I’m back from Indianapolis! And now that I’m back, the posts can continue!
There’s something that I’ve encountered a few times over the past few years:
How universal the Roman Catholic Church is.
No matter where in the world a Catholic goes, as long as there’s a Catholic church, they have a place to go. The Mass will always be the same structure, even if there’s a language or cultural difference. Also, Jesus is there in the church. So, wherever there’s Jesus, you’re welcomed.
Like I said, there are a few times I’ve encountered how universal/big the Church actually is.
I was a part of a Catholic organization during college, and they’re the ones that put on the conferences I’ve attended once a year since 2015. (Yes, that’s the one I just got back from.) Thousands of people come to these conferences each year. Students. Alumni. Priests, seminarians, and other religious. Organization staff.
Basically, there are a whole heck of a lot of people from a whole heck of a lot of walks of life. And I think this is what makes Catholicism cool: it isn’t just you and your parish and/or diocese. There are Catholics around the world practicing the same faith and religion as you. How freakin’ cool is that?
I’ve also gone to Mass in different dioceses from my own. This is cool because, sometimes, the culture of the place was integrated into the Mass, or the priest celebrating the Mass was of a different nationality or background than I was. And I’ve even celebrated Masses where my group and I are the minority, both in ethnicity and in being from outside of the community. But we were welcomed regardless. And I think this adds to the coolness that the Catholic faith isn’t just about you and your parish.
But even though there’s so much commonality in Catholicism, the Church still caters to her people.
Like I said before, the culture where the Mass is being celebrated can be incorporated into the Mass and they celebrate/practice their faith. For example, while in Hawaii, my aunt and I went to Mass at one of the local churches. And at this particular church in this particular Mass, after communion, some of the women came up and performed a traditional Hawaiian dance. (Which I think was pretty stinkin’ cool!)
Also, the Church provides several different ways in which people can pray/practice their faith. Daily Mass. The Rosary. Eucharistic Adoration. Reading Scripture. The Liturgy of the Hours. Silent prayer. Intercessory Prayer. Attending conferences. Going to a Catholic camp. Working at a Catholic camp. And probably so, so many more. And I think this is a good thing because each person is different and they have their own unique way in which they celebrate their faith. And I think the Church realizes that and she’s provided.
Isn’t that pretty darn cool?
Where’s your favorite place to go to Mass? What are some of your favorite ways to pray or practice your faith? Let me know in the comments below! I’d love to hear about them!