Recently I’ve discovered Catholic radio. For a few months now, whenever I am in my truck, I have the station set to hear what interesting broadcast is next. It’s the call-in shows that are the most fun. And once in a while I catch Mother Angelica. I’ve seen her a few times over the years on TV and always love her. She has little expressions that I try to memorize for future use like, “Now wouldn’t that be a Cracker Jack?” She makes it look like fun to love God and to be good.
Well for some mystical reason, these times in my vehicle with the catholics have made me miss communion. I mean really miss communion. I was raised Catholic until I was around eight or ten and we stopped going to church. My siblings say it was buying the cottage that did it. Once we stopped going in the summer, we stopped going when we returned home in the winter. But I’m not so sure. There were seven of us to dress, nag, and get ready for church. And my mother had cancer. At any rate, I went long enough to receive my first communion.
A few years later, after Mom’s death (and some other tragedies) I called myself an athiest. This lasted a good long time. I stayed mad at God and denied him for 10 years or more until I was in marital trouble and decided to pray for help. I remember being in the middle of a big messy crisis, and seeing this little pocket bible. I think I’d received it in basic training years before. I picked it up and opened it. The scripture I read said,
I’m pretty sure I threw the bible down. I stormed into my bedroom, opened the closet and sat down underneath my hanging clothes, batting them out of the way and feeling like a real idiot. I shut the door and sat there. I prayed (with some sarcasm) “Okay GOD…if you are real…here I am. Can you get me out of this mess?”
To make a long story short, I found Jesus, or He came and found me. However it was, it was wonderful. And I read the bible a lot. And I went to lots of different churches. Some full of nice people, and pot lucks, and some with lots of rules about clean living: no smoking, drinking, or cussing. Some full of robust laughter, and praise and song and shouts of “Hallelujah” and “Amen brother! Preach it!”. Some with robed choirs, some with alter calls to come and receive Christ and prayer, some with draping cloths for people who are slain in the Spirit around the alter. Some even singing Jewish songs and implementing Passover and Sukkot and other Jewish traditions to their faith in Jesus (who is Jewish after all). I checked out revival meetings, worship services, and huge gatherings that would dwarf a rock concert.
In all these things, I felt the Lord. But never more than when we broke bread. And for all these churches, and experiences I wanted more communion. I wanted to break bread every time I was with another believer. I would break bread at home with my kids if they were sick. And I would expect to do communion every time I stepped foot into a church. But that was not the case. So maybe that is why, after listening to the Catholics for a few months on the radio, I have this pull to go and take communion.
So I went to talk to the priest 🙂