What should I do now that I am back?


#1

For those who do not know me, I am a cradle Catholic who has recently returned to the Church. I am working with my Parish and Diocese and getting my long delayed Confirmation and I have been attending Mass. I have not taken the Eucharist because I am procrastinating Confession, since I have around 18 years of confessing to do.

Anyway, I am curious, what am I suppose to be doing? What do you do?

Should I prayer for an hour a day, first thing in the morning, go on long walks to be alone with the Lord? Any suggestions would be appreciated.


#2

*Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with Thee. Blessed art Thou among women and blessed is the fruit of Thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen. *

For the sake of his sorrowful passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world!

Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse. Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse. Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse.

Congratulations!! :heart: :slight_smile: :heart: Blessings!! May the Sacred Heart of Jesus through the Immaculate Heart of Mary keep you safe and close!!! May the Holy Spirit through the Immaculate Heart of Mary grace you with the gifts that you most desperately need!! For the sake of his sorrowful passion, have mercy on us (and especially on you :slight_smile: ) and on the whole world!! For the sake of his sorrowful passion, have mercy on us (and especially on you :smiley: ) and on the whole world!!

As St. Padre Pio said, “The one who prays a lot saves himself. The one who prays little is in danger. The one who does not pray loses his soul.” ewtn.com/padrepio/mystic/Mary.htm He also said “The Rosary is The WEAPON”, said as many as 90 rosaries a day in a special form for which he received ecclesiastical permission. Father Thomas Euteneur, President of Human Life International, cites this in The Rosary Batters the Gates of Hell hli.org/sl_2008-10-03.html

An immense devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus through the Immaculate Heart of Mary is powerful protection and guidance!! As His Holiness Pope John Paul II said in **Reflections on True Devotion to Mary: True Devotion to Mary leads us closer to Jesus michaeljournal.org/montfort.htm, “I myself, in the years of my youth, found reading this book a great help.” True Devotion to Mary, also practiced by St. Therese of Liseux, St. Maximilian Maria, and St. Louis Mary de Montfort is a 100% consecration to the Sacred Heart of Jesus through the Immaculate Heart of Mary!! One only stands to gain by consecrating themselves completely to the Sacred Heart of Jesus through the Immaculate Heart of Mary, not to lose :thumbsup: True Devotion to the Blessed Virgin montfort.org.uk/Writings/TrueDev.html

He devoted himself in this way, became a Third-Order Carmelite (the religious order under the protection of the Immaculate Heart of Mary and Elijah, and prayed for 5-6 hours a day, as well as added the Luminous Mysteries to the Rosary. The prayers recommended by the Marian apparition at Kibeho, Rwanda that predicted the Rwandan genocide if people did not pray, repent, and love others: are the Most Holy Rosary and the beads of the Seven Sorrows of Our Lady.

More information on The Secret of the Rosary, which explains the origin and name, prayers, mysteries, marvelous effects, proper dispositions, ways to combat distractions and pray the Rosary effectively, and Confraternities (so you can have the benefit of other people’s Rosaries as well) of the Most Holy Rosary is here: montfort.org.uk/Writings/Rosary.html

More information on the The Chaplet of the Seven Sorrows is here: marysprayersrosaries.com/sevensorrows.asp A deeper and more profound mediation on the Seven Sorrows of our Lady, provided by St. Alphonsus Mary de Liguori, one of the 33 doctors of the Catholic Church, is here: On the Dolors of Mary http://writer.zoho.com/public/immaculate/Seven-dolors

In addition, to prayer, which remember the Bible says, “Pray always,” making reparation to the Sacred Heart of Jesus has been recommended by the Sacred Heart of Jesus himself in apparations/revelations to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque and to St. Faustina. A book compiled from the revelations/apparitions to St. Margaret Mary Alacoque and comments of her confessor is here:
Devotion to the Sacred Heart of Jesus en.wikisource.org/wiki/Devotion_to_the_Sacred_Heart_of_Jesus#FIRST_POINT._.E2.80.94_The_ardent_desire_Jesus_Christ_feels_to_be_with_us.

One also should participate in frequent Eucharistic adoration, one can do it online if a Church is not available:
Online Adoration of the Sacred Heart of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament
louisville-catholic.net/WebCameras/AdorationChapel/tabid/825/Default.aspx and go to frequent Confession, once a week, with intent to reveal one sins in fullness and purity to the priest to receive as many graces as possible :thumbsup: and frequent the Most Holy Eucharist, as often as possible, Daily if possible :thumbsup:

Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse. Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse. Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse.

