A Question for Catholic Converts

So . . . what did you do in the meantime? You know, before you were "officially" accepted into the Church and could not yet partake in Holy Communion, confession, etc.?

I am finding it hard to enjoy the Mass when I am simply an observer for the most important half of it, and I spend most of the time trying to control my toddler, anyway. There is much to love in the music, readings, prayers and Father's awesome homilies, of course, but I definitely feel like there's something missing. (Hmm, could this be God's way of making sure I'm really hungry for the Blessed Sacrament when my time finally comes?) Anyway, any suggestions to help "spiritualize" the Mass for me while I'm still forbidden from consuming the real spiritual food would be welcome.

So far I've come up with the idea of trying to go alone to a nearby parish that does perpetual adoration, but the logistics are tricky with taking care of my little guy and my husband working all the time. I also say the "Spiritual Communion" prayer, but it is just not the same. I can't wait until Easter at this point. I feel like my life is in a holding pattern.



My Feet Are Freezing

I told my parents last night.

My mom won't even speak to me, and my dad is, to say the least, not thrilled (though he took it better than I thought he would). I spent two hours in heated discussion with my dad, and I don't think we're any better off than we were before.

In the eyes of my parents, the Catholic church is evil. Evil, as in "tool of satan, whore of Babylon" evil. The pope is the antichrist, priests and nuns practice witchcraft, and Mary and the Saints stand as an impenetrable barrier between us and Christ.

My dad said I have to speak to my mom eventually about this, but she said she didn't want me to talk to her this weekend because it's her birthday and she doesn't want it ruined. Ouch. And here I was going to tell her first, because I thought she'd be more open to this. Guess I don't know my mom as well as I thought.

I hate this. I hate hurting them. And my own confusion about things is muddying the waters, as well. I went to a mothers' prayer group though our parish yesterday, and some of the prayers were to Mary. I was even asked to read one aloud. I sucked in my breath sharply and read the prayer with incredible detachment. I literally felt like someone else was saying the words. I just can't grasp the Mary thing yet. I get it intellectually: Ark of the New Covenant, New Eve, Mother of God, and all that. But it doesn't make me love her. It doesn't make me want to ask her for help. I still cringe every time her name is mentioned during Mass. Obviously, I'm not "there" yet with my Catholic faith.

I've been feeling like I should go talk to the pastor of the megachurch about all this (if I can get an appointment, that is). Maybe I've been rash. I don't know. When I do the research, it all lines up and points to Catholicism, but I'm not completely "feeling" it yet. And when I pray, I feel oddly distant from God all of a sudden. I see Him working everywhere in my life, but I've lost some of the intensity and clarity I had when I prayed as a protestant.

I want to honor God. I want to do the right thing. I believe in my mind that Catholicism is true. But do I believe it in my heart?