How I Found My Way

“I moved into this neighborhood a few years ago, but kept driving to my old neighborhood parish for Mass.” Mary Jane recounts how she came to the Maronite Church and became an active member. For several years, Mary Jane drove past Our Lady of Mt. Lebanon in Los Angeles enroute to the Roman Catholic parish where she worshipped.

By Mary Jane De Simone
“I am on the Senior Board at another parish and one day our meeting was to plan future excursions for our seniors. Another Board member, Marti Sacker, suggested a trip to her church – it is Maronite Catholic. She said she would speak to the pastor, Fr. Zaidan, and perhaps he would give the history of the Maronite Church, celebrate Mass, and then (of course) we would go to lunch.

All was arranged for the seniors and the day came four our trip to Our Lady of Mt. Lebanon Cathedral. I was one of the last ones to enter and I just stopped – stunned or stricken. I looked at the altar and up to the crucifix. I was frozen. I was humbled. The open arms of Christ simply said to me ‘you are here where you belong.’

I have never had an experience such as that before. I have traveled to many countries and continents – so I have visited many churches and cathedrals …but never have I felt as I did when I entered this Cathedral. I started to ask questions of Marti. When she and her family invited me to different Cathedral gatherings, I went and enjoyed the happy occasions, feeling very welcomed.

One day I went to a daily Maronite Liturgy. I continued each day and, after becoming familiar with the celebrating priests and the variances between the Roman and Maronite Rites, I began attending the Sunday Maronite Liturgy.

And, I have come to feel as one of this loving and spiritual community…So, little by little, I moved from Roman to Maronite Rite…I feel I have moved closer to Jesus Christ and all I can say to summarize is – I am home!”