For the sake of his sorrowful passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world!

*Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with Thee. Blessed art Thou among women and blessed is the fruit of Thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen. ***


#3

*Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with Thee. Blessed art Thou among women and blessed is the fruit of Thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen. *

For the sake of his sorrowful passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world!

Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse. Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse. Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse.

Educate yourself on the message of the Marian apparitions, such as the one at Fatima that predicted the Holocaust and Kibeho, Rwanda that predicted the Rwandan Genocide. If the New York Times will report on the Virgin apparitions at Kibeho, Rwanda before the genocide, query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9400E4D81738F93BA35757C0A96F958260, why shouldn’t we learn about them as well. Even Mel Gibson, after filming the Passion of Christ, flew to Sister Lucy of Fatima to show her the movie!! :eek: !!

Then, knowing what it is that the Sacred Heart of Jesus through the Immaculate Heart of Mary wants you to do: pray for a spiritual director and seek to live out the life of the Gospel. Read on the saints such as St. Therese of Liseux, called by some “the greatest saint of modern times”, who Mother Teresa, originally named Agnes Gonxha Bojaxhiu, renamed herself after: Her autobiography is called: * The Story of a Soul * gutenberg.org/etext/16772 . Although she died in aa Carmelite nun at 24 of tuberculosis, she is reported to have said, “I have reached the point of not being able to suffer any more because all suffering is sweet to me” and on St. Faustina: Divine Mercy in My Soul, saint-faustina.com/Diary/DMIMS1.shtml , from whom, if I am not mistaken in my stupid ignorance, comes the Divine Mercy chaplet: ewtn.com/Devotionals/mercy/dmmap.htm. I am only an ignorant, blind, stupid, weak fool so my opinion can be safely ignored :shrug: but I have yet to see the diary of a purer, holier soul more united to the Sacred Heart of Jesus than St. Faustina. But, alas, I am still reading the Diary so be warned - maybe I shouldn’t report on a book only halfway yet read :confused: She is one that sought, not only to do God’s will, but to do God’s “pure will” :eek:

As well as on St. Maximilian Maria, who studied philosophy, theology, mathematics, and physics as a college student, before earning a doctorate in philosophy and a doctorate in theology in Rome, while suffering from tuberculosis. He became a priest, changed his name to Maria from Kolbe to venerate the Immaculate Heart of Mary, sheltered 2,000 Jews in his friary during the Holocaust, and when taken to the Auschwitz concentration camp offered to die in place of another man since that man had family and he did not as an abstinent fiar. During his time in the cell, he led the men in songs and prayer. Finally, after three weeks of dehydration and starvation, he was injected with carbolic acid and died. He is reported on the Jewish Virtual Library as Righteous Among the Nations. It shows that no matter how dire the situation God can continue to strengthen us. jewishvirtuallibrary.org/jsource/biography/Kolbe.html.He founded Slaves of the Immaculata, www.consecration.com.

Think about joining a Catholic group in addition to your parishes service groups for community, service, learning, and apostolic work. One can join one of the third orders such as Carmelites, Dominicans, and Franciscans as a lay member - Both of St. Maximilian Maria’s parents were Third-Order Franciscans. One can join the Legion of Mary: legionofmary.org/ One can join the Militia of the Immaculata: www.consecration.com. Subscribe yourself in the Rosary Confraternity if you can commit to saying the Most Holy Rosary on a regular basis to gain a share in the prayer of hundreds of thousands.
Rosary Confraternity Enrollment rosary-center.org/nconform.htm (As Pope Leo XIII said in his encyclical on the Confraternity, *“Whenever a person fulfills his obligation of reciting the Rosary according to the rule of the Confraternity, he includes in his intentions all its members and they render him the same service many times over.” Each member includes deceased fellow members as well; and thus he knows that in turn he will be included in the prayers of hundreds of thousands both now and hereafter.

Take care, Stay Blessed, Seek the Lord in prayer, and KEEP PRAYING MAN!!!:thumbsup: :thumbsup: Receive the Lord in the Eucharist OFTEN!!! We are very lucky to have this gift to receive often. Some people in third-world countries cannot even if they want to :eek: and even when you read works of St. Teresa of Avila, you realize that some of the saints could not even receive daily :eek:

Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse. Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse. Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse.

For the sake of his sorrowful passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world!

*Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with Thee. Blessed art Thou among women and blessed is the fruit of Thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen. **


#4

My situation 12 years ago was almost identical to yours. After I started “utilizing” Confession I began to love it, even tho it wasn’t alway easy. It required several trips to feel like I had worked thru past sins but I really learned the value of the Sacrament during that time and to this day it has remained particularly important to me -it’s an integral part of the continual process of our conversion. Why wait longer to receive the Lord in the Eucharist? He’s waiting.


