Why I Remain Catholic

I’m responding to a question posted by Elizabeth Scalia at Patheos: Why do you remain Catholic?

And all I can think of is: how can I not?

Alleluia

I feel like being a Catholic is in my DNA.

I’m not a convert, and I’ve heard people say that cradle Catholics (like me) never made that conscious choice that a convert might have made.

But I beg to differ.

I make that choice every single Sunday when I go to Mass.

I make that choice every single time I receive the Eucharist: the Body, Blood, soul and divinity of Jesus.

I make that choice when I pray the Liturgy of the Hours, when I attend gatherings of the Secular Franciscans, when I play music and sing at Mass, when I pray for someone in need.

Being a Catholic–and, even more than that, being a Catholic and a Franciscan–is the air I breathe. It’s a part of me that I cannot separate out.

I can’t point to some earth-shattering moment when I knew this was the right thing for me.

It just is.

I’ve visited other churches, for funerals or weddings–and something is missing. That something, the Real Presence, is what makes Catholicism stand apart.

I didn’t make one conscious choice–but there have been thousands of little choices, every week, every day, that keep me in my Church. And I am thankful for the grace that helps me to make those little choices.

Image by Barb Szyszkiewicz, OFS: Empty Tomb at St. Casimir Church, Riverside, NJ (Easter 2007). All rights reserved.