A member of our first parish was the retired editor of the local weekly newspaper.
On one occasion, as we reflected on our career paths, he observed his empathy for myself: a member of the clergy, and parish priest in a small community. The retired editor observed, “Each week you share, in a very public arena, your testimony”. He then added, “I appreciate how intimidating this can be. As the editor of the weekly newspaper, each week I was called to—or it was expected—that I would share my opinion on a chosen event of the week. This event could be local, provincial, federal, or worldly in nature.”
Over the past years (30+), I have often reflected on that conversation.
This week in my reading, I have once again been challenged in the idea (ideal) of sharing my testimony. If I travel further back in my Christian journey, I recall those moments when I have shared my faith journey.
Three incidents come to mind.
I sang a short solo titled, you may have guessed it, “Jesus Loves Me”. Yes, St. John’s, I sang. [NOTE: This was before my voice changed!] My aunt, visiting from Winnipeg at the time, observed: “someday I would be a minister”. Nearly 40 years later, she was able to witness in my ordination shortly before her death.
Early in the first semester of first year, we were encouraged (required) to share our faith journey. At that time, as in the first, I did not consider this, sharing my “testimony”.
Each week following—and many times-between-Sundays—I have shared my testimony. I know from the recollection of the first incident onward, I had no idea I would be giving my testimony on a regular basis.
In our second parish, over a 12-month period, members were invited and encouraged to share their faith journey in the monthly parish newsletter. The sharing was, for some, an opportunity to share from their heart the meaning of their faith. Others were so encouraged/moved by these faith journeys that they, too, were liberated, to the point of sharing their journey.
This past Sunday, we observed the beginning point of our personal faith journey, in the renewal of our baptism vows.
What might have been your reflection, at that moment, as you recall your journey and how, often unknowingly, you have given a testimony to your faith?
Blessings for this week,