#5

You make a very good point. It never dawned on me to go a few times before receiving the Eucharist. At my parish they handle confession on Saturdays.

There is only a half hour window (3 - 3:30), I wonder how they get everyone through so fast. I feel like I would take an hour or two. I might just stop by and spend 5 minutes on a couple of occasions.


#6

*Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with Thee. Blessed art Thou among women and blessed is the fruit of Thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen. *

For the sake of his sorrowful passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world!

Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse. Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse. Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse.

By the way, ** St. Faustina’s Diary: Divine Mercy in My Soul ** saint-faustina.com/Diary/DMIMS1.shtml strikes me as a real life lived version of St. John of the Cross’s theological book: ** Dark Night of the Soul ** ccel.org/ccel/john_cross/dark_night.html. Interesting, hmmm, how all of these saints keep on writing about the soul, soul, soul. :slight_smile: St. Teresa of Avila’s other works (she is the one who founded the reformed Carmelite order) such as The Way of Perfection are also great. :thumbsup:

Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse. Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse. Come Holy Spirit, come by means of the powerful intercession of the Immaculate Heart of Mary, your well beloved spouse.

For the sake of his sorrowful passion, have mercy on us and on the whole world!

*Hail Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with Thee. Blessed art Thou among women and blessed is the fruit of Thy womb, Jesus. Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners now and at the hour of our death. Amen. *


#7

I am a revert after 27 years and one thing I did was a Life in the Spirit Seminar. Since you are preparing for Confirmation a LISS would be perfect. It is transforming. In fact I believe everybody on earth should do a LISS. Seek out the Charismatic Renewal Group (Catholics). I ended up doing about 10 LISS simetimes as leader or co-leader. I am not charismatic in my manifestations of Faith but I recommend them - you will thank me. Your whole life will be transformed.

:slight_smile:


#8

I don’t mean that you have to go a few times before receiving. The Church tells us that all our sins are absolved at Confession, even the ones we may forget. What happened for me during the first year or so is that I would become convicted about sins I hadn’t previously considered or would become more contrite about those I had already confessed and so would feel the need to deal with those in the confessional. It’s a fairly common experience for converts- or “reverts” like us- I believe.


#9

If you need to make a lengthy general confession, it is best to call and make an appointment with a priest. You need to get it all out at once to the best of your ability, otherwise you may be tempted to save the really embarrassing ones for later confessions, and then later…and later…etc. See the problem? When we go to confession we are required to confess all mortal sins of which we are aware. Otherwise we sin by consciously withholding sins.

Call up a parish – yours or another – and make an appointment for a general confession (covering several years). Get your hands on a good examination of conscience, like this one. Look it over to familiarize yourself with the sacrament and make a list of sins to bring with you (unless you have a really good memory). Or you can simply let the priest know that you’ve been away for a long time and he will walk you through it all.

You are in my prayers.

God’s Peace.


#10

Thank you for the link. That page is very detailed. I guess I should probably make some sort of written statement and just read it to the Priest. I have done a lot of bad things during my teen years, time in the service, marriage and divorce, etc. I am just happy that Jesus will forgive me and accept the same as someone else who is near perfect.

How do you all pray? I say the Our Father a lot and Hail Mary. I am teaching those to my daughter at bedtime as well. I am curious though, besides just repeating the memorized prayers do you do any other sort of prayer or meditation?

How can I get the Holy Spirit to give me his gifts and allow me to fully live a life with the Lord?


#11

Cory, you said divorce… that’s the only thing that I see you might need to discuss with a priest…

Otherwise, my first confession … five minutes flat! I was 35 when I entered the Church. It was short and sweet and to the point. No need to details…just I did this, this number of times (or too many to count as in my case :rolleyes: ) and go on. I, personally, went to the Catechism. Look at the description of the commandments and made my confession from that. As for now, yes, I do look over a list of examination of conscience, I think it keeps you from making grave, moral sins if you confess venial sins.

As for prayer, don’t worry about the amount of time you spend, just make sure that you spend time in conversation with God, Jesus and Our Blessed Mother (saints…) consistency is the key. (this is advice from a priest for myself during confession)

Pray for a peaceful feeling as for the sacrament of confession. I prayed for a year and that’s when I finally was able to convert. (my whole conversion was about four years)

God bless…prayers for you!

