Dear Potential Confirmation Sponsors:

Just Be God’s: A Call to Continuing Conversion is a series of blog posts. You might want to start reading it from the beginning: Here.

All of the Sponsors!

I sent this message out to about 15 friends inviting them to sponsor me for confirmation:

2/24/2014 Gmail – Becoming Catholic. Being Protestant.

Paige to ALL THE SPONSORS!

Hello friends!

So, if you didn’t know, I’ve been going to RCIA this past school year (YAY! or NAY?!) and I’m in that whole getting confirmed discernment process with a bunch of BC upperclassmen. So much fun, and also kind of weird considering I’m like a “real” adult to them with a theology degree and super raised Christian and all that. Anyway, I wanted to invite YOU to be my AMAZING sponsor.

I know what you’re thinking, “Paige, I know I will be an amazing sponsor to you, teaching you all our secret catholic handshakes and things, but what about all these OTHER people on this email?” Welp, it was a weird conversation in RCIA the other day, “Can one person sponsor two people?” Yes. “Can many people sponsor one person?” Yes.

So there you have it. You may all sponsor me.

Will I, or won’t I get confirmed? Probably, I will… Will I stop attending mass? Probably not. Will I still preach/attend at the Brookline Church of Christ, or any other variety of church services? Probably yes. Will agree with everything the Catholic church teaches? Probably not. Will I post an impossible amount of Francis memes? Possibly yes. These and many more questions will soon be answered. 

So, as a sponsor, I think you have some responsibilities, like coming to some special masses, hang out with the bishop, write to the cardinal, tweet at Francis, bake me cookies etc. Generally keep me in line. Potential time of confirmation will be the Sunday AFTER Easter at the nine p.m. mass. Lots of undergrads.

All encouragements, criticisms, questions, and concerns regarding this are very welcome!

Is there anyone else i should inform and invite to the sponsor team? “Reply all” if you so desire.

Peace be with you, paige 

Mike: I thought you only had one sponsor?

Paige to Mike: traditionally yes, but it’s not a hard and fast rule… according to stm grad student guy who helps with rcia.

Kate:

Yayyyy confirmation and coming into full communion!

So I won’t be able to be there for the Mass. Is that ok? Can I still be a sponsor?

I will of course cyber support you in any way possible.

Congrats! Kate

Mom to Paige: So then you can be a “Non­denominational Catholic Protestant” like me! xoxo yo mamma Sent from my iPhone

Margaret to Paige

I love this. And you. And I am thrilled to sponsor you. I will most definitely be at the mass. And happy to tweet francis, bake you cookies, etc.

Peace be with YOU great one, margaret

“The greatest challenge of the day is: how to bring about a revolution of the heart.” ― Dorothy Day

Cheryl to Paige:

Oh Paige! How exciting! I’m so excited to join you on this spiritual journey! You will be in my thought and prayers as you prepare!!! Did you tell the peeps at Tobar Mhuire? Fr. Mel would be sooo proud of you! haha! Man, I miss those priest!

Love you! Cheryl

Dave to Paige:

Dearest Paige, Congratulations! I am so very happy that you are perhaps going to (possibly) join the Church. Now that you’re thinking about it I can less ecumenical and capitalize Church, because that’s how all the insiders know it’s THE Church. I could’ve slipped you some chrism a long time ago (I didn’t realize your baptism was valid ­ hence the purported need for surprise baptisms, which I think Kate actually tried once, right?) although the sacrament would have been neither licit nor valid. What secret handshakes have you learned? Unless, of course, you haven’t learned any, in which case that’s silly talk. Silly Paige! Thinking the Catholic Church has secrets… But I digress.

I’d love to be a sponsor, although I have many doubts about being able to be in Boston after Easter. So that limits my potential, or perhaps even destroys it. However, I do have a few other little plans to do my part in your journey… we’ll see if I am actually organized enough to get them done. I have high hopes, given how long I’ve been planning your surprise baptism.

And with your spirit, Dave

Paige to All:

Hello Sponsors! (I assume all of you are my sponsors.)

First, I want to thank all of you for your most gracious responses (they have been lovely).

Secondly, I want to let you know of things that are coming up that you should choose to attend, live tweet, skype in, object to, photograph, video, etc etc etc etc. I am approaching “The Rite of Sending.” Where we apparently begin (Feb 23 10:15 in the Height’s Room BC) a two week walk (not literally) to the Cathedral where there is the “Rite of Election” that takes place sometime in the afternoon on Sunday March 9th. I still don’t totally get it, but you should come! (Especially Margaret.)

Lastly, it’s been a very exciting semester of RCIA thus far. We’ve talked about sex, and baptism and some other sacraments, and Bibley stuff, and it’s been canceled TWICE on account of snow (even though everyone involved lives within or less than a mile from campus). Ok, well, it’s not THAT exciting… Also, because I don’t understand all the sacraments (or any?), I bought Joseph Martos’ book to learn. Any sacramental insight would be most welcome. Also, if you are somehow scandalized or offended by these weirdo updates, or would like to be removed from my sponsorship list, please let me know.

Love, Paige

Kate to Paige

Martos is a good historical introduction to the sacraments, but I wouldn’t count on it for much beyond an introduction.

