I love talking with Emily! We have a lot in common, and I'm so glad she was able to write a guest post. She shows how she and her fiance keep God at the center of their relationship as they prepare for marriage, and it's pretty clear that they are going to have a great life together! I hope you enjoy her story!
One thing I realized when I started dating my fiance (Jim) two years ago was the fact he went to Mass every Sunday. I was at a point where I wasn’t really in touch with my faith, and I didn’t regularly attend church. A few months after we started dating, I asked him why he never invited me to church with him. I would have gone, I just was never asked.
He felt terrible! He didn’t want to push anything on me that I wasn’t comfortable with. I went to a Catholic middle school and high school, so it wasn’t anything new to me. Once we started going to Mass together, I definitely noticed a difference in our relationship. We were growing together with God, and that is the best relationship that you can be in!
While we’re not having our wedding in the Catholic Church, the faith still is an integral part of our relationship since I’m converting to Catholicism soon after our wedding (and don’t worry, it’s still a valid sacrament in the Catholic Church with a dispensation from the Bishop). We attend Mass every Sunday together, pray before meals, and pray before we go to sleep (on the phone). Prayer has done wonders for us. I feel like we have grown even closer through prayer together. I now feel like if we can pray together, we can talk about anything! This next year is really going to be test of our patience as we are living an hour apart from each other. While this wasn’t the ideal situation to be in the year before our wedding, we are still trying to stay true to the faith in everything we do (and God is obviously trying to teach me patience, which I severely lack.)
I am very much looking forward to Pre-Cana (in March) to learn even more about each other and about our faith. Jim attended RCIA classes with me this past year and I think that has been a great experience for us both to learn more about the faith together. Keeping God at the center of our courtship has been incredibly important. The difference that attending Mass together weekly was astounding: we were talking more about our faith and about God, we felt comfortable praying together, and we even attended a Kairos retreat together. The letter he wrote me during that retreat told me how much it helped his faith. It’s crazy what a good retreat can do for the heart!
Throughout the past 9 months (that we’ve been engaged), I believe we have grown to know and love each other even more than before. Having a long engagement is a true test of patience, and I try to see it as a blessing rather than an inconvenience. We get tons of time to prepare our hearts and really get to know each other from a distance. I think it is also really important to prepare for the marriage itself, not just the wedding. I’m hardly concerned what my bridesmaids wear or what songs are sung. I’m more concerned about our lives that will be started together next May. I’m truly blessed to have Jim in my life.
I really hope to look back at this post once we are married and see how much further we have come from even today. 11 months is a long time to get to know each other on a deeper level. I cannot wait to be able to spend the rest of my life waking up next to my beloved and getting to know him on a level we cannot even imagine!
Emily blogs over at Day in the Life about wedding planning, conversion, and weight loss all at the same time!