Yesterday was Palm Sunday, marking the beginning of the week leading up to Easter and Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem. While Holy Week is a time of reverence and celebration for Christians everywhere, this year’s festivities hold particular significance to me as the week will conclude with me completing my baptism, confirmation and first communion at the Easter Vigil mass.
After almost two years of questioning and preparation, I will finally officially enter the Catholic church. I can’t wait! Not words I ever thought I’d use to describe the electric enthusiasm with which I approach these holy sacraments. Happy Holy Week! May yours be blessed.
This weekend I witnessed my first adult baptism, confirmation and first communion at the Pentecost Vigil. As someone who will be completing all of these sacraments at Easter, it was exciting to be able to attend this private ceremony for two of my fellow Right of Christian Initiation for Adults (RCIA) members. It was an opportunity to observe the process first hand before participating in it myself.
I expected to gain a little knowledge and experience from the event but what I left with was far greater. I went away filled with a new appreciation for the sacraments and even more anxious to complete them in April. It was so refreshing to watch my fellow inquirers declare their faith and be accepted fully into the Catholic church.
This bold declaration of faith often seems difficult to come by among many of my peers. No one wants to sound preachy or be judged a pious goody-goody. I’ve struggled with this myself, even after my decision to eventually complete the sacraments of initiation. I know what I believe and I’m not ashamed of that. But speaking freely about it to people my own age, knowing that many of them feel very differently, is not something that comes easy.
However, no matter what your faith, it’s as much a part of you as the color of your hair. In order to truly flourish in life, you must accept yourself in your entirety and that includes your faith. If you are completely honest with yourself and about yourself, you may be surprised at the positive reaction from others. People appreciate genuine authenticity far more than polite affirmation so be authentic. Your faith is simply a conversation between you and God and there’s no reason that it shouldn’t be a conversation among your peers as well.