Not really sure what the Rite of Sending and Rite of Election are, since I haven’t studied the RCIA, but since I’m currently reading about the origins of Lent for my exams, here’s my thoughts.

The Rite of Election is probably a modern RCIA version of when the bishop agreed to take on the catechumens who had been “elected” for baptism during the upcoming Easter vigil. Then, beginning with Lent, they began their pre­baptismal fast and instructional series. The bishop spent a few hours each morning teaching the baptismal candidates about the scriptures, doctrinal issues, and the Creed. These weeks of instruction were interspersed with rites of exorcism and renunciation of the devil/wicked ways/the world. They were not, however, taught anything about the sacraments, except that their upcoming baptism would be a complete break with their previous life and would be eternal. Then on the Easter vigil they were baptized, anointed, and received first communion. They attended Mass every day in the week that followed, being instructed during the sermons on the mysteries which they had undergone (mystagogical sermons)­ ­these sermons explained, using scripture, what the sacraments of initiation meant.

This pattern of election, fasting, instruction and celebration of the sacraments, climaxing at the Easter vigil, was a liturgical innovation of the 4th century, necessitated by the large numbers of pagans who wanted to become Christian. Although this pattern was really only necessary for a century or two, it was incredibly popular among the already­ baptized, who prayed and fasted along with the baptismal candidates and who likewise enjoyed the catechetical and mystogogical sermons. In time, it was only babies who would be enrolled and elected, who underwent the scrutinies and exorcisms, and who were baptized at Easter; but the pattern of communal prayer, fasting, penitence, and paschal expectation endured (since it really was a very good innovation) for centuries. Over the course of the Middle Ages, the Easter Vigil became moved to a Saturday morning liturgy. It was not until the 1950s that the vigil in the evening was restored (and it became very popular). Furthermore, it wasn’t until after the reforms following Vatican II that the RCIA came into being, modeled upon this early Christian pattern, and restoring the original baptismal meaning to Lent.

So, there’s my contribution for the connection between Lent and the process you’re going through. I’d be happy to answer any questions!

LOTS OF LOVE (and maybe an upcoming Catholic Meme cheering you on), Kate

Clarissa to Paige

Yo Paige ­ I’ve sat down to write an e­mail to you twice but it time keeps getting away from me. First of all congrats on making it this far. And secondly, I’m honored that you would ask me to be one of your army of sponsors. That’s quite special. I can’t make it physically to Boston for the Mass, but thanks for the invites.

I’m not sure what you need from me from afar but I will certainly be praying for you as you prepare for the Sacraments (wait, did you take Bader’s Sacraments class with me?).

Man, this is exciting stuff.

How are things/life in Boston other wise? Let me know if you make it out to the Midwest and maybe we can rendevous in a cornfield in Illinois or Indiana.

Peace, Clarissa

Kevin to Paige

Awesome ­ yay can’t wait to go to Easter mass with u!!!!!!

Margaret to Paige

I accept these invitations and will do what I can about the sacraments… hmmm… 10:15 is MAD late. I’ll think about it, but wanted to let you know that YES i’ll be spiritually present there.

Margaret

Margaret to Paige

Also… Dorothy Day is my favorite person who talks about the Eucharist. Confirmation is slightly confusing to me. I get marriage… even though I’m not… That’s all I have for the moment…

Paige to Margaret:

Come on! We can dress in sweats and hoodies and pose like undergrads. It’s ok. You and Doug are the most likely to attend any of the crazy RCIA masses. I think I have to be there at 9:45, and we’re supposed to have some sponsor there. Could you make it on March 9th?

Dorothy Day does talk great about the Eucharist! I do enjoy her style. Kind of how I feel.

Yeah, maybe I should start by reading about confirmation, it probably is the most confusing.

I don’t even get marriage.

The only things that make sense to me are pretty much baptism and eucharist, but that’s because I’m a protestant…. I don’t know why foot­washing isn’t a sacrament…

Heart, Paige

Margaret to Paige

Aright I’ll stop being a flake. Count me in.

Chris to Paige

Hi Paige!

Congratulations!! Now I really wish we made that Inception video with you and Tom Groome.

I can honestly say that the Catholic Church will be better off with you as an official member. I’m really proud of you for making this decision and taking this journey. I’m sure it can be hard and a bit scary (the sacraments and parish­based formation often are), so I really look up to you for exploring and following how God is calling you. Your passion for the faith is something I always admired. I know we all studied theology but I often got the feeling that you were one of the few who really knows and loves Christ. And you going through RCIA is just another example of how you have challenged me to live out my faith better. So congrats.

As for being one of your sponsors, I am incredibly honored and couldn’t be happier to help. However, I don’t know if I can make it to much. I can’t make the Rite of Sending today, and I’m going to be getting back to NYC from a trip with some students on March 9th during your Rite of Election. If I’m reading your email correctly and your actual Confirmation is April 27th (the Sunday after Easter), then I should be able to make that at least. So if that means that I can’t be one of your formal sponsors, that’s fine. I will be praying for you anyway.

Well, I hope everything else is going well. I can’t wait to see and hang out with you again. Good luck with everything and let me know if there’s anything I can do.

Sincerely, Chris

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Author: Paige

Explorer. Healer. Eater. School counselor, teacher, party planner. Personal passions are holistic healthcare education, spirituality, food, and writing.

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