Last Updated: Tuesday - 01/04/2011
April 9, 2001
Coming soon: The most special Easter of our lives
DAISY WITHERELL DÉRY
SPECIAL TO THE WCR
Easter is coming. For catechumens and candidates in the RCIA, this will undoubtedly be the most special Easter of their lives.
Along with other candidates and catechumens in Edmonton and across the world, the three of us in the St-Thomas d'Aquin Parish RCIA will become official members of the Catholic Church at the Easter Vigil on April 14.
No longer will we remain seated as everyone else rises to participate in the Eucharist. No longer will we face preparing our children for sacraments we have never experienced ourselves. No longer will we feel we do not completely belong.
Instead, we will be welcoming the days of greater family unity, of a greater relationship with God and of truly belonging to the Catholic community we have come to know and which has come to know us.
After the long preparation, it is exciting that it is almost over. It has only been seven months since we began in the RCIA, but that is only the formal preparation. We have been preparing ourselves for years for this.
I, personally, have spent 10 years being pulled in this direction, a little more than two of them actually preparing to become Catholic. Prior to joining the RCIA, I was more or less on a spiritual path by myself. I spent years studying different branches of Christianity and praying to God as to where the proper place for me was. But it was all done alone.
Since last September, my path has converged with others. We have had weekly meetings to discuss the Sunday readings to understand their meaning and application to our lives. We have also had various themes such as discernment, prayer, Baptism and our image of God, and have looked at various teachings of the Catholic Church.
We have very often come to the conclusion that what it all comes down to is love: love God, love ourselves, love everyone else. But most of all, we have come to know that God's love for us is completely unconditional. These meetings have been vital to our spiritual growth and our preparation.
Recently we have passed through the scrutinies, where we were presented with the Apostles' Creed and the Lord's Prayer. These scrutinies have also been a time of letting go of the things that are holding us back in areas of personal and spiritual growth, and encouraging that which is good and will help us move forward. And, of course, to have us as ready as possible for entrance into the Church.
As the Easter Vigil approaches, I wonder what I will do to continue my spiritual growth once we stop our weekly meetings. I wonder if being baptized, confirmed and participating in the Eucharist will feel like graduation or marriage, an initial feeling of uncertainty that the event has actually taken place.
I wonder how long will it take for me to feel that I am Catholic. I wonder if I will ever remember the Apostles' Creed. I wonder what path lies before me and what I will be called to do next. I can only imagine that it will be even better than what I have been called to do until now.
Easter is coming. And what a wondrous one it will be.
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