I am the father of six children, two boys and four girls. I also have 13 grandchildren and one great-granddaughter. About two months after my wife and I celebrated our 43 wedding anniversary, she passed away. Her health had been failing the previous five months. Since her passing, I met a friend on a pilgrimage to Poland and Italy, and we have become a couple. A good Catholic girl she is, also a member of St. Charles Borromeo Parish. Whether you are watching a play, a movie or TV, it is always better beside the one you love.
Why I am a Catholic:
I’m considered a cradle Catholic. I was baptized about a week after I was born. I attended Catholic grade and high school and in grade school I was an altar boy. That was pre- Vatican II, so you had to learn all the responses in Latin. After Vatican II, the Catholic Church became more meaningful to me. I was able to grow in faith when we changed from observers to participants. Somewhere in that time period, I chose to stay a Catholic because I wanted to, not because I had to (such as pressure from parents or family).
How I live my faith:
Just going to Sunday Mass, making a monetary contribution, and taking home a bulletin is about the minimum one can do to be a practicing Catholic. I did that for a while, but was in fact, going backwards, not ahead.
I found that getting involved with various parish groups, attending daily Mass as much as possible, and visits to the Blessed Sacrament (Adoration) strengthened my faith. Working with the RCIA group the past several years has opened my eyes and given me new vision on how to live my life more like Christ. With questions that get asked in the class, I think to myself--why didn’t I think of that? I also think sometimes, what if I was born into a non-Catholic family? Would I be in this class to become a Catholic? I am thankful, and thank the Lord Jesus Christ every day for life. I can stand up, I can walk, and I thank Him for small things that make my life worth living.
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