Wednesday, August 20, 2008

History: a personal perspective

"Time present and time past
Are both contained perhaps in time future
And time future contained in time past”
T.S Eliot “ The Four Quartets”

“the past I felt was a ghost with the spirit and soul of some mischievous child. Which hid somewhere along my way, and popped out suddenly to tickle my consciousness and tap on my memory and be gone again before I had time to put a name on it. It crept up slightly and pretended to be the present, and then nipped away again leaving me wondering if there really were any way of telling one from the other.”
From “an experiment in Education” by Sybil Marshall

Before coming home to the Catholic Church, we attended each Sunday, a traditional Anglican church.
The building by Australian standards was old and beautiful.
Each Sunday we would sing hymns by John Henry Newman).

(At the same time my spirit was being awakened by His Spirit to the beautiful words in the Gospel of St. John Chapter Six.)

Each Sunday just prior to communion I would sense “the communion of saints” surrounding us and lifting their voices in worship before the throne.
The dilemma was always the same: how could I receive each Sunday what I knew was only a symbol of Jesus when I had the opportunity to receive Him in full.

And so eventually one Sunday with tears in my eyes I told my puzzled husband why I could no longer receive communion at the Anglican service.
I desired,
longed for,
hungered to receive all of Jesus
and be in full communion with all those who had gone before.

Of course how we all subsequently came into the Catholic church one glorious Easter Vigil is not what I am writing about in this post. No, rather it is that sense of the church, past, present and still to come that fills me still at each Eucharist with awe and wonder and yes greatfulness.
Truly we can raise our hands in praise to God for His church begun in Christ Jesus our Lord!

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