Sunday, September 07, 2003


It appears that I will be participating, at least to some limited extent, in the RCIA program in my parish this year. We have a new DRE in the parish and except for me and one other, there’s an entirely new team. I am looking forward to it, although I will not be able to be involved every week between now and Easter Vigil.

The groups in the past year or two come to the Church as the result of a conversion, although not from having been Protestant. In other words, they are not necessarily Protestants who have come to a conversion experience; they are coming to the Church with little, if any, previous exposure to the faith. This is not the typical background for an RCIA candidate. I wonder if this new way of coming to the faith represents a trend around the country, but I think it somewhat remarkable. It seems that, with the cultural environment being what it is, especially here in Colorado Springs, that most people would take the easier approach and join an evangelical Christian church, of which there are many here in the Springs. Catholics are not known for their evangelization skills. Make no mistake, I think this is a wonderful and heartening trend, but it strikes me as a bit odd.

Around this time of year, as RCIA begins in most parishes (will we ever get away from the "school year" model?), I think back to my own conversion to the Church. It was, in many ways serendipitous and, I am convinced, that it was the work of the Holy Spirit. Left to my own devices, I would never have found my way to Rome; I simply could not have done it on my own. It was really rather easy, I didn’t really even begin learning Church doctrine until after I had received the Sacraments; I just knew God was leading me to the Church. There were a few difficult times, times when I thought I must be crazy, my coming from a Scots Presbyterian background and all. But, I pressed on, and as I look back, I realize it could only have been the Spirit at work.

So, I guess, in some ways, my own experience is not all that much different from that of most RCIA "classes". Perhaps, the Holy Spirit is working to build His Church and we all need to be reminded that the gates of hell shall not prevail against it -- even with the likes of me among its members.
While ile the trial period continues this post also appears at The 7 Habitus on Typepad.

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