Church “To Keep Me”
I hear too many tragic experiences about the Church and not enough of all the good that the priest does for everyone. So, I’d like to share something wonderful that the Church has done for me:
I went to public school and didn’t spend as much time in Church when I was younger, other than CCD classes that were given by our parish priest after school. However, I thrived in a blessed environment with parents (my mother) who actually brought God in our house, as though he were alive and living among us. Losing my mother and becoming a widow at the age of twenty-six was the enduring and same time that my daughter started first grade in Catholic school. It was my first meeting with God in a school besides what I learned of Him from the priest and from the home, the house that was no longer.
Through anguish, I searched for literature and other views of spirituality to the many questions that paraded on my mind - and never from any lack or support from the Catholic Church. The lack was in my spiritual development.
Catholic school tuition was an expense that didn’t come easy with my limited income as the sole provider of our family. However, the priest understood the importance of a Christian education and made a way for us. The allowance wasn’t monetary; it was much more valuable than that. Earlier on, ( looking for a place to belong) we moved three times within a matter of three years before my daughter was in the third grade - and every new registration in school and Church (three to be exact) welcomed us with open arms to attend our needs. It was as though the priest were the only ones in the world that could see the turmoil and shown greater compassion and understanding consistently. If ever there came a time that I was a little behind in monthly school tuition or didn’t meet weekly donations in the Church envelopes; patience was shown and never any demands - and by the Grace of God, it was possible to give my daughter twelve years of the best education along with religion until her graduation day.
Things have truly changed a lot in our lives since then; a new family, house, son, and a new public school. One of the things that stayed the same and true for us is the blessed priest in the Catholic Church. Religious education is now taught in another building on our Church grounds. Our Church has a religious program and activities that meet every child all through their school years and more. The Church is the Holy family that has always been the emotional belonging of return. Home, the House to dwell in.
And I remain a child of the Church to bless and keep me, and thank you for showing me the way.
Causes Catherine Nagle Supports
Westwind Foster Family Agency, Christian Children's Fund, Compassion International, Make-A-Wish Foundation, Invisible Children, Save the Children