During this Holy Week, I thought I would finally sit down and write out my story. The story of my life and the story of my eventual conversion. What better time is there than the week where we contemplate Jesus’ passion. The week where we open our hearts to the hope of resurrection. The week where we gaze upon the cross with a mix sorrow and gratefulness, because of the unequivocal love that Jesus has for all of us. It is with great hope that in my story, you can see the power that the Holy Spirit has had on a once hardened and confused heart.
My name is Elizabeth Grimm and I was born on an exceptionally cold day in January of 1989. I was born in Omaha, NE to a family of mixed religious background, my mother being a non practicing, but faithful Protestant; and my father, a devout Roman Catholic.
I am a “Cradle Catholic”, or, that’s at least what I have always considered myself. Catholicism is all I have ever known. I grew up going to Sunday mass with my dad and younger sister, and as a youth, I learned a handful of Catholic prayers. Those prayers, I now see in retrospect, are the very prayers sustained me and pushed me toward my eventual conversion in my latter twenties.
I was baptized into the Catholic church in April of 1994 and not too many years after my baptism, my dad eventually stopped taking me to Sunday mass. My eventual withdrawal from the church was gradual, due to my dad’s busy school and work schedule, and “life getting in the way” as most people would say. However, for many years as I was growing into adolescence, questions and pressures began emerge in my heart. Questions of who I am, where I came from, and what is my purpose. Normal questions, right? Haven’t we all been there at one point or another? I think most of us can identify with the burning internal disputes of our life’s purpose. Fast forward to my twenties, and those internal disputes only began to intensify.
I began to quench my thirst for theological knowledge by listening to religious podcasts and reading spiritual books, blogs, articles, anything I could get my hands on. Most, if not all the readings I had done pointed to the importance of the Rosary. So, I learned to pray the prayers of the blessed Rosary, and what a true blessing those prayers have been in my life.
The popular saying “hind sight is 20/20” I heard once many moons ago has always stuck with me; and it means more to me now than it ever has before. I look back on my life over the past five years and I see where the Rosary prayers have touched my life, my heart, and my soul. I often think back to the times before I integrated prayer into my daily life and I feel a profound sense of emptiness that I no longer feel. Throughout the course of the last five years I went from being somewhat of a lost soul to a converted heart who now has hope in the resurrection. My purpose has finally become clear.
Now, I won’t bore you with too many more details of my spiritual conversation, but I feel this last part is necessary to my story. Through the Rosary, our Blessed Mother has pushed me, sometimes gently and sometimes quite forcefully, back to Her Son. One of her gentle pushes was to attend a YCP meeting. Last March, I had been sought out whilst waiting in the long line of a Holy Name fish fry. I was told a little bit about the organization and decided I would attend my first meeting in April. I’m so glad I did! Through YCP, I have met some absolutely wonderful people and have made friends who have inspired me throughout my faith journey. I am so grateful for them.
As I sit here on Good Friday wrapping up the story of my journey through faith and conversion, I am truly excited to end by saying that my mother and I will be receiving the Sacrament of Holy Communion and confirmation tomorrow evening on Holy Saturday. Our Blessed Mother pushed me, more forcefully this time, back in early September of 2017 to join RCIA. Oh how truly thankful I am for that push! Going through RCIA with my mom and learning more about the Catholic faith has only began the next step of my journey. I am now looking forward to my future in a new and comforting light, thanks be to God.