Friday, October 12, 2012

7 Quick Takes- New Church Addition


Welcome to The Year of Faith! I thought I would celebrate by blogging about our recent church experiences for my quick takes this week!

--- 1 ---
After a few months of debating whether to switch from the Cathedral to our local church, we finally officially made the dive. It was really hard for us for many reasons. I had been attending the Cathedral since I first moved here over 3 years ago. It was the first thing I really 'did' in my new city, and I could walk there from my first apartment. I knew I would love to get married there the first time I stepped inside. Then I met Steven and we went through RCIA together there, he converted there, and we got married there. So you can see why we would both be very emotionally attached to that church! Plus... it is just beautiful and has that Catholic church feel that so many churches lack these days. 

--- 2 ---
We discussed it over and over again for about two months and both just had this nagging feeling that we should join our local church, St Mary, Mother of the Church. It's SO close to our new house and we felt like we needed to support our local parish. We also loved the community feel there. Since it doesn't have the massive attendance that the Cathedral has, you actually see people over and over! Our Cathedral is the smallest in the contiguous US so you feel like there is community by the intimate size... but there are so many masses that you hardly ever recognize a face. We had someone recognize us in when we were out to eat after the second time we went to St.  Mary's, and that felt so nice!

--- 3 ---
So even though we both felt a bit unsure, we called the Cathedral to let them know and then signed up as parishioners with St. Mary's. And then so many little things began to happen that we feel like was really God letting us know that we are where He wants us to be. If it wasn't so cool, it would be downright creepy!

--- 4 ---
First, our neighbor who we have gotten to know because we ran into her at a homeowner's co-op, then at Cathedral, and then her and I realized we attend the same (small, far away) women's group... has switched back to St. Mary's! Neither she nor I knew the other person was switching, yet we switched the same week. So we still both go to the same church, but a different church than we both went to two weeks ago haha!

Our humble little church :)

--- 5 ---
You know how sometimes you just feel like the homily and/or readings were meant for you? Well the entire Mass last week felt like it was meant for us. The readings were about marriage, and the homily was a WONDERFUL message about Catholic sexual teaching. Most priests I've had either avoid it, water it down, or are completely PC about it. Our new priest laid it out there, and I was *that* much more excited that he is our new priest!

--- 6 ---
The same night (last Saturday night) at Mass, the cutest thing happened to us (and this relates back to our love of the community feel there). We arrived to Mass with quite a bit of time to spare. Steven would put his arm around me and then his arm would fall asleep, so he would take it back. After a few times of that, this precious old man behind me tapped my shoulder and said "It's ok to hug in church. We've been married 52 years and have snuggled a lot in church". I guess he thought I had been telling Steven to quit putting his arm around me! I seriously almost melted into a puddle right there in the pew. Everyone at the Cathedral was generally nice, but no one ever talked to us like that. There wasn't much talking outside of the peace be with you. *love!*
--- 7 ---
And last but not least, they hold a blood drive at the church every 3-4 months. Why is that awesome? Because as much as I feel like I should give blood because I can give blood, I am really lazy about it. Before I moved here, one of my friends and I had a standing date for every other month. We'd give blood and then go out to dinner. When I moved here, I intended to continue, but since I would go alone, I quickly got out of the habit and was only giving once a YEAR. So when I saw there was a blood drive last month at the church, I signed up. It's so close to home since it's at the church; how could I not go? Then when I was there, they asked me to give double red cells because my blood type is somewhat rare, which I did (weird experience, but cool!). With double red cells you can only give every 112 days instead of every 60. When is St. Mary's next blood drive? About 118 days away! So I signed up again. I'm so thrilled they offer this opportunity for me to give back, especially after I have been so lazy and bad about it the last 3 years!

So basically.... I love our new church and I'm really glad we trusted that this was where we should be!


Bonus take: Yeah, I just can't shut up today! Did you know that yesterday began The Year of Faith? Ironically it's like 13.5 months.Well one awesome thing (of many) going on is that you can read the Catechism in that year! By signing up here, you will get a daily email with the section to read for that day. Can't get any easier than that! If you want to but are intimidated, remember that if you get behind they will all be in your email, so you can catch back up! And.... 27,000 people are doing it... don't miss your chance to be a part of that! *PSA over*

For more Quick Takes, visit Conversion Diary!

21 comments:

  1. I'm glad you are liking your new church! The church I go to now is HUGE (nothing at all like the tiny one in Ada Jim and I used to go to), but I sometimes see familiar faces. I'm not sure where we'll go once we move, but I'm excited!
    And this will probably be the best year of faith ever with converting and getting married. Just sayin :)

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    1. You are so right... awesome year for your faith!

