My Spiritual Journey

Once I was a slave in the land of Egypt….

This verse was part of the Passover observance; commanded by God in the Torah.

I sometimes think of the Mass when I go over that verse.

When you examine the Last Supper in the Gospel, you’ll notice it’s a Passover Seder with Jesus presiding and as the sacrificial lamb. The Mass is essentially a Passover Seder combined with Bible readings and a homily.

I mention this because of what I went through in my journey to the Eucharist and because each baptized Catholic has been freed from slavery to the devil.

Once I was a slave in the land of Egypt….

I was baptized both as a Lutheran and Catholic when I was born in 1977. In my pre Catholic days, I sometimes liked to joke that I had both flanks covered. Lol

My parents are Lutheran but I was born in a Catholic hospital. I had problems in my birth and the Sisters feared that I would die. So, they pestered my Mom, asking to baptize me until she relented. I was later baptized a Lutheran by their pastor in a home ceremony.

I grew up in a not religious home. My Dad’s Sunday religion is football and my Mom had trouble with us kids until she gave up trying to do the organized religion thing.

By middle school, I became an atheist; believing that science could answer every question.

By high school, that changed. I had learned in my reading and TV watching about the paranormal that science couldn’t answer every question.

It was the middle 90s, and the TV show The X-Files was popular. I had begun my spiritual quest after talking with my friends at the lunch table in school. The sheer mathematical improbability of life’s existence led me to conclude Something caused life and I wanted to find out what that Something is. I was curious if magic and psi abilities were real and I fancied myself a scientific investigator of the paranormal.

After hearing about Wicca from a friend of mine at school, I met a man from Texas who was a Wiccan. Wicca is a witchcraft religion. He started up a coven and I decided to learn magic firsthand from him in order to discern if magic was real.

Eventually, I joined his coven and became a Wiccan.

Wicca appealed to me because it seemed more natural and more flexible than Christianity and because the pagan religions are older than Christianity. Other reasons include that I had the false impression that Christianity taught men to be servile and fearful of a vengeful and wrathful God that harshly punishes the least fault or infraction.

I had believed that man didn’t need God in order to be good and could do it all by himself.

That and I wanted to know all I could of magic.

14 years I lived and worshipped with this coven. During these 14 years, I also studied some Zen Buddhism.

Until I met my ex wife in 2009. By that time, I had suffered a mental breakdown and suffered from spiritual warfare. With her and her son, my husbandly and fatherly instincts kicked in and my relationship with her had developed to such a level that the witch leader was jealous and demanded that I choose between her and her son or them.

I chose her and her son. So, I was kicked out.

I moved in with her and her son. I continued the witchcraft thing until one night at work in late 2009. I blubbered and wept, asking God to forgive me and take me back.

Once I was a slave in the land of Egypt….

I was a Christian again. My ex wife was nondenominational and I went to her church.

I read intensively; trying to figure out God and to solve my mental health and spiritual warfare issues. With Protestant theologies, I got no where and they couldn’t even touch those issues. Plus, my ex wife and I would go back and forth on faith alone versus faith without works is dead.

I instinctively knew that faith without works means that a Christian can’t just believe. A Christian must walk the walk.

Eventually, I began to study Catholic and Eastern Orthodox spirituality as a means to solve my problems. I began to pray the Rosary.

In time, due to the mental issues stemming from my breakdown; caused my ex wife to divorce me in 2015.

I began to study Sacred Scripture on my own and began to fight like a Catholic as I remember hearing that Catholics know about evil: Praying the Saint Michael Prayer and doing Catholic devotions. I knew I needed the Church and the Sacraments, so I entered RCIA.

During the course of RCIA, the more I studied and compared the theologies, histories, doctrines and the leading figures of Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy and the Protestant denominations as I studied Sacred Scripture; the more and more the Church made sense and lined up with Sacred Scripture.

Meanwhile, I learned that everything the Church teaches is what I instinctively believed before RCIA.

What nailed it was when I read in Dr Scott Hahn’s book, Rome Sweet Home; that Luther altered the text of Romans 3:28 in his 1529 German translation of the Bible. I can’t trust anyone who’d alter Scripture. That ruined Luther’s credibility as a theologian, translator, exegete and preacher.

Also what happened was that I experienced graces. I saw grace coming out of Father’s hands when he consecrated the Host at Mass and I felt the Presence of Christ in every Catholic church I entered. I experienced graces in praying the Rosary.

I learned of the deep intellectual and philosophical tradition of the Church and that everything in Catholic doctrine is internally self consistent and logical. That was important; as I’m intellectually minded and a self trained philosopher.

I was received into the Catholic Church Easter Vigil, 2016.

Once I was a slave in the land of Egypt….

Five years later, I’m healed and whole again. All of my spiritual and philosophical questions are answered. Now that I’m not data mining Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition anymore for solutions and just living out my Faith, I’m living an experience of faith that I never thought possible.

I’m in a familial relationship with that Something I sought all those years ago; a loving, merciful and all good source and author of the universe and all of it’s truths.

Quest completed.

Once I was a slave in the land of Egypt….

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