Last Updated: Tuesday - 01/04/2011
April 30, 2001
I feel fulfilled by my entry into the Church(This is the last of three articles written by former catechumen Daisy Dery of Edmonton's St. Thomas d'Aquin Parish as she awaited her entry into the Catholic Church at Easter.)
DAISY WITHERELL DERY
SPECIAL TO THE WCR
EDMONTON — When I was a child, church did not play a big role in my life. The only times I ever went to church were when we visited my Catholic grandparents (which was not very often) or when my mother was away on business and I attended Sunday school with friends. This lack of church has, I believe, been a wonderful blessing in my life.
I have seen and known people who have grown up in a church only to leave it when they reached adolescence or adulthood. Some left religion altogether while others changed denominations. I cannot help but wonder how many left due to a dullness of routine, in search for greater spirituality and life.
In my case, I have done somewhat the opposite: I have left the world of "unreligion" for a place where I feel I can grow spiritually. I am fortunate in that, at an age when most seem to have left religion behind and are feeling a void, I am entering into religion and finding myself filled.
At the Easter Vigil, I was baptized along with my infant son and my nephew, who is now my godson. I was confirmed along with the other two women in my RCIA (one of whom is my sister-in-law, mother of my godson). And I had my First Communion.
The sacraments themselves happened so quickly, it somehow did not seem real. The days that have passed since then have helped me to reflect on and understand the experience more, but it will take more time before I feel like anything has really changed. That is, before I really feel Catholic.
The RCIA, however, is not over. While the other two women and I in the RCIA are eager to have our weekly meetings over with, I understand the need to continue meeting until Pentecost. It would be very easy to let the meaning and import of our recent sacramental celebrations slip away and to simply enter the routine we may see around us.
Our meetings until Pentecost are aimed at helping us better integrate into the Church and to see how we might participate, instead of just being there. These meetings will undoubtedly help us reach a state of not only knowing but also feeling that we are indeed Catholic.
The people in our RCIA team have been a wonderful blessing. They have proven themselves to be people who are not content to stick to the letter of the law and routine, but to stick with the spirit and grow.
Through the RCIA, I have been encouraged weekly to look beyond what is presented before me and to go for a deeper understanding. Not only that, I have seen that it is possible to continually grow in the Church, that there can always be newness if I am willing to see it.
What lies before me now? I think my greatest challenge at the moment is to live a growing faith and ensure that my children experience their faith as alive and growing as well. I was continually growing spiritually through my unchurched years, how much more important it is that I do so now.
I am now Catholic, even though I do not yet completely feel it. What I do feel, however, is that I am home.
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