Sometimes when people want to be friends with me I think “really? me?” and can’t quite believe it. But that’s not what I want to write about.
Yesterday I watched three people be baptized into the Catholic Church, and two more make their profession of Faith before all five were confirmed, thus completing their full initiation. They were young and by all observation “normal” people. They decided on their own to join the Church. It’s hard not to think “really? us?”
Because like any big family we fight a lot, sometimes in public. We have opinions and we really, really care about them, sometimes so much that we don’t treat each other as well as we should. We have “old-fashioned” beliefs that are out of mainstream. We are called to welcome the alien, care for the vulnerable, commit ourselves to prayer, use our sexuality appropriately, forgive the sinner, and respect the dignity of every human being. Every. Single. One.
Still, for reasons I can’t understand, five more joined our merry band last night. They walked to the back of the church, to the font, were baptized, and returned to front of the sanctuary transformed. I don’t understand how water and words show grace to us. I don’t understand how oil seals us with the Holy Spirit. I don’t understand how or why God saves us and draws us in.
A belief system in which God only acts in ways we can understand would be boring, I suppose. Maybe there are other things I don’t understand which are also conduits of grace.
(To read about last year’s RCIA liturgy, involving spilled cups of water and high drama, click here)
Deut. 29 The secret things belong to the LORD our God, but the things revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may follow all the words of this law.
Awwh… the awesomeness, greatness, and unfathomable God we serve and love.
What the Spirit does in our lives is both visible and invisible… like the wind in the trees. But the fact that God called out to 5 young people, and they answered the call, took action, and believed is nothing but a miracle! (that being something accomplished by the divine). For it is no action of our own that can turn hearts, mend souls, and forgive sin, but the action of the Father, Son, and Spirit all in one together who bring the lost to his side.
Thank you for the “Good News” of new brethren… Welcome them to the family for us!
Great reference! Glad to share such good news. It is inspiring and indeed miraculous.