Thursday, October 21, 2010

Faith Journey...Membership Moments

Here's an example with how it is with one of our new members, and why membership is important to so many...here you can have a sense of belonging...of love and of compassion. Here at St. Peter's, we're trying to be a "House of Prayer for ALL People"~

From Debbie...
I first came to St.Peter's back in 2009 for the Ham and Bean Supper. The first thing I noticed was that everyone had a smile on their face and they truly wanted to be there and welcome you. I got to meet a lot of great people there that night but one in particular was a real character. This gentleman came up to our table and wanted to know if I would be his "criminal" for the Sunday service.I didn't know who he was but I just got the sense that this was where I was suppose to be and this was the place I was looking for.

I was always brought up to respect your elders and that religion was the most important thing in your life. I went to church on Sunday and found relief in the sermons and songs. You see I was put up for adoption when I was 5 my mother I found out later in life made it very clear that I was to be put into a family that would raise me in a Catholic environment. So I guess you could say church was always in my DNA. I was always the "lost" child I never quite fit into school friends or even in the family. The only place I truly felt that I belonged was in church. I always felt alive when the songs started and when the priest started his sermon even when I thought he was long winded.
I found myself drifting away from the church for different reasons but the last straw was when I came to the realization that I was a lesbian and that the church didn't want me. I didn't understand why they didn't want me I was brought up with the belief that we were all made in God's image so what was wrong with me? I was a child of God but yet I wasn't welcomed in His house anymore because of who I loved.

So I went on a journey of discovering different outlets to re-connect with the church. I wasn't very successful at it. I always felt that something was missing this church had one thing but not another or it was not a comfortable feeling coming from the people there. I was beginning to think I was never going to find a church I would like. But then came the Ham and Bean Supper and who would have thought that would be the ticket to finding my way back to the church. And who would have thought that by saying "yes" to a Simple Parish Priest I would at long last find my church and a new family. My favorite saying here at St.Peter's is that ALL are welcomed here and it doesn't matter how long it's been since you walked into a church we will still welcome you and your family. Come take a leap of faith like me you'll be glad you did.

God Bless you Debbie...and all of you out there who are looking for the embrace of God in a sometimes chilly world.
Fr. Paul

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