By KATIE BORKOWSKI
BREDA – Two women in the Diocese of Sioux City will complete their journey to becoming Catholic at Easter vigil, both insisting this was a “rite” fit for them.
Dani Mueggenberg, elect, and Stephanie Neumayer, candidate, will each receive sacraments at St. Bernard Church in Breda on March 31. They participated in the Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults on Feb. 18 at St. Mary Church, Storm Lake. Bishop Walker Nickless presided at the service.
Mueggenberg will be baptized as well as receive the sacraments of Eucharist and confirmation. She was prompted to enter the church when she and her husband Glen were married by Father Gary Snyder, a little more than two years ago.
“Father Gary Snyder sparked my interest, so I started attending church with my husband every weekend,” said Mueggenberg. “Then, after being around my husband’s family with their strong Catholic background, there was just something that just kept making me think about becoming Catholic, so I knew it was time to join.”
Through the RCIA process, she said, Brenda Kline, the RCIA instructor, has been “very patient, kind and helpful in answering all my questions. I have had a lot of questions.” Father Mark Stoll has also helped as much as possible and has been trying to get the parish involved, Mueggenberg added.
The elect has enjoyed learning the meaning behind what goes on during the Mass, the order of everything and the prayers.
“I knew there was a reason and I wanted to find out why,” said Mueggenberg. “This whole process has really made me think about choices and after life and really appreciate everything and everyone around me more.”
Mueggenberg’s sponsor is Susie Boles, who has helped the elect “not feel dumb about not knowing things. She is a really good friend and that is why I chose her.”
Once she has entered the Catholic Church at Easter, she is looking forward to being able to fully participate in Mass and the sacraments.
Mueggenberg has four children – Hannah, McKenna, Aaron and one step-child, Malachi. The family lives on a farm outside of Breda.
“I just want to thank everyone at St. Bernard Parish for welcoming me,” said Mueggenberg. “I have been overwhelmed with how many people have come up to me and hugged me, shook my hand and just said welcome. It has been the best feeling, I cannot explain.”
Neumayer will also enter the church at Easter vigil and receive the sacraments of Eucharist and confirmation.
“My husband (Kevin) and I were married at St. Bernard Church,” she said. “I always knew that I wanted to convert to Catholicism. I saw the number for Brenda Kline, our RCIA instructor, in the church bulletin and I knew that the time was right to begin this journey. I called Brenda that week and started classes the next Sunday.”
The RCIA process has been an “amazing journey,” said Neumayer.
“I have learned so much about the Catholic faith and about myself,” said the candidate. “I have really enjoyed our Sunday classes and I look forward to going every week. I have enjoyed learning how powerful the Catholic church teachings are and that they give us a strong foundation for our faith.”
Angie Killeen, Neumayer’s sponsor, has always been there to answer questions and discuss any topics presented in class.
“Angie is actually teaching RCIA classes for two of her nephews and I really admire her commitment to the faith and her willingness to assist others in their faith journey,” said Neumayer. “My faith has grown a lot stronger. I have put more trust in God and recognize that whatever situations I go through in life, I am not alone.”
Following Easter vigil, she is looking forward to being able to receive the Eucharist at every Mass.
“I am so thankful that I started this journey,” said Neumayer. “My husband and I have three children and I am really looking forward to continuing to grow our family’s Catholic faith.”
The Neumayers have a daughter in first grade at Kuemper Catholic School in Carroll. They also have a son in preschool at Kuemper and a 2-year-old.
“I am so appreciative for my RCIA instructor, Brenda, who has been absolutely amazing helping us through our journey,” said Neumayer. “I also appreciate Father Mark for being so supportive of this process and for letting us know the positive impact that Dani and my journey has had on the rest of the parish.”