Author Topic: Catechumenate  (Read 1064 times)

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Offline Big Chris

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Catechumenate
« on: April 04, 2012, 10:13:41 AM »
Hi,

I have been Roman Catholic for the past 5 years.  I was confirmed as a Catholic on April 7, 2007.  Prior to converting to Catholicism, I was raised (shoddily) as Baptist (until my parents divorced) and then was baptized in the United Church of Christ; however, I never really understood or accepted the Christian faith.  I studied early Church history while at university and during the summers at home attempting to find solid intellectual evidence that Christianity was bunk; however, along the way, I discovered my need for faith, and later realized that this need wasn't being nourished at my local UCC church.  I realized that the ancient, New Testament Church was present in the Roman Catholic and/or Orthodox Churches, but despite my research I failed to note the discrepancies between the two churches since 1054 AD and how each had developed since then.  As a result, I failed to take a number of things into consideration and just assumed both were equal representatives of the apostolic faith.  Also, Catholicism had a much more definite presence than Orthodoxy.  It somehow just seemed easier to go with Catholicism at the time.

I have been attending Divine Liturgy since the beginning of Lent (Revised Julian).  I seem to have found a true spiritual home in an OCA parish about 25 minutes away.  I had lunch with the priest there once in order to discuss my interest in becoming Orthodoxy, and he invited me to continue coming to Liturgy, to settle myself in with the community, and see how I felt after a few months.  He said we could discuss my potential joining the catechumenate later.  However, my Christian faith has never felt as alive and real as it does now as a result of participating in Orthodox liturgy and spirituality.  I am most certain that this is the only, holy, catholic and apostolic Church of Christ, and this is even after researching some of the current schisms present in Orthodoxy.  I don't want to put the cart before the horse - but I feel that I am ready to take the next steps toward becoming a catechumen.  Should I have another discussion with my priest after Pascha, or should I wait for him to approach me and ask if I am ready?  I only wish to do the will of God and submit to His decision.
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Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #1 on: April 04, 2012, 10:22:15 AM »

Hi, Mint.

I would follow up with the priest.  He may think that "you" are still contemplating your decision.

Just come up to him and have a short talk.  I am sure he'll find the time to discuss the future steps you should take to join the Church.
Conquer evil men by your gentle kindness, and make zealous men wonder at your goodness. Put the lover of legality to shame by your compassion. With the afflicted be afflicted in mind. Love all men, but keep distant from all men.
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Offline elephant

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #2 on: April 04, 2012, 10:38:26 AM »
Dear mint,

I also think you should approach your priest. Orthodox priests are unlikely to "push" people forward. 

I hope you are able to attend the Resurrection service.  It is wonderful!

Love, elephant

Offline Big Chris

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #3 on: April 04, 2012, 10:52:37 AM »

I hope you are able to attend the Resurrection service.  It is wonderful!

Love, elephant

I hope I am able to, as well, but it will depend if I am in town. 

For some reason, I don't want to seem like I'm chomping at the bit, but I know I am, in a way.  However much chomping, though, nothing about this (experience) seems forced.
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Offline Ortho_cat

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #4 on: April 04, 2012, 11:52:13 AM »
Hi mint, i would definitely approach him again after Pascha and let him know your feelings. :) Pascha (and holy week in general) is considered a "watershed" for many, and priests like to see potential converts/catechumens go through the paschal season so that they are aware of what Orthodoxy really is. Try to attend as many services as possible.


Offline Big Chris

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #5 on: April 04, 2012, 01:36:57 PM »
Hi mint, i would definitely approach him again after Pascha and let him know your feelings. :) Pascha (and holy week in general) is considered a "watershed" for many, and priests like to see potential converts/catechumens go through the paschal season so that they are aware of what Orthodoxy really is. Try to attend as many services as possible.

Like I said, I will make the fullest attempt possible at going, but my schedule may not allow it.  I hope my priest will not think I don't care about Orthodoxy just because I may not be at this Paschal celebration.
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Offline Jason.Wike

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #6 on: April 04, 2012, 01:52:22 PM »
Hi mint, i would definitely approach him again after Pascha and let him know your feelings. :) Pascha (and holy week in general) is considered a "watershed" for many, and priests like to see potential converts/catechumens go through the paschal season so that they are aware of what Orthodoxy really is. Try to attend as many services as possible.

Like I said, I will make the fullest attempt possible at going, but my schedule may not allow it.  I hope my priest will not think I don't care about Orthodoxy just because I may not be at this Paschal celebration.

The best thing to do then is tell him. :) Hoping alone will likely result in less than desirable results.

Also, if you want to be a catechumen, tell him. There's lots of good reasons he could not push the matter, and is waiting for you to step up.

