I stand boldly and proclaim it every Sunday....

My tongue still stumbles sometimes over the word "consubstantial"...

My eyes often well with tears as I bow while professing the words

"For us men and for our salvation
he came down from heaven,
and by the Holy Spirit was incarnate of the Virgin Mary,
and became man."

I believe, but Lord, help my unbelief.

In my quiet reading time today, I began the new Scott Hahn sure-to-be classic The Creed: Professing the Faith Through the Ages (currently available in promotional paperback free of charge here). Don't hold your breath for my review, because I can tell after only having poured over the first chapter that this is not a book I will finish quickly. It's one that will take time to finish because pondering this book and its message deserves time and consideration and ultimately decisive action.

The opening pages of Dr. Hahn's book had me break my "no screens while reading" rule and fetch my phone to access the Youtube video of Rich Mullins' "Creed". The song is mentioned in Chapter One and while I'm a Mullins devotee, I'd never heard it before. I want to share it here, because for me this video, combined with this book, answers some questions in my heart about who I currently am in my life, and why...

A long-lost acquaintance recently connected with me on Facebook and privately asked me why I stay so busy. In summary, his queries were: Don't I want to be at home with my husband and friends? Don't I count the days until retirement? Why am I constantly running around to far-flung places talking about Church stuff. Don't I get tired? Doesn't it all get old?

Had I already begun reading The Creed, I would have had a more profound answer to those questions. And that answer would have come in some simple but profound words found on page 11 of Hahn's book:

"By God's grace, the creed is making us."

Why do I go to Rwanda to learn about post-genocide reconciliation efforts so that I can learn about the hope we all have true forgiveness?

By God's grace, the creed is making me.

Why do I fly to the coffee plantations of Colombia or dine on sea snails with a family in a slum near Manila?

By God's grace, the creed is making me.

Why do I criss-cross the country on weekends, standing in parish halls and sharing my joy for The Grace of Yes, the "yes" that each of us is uniquely called to give God?

By God's grace, the creed is making me.

Our Creed

Hahn teaches me in the early pages of this groundbreaking work by giving words to some of the sensations I've long felt in my heart:

"A creed is a symbol of something larger--and, ultimately, of Someone we love, Someone who makes us who we are..."

When I profess my faith in the creed at Mass, I stand and give my personal "I believe".

Lisa helps friends pack meals for Catholic Relief Services' "Helping Hands" program. Lisa helps friends pack meals for Catholic Relief Services' "Helping Hands" program.

But for me, even more so when I venture among the poor, the vulnerable, and when I journey with others like me who are struggling to understand how their belief (or lack thereof) can lead them to serve Christ in those around them, I am "made". For whatever reason, my personal version of living the creed at this time in my life propels me to the margins, to the unknown, to new friends just waiting to be made and to a trust that by simply loving and by sharing stories, I can perhaps help others enjoy the true hope I feel in God's love for each of us.

In so many ways, every day, I fall short of who I "think" I should be, who God is calling me to be. I stumble and sin, but God seems to fill me with the grace and energy to pick myself up again and to trust His divine path for my life. My creed is lived out in my home, in service to my family. But in new ways, it is also calling me into situations I never would have dreamed of. I don't know how long this way of life will last. But I trust the God knows.

For me, our creed is a symbol of the God I love, the God who makes me who I am. The God who sends me to love in little, simple ways and to believe that through, with and in Him, we find the way.

Thank you Dr. Hahn, for teaching me today that the creed "makes" me.

To Ponder: How and who does the creed make YOU?

The Creed: Professing the Faith Through the Ages is currently available in promotional paperback free of charge here. For more information, visit

Copyright 2016 Lisa M. Hendey
photo credit: Stained glass window at Holy Trinity Lansdale via photopin (license)