This faith-sharing group is designed for individuals who are troubled in some way by their past or present relationship to the Catholic Church. We welcome inactive, alienated, former, and "recovering" Catholics ... discouraged or disappointed current members ... and Catholic Seekers who may or may not be attending other churches or participating in other faith traditions.
Our purpose is to provide support, encouragement and understanding for active, inactive and former Catholics or Catholic Seekers who want to discuss their feelings, concerns, or issues in a safe, non-threatening and non-judgmental atmosphere. Our goal is to help Catholic Seekers continue growing in their relationship to Jesus Christ. There will be no pressure to resume active participation in the Catholic Church.
The group will meet once a month to provide prayerful support and personal encouragement to individuals, wherever they are in their spiritual journey.
For more information contact a member of the parish staff or:
Dave Cushing, Director of Adult Faith Formation
In many ways our relationships to a religious organization or faith community are like other personal relationships.
A healthy relationship grows and changes over time, as the individuals involved grow and change. In this case, the individuals continue to value and care for each other inspite of, or sometimes because of, those changes.
However, from time to time some relationships stop growing and changing.
• In some cases, one or both individuals may stop caring about each other and stop investing in the relationship; the relationship declines and eventually ends.
• In some cases, a relationship ends suddenly as the result of some action on the part of one or both individuals.
• In other cases, a relationship declines and may eventually end because one partner or the other is unable or unwilling to grow and change themselves, or adapt to growth and change in their partner.
In every case, the end of a deeply meaningful relationship is painful. So is continuing in a dysfunctional relationship when a partner is unable or unwilling to continue investing in the relationship.
Many inactive, alienated, discouraged, recovering and former Catholics feel like they are partners in an important relationship which has broken down.
• In some cases, the relationship between an individual and the Catholic community is strained or broken because the individual failed to continue investing in the relationship and the relationship gradually died.
• In many other cases, however, the relationship is strained or broken because an individual feels that the Church has abandoned, rejected or ignored them.
Many of these inactive, alienated, discouraged, recovering and former Catholics are deeply hurt. Many are disillusioned and angry. Many feel betrayed because they feel the Church or someone representing the Church has lied to them, taken advantage of them, ignored them or devalued them. Some are deeply wounded and shamed. Many assume that it must be their fault, which adds to their feelings of shame and guilt.
In any case, most inactive, alienated, discouraged, recovering and former Catholics want to live happy, healthy spiritual lives. In some cases, this may mean reconciling with the Catholic faith community; in others, it may mean learning todevelop a healthy spiritual relationship outside the Catholic Church.
As in any relationship, learning to live in a healthy, positive spiritual relationship to a faith community does not come easily after a serious breakdown.. Healing a broken spiritual relationship takes time. We must slowly re-learn how to trust ourselves and others -- and in many cases, learning to trust God. It means recovering the ability to take risks without being reckless, ... to hope without being foolish, ... to be honest without living in denial, ... to be careful without being paranoid, ... to be responsible without being compulsive, ... to recognize our interdependence without becoming dependent, ,,, to be free without being isolated, ... to forgive without condoning what has happened.
Our faith-sharing group for inactive, alienated, discouraged, recovering and former Catholics is designed to provide a safe, affirming and encouraging environment in which individuals can work on healing their relationship to the Catholic faith community.
• By phone: call 319-234-9912
• By email: DBQ208s3@arch.pvt.k12.ia.us
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If you or someone you know is interested in discussing their relationship to the Catholic Church in a private, confidential meeting, please contact a pastor, a staff member or:
Director of Adult Faith Formation. 320 Mulberry Street, Waterloo IA 50703
Phone: 319-234-9912 Email: DBQ208s3@arch.pvt.k12.ia.us