There is joy in being a divorced Catholic. I bet that sounds strange to many ok most of you, but it is true. But the true joy I have found is in obedience in my faith to not receive the Blessed Sacrament of Communion.
So that got your attention huh? I am glad because I am going deep again…
A few days ago I posted I am a sinner and I got called out. It was an opportunity for me to dig deeper into my faith and to discern more where I am currently. But thankfully many of you read the post and reached out to me. I’ve had some of the most amazing conversations of faith in the past few days. And I thank you and I welcome it. Not just me Catholic siblings in Christ but all denominations.
I think many of you reached out to me because I worried you. For those of you who did not reach out but may still be worried… Please don’t be…
Here is a summary… In no specific order.
Am I sad my marriage has ended? Yes, of course.
Do I know God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit still love me? Yes, maybe more than ever!
Am I saved? Yes I am a baptised child of Christ.
Does the church still welcome me? Yes (So many of you have proved that again)
Does God forgive me? Yes*
Do I know I still am welcome to receive Communion? Yes*
So am I good to go and receive Communion? No*
Wait what… Why all the *’s? Obedience.
This faith I am in.. The Catholic Church… Yes by definition it is open to all and welcoming to all…
But do I have a say in what we belive? No!
This is the hardest thing in the world right now is to trust others and be obedient to them. To be that is a great way to explain faith. I do have to learn and try to discern what the Lord wants of me. But much of the structure and guide on how to discern is layed out before me by thousands of year of scholars before me. And I must have faith in what they agree on.
So let’s take a look into what the church says on a few of my questions…
OK so let’s go straight to the *’s.
God does forgive me. But to be forgiven one must ask and be penitent. The Catechism of the Catholic Church has a big section on this search starting at 1422. So the answer is yes but in my case I have yet to go for the Sacrament of Reconciliation. So… God wants to forgive me. But I am not quite ready. Before we go to Reconciliation we need to do an examination of conscience. And these blogs and the discussions I have had have helped start me on that path. Also, I want to have a full and honest conversation when I go for Reconciliation and I am looking to speak with a priest who knows me. Right now the priests who I would reach out to are not as accessible as they once were to me. So to remove this * is going to take a bit of work on my part.
So now they get a bit easier… Can I receive as a divorced Catholic? Well there is a good article here. That covers it. But the big quote:
… those who are actually responsible for the breakup of the marriage and the failure to be reconciled when possible are indeed guilty of sin and have an obligation to repent and confess their sin before receiving Communion, as would any grave sinner.
I know I am not fully at fault but I can not claim my hands are clean. So this is part of my examination. What did I contribute? I can not fully answer that. But it is a big point for me. And it is the biggest hurdle for me.
So am I good to go? Well if you are still with me you will know that the answer is no… for now…
So am I sad I am not receiving communion? Yes but I also feel joy and love.
God loves me and he doesn’t want to see me struggle. But I also know that I love him and in obedience to his teachings I must make myself ready again. And if I take it lightly how much is that love worth to me?
I could just go up for communion… They most likely will not deny me (unless they know my blog and then still only maybe)… I could go to a parish near me that has confession almost 24/7 and be good to go…
But if I were to do these… How honest would I be with my Lord? How much would my soul really be healed?
So in the obedience of love for my Lord I am doing a deep examination and will schedule time with my priest.. But all the while in constant adoration of the loving and saving God who is walking with me. And this truly has been a blessed time.