“I Hope So…”

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Easter Service at Sacred Heart!

Okay, let me set the scene for you.  It’s Easter Sunday.  My son and I taught Kids Church at our church at 9 am.  We’re very Pentecostal!  My husband is Catholic.  So on Christmas Eve and on Easter Sunday, my son and I become “C and E” Catholics, so we can go as a family to Dad’s church with him.

Perhaps not ideal.  Or, even what I pray for.  But it is what it is!!

Anyway, I know Easter Service is going to be super packed at the Catholic church, so I want to get there as soon as we can, when my son and I get home from our church.  We wore regular church clothes, instead of our Kids Church t-shirts and jeans, as we usually would, just to save time.  But, I let my son wear his black and white Converse sneakers with his black pants, because, well, who cares, right???

Anyway, my husband insists our kid come inside, and change his sneakers, and so, we got to his church right before 11 am, instead of at 10:30 am, like I planned.  There might have been a shot at getting a seat at 10:30 am, but “No Way” at 11 am!!  It’s a huge, beautiful church, just rebuilt after the hurricane! 

But, folks, this is Easter Sunday…Resurrection Day!  Amen!  And Hallelujah!!

We walk in through crowds, upon crowds, of people.  I see a friend and she says, “No seats!!!”  Since the usher just gave her husband the last seat, because he had just had surgery, and wouldn’t be able to stand for an hour and a half.

I can’t either!

So we head back outside…

Walk around to the other door…

Into the overflow room!!

The overflow room has overflowed!

  People have overflowed out into the vestibule…

And onto the outside walkway…

And well into the parking lot!

So we decided to stay in the vestibule, ’cause I saw a little 2″ window sill, that I mistakenly thought I could rest on.  But, at second glance, I saw that it was way too small for my behind!

What was I thinking?

Also, I had worn my really cute, little, tiny heels, since I figured,

“Hey, I’m not working and standing all day, right? 

I’ll be sitting, won’t I?” 

Ouch!

My mind is racing.

How to find a way to sit down…

ANYWHERE!!!

I ask the usher if there are any folding chairs? “No!”  My husband goes to the Annex Building to look.  “No!” 

Then I spy a door to a kitchen, and just inside, is a little mahogany step stool!

I sneak in when the usher isn’t looking, and grab it!

Nice Christian move, huh?!?!?

I sat rather uncomfortably on this stool for the entire service,  I couldn’t even see the priest.  I peeked around the blob of people in front of me.  He was miles away, but I saw that he had white hair.  We had settled right next to the bathrooms, where people were coming and going, and flushing!  Not really conducive to worshiping!

But, with their great sound system, and I could hear every word the priest said!

All the hassle was worth it, because of the sermon I heard preached to the Catholics!!

After awhile everyone calmed down to stand in their chosen spots, and the ceremony began.    They even sang “Celebrate, Jesus, Celebrate”

Which I loved!  Real hand clapping music!  Amen!

The priest was talking about what Jesus did for us on the Cross…

“It’s Finished, Nothing Else Needs To Be Done!”

Amen!

He helps them recite their profession of faith and belief in Jesus Christ, etc.

While I’m not Catholic, my Mom’s older sister was a nun, I was raised in a Catholic town in NJ, and basically there were a hand-full of us non-Catholic Italians in our town-most of whom were related to us!!

So, if you have any questions, please go to Rebecca Hamilton’s blog called Public Catholic, at:

http://www.patheos.com/blogs/publiccatholic/

For more precise explanations of Catholic doctrines.  Her blog is awesome!

Finally, the priest got to the sermon part, and said…

“I Hope So!”

My ears perk up from my crouched position on that tiny, hard, little bench! 

This is a phrase I’ve heard from my husband, since we met in high school!

Question:  “Are you going to Heaven?”

Answer:  “I hope so!”

“Where did you learn that answer?” I asked him…

Now, my husband knows a lot of Bible…thank you Catechism classes!

“I was taught,” he said,

“That the only person who is assured of going to Heaven, is the one thief on the Cross,  who said,

“Jesus, remember me when You come into Your Kingdom.”

Jesus answered him,

“I tell you the truth, today you will be with Me in paradise.”

Luke 23:42-43

  “That’s the only one?”  I ask.

“Where’s our Blessed Hope, then?”

“Not to know if you’re on your way to Heaven, or not…’til when?” 

“‘Til after you die????”

I never got it!

And I never heard a sermon at my husband’s church addressing it…

‘Til this Easter!!!! 

I was so excited! 

We Pentecostals are like that!  Ha!

When the Holy Spirit reveals something…

Remember what happened in Acts Chapter 2!!

Good thing I didn’t have far to fall,

‘Cause I was about ready to fall off my stool!!! 

I’m poking my husband, as the priest is saying, 

“You know, we’re the only religion, that when asked if we’re going to Heaven…

We say,’We hope so!’ 

And, we’re the only religion that has a place called ‘Purgatory!’ 

Where is that, anyway???” 

That’s another doctrine I couldn’t understand, either… 

“No!”  he said, “Believe in Jesus as your Savior!” 

Then, the priest adds, 

“Also, don’t be so grouchy, Jesus wasn’t grouchy, and He died on a Cross for us, so we could go to Heaven!!”

This priest preached to a packed audience of Catholics, and friends, the sermon I’ve been praying my husband would hear for years and years. 

“Did you hear that?”  I ask my husband.

He said, “No, I couldn’t hear a thing, you were talking so much!!” 

Dear Holy Spirit, please reach out and open his ears!!

 

I was made to love You!

Jesus, I repent…

I’m following You…

I’m serving You in Confidence…

So Daddy, I’m on my way!

“For by grace you have been saved through faith.

And this is not your own doing;

it is the gift of God,

not a result of works,

so that no one may boast.”

Ephesians 2:8-9  ESV

“For God so loved the world,

that he gave his only Son,

that whoever believes in him should not perish

but have eternal life.”

John 3:16  ESV

“And there is salvation in no one else,

for there is no other name under heaven given among men

by which we must be saved.”

Acts 4:12  ESV

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4 responses »

  1. Pingback: 4/7/2013 We Are Witnesses | ForeWords

    • Thanks!! Thought you’d enjoy the Catholic humor, since it would bring back memories for you! Oh, services at our Pentecostal churches can be quite comical at times, too! But, what unites us, is we LOVE Jesus!!

      Loved chatting with you today…while you were doing my hair! You’re the best hairdresser!

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