Offline Big Chris

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #7 on: April 04, 2012, 01:54:50 PM »
Also, if you want to be a catechumen, tell him. There's lots of good reasons he could not push the matter, and is waiting for you to step up.

What reasons, if you don't mind my asking?
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Offline katherineofdixie

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #8 on: April 04, 2012, 02:47:50 PM »
I urge you to make it your highest priority and do everything within your power to attend as many services during Holy Week as you can. I promise you that you will never regret it.
"If but ten of us lead a holy life, we shall kindle a fire which shall light up the entire city."

 St. John Chrysostom

Offline Big Chris

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #9 on: April 04, 2012, 03:29:49 PM »
I urge you to make it your highest priority and do everything within your power to attend as many services during Holy Week as you can. I promise you that you will never regret it.

Thank you, it really does sound great.  I will, indeed, make a concerted effort to attend (again, provided that I am in town); however, considering that I don't live alone but with my parents, it will be a challenge sneaking into the house at 4:30 AM without waking everybody up on a Sunday morning.  There is a certain level of impracticality about it this year (again, provided that I am in town) and it may, unfortunately, have to wait until next year. 
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Offline Ortho_cat

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #10 on: April 04, 2012, 05:50:11 PM »
I urge you to make it your highest priority and do everything within your power to attend as many services during Holy Week as you can. I promise you that you will never regret it.

Thank you, it really does sound great.  I will, indeed, make a concerted effort to attend (again, provided that I am in town); however, considering that I don't live alone but with my parents, it will be a challenge sneaking into the house at 4:30 AM without waking everybody up on a Sunday morning.  There is a certain level of impracticality about it this year (again, provided that I am in town) and it may, unfortunately, have to wait until next year. 

just curious if you don't mind me asking how old you are?

Offline Big Chris

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #11 on: April 04, 2012, 06:51:17 PM »

just curious if you don't mind me asking how old you are?

I don't mind you asking, but I don't think my age has any relevance to this thread or why I find a midnight Pascha to be currently impractical. 
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Offline Ortho_cat

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #12 on: April 04, 2012, 10:28:41 PM »

just curious if you don't mind me asking how old you are?

I don't mind you asking, but I don't think my age has any relevance to this thread or why I find a midnight Pascha to be currently impractical. 

I was just wondering if you were a minor, is all...and the associated amount of responsibility that your parents may or may not over you. Didn't mean to offend

Offline katherineofdixie

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #13 on: April 05, 2012, 10:05:42 AM »
...it will be a challenge sneaking into the house at 4:30 AM without waking everybody up on a Sunday morning. 

 ;) In my misspent youth, I often snuck into the house at a later hour - though certainly not returning from church! I don't recommend this practice however. I
"If but ten of us lead a holy life, we shall kindle a fire which shall light up the entire city."

 St. John Chrysostom

Offline Big Chris

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #14 on: April 10, 2012, 02:43:46 PM »
Just sent an e-mail to my priest asking to be considered for the next catechumenate.

May God's will be done.
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Offline LizaSymonenko

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #15 on: April 10, 2012, 02:49:25 PM »

Excellent!
Conquer evil men by your gentle kindness, and make zealous men wonder at your goodness. Put the lover of legality to shame by your compassion. With the afflicted be afflicted in mind. Love all men, but keep distant from all men.
—St. Isaac of Syria

Offline Ortho_cat

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #16 on: April 10, 2012, 03:47:27 PM »
Just sent an e-mail to my priest asking to be considered for the next catechumenate.

May God's will be done.

Amen!

Offline Nicene

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #17 on: April 10, 2012, 06:25:01 PM »
It's good you have found Orthodoxy and are seriously considering joining the church but I think its better to wait, study and be as convicted as possible before you join, it took me about 2 years myself.
Thank you.

Offline Big Chris

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #18 on: April 10, 2012, 07:28:23 PM »
It's good you have found Orthodoxy and are seriously considering joining the church but I think its better to wait, study and be as convicted as possible before you join, it took me about 2 years myself.

What makes you think that I haven't waited, studied or am not fully "convicted" [sic]?
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Offline Nicene

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #19 on: April 10, 2012, 08:16:48 PM »
Forgive me, I just assumed that which was bad on my part. But I think it is good to wait and not rush these things but if you are truely convicted go for it.
Thank you.

Offline Big Chris

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Re: Catechumenate
« Reply #20 on: April 10, 2012, 09:16:40 PM »
Forgive me, I just assumed that which was bad on my part. But I think it is good to wait and not rush these things but if you are truely convicted go for it.

There's nothing to forgive.  However, despite the concise punctuality of the OP, this isnt something which I am rushing into.  I don't know your story, what background you come from or why you made th decision to become Orthodox, but I don't come from the sort of thoughtless, irreligious background that often results in impatient conversion for some people.
Tasting is Believing