About a month ago I posed what no doubt seemed like a strange question to Lisa Hendey and Sarah Reinhard. I asked them, “Am I Catholic enough?”
For those who truly know me, such a question may seem silly. I was born and raised Catholic. I attended twelve years of Catholic school and my husband and I are committed to doing the same for our own three children. We attend weekly Mass, pray individually and as a family daily and take the time to teach our faith to our children. My brother is even a Catholic priest. It’s safe to say most people would consider me to be plenty Catholic. But am I Catholic enough?
I’ve been thinking – and praying – a great deal about where I want to take my writing career. Do I want to maintain my focus on my love of writing fiction for kids? Do I want to take a leap with that fiction and try for a slightly bigger stage than that which I enjoy right now? And do I want to also try to do more in the Catholic Mommy blogger space? All these questions have been swirling around in my head with little progress being made toward an answer. I’m listening for the Holy Spirit. Or I think I am. Sometimes the loud parts of life can make the really important things harder to hear.
But when I give thought to being more active, more of a force, in the Catholic Mommy blogger space, “Am I Catholic enough?” is something I wonder about.
As a author, I write middle grade fiction as well as personal essays and blog posts like this one. In all of my writing, my faith is part of it. I’ve heard from kid and adult readers alike that this is one of the things they enjoy about my books. That the characters’ faith, while very much present, is a natural part of their lives. It’s always part of the story, but it’s not the headline. Rather it’s the thing that runs underneath all the rest. The foundation.
It comes back to where my faith is in all of my writings. And where my faith is in my life. The foundation. I don’t wear my faith like a brightly colored pair of pants or a busy holiday sweater. For me, my faith is like a really good bra. Something underneath that makes the rest of it look better. Smoother. More finished. It’s the thing that gives my life its shape.
But in this age of the New Evangelization, is there room for – or a need for – someone like me? Someone who weaves her faith into all the nooks and crannies of her life, but who doesn’t shout it from the rooftops.
I think so.
I hope so.
I pray so.
Copyright 2014 Marilee Haynes