Quick Update - Taping Accomplished!
Thank you so much for your prayers!
Checking in this morning to let you know that filming for The Journey Home went great! So far on your prayer your request list:
The drive up went great, other than my inability to function at toll booths. The lady was super nice, though.
They had a make-up artist! So, um, there was a lot more make-up on me than anticipated, and I will let those of you who know about such things be the judge of how she did. Also a super nice person — so far I haven’t met any not-nice people on this trip. It’s okay if I don’t.
Taping went great. If you ever get invited to The Journey Home, highly recommend that you accept.
We were all praying very specifically that I’d say what God wanted me to say, and what we ended up with was basically 100% conversion story.
The show is live-taped, meaning that you sit down and they start recording and you talk for your hour, done. When the show goes to a break you have a moment to confer with the host while the music plays, but you stay right there in your seat and the clock is still running. This is completely unlike writing. I had to mentally shift expectations in a big way.
Can honestly say I’m 85% looking forward to seeing it? That’s probably the highest level of happy-anticipation you’re gonna get out of me on recorded things like this.
Now on to the part you really need to know: These people.
The Journey Home is only a small portion of the Coming Home Network’s ministry. “Network” doesn’t mean broadcasting-network, it means support-network. The bulk of what CHN does is help non-Catholics who are thinking about converting and are either probably or definitely going to lose their job and entire professional and social support network if they do so.
It’s isolating and scary to be in that position, feeling drawn to the Catholic faith but knowing how much it is going to cost you up front. Most ministry-staff out there aren’t pastors of high-profile mega churches raking in the big bucks; they are living modestly (at best), and their usual emergency plan is their friends and family within their existing church community, people who are highly likely to view their conversion as a personal betrayal.
What struck me most about everyone I met at CH Network is how much they get it. They’re normal people who understand that conversion is a process that unfolds over time, that it isn’t always easy, and that there is a lot of good that you received from your previous life.
For me, personally? I’d done a lot of second-guessing over whether I should do this trip. I knew it was something I’d enjoy, but also it was a lot of time and energy I wasn’t sure I should spend in this way. I would have declined if my immediately family hadn’t been so insistent from the outset that I go.
No doubts about it now.
June was my month of coming home to my family. We’re spread around the country and don’t get to see each other much at all, and it was so, so wonderful to see (almost) everyone again. Something that surprises me every time is how much I love my siblings and how much being with them again, despite how different we all are from each other, is always such a deeply joyful time. There’s this sense of being “at home” with each other that is unlike any other relationship.
My few hours getting to know a handful of the Coming Home Network staff? It was like the flip side of that. We were only just meeting each other, but yeah, it did feel a lot like a “coming home.” Pretty neat day.
So thanks again for your prayers.