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.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Catholicism vs Protestantism Philosophy of Life

My wife, also a convert, wrote this after contemplating how her view of life changed as a Catholic. 

   Protestantism - Earthly life is painful and quickly passing away.  People are wretched and sinful.  But I have God to help me get through until I die, at which time I will go directly to heaven and never have any connection to this dreadful existence again.

    Catholicism - Earthly life, though at times painful is always filled with goodness and beauty because God created it and is in the midst of it.  People are created in the image of God and therefore have the potential for infinite goodness.  As we walk through this life with God we cooperate with Him by offering up our pain and giving thanks always and everywhere until the day we die; at which time we hope to spend eternity with Him, always connected to those we love in heaven and on earth.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

The Eucharist and Christmas

                                    (our manger before Christmas sans the baby Jesus)


                                        This is a little play I wrote a few years ago.


The setting: A stable outside the forgotten little town of Bethlehem (House of Bread*). Shepherds and their families and kings from the east as well as a few other curious onlookers stare at a newborn wrapped in coarse linen in a feeding trough for animals. A bright star overhead illuminates the otherwise dark night.
Shepherd boy, while yawning, says to his father: “Just looks like a baby boy to me, can’t we go home now? I'm cold!”
Father to boy: “ Thomas, the angels in the field said something about a Savior. Let’s just stay awhile.”
Boy: How could a Savior and King look and.... yecch!… smell like a little baby? He looks just like any other baby to me!”
King from the Orient, kneeling before the makeshift crib says with a whisper: “Shhh, don’t you know the ancient prophecies? God would come to us, to live among us, through a virgin’s womb.
Balthasar looking at the Child then raising his eyes to heaven says: The God of Israel has chosen this night to redeem us. Our Savior and King has come to us as a little child.


33 years later.

Setting: Jerusalem at Passover. The city is buzzing with the noise of pilgrims and bristling under the Roman occupation.
At the meal of the Passover, Jesus surrounded by his companions prays the blessing. As he breaks the bread he stretches out his hand holding the bread saying:
“Take this and eat. This is my body….”
One of the twelve disciples leans over to another and says under his breath;
“How can this be? It looks just like any other piece of bread to me? How can He give us His body to eat?
The disciple whom Jesus loved said to him: "Thomas, don't you remember last year when he told us He would give us his body to eat and His blood to drink?
Then as supper was ended, Jesus took the cup and gave it to his disciples saying:
"This is my blood of the new testament, which shall be shed for many…"


Just as Christ came to us in the improbable form of a human baby, He continues to abide with us in the equally preposterous “breaking of the bread.” God chose the common things of this world to reveal Himself. First, a baby born in Bethlehem and then bread and common table wine. As we approach the Lord’s Table at Midnight Mass this Christmas Eve, our mind says, it just looks like a piece of bread but our heart says, "Jesus, bread of life, you have come to abide with me this night."

Thursday, December 03, 2015

Catholics Are Praying People!

A few years ago I posted my plans to make a homemade prie deu, which is a kneeler. Catholics understand the importance of physical gestures in their worship once again illustrating the incarnational principle that God uses the physical things of earth to lead us to the things of heaven, even our liturgical gestures of kneeling and genuflection, applying the sign of the cross etc. One of my many humbling experiences as a new Catholic was discovering I could not pray an entire rosary on my knees! I learned quickly that many Catholics much older and "out of shape" than I could pray the entire rosary , which takes about 17-20 minutes on their knees. I had back spasms, knee pain, whatever. Over time, however, it became easier for me to kneel and in especially mass during the Eucharistic prayer I have no problem anymore maintaining that posture of kneeling. Pity the Haitians and others in the third world without the cushioned kneelers that us soft "first worlders" demand!
    So I decided to build a kneeler for my prayer room at home. I searched the internet and found kits and plans but the costs were high so I decided to improvise my own. I later posted the plans on this post. Over the years, that blog post has gotten daily hits far in excess of my other blog posts. My not so scientific conclusion is that Catholics are indeed, praying people!