The weekend was long and so perfect for reflection and discussion.
I got to thinking (uh oh) about how we can, as Catholics, reach out to that demographic in the pew that is usually forgotten. I am speaking about the age group between 40 and 60, the first casualties of the so-call Sexual Revolution.
Most of us are unmarried and without children. We have no family left, or those that are still around are so fragmented we never see them. We have lived awful lives and are now turning that around, coming home to Holy Mother Church because it has dawned on us at this late date that She has never lied to us. Some of Her workers have, maybe, but She Herself (Her Teachings and Her Wisdom) has stood the test of time.
So here we are, trembling and fearful that someone is going to tap us on the shoulder half way through Mass and ask us to leave. We know we could have had a different life if we had not strayed, if we had been taught better, if we had just grown up faster. We look around us and we see the pews filled with people our age holding grandchildren and sitting with their daughters and sons and we are filled with regret and sorrow for what we did, for what might have been, and for the lives we have today.
Yet we also know, instinctively, that we have much to offer. We have a wisdom born of pain and destruction. We know what the battle is like because we have fought it. In fact, one might say we have fought it successfully because our very presence in the pews is a testimony to our bravery, our courage under fire.
So...how does the Church reach out to them and let them know they are welcome?
How much of the responsibility is on OUR shoulders to make sure we become 'a part of' the Body of Christ?
I thought about this as I prepare to attend the Catholic Stewardship Conference in Dallas, Texas. I am so blessed to be going as a guest of my wonderful parish. I am still a little amazed that they want me to attend. I look forward to finding out how much more I can do to advance the cause of Truth.
And, I am, Of course....a little fearful....a little afraid.....that tap on the shoulder might come in the middle of the lecture. "Please come this way, Mrs.K. There has been a mistake. YOU are not supposed to be here. Let me give you your sackcloth and ashes and show you to your pen, uh, place outside here in the snow (will there be snow in Dallas in September?) where you can kneel in supplication until we deem you worthy of inclusion".
You know what?
I really need to stop watching all those medieval themed TV shows.....