Skip to content

December 30, 2012


Finally, the river has been crossed, a new harbor awaits…

We asked today to be allowed as Catechumens into the Antiochian Orthodox church, next sunday at the end of the Great Liturgy we will be accepted into the arms of the OCA and begin our journey to becoming fully Orthodox.

This has been a long and trying year for us, we left the Catholic Church, we stumbled at the strong middle eastern influence of the Orthodox liturgy, and our lives unraveled around us. At a time when we where between the shores of the Catholic faith and the Orthodox faith, I believe, God used circumstances to finally push us in the right direction. There is a huge sense of relief with our asking this morning, and the reception, along with the fellowship warmed our hearts.

I knew 5 minutes into the Liturgy this morning it was time, I signed to Michelle I was ready, and she told me later she felt the same calling. I don’t think that was coincidence,  I think it more divine providence. We have been off and on with the OCA, struggling with the liturgy and the aesthetic nature of it all, I tend to shy from piety because of my background in the Baptist faith.

But a month ago I met over lunch with Fr. Mark, and we discussed our hesitation and concerns, he shared the difficulty in his conversion which helped us to relax and just let it happen. We stopped worrying about getting the details right, and let the liturgy come to us naturally, it made all the difference and we are beginning to finally settle in. I have also realized that the piety I was so concerned about, is nothing of what I experienced while I was a Baptist. It was an internal change, but one that allowed me to start taking my guards down, which is a big step. Even while Catholic I never fully let my true self out, I was always on guard at some level, I never felt the familial comfort that we have found with Orthodoxy. That’s not a knock at all against the Catholic Church, I’m just pointing out the difference in how we have been received. I did a full year in the ministry of Lector, and it was an honor to be able to serve and pronounce the Gospel, and if we could heal the Schism, I would sign up again because serving to me, is the highest form of praise.

This journey will change us, I can already see that we are going to need a basic understanding of Greek to get through this, that’s a challenge, I could say it’s all Greek to me right now!, and very little in the liturgy or practice uses western names. They are in many ways very close to the liturgy of the Catholic Church, just with wildly different names. There are new Diet restrictions, weekly fasts, a more stringent rules leading up to the Eucharist. It’s all doable, but it’s new, and it will take time to adjust.

So we will start out the new year on a new set of journeys, from a new house, kids moving out, and into a new and wonderful faith.

2013’s going to be a ringer of a year!!!

Bring it on!

Read more from Church, Conversion, Faith
1 Comment Post a comment
  1. Dec 30 2012

    Paul, be assured of my prayers for you and your wife. I also pray the schism will be healed sooner rather than later. I wrote some on my historical fiction book today that covers the events of 1054 AD…my small contribution (hopefully) to the healing one day. :)


Share your thoughts, post a comment.


Note: HTML is allowed. Your email address will never be published.

Subscribe to comments