Hi all. I know this thread is about Papist, but with all due respect to him I would like to share a little about where I'm coming from. (So don't say I didn't warn you that I'm going to be talking about myself.
Most of you probably don't know that I began attending a Melkite Catholic parish weekly back in 2002 – so 3,000 or so Divine Liturgies in total, I suppose. Often, in the last 10 years, I felt that I was close to joining the Melkite Church officially. Just several months ago I began to feel that perhaps it wasn't “just a matter of time” until I join officially – that is to say, I began to consider not joining, period.
For the record, I do not wish to provide a full explanation of my reasons for this decision, and nothing I say should be taken as such. (I want to emphasize this, because I'm certain that I will occasionally make statements which a casual observer could interpret as “I'm not becoming Eastern Catholic because of such-and-such.”) I have given some thought to what I could say by way of explanation, if I really tried, and I came to the conclusion that such an attempt could be not only futile but possibly harmful, due to the complexity of the different factors. Let me just say that the reasons are both intellectual and experiential.
On a related but slightly different note, during the last 10 years (or more) I have gradually come to realize that I no longer identify with neo-conservative Catholicism, nor can I support it. (My upbringing was definitely neo-conservative Catholic.) To make another long story short, I now feel that I have “arrived” somewhere – see my profile – that's neither where I started (neo-conservative Catholicism), nor where I thought I was heading for a long time (the Melkite Church).
So that's a little about me and my journey. If you're wondering why you should care … well, I don't really have an answer to that.
But at least I kept it short.