Walking on the Journey

Two years ago, right around this time, I wrote a post about my best friend who happens to be an atheist. It was one of my highest rated posts, with the largest number of views in the history of this blog. But that’s not all. It’s also the most meaningful to me for a very important reason.   After I wrote that blog I received an email from a lovely young woman named Jasmin, who told me that she, too, had an atheist friend named Thomas Romanelli whom she had introduced to “Footprints on the Journey.” She continued to say that through discernment and reading of the blog, he had changed his beliefs from atheism to Catholicism.     This year, I received a message from Romanelli, the former atheist, who told me that he had entered the Catholic Church at Easter!   Romanelli told me about his earlier beliefs and said, “I was raised in a Catholic family, but had no interest. I felt there was no evidence of God. I had no one to inspire me or educate me of the simplicity of believing, and understanding that evidence of God was not always apparent, but was often subtle.”   He went on to say now: “God has completely changed my life. I am more at peace with myself and others. I am more confident and self assured, knowing, not just believing, but knowing, that He is there for me.”   He mentioned that my blog had played a part in his conversion. At that, my heart soared with joy and I cried –sobbed, really. If I made a list of the five happiest moments of my life, receiving that note would rank high among them.   Why am I sharing this with you? For two reasons: Because oftentimes we don’t know the part we play in someone else’s life and because God can work in your life even if you think he can’t for whatever reason.   You may think that your actions have no effect on someone—but they do. Did you help a coworker with a project? You may be the reason he doesn’t quit. Are you a sponsor for a recovering addict? You may be the reason she doesn’t give up hope. Did you leave a nice comment on someone’s Facebook page? Your kindness could be the thing that stops others from rude remarks.   As we walk along this journey of life and faith, let’s try to remember that when others join us on our path, they are there for a reason—to teach us, to inspire us, to challenge us. St. Paul tells us in Ephesians 5:1-2, “Follow God’s example, therefore, as dearly loved children and walk in the way of love.”

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6 thoughts on “Walking on the Journey”

  1. I too, was raised in a Catholic household. For me though in later life I have no use for the church. For all those who pray during sickness, disaster , and all around suffering, ask yourself this, “Where was God before and during these events?” Now for the response before you say it, “He only gives you as much as you can handle,” or “God works in mysterious ways.” I’m not buying it!!!

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    1. I’m not a theologian, but I think that God is right there with us when we suffer. We can either turn towards him or away from him. Jesus suffered. What makes us think that we won’t suffer? I think God is there to help us through our suffering. He’s not there to take it away like it never happened. In my own experience personally, suffering brings pain, and of course its horrible and a lot of times doesn’t make any sense, but it also brings compassion for others.

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  2. Thank you. After a spending a miserable morning fighting through the gauntlet of the NYC subway, getting pushed and elbowed, having rude straphangers push their way in front of causing missed trains and an overly stressful start to already rainy miserable day, your blog was just what I needed to hit the reset button.

    Your post reminded me that we should never let ourselves be swayed by all the negative and evil around us, but to always stay true to what is important and do our best to bring good to the world and help others in spite of all the people that try their hardest to knock us down.

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  3. Those last two posts really made me reconsider my position. It makes me want to run out and go to mass this week, and I’m sure there will be the double “shakedown”, oh I meant collection. When I leave I will make sure I light a $5 candle. After all isn’t that what the church is all about? $$$$$$

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  4. NJD3, maybe the issue is that you keep putting your faith, or lack of faith, on the shoulders on people. People have free will, and sometimes they choose the wrong instead of the right way.

    Maybe if you put your faith in something other than people, you will find the answers you are looking for.

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  5. Why negative comments? I personally know Romanelli, and the difference between how he was and how is now is astonishing me. I commend Mrs. DosSantos for her hard work influencing people such as Romanelli, and putting them on a spiritual path.

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