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Marge Kilkelly life in Dresden and attends Christ Church in Gardiner. She has not long ago been named as chair of the Diocesan Resolutions Committee and formerly served as a deputy to the National Episcopal Convention. She is a member at large of the Maine Council of Churches.
Motion by the U.S. Convention of Catholic Bishops to draft a resolution denying communion to politicians — notably President Joe Biden — who assist a woman’s total obtain to overall health care including to abortion is distressing. Distressing, but not shocking. It is just 1 much more motion designed to preserve them solidly in a placement among God and the devoted and to threaten the trustworthy with the extremely salvation of their souls if they are not compliant.
An indicator that this action is selective and mostly political is that the bishops are not talking about denying communion to politicians who assist the death penalty, even nevertheless on Oct. 3, 2020, Pope Francis issued a new encyclical entitled Fratelli Tutti (“All Brothers”) that ratified the placement of the Catholic Church from the demise penalty.
It is not new. For example, in the 14th century, the Rev. John Wycliffe was declared a heretic for his effort and hard work to translate the overall Bible from Latin into English to make it more obtainable to weak Catholics.
John D. Whitney, a Jesuit priest, in a modern Fb put up reminded the bishops that clergy are merely the servers at God’s desk, not the gatekeepers. That post resonated with me and my experience in the church.
My education commenced in a Catholic school — Mass each and every morning and catechism was a class involving arithmetic and studying. The church was element of me, and I was part of the church. It was a major element of my id.
When my dad and mom moved again to Maine from Connecticut, I attended community school and going to Mass became even additional essential in my everyday living. It was my touchstone, my risk-free place, the position where by I felt most relaxed. It was home in a time of upheaval, a place I could generally go back to — or so I believed.
After a variety of life’s twists and turns, I was a divorced young mom. My attempt to uncover the consolation of the church was thwarted by the nearby priest, who not only denied me communion but insisted that he would not baptize my young children right until I experienced regularly attended church for a calendar year.
I try to remember the pain of currently being prohibited from communion. I felt misplaced and sitting down in the pew, and not likely for communion was difficult. I felt guilty that my wretchedness as a human currently being was also carried above to my small children who could not be baptized. It was an agonizing system. The church I liked was not there when I wanted it most.
1 morning at coffee hour after Mass, this identical priest picked up my stunning toddler, who experienced been participating in on the flooring and proclaimed, “It’s challenging to think that you are not a child of God!” All those phrases pierce my heart to this day.
At that place, I left the church and was unchurched for many years. I prayed the acquainted prayers, I listened to God for guidance. Just one day, that concept arrived. I realized then that my incapability to receive communion or have my small children baptized was not for the reason that God’s view of me had adjusted, but that a handful of gentlemen in electric power were being decided to make me really feel lesser and preserve me in my area.
As is God’s way, about that time, when I was so completely ready, I was invited to a assistance at the area Episcopal church. When I listened to the communion phone, “This is the Lord’s table, and anyone is welcome,” I knew I experienced identified my actual religious home.
My children and I have been welcomed with open arms, like and caring.
For me, the Episcopal Church has been the fertile ground and treatment that has permitted my religion to both deepen and bloom. That in switch, has allowed me to be a supply of support and caring for some others, as I feel is our mission in this everyday living.
As I look back again on my previously religion journey in the Catholic Church, my time was targeted on me. Performing to obey the policies, be compliant and conference criteria to accomplish their variation of God’s acceptance. There was no time or electrical power to do God’s operate in the entire world.
Ironically, possibly I should really thank that priest and the males in ability for forcing me to glimpse at myself and find out additional about my personal connection with God and how to stay as a Christian.