Our journey to the Lord usually begins with how our parents raised us and in what faith they practiced. The Lord calls each of us in different ways and at different times into new experiences of life with him. Many Christians discover the history of the Church and its tradition which has been lived out since Jesus Christ’s founding of it upon his death on the cross.
We profess one baptism for the forgiveness of sins. Therefore, if you have begun your life with Christ in a Protestant, Evangelical, or Fundamentalist tradition, there is a path back home to the Catholic Church.
Many people have been participating in the Catholic Church for years, but have never become Catholic by receiving the Sacraments of Initiation. Some people have newly met a friend who is Catholic and are curious. Others have felt a call out of the world to something different, but haven’t practiced any faith for most of their lives. For all these cases and more, coming into the Church is an individually-tailored experience. It involves:
- Scripture: the stories of God’s people
- Teaching: what Catholics believe
- Prayer: how we develop our relationship with God
- Liturgy: how the community worships
- Mission: how we live out what we believe
Receiving the Sacraments
The moment of coming back home to The Church is called Reception into Full Communion and is celebrated at St. Anne at different high feasts (Solemnities) throughout the year. Often these are Epiphany (January), Divine Mercy Sunday (March or April), Pentecost (May or June), and the Solemnity of Jesus Christ King of the Universe (November). Leading up to that moment, there are two rites whcih mark progress in the spiritual journey: Rite of Welcome and Call to Continuing Conversion, which are celebrated throughout the year.
Carrying with the receipt of the sacraments of Reconciliation (which precedes the others), Confirmation, and Holy Communion, is an oath and profession. A candidate proclaims “I belive and profess all that the holy Catholic Church believes, teaches, and proclaims, to be revealed by God.” The candidate professes the ancient Nicene Creed with the worshiping community. These formulas of oath-taking and profession serve as litmus test for readiness. If we aren’t ready to understand and proclaim these things, then we have more journeying to do. Living out the faith is a lifelong journey of yearning and learning.
Depending on your particular journey in the faith, this could take as little as a month or over a year. Everyone is at a different place in life and in their relationship with God.
No One Walks Alone
In preparing to return home to the Holy Catholic Church, we never walk alone. A Sponsor (like a Godparent) walks with us. This companion arises from your own life as a witness to the faith, having already walked with you part of the way, or can be appointed from among our parishioners who have volunteered to act in this role. Either way, this relationship is one of journeying together and can be life long.
For More Information, Contact
Director of Faith Formation
(276) 669-8200 x2003