Anyone still around?
I didn't realize this social group existed until today. Anyone still active?
Just joined! Looks like a lot of groups are like this: no one has posted in a long time. I’ll tell my Catholic & MFP stories anyway. 😀 Will try to make it short, but it’s complicated. But I think it’s a great story!
I was brought up nominally Presbyterian but basically agnostic. My family took me to Presb. church a lot when I was little, & put me in Cath. school for 3 yrs, but somehow I never learned anything about God. Also, my family had an icon, but I didn’t know what it was. They just told me, ‘It’s Jesus & Mary,’ ‘It was Grandma’s Topovski’s,’ & ‘It came from Russia.’ Turned out they had actually come to the U.S. from Belarus, because it was ‘in between Minsk & Pinsk’ my grandma said, & they were extremely poor. She said her only X-mas present was an apple. They were running out of food & clothes for 11 kids. Presb. missionaries found them, helped them, took my grandma as their foster daughter, but converted them all to Presb., & supposedly baptized me. I think my great-grandparents must have hidden the icon from them, b/c even dancing & card-playing were banned (back then in 1920 or whatever, not anymore when I came along). Also, my grandpa met my grandma when he was an Army officer & she was working on the same base. He was a Swedish Lutheran who was trying different churches there. When he came to the Presb. one, he met my grandma, fell in love, & converted & they got married.
Eventually I met my husband & got married to him. It turned out he was a fallen-away cradle Ruthenian Cath. Later he wanted to go back to church, but for some reason he took me to a Lutheran church (prob. b/c of Lutheran friends). I was a skeptic, but the pastor told me about OT prophecies & fulfillment in Christ. So I thought, which is more likely, a conspiracy involving billions of people & taking place from the beginning of recorded history until the present time, or true prophecies? I went w/ Occam’s Razor. 😄 But almost nothing else in Lutheranism made sense, & the Qs. pastors couldn’t answer piled up. Like ‘The 95 Theses’. I read them, & they were about almost nothing but the sale of indulgences. So why wasn’t Lutheranism like 16th-c. Catholicism minus indulgences, or just the sale thereof? Why had practically everything changed, for the worse, & who authorized it? Where were the bishops? Why was the only prayer to saints ‘Ye Watchers & Ye Holy Ones’ but we didn’t even get to sing it? And why did Confessional Lutherans prohibit ‘prayer for the dead’ when their confession said they didn’t? And the Solas were self-refuting or unbiblical…
Eventually my husband decided ‘something was missing’, & I think he must have wanted to go back to his church, but we had moved away, & there were no Eastern Catholics here. So I guess that’s how we ended up at an Eastern Orthodox church. Finally everything made sense & everything I noticed seemed perfect, except the Orth., like the Lutherans, allowed divorces, which obviously is wrong. My baptismal record was not found at the Presb. church, so I was conditionally baptized.
Later, he decided he needed ‘to get back to the Cath. Church’. And there were no suitable godparents at the Orth. one for our baby that was about to be born. He took us to the Latin Mass church, but I was confused by the things that were different from the Orth. church. (Sorry, those of you in the Latin Church. Nothing personal! 😊) But there were suitable godparents there. The priest there baptized our new baby & put us in classes, but after a few, he was transferred. The new priest—who is Polish, so I guess esp. understanding of Slavic things—said, ‘No, no, no! No more classes,’ ‘You already have the Catholic Faith,’ ‘I could receive you today,’ ‘You are all Byzantines,’ ‘You cannot change Rites,’ ‘The Rite follows the line of the father,’ ‘Your baby was baptized in the wrong Rite,’ ‘Your other one was baptized at a
church?’ & ‘I have to consult a canon lawyer.’ 😅 We hadn’t realized it was so complicated. My husband had wanted to become Roman, but I was relieved I didn’t have to change anything. So he stayed Ruthenian, the children were all already Ruthenians, & we were directed to the new Ukr. Cath. mission where our baby was chrismated. I, having been baptized & chrismated according to the Russian Rite got put in the Russian Cath. Church. (My husband said, ‘All 2 of you!’ b/c it’s tiny, but I don’t care. I like being rare, & I think it has the most beautiful music & icons! Those are important!)
Later I was looking at a historical map of Belarus, & discovered that in between Minsk & Pinsk is part of the territory of the Union of Brest. So it turns out my ancestors were Byz. Caths. anyway. The people there
have been eventually forced into schism by the Russian Empire—hard to tell—but essentially they would have had the same Faith anyway. So if that didn’t or hadn’t happened, & if the Presbyterians hadn’t gotten to my family, my grandma would have been brought up Byz. Cath., my grandpa would have met her at the Cath. church, & we all would have been Byz. Caths. So it was meant for me anyway. 🙂
MFP part is pretty short. I have chronic mono, & it’s been pretty bad the past few mos. My husband thought more protein would help, so I started logging it & trying to have more. Also I have arthritis & a bad ACL. So I can’t get much exercise w/ these 3 problems. So I need to lose 40 lbs. Working on it now.
I'm late to responding, but I think it's cool you were able to remain in the Ruthenian rite. I'm Roman, and from what I've read about the East and West rites there's no need for you to change rites. There is a Ruthenian parish in the area I live and I've always wanted to visit and attend a Mass there.
I just came back to MFP a few days ago. I just had my second child 8 months ago and it’s time to lose the baby weight I’ve gained.
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