Monday, July 26, 2010

A small step toward the Catholic Church

A shot of Monte Cassino shrine at St. Meinrad Archabbey in southern Indiana. That's where my doubts and troubles over Protestant doctrines boiled over and for the first time I turned a corner toward the Catholic Faith. Actually, it was in the large field just north of the picture here, and it was in November. Even at that southerly location, by then most of the leaves were down, and you could see through the empty branches for miles from the top of the hill. It was cold, had rained earlier, and was overcast - just the type of day I love.

I sat, and sat, and sat, and sat. I just sat, wrapped up in my coat, and thought like Pooh, thinking and thinking. There was no real revelation or anything, no angel touched down and put a coal on my lips. No light broke through the clouds. But I remember thinking about what it was to be Catholic. I was just sitting, and as any Baptist minister knows, that could get you in trouble. Baptist ministers don't sit - they do. Something. Anything. But they do. And there I had sat next to a line of small trees in the middle of an empty field just south of a Catholic shrine for I don't know how many hours.

When I finally came around to realize it was time to get back for supper, I had to chuckle at the thought of just sitting there thinking. How that was so far from a Baptist thing to do. But then it dawned on me as I went to my car: I wondered if it might have been a very Catholic thing to do, which is why in that Catholic setting, I ended up doing it. As I said, no big revelation or anything. But the first little, tiny, baby step toward looking from the troubles and doubts I had developed about Protestantism, to glancing toward Rome. More some other time.

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