My Friends Return to RomePosted: April 17, 2009
This past Easter weekend two of my dearest friends were formally taken into the fellowship of the Catholic Church.
This in and of itself is a little amazing but not shocking given that many evangelicals and former evangelicals are moving towards Orthodoxy in one form or another.
There are, however, a few things that I believe make this extraordinary at least for me.
Bryn and Sandra befriended my wife and me many years ago when we were perhaps not newly minted Christians but were certainly not deep in the faith.
Bryn in particular was and is a mentor to me as well as my friend.
I want you to imagine that person or one of those people that were there for you and helped guide you through the early days of your walk with Christ or “the Christ” as Bryn is fond of saying, becoming Roman Catholics. Think of it.
Those of you who are regular readers of the internetmonk have watched and in some detached way seen what Michael Spencer, an ordained Southern Baptist minister and educator has gone through during his wife’s conversion the Roman church.
Bryn was one of three older men who mentored and were spiritual guides for me.
Bryn and another dear and departed friend lead my brother and me to a men’s spiritual retreat and training that I still look back upon with deep appreciation for the many lessons learned.
Both of the other men have now gone on to be with the Lord.
Bryn and Sandra also opened their home to us and several other couples for a home bible study/worship service that to this day has not been equaled in my experience for its depth and warmth.
These are not flighty church jumpers.
Bryn is a 71 year old semi-retired architect and Sandra has raised two beautiful daughters as well as put up with Bryn for a long, long time.
Sandra, being clearly much younger, could possibly be looked upon as doing something out of the impetuosity of youth. Bryn has no such excuse.
I spoke to both of them at some length last week and the single question I had was this.
Both talked at some length about things that they liked or didn’t like about the churches from their past and their new church home.
They both talked to some degree about the theology and apologetics.
When it finally got down to the basic truth they both were looking for authenticity in their worship experience.
This is a reason that reverberates with me.
This is reason I understand I believe many evangelicals can identify with.
Our churches and the worship experience have turned into extravaganzas and circuses meant to attract the “unchurched” and entertain the masses.
I wish my friends all of the happiness and blessing possible in their new spiritual home.
They may soon be joined.