I was CINO as I like to call it (Catholic in Name Only), a little more than 5 years ago. I was raised Catholic but the Church never seemed much of a priority. We were always encouraged to trust God and pray but as far as all of the “rules” and “fluff”, we didn’t really follow it. God was someone I called of in times of need but when things were going well, I could handle it on my own… thank ya very much.
I was Catholic but…
I had my unpure Times in college. I used birth control. I even was so depressed I almost took my own life. I didn’t understand a lot about Church. I didn’t think it was important to get married in the Church because there were too many hoops to jump through. I missed mass often because it wasn’t convenient and sleep seemed better. And the list went on.
We were attending a beautiful Cathedral in Shreveport, LA (because I picked the church because it was pretty – reallllllly mature of me, right?) and the priest at one mass (that I actually went to) mentioned the *obligation* of confession at least once a year. I went, it was during lent. Honestly, looking back – I had JUST had a lady part surgery and I was desperately hoping to become pregnant so I thought “confessing and starting to go to church would help”… Right? (Side note: that’s not how Jesus or the Church works… that’s called legalism – no good sistah… I’ll post more on avoiding the Catholic tendency to legalism later!)
Well, wouldn’t you know that that confession was life changing (as God’s graces always are!). In so many ways. I witnessed a mom of like.. a billion kids… lining them all up for confession and thought “wow, she makes them go every week? odd”. I had notes, I was terrified. I went into that confessional and let it all out. I cried, a lot. First from embarrassment of all the things I had done in my life and then from the miracle that is the sacrament of confession. And that ya’ll is what confession is about!! I poured my heart out, openly to a man sitting “in persona Christi” (acting as our physical representation of the actual presence of Christ) who pardoned me of my guilt and sins… its amazing. Check out Father Mike Schmitz and his video on the Power of Confession.
I was Catholic but… I didn’t understand the sacraments of confession and the Eucharist (communion). And once I got the “amazing grace” bug that Jesus laid on me in that confessional… it was on. Well, my headfirst dive into the Church that is.
So here I am writing to you. I am a Catholic who is imperfect, who doesn’t miss a mass not because its the “rules” but because Heaven quite literally comes down to earth at mass. Did y
ou know that?? Why would you ever miss when you grasp that?? (Cue blog post on “the Mass as Heaven on Earth – Theology for Busy Moms” coming soon!). I am a Catholic who loves, LOVES
the sacrament of confession instead of fearing it like I used to, who screws up a lot but… I am a Catholic who loves Jesus and His church. And He loves me back ya’ll.
I want to reach out to you – if you’re “A Catholic but…” you don’t go to mass, haven’t been to confession in years, don’t understand a Church teaching, disagree with something some Church leader said (BTW we don’t have to agree with everything the leaders or the Pope says… seriously) – PLEASE ask me. Ask someone. Reach out, ask me! I’ll answer – because “Jesus heard this and said to them [that], “Those who are well do not need a physician,[a]but the sick do. I did not come to call the righteous but sinners.” – Mark 2:17 aka…
After all, if you think that all of us mass go-ers are perfect then you’re not really understanding why Jesus came to save us all. We’re all so horribly horribly imperfect that we NEED him and He wants us to let Him in.
So what are your questions? What “why does the Church say this… why do we do that? What is the point of genuflecting?” questions do you have? I’m making it my mission to make Church teaching and theology accessible and easy to understand for busy moms. (or girls, wives, daughters, anyone!).
Comment your questions or go over to my Facebook page or Instagram @HolyHotMessMom and I’ll answer anything you throw at me!