Dana


#12

Here is another examination of conscience that’s a bit more simplified. You’ll do yourself a favor to write down your confession, it will help a whole lot both in examining your conscience, as well as remembering what you need to say to your priest. When you begin, be sure to tell the priest how long it has been since your last confession, that’s very important.

When you ask, “How do you all pray?” you are so totally on track with the Our Father! The Lord’s prayer was given to us specifically to answer your question. There is an entire section of the Catechism devoted to Christian Prayer, and to the Lord’s prayer in particular. The Lord’s prayer is our model for how to pray. Read thru Part Four Section Two of the Catechism to see what I mean (scroll all the way down to the bottom of the page). But know that the first step in prayer is just doing it, perseverance is sometimes very difficult. Part Four, Chapter Three Article Two is titled, “The Battle of Prayer,” so know that it can be very much a battle at some times. Spend some time in the Spirituality Forum here @ CAF too, there are so many ways to pray! Lectio Divina is a wonderful meditative style that you may find helpful.

I hope and pray for a shower of blessings on you and your family during your return home to the church.

You say you have a daughter you’re teaching to pray as well, that’s just wonderful!! I’m curious though, are you married? I ran into some complications myself when I came home to the church since I was married civilly while I was not practicing. You’ll need to address any marriage issues you may have before you can participate in the sacraments of confession and Holy Eucharist. This can be very difficult for some, but believe me, as someone who has lived through the difficulties, it is very much worth it.


#13

I had 31 years worth to confess last December. It took me less than 10 minutes. Here’s the examination of conscience I’ve used. It’s a good one for those returning to Church.

I’m not sure if I read what you’re saying right, but do NOT try to confess in multiple sessions. If you deliberately hold back sins in confession, you invalidate the confession and have to confess everything all over again, plus what you left out. You need to do the whole shebang all at once.

If you need to, make an appointment with the priest. You can always ask him to meet you in the confessional behind the screen at a certain time if you don’t want to do the face to face thing.


#14

My pastor asked me to bring my paperwork from my childhood Church in order to process the annulment. My mom is gathering it and putting it in the mail. As soon as I receive it I will have the annulment complete.

No confessions in multiple sessions, you are probably right beckycmarie. My parish is having a Mission week. I guess there are things going on all next week and there is supppose to be a large group of priests cranking out confessions next Tuesday. I think this will be my day.

Are you saying that until my annulment is complete I shouldn’t particpate in the Sacraments of Confession and Eucharist?


#15

Only if you have remarried. If you are currently single, you can go to Confession and receive the Eucharist. You will have to get the annulment to re-marry.

If you’re remarried, you have two options:

  1. Wait for the annulment to go through and then go to Confession
    or
  2. Agree to live with no sex until the annulment goes through, and you can receive absolution and then the Eucharist right now.

#16

I’m not remarried, although I have a son with my current girlfriend. We live together.


#17

In that case, in order to receive the sacraments right now, you can agree to no sex until the annulment goes through AND you two are sacramentally married.

If you can’t agree to no sex, you won’t be able to receive absolution and the Eucharist until you get the annulment and sacramental marriage.

Basically your choice right now boils down to sex or the Sacraments while you wait.


#18

So that’s where that examine went! That one has moved from site to site so much that I thought it was lost. I actually have the book version of it, which includes a list of venial matters a la 10 commandments and a section on imperfections. It’s called An Examination of Conscience: A preparation for the Sacrament of Penance, by Fr. Robert Altier. It’s a pocket-sized booklet put out by the Leaflet Missal Company. Will cost you about $2 at your local Catholic shop. I highly recommend it.

Thanks for the new link. I had defaulted to Fisheaters’ version just to have something to recommend. :stuck_out_tongue:

God’s peace be with you. And welcome home!


#19

This is critical. You need to get this worked out with your priest. There may be other matters that you haven’t mentioned, like whether or not your were confirmed, religion of your girlfriend, etc. A priest will know to ask all these questions and how to handle them all. :slight_smile:

You can go to confession, but afterwords you will have to live as “brother and sister” with your girlfriend, which means living chastely, sleeping in different rooms, etc, until you both can have a sacramental marriage. Until this is resolved you must refrain from receiving the Eucharist, which is a sign of our full communion (no obstacles) with the Church. Don’t look at it as a punishment. As you withhold relations with your future spouse prior to marriage (the physical sign of union between husband and wife) so too are you patiently abstaining from the Eucharist (union with Christ himself) until you are properly disposed.

Anything that is worth doing is worth doing right :slight_smile:

God’s peace be with you.


#20

Thanks so much; it’s good to be home, almost a year now. :getholy:


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