The weeks with my Dad were slightly different. With my Dad, he enjoyed going out, shopping, vacations, movies, and etc. He kind of spoiled my sister and I a little more. He never really told us the real reason why he wanted a divorce , he always told us he will tell us when we are older. My Dad found a different church as well.His church was near Atlanta, Georgia and it was named Berean Christian Church.
I believe my mom wanted her kids to know about the Creator and endured the ‘mental pain’ to complete the task. Soon enough when I turned twelve, things changed and we did not attend church that regularly and eventually leading to not at all. In middle school, I made a friend, Kelly, who attended church every Sunday. My mom did not frown upon me being with her so I would spend some Saturday nights with Kelly and wake up to attend church with her. It was great fun because there was a band and they made it lively.
I disputed my religion teacher's position concerning the civil rights movement (just one of many discussions we had that year). But without Mom's example, I would have been silent like the other kids. I could speak up because she also took the time to teach an added course to me on Saturdays-not only did I go to class every weekday at school, but Mom held special sessions of history class every Saturday afternoon, replete with really hard memorization
With my mom’s inspiration and suggestion (a professor with over 30 years of career and still managing her home), she advised I should put it in writing to encourage other career moms like me. She only wished I had written it earlier and so many can benefit from it. Metaphorically, I leapt over the desk and sat in my mom’s place. She was right. There was need to explain balancing career and motherhood to career moms and not write down to them or patronizing.
Which brings me to Fowler’s Theory of Faith Development, specifically Individual-Reflective Faith which occurs in early adulthood. Growing up as a family we went to church every Sunday and sometimes even twice a week, everyone in my family was a catholic and that was expected from all of us, no questions asked. I even got baptized as a baby and did my first communion when I was about nine years old. I did not mind the expectation from my family when I was little because I loved church, especially the singing. Then came a time where both of my parents started to work on Sundays, so did my sister, and so my brother and I helped out at my parents restaurant.
Church became a hobby to me, I didn’t hate going there but it was just what you did. I thought that all families were like that also, I didn’t realize till my teenage years that not everyone goes to church every Sunday morning and Wednesday night. But as I grew older and started really listening to what my friends would talk about at school, I saw that life wasn’t all about going to church and being a Christian for some people. During my seventh grade year, my church went to a youth rally at a local church on weekend. Because of this rally and the message it sent, I realized and wanted to give my life to Jesus through baptism.
In the beginning of my junior year of high school, one of my close friends told me she was getting confirmed at church next Sunday, completely clueless I only nodded in agreement and said that was great! When we arrived home I asked my mom what confirmation was, and she explained to me that it was the next step, or Sacrament, in a Catholic’s life where you confirm the relationship you have and want with God. In the Catholic religion, you are baptized at a young age, most of the time, before you can walk. Later, you enroll and attend Sunday school for a certain period of time to prepare for what is called your First Communion, which is the third of seven sacraments received. When a person receives their first communion they are most of the
Samantha is in 8th grade and has attended St. Paul since pre-Kindergarten. She has been an altar server since 6th grade and assists the priests during weekday and Sunday Masses, as well as Holy Days, weddings, and funerals. She volunteers to read at the Children’s masses on Sundays and participates in various capacities at school masses. Both girls received their sacraments at St. Paul; Rebecca received First Communion, Reconciliation and was confirmed; Samantha was baptized, received First Communion, Reconciliation and will be confirmed in February. My wife, Maria, is a Eucharistic Minister at St. Paul and regularly participates in masses and assists the Priests and Deacons.
Mahatma Gandhi once said, “The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others”. My mom likes to tell me the story about how I told her what I wanted to be when I grew up. Honestly, little me was really interesting and inspires me to this day. I grew up in a very religion oriented family, small group every Wednesday and church service every Sunday. One day when I was four years old my mom asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up.
At the Christian church my mom took my brother and I to on Sundays we sang praise songs that didn’t sound like they came from the 1800s. Outside of songs of praise, scripture analogies, and dinner prayer, religion and God were sprinkled lightly throughout most days. Every school day began and ended with class prayer. On weekends my mom told me to pray in my head while I brushed my teeth. She even prayed with me before basketball and baseball