Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception
1122 South Clinton Street
Fort Wayne, IN 46802-3130
Photo Credit: KFH (May 2008)
God and church have always been a factor in my family's life. My great-grandmother...Helena Starost Roy Kline...was a Catholic girl, through in through. She raised her three sons - Wayne (my grandfather), Walter Jr., and Kenneth as good Catholic boys. When Wayne and Walter Jr. grew up and married (Kenneth died as a boy), their children also continued the Catholic traditions.
The downtown churches - Cathedral, St. Mary's, and St. Patrick's were the three churches that generations of my family belonged to. I can find old newspaper clippings of marriages, funerals, first communions, baptisms, and school attendance.
Although much of my childhood revolved around St. Therese, most of my life's major events have taken place in Cathedral.
Photo: 1967 (from left) Wayne Roy, Kristina Frazier, Helena Starost Roy Kline, Patricia Frazier.
I was baptized there, I was married there, and my grandfather's funeral was held there. When I was a young adult, I sang in choir and attended mass there. I wasn't an every week person but I certainly considered myself a Catholic girl.
When I left Fort Wayne, all association with my Catholic church (in general) ceased. Part of that was my uncomfortableness with living in the Indianapolis area (it's still too big for me and doesn't have that small city/big town feeling that Fort Wayne always gave me). The other reason I didn't attend church was that I was pretty angry at God for taking away my grandfather. Even though I had expressed this opinion to Grandpa (while he was close to death even), he was very steadfast in his belief of God and was even perturbed at me for ever mentioning (me) "not believing in God anymore".
For 22 years, I have carried that pain with me - my grandfather's hastened and unfair death, my anger at God, and some of my grandfather's last words to me.
2009 has been a horrible year. You see I haven't posted much this year on my blog and I can tell you that much of that has to do with the heartbreak, heartache, and misfortune I have experienced this year.
Recently though, that anger that I've been holding on to for 22 years has dissipated. I can't tell you what happened exactly - it wasn't just one thing...it was a series of events and signs that made me realize that it was time to let go.
I still miss my grandfather but I know that I was one of the luckiest chicks on earth - to have had a man in my life who taught me so many life lessons and who loved me unconditionally...what more could anyone want? I no longer deny my belief in God and suddenly, I have a yearning to be close to my Cathedral again.
When I think about my Cathedral, I feel a sense of peace, a sense of awe, and I feel close to the things that have always been important to me (but you know, time/space sometimes makes you forget what those are). If I lived in Fort Wayne, I'd be right back there - singing in choir, attending mass (mostly) weekly but unfortunately, I don't live there anymore and now, I have to find somewhere else to continue the Catholic girl traditions.