My mom always told me, “Go where you’re celebrated.” To me, this means go where people love and accept you, and if at all possible, avoid the soul suckers.
When I was first coming into my faith a little less than 2 years ago, the only practicing Catholic in my life was my wonderful boyfriend, who is truly wonderful, but it was him, and him alone, that I could share religious struggles and triumphs with. I went to church once a week – and that felt enough. I got my weekly dose of scripture and encouragement and I got sent off for another 7 days.
Then I started reading scripture and the Catechism on my own. I thought, “Well I better become a little more versed in this stuff if I’m going to write about it.” And plus, the Catechism is just so gosh darn beautiful. So I was doing daily readings, praying throughout my daily routine, going to weekly church, and sometimes doing events with the church. Anyone see a gaping hole?
Fellowship. It’s huge and I’m just now realizing how important it is to spiritual prosperity. We need others who share our views, values, and struggles. If you’re a young Catholic girl struggling with something, chances are there’s another Catholic girl out there with the same conflict.
Recently, I started going to a women’s Catholic group, and quite frankly, I don’t know what took me so long. I suppose for a long time, I thought I wasn’t a “good enough Catholic”. I also felt like I didn’t know enough about the church and its teachings (hence why I read up on scripture and the Catechism, but guess what? I still have so much to learn! ….And it’s OK.) Fellowship isn’t just beneficial for our spiritual health, but necessary. If you are a cradle Catholic, this could be something you’ve never thought twice about – you grew up in a Catholic home, went to Catholic school, and the majority of people in your life are Catholic. This is not me. Like I said, for a long time I had little people to go to outside of my boyfriend to discuss spiritual things.
I would never abandon my non-religious friends, I have some great connections with people from all kinds of walks of life, and I find much value in this. Religious people or not – go where you’re celebrated! But let us not forget how important fellowship is. We do not have to go through life alone.