My conversion story is now live on the Coming Home Network's website here. It's called "Forgiveness on the Path to Faith" and uses my pseudonym, Ari Mack. The CHN version includes a little more detail than my story as published on this blog, along with some editing for content, clarity, and length. It's kind of like my whole life story, as it pertains to religion and faith.
[You can the version on this blog here: Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV if interested]
I'm excited and nervous. I love stories, particularly conversion stories. I think that hearing someone's story and experience often is more meaningful than hearing a doctrine or theological argument (as important as those can be). We can learn from others, and I am 100% not perfect. I pressed on in submitting this to the Coming Home Network because they have a much larger platform than I do, and if my story can help one person, then praise be. I wrote it, submitted it, and now I have to let go and work on living a life of virtue and love. My faith is very much a work in progress, and I love the idea of "practicing Catholic" - I am practicing, but have not yet arrived.
I love the phrase "coming home," don't you? The idea that the Church is our true home, that it ushers us to heaven, our eternal home, that we can rest and be at peace within her walls, that we can travel this journey with others in the family, that we share a meal at the banquet table with our brothers and sisters in Christ.
I can think of no better image or story of this reality than that of the Prodigal Son. If only we knew how much God loved us, we would come home, running into God's open arms.
To those who have become Catholic, welcome home. To those searching or questioning, to those who have left for whatever reason, come home. We aren't perfect. We don't have all the answers.
But Christ is in our midst.