My oldest son Joe took part in a very special Going Forth Mass at Holy Spirit Church today. He took his first holy communion ages ago, he's since even taken communion in France. Anyway, his whole class did it in shifts, but today was about the whole class from St Mary's celebrating their joining of the Catholic faith together. Joe read a prayer beautifully and contributed to the homily. We were all there, as was his Grandad and Nana. But it was great to see all the kids together.
I'm quite new to the Catholic Church and have only experienced good things in my life as a result. I see the same positive things influencing the lives of my children too: a moral compass, a purpose, companionship, and a strong sense of justice. A state of grace. I owe a great part of that, as do many people round here to Deacon Stuart Adlington and Father Marianus Kullu who provide such warm and human guidance to the community.
At the risk of this turning into "kids say the funniest things", we were so touched when Jamie Oldfield, one of Joe's mates, stood up and said the high point of his first communion was that God and Jesus came into his heart. Lovely. But as his Dad, top chap Mark Oldfield, said to me after, "when we asked him he said the best bit was going for an Italian meal. My heart was in my mouth when he stood up and said he had something to say."