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  2. So happy you like your new church! Also, good on you for giving blood! I used to giver ever chance I could but since 3rd year has started I've been pretty shitty about it. Also are you O negative? Because if so that's even more awesome that you give!

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    1. I'm B- (which explains a lot about my general mood!), but the lady said double red cells from that type is needed because it's not a super common blood type... something about having to mix two types together if they don't have enough of the B- ones? I have no clue.

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  3. #7 Ughh... I used to give blood a lot and now I haven't been for quite some time....

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    1. If I don't make an appointment, I don't go, so try making an appointment. Or setting up a reward for yourself, like if you go, you get a special dessert after :). I'm not above bribing myself!

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  4. How awesome! That comment IS just the sweetest! We just moved to a much bigger church in our new city, and I do miss our humble little country church where everyone knew everyone and they'd been there for 30+ years. A community like that is so special.

    Thanks for the bonus take, I'm now pretty much convinced that yes, I CAN make it through the enter CCC :)

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    1. Haha I'm nervous about getting through it, but I have the accountability of Steven doing it too :).

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  5. It's amazing finding your home - we felt like that at our current synagogue compared to the last one. It's moderate-sized, with enough attendance to make it a true community (the first one we tried had 15 people on what we were told was a busy day...) but small enough that people already recognize us and greet us - and know where we sit, lol. It makes it so much more comfortable for shy people like us.

    What is your blood type? I'm AB+, the universal recipient. So I can take from anyone but can only give to other AB+ people. Which makes me feel slightly less guilty that I can't stomach giving blood. But I still feel guilty. I did it at Converse for the 9/11 drive when I was 18, and was set on doing it whenever I could, but then felt so psychologically nauseous over it that I haven't been able to do it again. It was torturous. I keep trying to make myself get over it - but 11 years later it hasn't happened yet. :(

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    1. I'm surprised it bothers you! I didn't peg you for a nervous blood giver :P.

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    2. I'm surprised you're B-, Bear. Is that even possible if Dad and I are both +? And why wouldn't you have been a "blue baby" when you were born? All this is too confusing to me - I don't remember my Biology (and only barely passed it as it was :-)

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  6. I love having a parish community. It is great to see the same faces week after week. And I bet it will make the times you do visit the Cathedral even more special.

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    1. That's true! They offer some things our church doesn't, like taize prayer, so it will be really special when we go back for things like that!

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  7. I love when you have a good community feel at your parish! Our parish is large (appx. 8000 families, I think). But we attend the Latin Mass (which my husband has always loved, but it took me a while to come around to) which has it's own little community. I love it! The same families come week after week and everyone knows everyone else.
    As for giving blood the whole idea of it freaks me out. A needle in my arm for how long? Also, I'm AB+, so like Rachel, I try to use that to make me feel a little less guilty for not doing it. And I nearly pass out when they take only a couple tubes of blood for regular blood work so I'm pretty sure me giving blood wouldn't be a pretty sight.

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    1. You know, I was SUPER scared about giving blood and refused for a few years. Then one day I finally got up the guts and I swear it isn't as bad as you think it will be. The needle in your arm is a piece of cake. I have them cover it (they usually do anyway) because I don't want to see it, and then it's pretty easy to pretend it's not there. Of course there is a pinch when it goes in, but nothing worse than a shot (usually not even as bad).

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    2. We attended one Latin mass and loved it (not the AM time though :)). It is beautiful and mystic.

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  8. It is great to find a parish with a good community where you actually recognize people. We attend a small parish -- small enough that you notice new people, but not so tiny and I love it. We don't have blood drives there though. It has been years (and years and years) since I gave blood, and I'm not even sure what the rules are when breast-feeding.

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    1. I so agree on the size- small but not too small!

      They never ask me if I'm pregnant, breastfeeding, etc so I think it's just a matter of if your iron is high enough (which they check regardless).

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  9. My parents are in the Raleigh Diocese as well. They are actually none too happy about the push to build a new Cathedral. Their church comfortably fits 120 people. Our church in OH was intended to be a Cathedral in a new diocese that was never created and it, I believe the largest in the Cincinnati Diocese.

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    1. You know, I was really against for a while, too. But then I thought about the fact that a Cathedral is supposed to serve the diocese. We can't have any special masses because there isn't nearly enough seating. There are no common spaces for socializing for the parishioners. The building isn't up to code so there is no handicapped accessible restroom.... I could go on. I looooove the Cathedral and I'm sad to see Sacred Heart become just a chapel (rather than its own parish), but I completely see the need for a space that actually serves the parishioners, and especially the diocese. But yes, we are sad about it and that helped us make the decision to move to our local parish, actually, since we know Sacred Heart will be a shadow of its former self in a few years. What church do your parents attend?

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  10. I am so, so glad you love your new church! I just love the story about the older couple behind you. :)

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