Crossed The Tiber

An Evangelical Converts to Catholicism

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Location: Pennsylvania, United States

I was born into the Catholic faith. At 14, I was "born again" and found Jesus personally but lost His Church. After thirty years as an evangelical protestant, I have come full circle to find that He has been there all the time, in the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church. I wish others to find the beauty and truth of the Catholic faith as I have found.

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Springtime Is The Time For Conversion

Though God's spirit can move any heart at any time by grace to seek Him, the majority of that those who return to or join the Catholic faith do it in the Springtime. The most obvious reason is that the teaching and preparation program called the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults begins in September in each parish and concludes in the spring at the Easter Vigil. At the Vigil mass, the catechumen is baptized, confirmed, and received into the Church, and receives the Eucharist for the very first time. For those who are already baptized with a valid trinitarian baptism in a protestant faith, they will receive the sacraments of confirmation and the Eucharist on the Easter Vigil.

People can be received into the Church even without RCIA and at times other than the Easter Vigil if there are pressing circumstances, however the normative course of events is for an individual to be received in the Spring at the vigil mass of Easter.  My wife and I returned to the Church on April 30th in 2004. It was three weeks after Easter which was on April 11th. We did not need RCIA because we were both born Catholic and received our sacraments earlier in life. Actually, Deborah was never confirmed so about a year later Deborah was confirmed by the bishop at Pentecost Sunday 2005. We both did attend RCIA the following year just because we wanted to understand the process more fully and truly felt like converts, though we were born Catholic.

So it seems that God moved in such a way that it was in the Spring that we returned. My journey probably started a few years before this in little ways that I could not even perceive but it was the viewing of the Passion of the Christ in the beginning of Lent 2004 that culminated in my return on April 30th of that same year. The Creator of the Universe who makes the weather warm in spring and causes the flowers to bloom once again also pours out His grace in a special way at this time of year. Yes, springtime is the time for conversion.


Anonymous Nancy said...

I was baptized, confirmed and received the Body and Blood of Christ for the first time at the Easter Vigil on April 7, 2007, which makes this Saturday exactly 5 years to the day that I entered Holy Mother Church.

It was, is, and will remain to the day I die the happiest day of my life.

April 04, 2012 7:04 PM  
Blogger Russ Rentler, M.D. said...

Ah yes! Was a wonderful day for us too, but honestly had no idea it would turn into this "tragic love affair" as Chesterton called conversion.

April 05, 2012 6:30 PM  

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