Converts can teach us how to love the Catholic Church anew, but cradle Catholics can teach us how to love it through thick and thin. I don’t have anything seedy to share with you, but I do have a story worth telling, as does every cradle Catholic. I can tell you about grappling with my Catholic faith after losing my dad at age fifteen. Or about wrestling with my vocation discernment. Or what I do to pick myself back up when I really slump in my striving to be a good Catholic. Or what my faith meant to me when we nearly lost three of our babies after birth. I can’t answer the question, “What brought you into the Catholic Church?” but I can answer the question, “What’s kept you here all these years?”
I’ve never been away from the Catholic Church, but there are times in my life when I’ve been closer to it or more distant from it. I guess you could call me an “un-vert,” and in that respect I, like so many others, have remained faithful the whole time. Don’t we deserve a little credit for that?
Marge Fenelonis a Catholic author, columnist, and speaker and a regular guest on Catholic radio. She’s written several books about Marian devotion and Catholic family life, including Strengthening Your Family: a Catholic Approach to Holiness at Home (Our Sunday Visitor, 2011) and Imitating Mary: Ten Marian Virtues for the Modern Mom (Ave Maria Press, 2013). Find out more about Marge at www.margefenelon.com.