It is with joy that today I bring you the first installment in a new series on the NLM called “Faith and Tradition.”
This series will present the stories of people who have had their lives profoundly marked by the riches of the Church's liturgy, sacred art, and the beauty of tradition.
The stories will be given in the form of personal narratives. Some of the narratives, like that of today's first installment, will present a story of a long-suffering labor of love for the Church's traditions, often marked by profound trials. Others will be stories of how one's Catholic faith was profoundly deepened by contact with the Church's traditions and treasures. Still others will be of conversions to the faith as a result of contact with the splendor of the Church's liturgy. And still others will chronicle a return to the practice of the faith through contact with the traditions of the Church. Some stories will simply share what the traditions of the Church have meant to the faith of the narrator. Some will relate the experience of incorporating more beautiful, sacred, and traditional elements into the Ordinary Form. Finally, the series will also include stories of the profound ability of the Church's traditions to catechize and evangelize, and the essential role that the Church's traditions play in the ability of the Church to evangelize and proclaim the Gospel of Christ.
Some stories will herald from older souls who have endured much. Others will be from younger spirits who were born well after the Second Vatican Council.
Given the personal nature of these stories, the following must be kept in mind:
- Many stories will be anonymous out of respect for the person sharing his story and/or out of respect for the identity of others involved in the story, including the narrator's current parish or situation.
- Comments may be disallowed on the story, per the desire of the person telling their story.
- If comments are allowed, they *must* be charitable and sensitive to the personal nature of the stories. These stories are not just about ideas, they are about real people - people who will likely read the comments on the story. The comment box will not be the place for griping and despair. Also, the comment box will not be a place in which speculation of the identity of the narrator and/or community involved is to be had - that is simply not the point of the sharing of these stories. In short, comments must address people with the same charity that would be expected in a face-to-face dialogue; there will be no room for hiding behind the anonymity and distance provided to readers by electronic interaction. Comments contrary to this principle will be deleted, regardless of viewpoint. Charity and hope must reign supreme, even in sharing your own stories of extreme hardships borne out of love for Christ and His Church's liturgy.
It is my hope that this series will inspire you.
It is my hope that this series will motivate you to work with ever greater diligence to bring people to Christ and His Holy Church through efforts to renew the Church's liturgy.
It is my hope that this series will evidence the vital role that the Church's tradition has in any renewed efforts to evangelize an increasingly secular world which bears hostility to the Gospel.
It is my hope that this series will invite those far from the life of the Church to take a second look at Christ's bride and the profound joy to be had in communion with Christ in His Church.
It is my hope that this series will touch the hearts of clergy and future clergy.
It is my hope that this series will help renew your faith in God and His providence for you, especially during times of great suffering.
**If you are interested in contributing your own story to this series, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include "NLM SERIES" in the subject line.
Finally, it is with filial gratitude that I dedicate this series to the patronage of St. Peter, who has played a profound role in my own faith and discovery of the beauties of the Church's traditions, as well as Our Lady of Perpetual Help and St. Joseph, patron of the universal Church. Orate pro nobis!