Friday, April 6, 2012
Welcome, New Catholics!
As I celebrate the 10th anniversary of my own reception into the Catholic Church, I wish to say to all new converts this year:
Welcome, new Catholics!
On Monday’s “Vortex” episode, Michael Voris shared a letter he wrote to a young man who is being received into the Catholic Church this Easter (see the video below).
I think it’s worth sharing, and I’ll bet if you wanted to “borrow” some of these words to put into your own letter of welcome to a new convert, Michael Voris won’t mind.
First off, congratulations on your acceptance into the One True Church of Our Blessed Lord. Your path to salvation has become much less cumbersome and you will soon begin to excel even more rapidly in the spiritual life. My most heartfelt ‘welcome home’ to you.
When you and I first had occasion to meet last year, I felt sure that a young man who asked so many questions, must want to be very certain. Certitude is an admirable quality – it is an expression of the intellect’s grasping and taking possession of something. This is a necessary ingredient for your apprehension of the Faith.
However, even more important is that your knowledge now leads you into the mystery of Faith; it is here that Our Lord works His greatest actions in your life. Our minds can only comprehend so much, before words and our natural thought process begins to fail us. We cannot get our minds around the Divine, but we CAN fill our minds with truth and so invite the Divine to wrap itself around our minds. When Our Lord says, “know the truth and the truth will make you free”, this is what He is saying. You now know the truth, and always remember, that in the last analysis, the Truth is a person, not a concept.
We come to know THE Truth, by learning truths. They are, after all just little reflections of Him, some greater, others lesser, but all reflections of Him. When we come to learn, judge, weigh and accept theological truths, so as to then commit our selves, our very selves to Him, then He does indeed make us free.
Freedom is the greatest gift we have as men. With it, we can choose the Divine – in fact, that is the sole purpose of freedom, to choose to be with God. Any other choice limits our freedom and eventually kills it as we become trapped in sin and commit little acts of spiritual suicide. What our Loving Father desires for us is the light of freedom, His freedom, where we can stand fast caught up in the glory of the life of the Holy Trinity; where we can be in possession of God and within our capacity, love Him as He loves Himself.
The beginning of this process will now unfold for you as you receive Him in Holy Communion, as you meet Him in the Sacrament of Confession, for you will more than likely fall in the future and you may rest assured that this remedy is always available to you, prepared in fact for you, so you may experience anew, the joy of coming home to Him.
You now belong to the Church with countless ranks of angels and saints and martyrs flung far and wide not only through history, but also in Eternity. You have put on the Armor of God as St. Paul, a convert himself did and told you too as well. You have come to the Church personally established by the Second Person of the Holy Trinity to lead all men into sacred communion with the First and Third members as well.
You will be united not only in spirit, but also in the flesh as you receive from the altar His Body and Blood many times over in your life. In this, your own flesh will be prepared to be raised and glorified and brought to the home prepared for it from the foundation of the world.
body and drinks my blood abides in Me and I will raise him up on the last day.” Having
been prepared to come into the Church, you are now being prepared to enter into Heaven.
Always stay strong in the Faith. This is not the end of a journey, although it is the end of the first steps. It is the continuation and unfolding of what God has desired for you personally before he threw the heavens into place and set the galaxies ablaze. Before the world came to be, He willed, with infinite longing that you be with Him and because you sought Him in what were then, unknown ways, through your love and desire to know the truth, you found THE Truth. And now he has prepared the path for you to enter into His life as fully as possible.
Welcome home John. Heaven has been waiting for you.
GOD Bless you and keep you.