Recently I had the privilege of serving as producer for Matthew Kelly on his recording of “Rediscover Catholicism.” Matthew will be self-publishing the title that will be available next year. My relationship with Matthew goes back to the early 1990s, when Matthew had just inaugurated his ministry and was traveling around the world sharing the message that everyone should be on the road to becoming “the best version” of themselves.
When I first encountered Matthew and his message, I was struck by the number of people with whom it resonated. I had been involved in ministry for a few years and was keen to discover just how to reach people with the gospel. Along came Matthew, who seemed to have the uncanny knack of presenting the gospel in a challenging way, yet simply and accessible to all.
This time around, as we recorded his revised version of “Rediscovering Catholicism,” in a new edition to be titled “Rediscover Catholicism,” I am struck not by Matthew’s simplicity but by the complexity of his message and how what Matthew says affects so many things. Has Matthew’s message changed? The message has taken on a different hue for me now. Even more significant is how I have changed. Over the years, I have grown in my awareness of self and of the world around me. As I re-encounter Matthew, and his challenge to rediscover the roots of my faith, I am challenged like never before.
It was a pleasant surprise to know that one man’s message could be used in my life in a different way as I listened again, 15 years later.
I once asked Matthew why he presented such a basic message. His reply indicated that his message is tailored to give people what they are ready for. Now I know what he meant. When I first encountered Matthew and his message, I wasn’t ready for the deeper things, so I received his words at that level. Now I have grown, and Matthew’s message resonates with me in a deeper way. His message hasn’t changed. It’s me — I’ve changed. I wonder how many other people and truths I encountered many years ago will resonate differently for me now as I seek to rediscover them.
It struck me that there might have been many truths and nuggets of wisdom presented to me in the past that I overlooked or just wasn’t ready for. Sometimes, when we revisit the past – a book, an old friendship, a childhood memory, even a teaching of the church — we might find that what we didn’t grasp or comprehend now resonates, and we see the light. I encourage you to take some time, revisit your past, look for those missed truths. Perhaps you’ll find an answer to what you seek today in a nugget of truth that was given to you long ago.