This seems pretty exciting to me, getting back to my blog after several years of silence. I have struggled over the call in me to write, to share my thoughts on life and the world, and it hasn't been easy. I am happy I was able to share the many years of Scripture reading and study and contemplation, but it was easier when I was just recounting the passages I had read and making comments on them. Now, I am mostly just writing from my head, and it's a 70 year old head that doesn't work quite as well as it has in the past. But it is Christ in me that brings me back always to life and away from decay and despair. I must trust. There will be many things I hope that end up on these pages, and I pray that they may all be rooted in love and appreciation for life and growth and change.
The first things I want to share is that I was recently accepted back into membership in the Westbury Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends. I am so thankful. I first became a Friend in 1980 in Asheville, NC. This was 16 years after I had joined the Catholic Church in 1964 and then slipped into a time of doubt and political activism. It was through Friends, early Friends, that I had been able to find my way back to Jesus, and that resurrected faith would eventually lead me back to the Catholic Church in 1991. I wrote the whole story out in my book, Leadings: A Catholic's Journey Through Quakerism. When I returned to the Catholic fold, I did so very much with the intention of bringing the Quaker approach to the Christian faith to the Catholics I met. I did do that on every occasion that presented itself. And in Meeting, I have continued to testify to the leading I feel I have had that all Christians should be one, and that all Christians should be linked to the long and sometimes stained tradition that goes back to Jesus' time. The Meeting I was part of dropped me from the rolls, assuming that was my intention, but it never was. It's taken a while, but I am back as a dual member.
Now how can that be? How can one be part of two denominations? It's kind of like being a dual citizen of two countries - both roots are part of an identity that is important but complicated. I feel I don't fit into any of the boxes humans created to simplify identity issues. I want to say "No" to the break-up of the Church. I don't want to just swallow history as it is fed to us. I want to think about it. We'll see how this works.