May 12, 2024 Essay: Notes From Some of Our New Catholics

May 6, 2024

Nineteen adults were received into the Catholic Church at the March 30th Easter Vigil. Here are a few highlights of their journeys to the Catholic faith.

If there is love, there is God. Coming from a difficult upbringing, I pondered whether I had ever truly felt love for most of my life. Being an overthinker, I found incomplete answers in many places. My journey with the Catholic Church has helped me realize that love is not something to be found, it is already in us because God dwells in us through the waters of baptism. In these final days before my first Pentecost, I look forward to my new life, one centered on giving love and giving God. — Tianci Guan

My parents surrounded my brothers and me with the Lord and love from birth. I met my wife, Grace, in college when I was still discovering my relationship with God. God placed her in my life for many reasons, one of them was for her to take me by the hand and walk down the path of religion together. I learned the foundation of my faith from my family and childhood, but Grace was the gift from God who has inspired me to journey with the Lord. I am happy to be welcomed to a Church of open hearts and strong conviction. From the parents in the back of the church taking care of their children to the quiet lady praying the rosary after church, we are all part of God’s love. — Grant Lee

It was a long journey till now (born in a Catholic hospital in Tokyo, ballet lessons in a Catholic school, a friendship with a Catholic missionary from Paris). After all these connections to the Catholic faith, I feel this is the right place to arrive in my life. I arrive with great joy and happiness! Thank you so much indeed! I enjoy so much being with you all in this community of faith. I look forward to continuing my journey. — Mika Kimura

I grew up attending a Methodist church but was never baptized or confirmed and largely fell away from it through high school and college. As a young adult, I desired to build a stronger relationship with God but didn’t know where to start and felt I was too far behind to join a church.

After my husband and I became engaged, he told me it would mean a lot to him and his family if we were married in the Catholic church. We started attending Mass at St. Ignatius Loyola regularly and began the Pre-Cana process.

Everyone I met through Pre-Cana was wonderful and inspired me to deepen my relationship with God. I read the entire Bible, was baptized by the Methodist pastor of the church I attended growing up, tried out a couple of Methodist churches in the city, and attended St. Ignatius Loyola with my husband. At the time, I didn’t think of converting as an option and figured my husband and I would work out our religious differences after the wedding.

Looking back, experiencing the sacrament of marriage marked a turning point in my faith journey. Shortly after the wedding I was walking by St. Patrick’s Cathedral and suddenly came to the realization that I wanted to fully join the Catholic Church. The RCIA process has been incredible, thanks to the whole team. I have learned that my Protestant concerns about Catholicism were largely unfounded, and have come to appreciate the richness of the Catholic faith. This process has strengthened my relationship with my husband, and changed my entire outlook on life. I am so happy to be Catholic and incredibly appreciative to everyone at St. Ignatius for their love and support. — Emily Seitz