Well, this weekend I became Catholic officially and it is really really exciting. I feel great about the decision God has called me to make. I stayed with Andy’s awesome family this weekend and spent a lot of time with Megan’s super awesome family. On Friday night, Andy, Megan, and I went to the Tenebrae service at St. Mary’s which was really cool. The have 8 or so lit candles on the altar and as we sing each of seven Psalms they extinguish one candle until there is one candle left. Then they turned off all the lights and removed the candle from the sanctuary so it was completley dark. It symbolized Christ’s death on the cross. Then everyone started making as much noise as possible by banging hymnals on the pews. It was really eerie and just made this pit in your stomach drop. But then they eventually brought the candle back in as Christ was resurrected.
But, as you know, the important day was Saturday. Andy and I started the day by going to a retreat, but it was kind of lame. All we did was go over the scripture readings that were going to take place at the Vigil Mass. Then at the Mass as Fr. Steve was talking about me before my Baptism, he had thought that I was the one marrying Megan and not Andy. Well me, Josh, Andy, and Megan all kind of freaked out and then Fr. Steve was pretty embarassed and everyone laughed for a bit. Regardless, it was still the most serious and best moment of my life so far. I can’t tell you how meaningful Baptism is, to know that at that moment your past mistakes are wiped clean, that you truly are a new creation. Then a few minutes later I was confirmed, sealed with the Holy Spirit, a member in full communion with the ancient Roman Catholic Church.
We didn’t get to be confirmed with Saint names, but I picked one anyways, just because. I picked Paul just because I see so many similiarities between his conversion and mine (the whole persecutor joins the one he persecuted) and because of his missionary mindset and that I still want to do missions sometime.
It was a really good weekend. I’ve had a few people express concern on facebook about my Catholicism, but what’s new? I try to explain to them how it came to happen and hope that God will soften their views. I suppose I have a lifetime of this kind of stuff ahead of me now, but I really don’t care because God is good and my faith in him has only been deepened.