Sunday, January 23, 2011

Ecumenism: through the eyes of a Protestant Preacher's Kid Turned Catholic

I went to the Ecumenical prayer service for Christian Unity today. Even with the bad weather, the parishioners at our parish were well represented. There was one Baptist pastor, one UCC pastor (but ordained Baptist), one UM pastor and our parish priest.

I realize that I like Protestant ministers. I really, really like them. I see them, and I can't help but think of my dad, the Protestant minister. Simultaneously, I find myself overwhelmed by the great divide and the burning desire within me to be able to share in a meaningful way what I have come to love and cherish in the Catholic Church. But this isn't the place for that. This is a not a moment for convincing words or arguments; it is a moment for prayer. Father, make us one.

I feel caught between what is and what should be. I feel the pain of it. I literally ache for the remedy.

As I stood and prayed - and sat and prayed - and stood and prayed again, I felt fully a Preacher's Kid and fully a Roman Catholic. It was like being the child of divorced parents, and you finally have them in the room together. And that is wonderful, but your heart wants more. Your heart wants full reconciliation between those you love so dearly.

I wanted to cry over what isn't.

But I also wanted to thank God for even this much.

It is a cross. A kind of standing-in-the-gap and seeing both ledges. One, I love deeply because I was raised there and I can see on the faces of those pastors my own father's face. The other, I love deeply because it is my Home and I see the full helping of goodness laid out before me - all that I share here and all that I keep quiet in my heart.

So I stand here, and lift high this cross - lifting it up to the Cross of Christ. I give it to you, oh God.

Make us one, as you Father are one with the Son.

So that the world will know Jesus.

John 17


No comments:

Post a Comment