About this blog
Thank you for reading my blog! I hope to share my story, insights and questions about faith, God, church and life to explore my own understanding and to encourage you to think deeply, question, and, I hope, rejoice in all that is “good and holy” around us. I believe that I learn best by sharing what I think with others (and learning from the reactions I get from such thinking aloud). I look forward to you sharing your thoughts and reactions to what I write with me and other readers. I just ask that we all practice kindness and compassion when we enter into discussion. Let us all remember that we all are children of the same God (even when it might seem hard to recognize), and just as no family is perfect, no one person is either, therefore we need to treat one another with gentleness and charity.
About me, Nancylee Novell Jonza
I am the oldest of five children, haphazardly raised Catholic by parents who didn’t regularly attend church, but when they did, preferred to sit quietly in the back. I say that I rebelled into the Church because it annoyed my parents when I insisted on getting serious about my faith as a teenager.
I learned a lot about the Bible and my personal faith in God through my high school friends, most of whom were Protestants, and through my participation in a non-denominational singing group. In college, I started out exploring a variety of denominations–I joined the Baptist drama ministry and the Methodist contemporary singing group as well as the Catholic group–but time constraints made that impractical. By my sophomore year, I had committed myself to remaining and claiming my Catholic identity because the Catholic celebration of the Sacraments had been inscribed on my heart. I could not imagine my life any other way.
During and after completing a doctorate in English, I taught at the university level for a number of years and tried to stay active in my local parish. But when we moved back to Minnesota for my husband’s job, I took some time off and explored other career options. After several years, I found a part time position in church ministry, and eventually I returned to school to complete a Masters of Divinity from St. John’s University in Collegeville, MN (an experience even more intellectually and personally challenging than my previous doctoral work).
I have worked as a volunteer as well as a paid professional in a number of Catholic parishes. I love leading Bible studies, sacramental preparation programs and discussion groups most of all. Exciting things happen when we gather and talk and learn more about our faith. Since I am currently retired, I thought this blog might be a way to create a community which shares my love of learning and discussion.
In the fall of 2021, I reluctantly left the Catholic Church. See my post “Goodbye, I Love You” for the reasons why. I currently worship in a wonderful ELCA Lutheran congregation.
On the personal level, I am married with two delightful grown children, one amazing grandchild and two demanding cats. In my spare time, I read widely and quilt obsessively.