Family of Believers
Many years ago God blessed me with a very close connection to a church family. My life was not only centered on worshipping at the Church of the Good Shepherd, but also focused on the caring flock led by a very special priest, Father Al Durrance. It was during this time that I received the baptism of the Holy Spirit.
Not long after receiving the Holy Spirit, I began to sense the physical presence of my Lord. I felt His presence so strongly that I would even move over so He could sit beside me in the church pew. It was a sensation I'll never forget! It happened on a number of occasions, and I became accustomed to His being next to me. How wonderful it felt to have Him so close as we prayed together!
Being a member of this special church family gave me such joy! I was delighted to serve on the prayer team and to assist at the altar. The baptism of the Holy Spirit service was held on Monday evenings. Even ministers and priests from other congregations would come to participate in this service. Many, many other people were drawn to this service as well. In fact, I can remember people lined up outside to come in. One evening the service lasted so long I didn't get home until after 2 a.m.
So many people were attracted to this church that we soon outgrew our small chapel. A larger church was needed. Father Durrance was extremely influential in its construction. Under his guidance, the planning and the building of the new church was accomplished. The project became a united effort of all those who attended. This new church was truly made possible by the hard work and love of the tightly knit church family members. We even helped in the making of the stained glass windows.
When Father Durrance left, I began attending another church. I was away from the Church of the Good Shepherd for more than 35 years. Now at the age of 93, as the passing of time would have it, many of my friends there began moving away - or passing away. I was so saddened. I decided that I would try returning to the church which I had felt very attached to so long ago. As soon as I walked in the door, I knew I was "back home.” The new priest, Rev. Sarah Bronos, welcomed me with open arms. Today I am sitting in the same pew I used to sit in - feeling the same love I used to know.