Becky Greene was 8 years old when she watched Mary Lou Retton score a perfect 10 at the 1984 Olympics.
“I fell in love with this idea of becoming an Olympic gymnast,” Greene said. “I had my eyes set on the ‘92 Olympics — that was my goal.”
Due to injuries and other factors, it was not to be. Greene decided to accept an athletic scholarship to the University of Arizona where she studied creative writing.
“I was very pro-choice and very anti-religion,” Greene said. “I kind of had this caricature of what religious people were.”
After college, she met Steve and the two began a relationship, although he told her he had been accepted for seminary study. Before he left that August, Greene told him she would begin RCIA classes. She said she wasn’t committing to becoming a Catholic — but she wanted to see why he took his faith so seriously. The process made her realize — much to her dismay — that there were some holes in her thinking.
“The faith wasn’t what I thought it was,” Greene said. “I was constantly surprised around every corner about the beauty and depth of the teachings and why the Church teaches what it teaches.”
She decided to become a Catholic and planned to enter at the Easter vigil but was deterred by tragedy. On Holy Thursday, her 55-year-old father, en route to Phoenix for the ceremony, suffered a fatal heart attack. Instead of being baptized on Saturday, Greene was picking out caskets.
“That sent me into the depths — I held God responsible for all of it,” Greene said. “I was very angry. I remember thinking, ‘Good Friday? What’s so good about it?’”
Ultimately, she surrendered everything to God, including any hope of a possible future marriage to Steve, who as it turns out, eventually returned. It was during their marriage preparation process that Greene was able to accept the Church’s teaching on contraception.
“Taking the NFP class and going through the process of learning what marriage is, what the vocation is, helped me to see what deep down I wanted to believe all along but was afraid I wouldn’t be able to buy into,” Greene said.
These days, she and Steve are themselves members of the team of presenters for “God’s Plan for a Joy-Filled Marriage,” part of the marriage prep program for the Phoenix Diocese. Greene has appeared on “The Bishop’s Hour” with Michael Dixon and “The Pat McMahon Show,” explaining the Church’s teaching on contraception. She also has a blog, ReclaimingtheWomb.com, devoted to a Blessed John Paul II view of femininity.
Faith in a nutshell:
The truth is not afraid to be tested…the real faith and the real truth demand that you question and challenge them because we’ve been given an intellect by our Creator. We’ve been given a mind and He’s stamped into us the truth of Him. He wants us to seek Him.
What she loves about being Catholic:
I think just resting in the truth and having the truth at my disposal. There’s a real sense of peace that comes in not having to just continually navigate the world which is so full of contradiction and inconsistency and subtle evils…I really feel at home.
It would have been so easy to cast off religion as some sort of silly myth that keeps people blind and in the dark. It’s the exact opposite. I was the one who was blind and in the dark, buying into a secular worldview. It was the Church all along that had the truth for me. I just had to open my mind, my heart and humble myself.
Year of Faith:
The Church is not telling you to run and hide and bury your head in the sand and not think for yourself. It’s the exact opposite: please do think for yourself, please embrace this faith fully as your own because you have really delved into it. A superficial faith isn’t going to serve anybody.
Home-schooling, marriage prep, public speaking on pro-life, marriage and
We’re not supposed to be kept as infants in our faith. You’re supposed to keep digging…that’s what the journey is.
Catch more “Catholics Matter” features on Sundays following the 9 a.m. televised Mass on AZ-TV 7 / Cable 13