I am one of those enthusiastic converts to Catholicism. It started when I dated a girl who was a “contagious Catholic” in college. After knowing someone who was that “into” her faith, it actually sold me on giving the Catholic Church a try. I just got an Email with a reflection about being bold in our faith from a friend of mine Fr. Scott Reilly LC. It made me think about those people in my life who have been contagious Catholics. Here is what Fr. Scott wrote:
I read this last night in the chapel and it simply blew me away: “All around us, potential converts abound. The tragedy is not only that they lack faith, but that we seldom ask them to embrace it. A non-Catholic lawyer was asked on his deathbed by his Catholic partner of twenty years, “Now that you are nearing your end, how about coming into the Church?” The dying man raised his eyebrows. “If your faith meant so little to you during the twenty years you have known me,” he replied, “it cannot make that much difference now.” (The Priest Is Not His Own by Fulton J. Sheen, p. 63).
While I would certainly give some credit to the Catholic lawyer for at least trying, the story made me think that we can’t wait until the last minute to share our faith. It needs to be an ongoing, every day dimension of who we are. That way, when opportunities and critical moments do arrive, we will have a little more credibility that might just make the difference when it really counts.
Thank you Fr. Scott for those words. The question for us all is this – Do other people see our Catholicism as contagious because we are sharing our faith with others on an daily basis?