That’s me in my first communion garb, when I got married to Jesus. I grew up with a Catholic mom who didn’t attend church and an atheist father. It was strange. I never went to church after I was on my own.
I felt like “Jesus is just all right with me” (remember that song?) but I had my own personal Jesus (remember that song?) I didn’t think too deeply about it. “Jesus freaks/out in the streets/handing tickets out for God.” (Remember that song?) Inevitably, my friends who became Jesus freaks had been busted by their parents for smoking pot.
I went to church again when I had kids. I felt like, well, I’ll give them this base and then when they’re old enough, they can decide. They went to cathecism and got all their sacraments. Our pedophile priest went to jail. When the priest who wants your sons to be altar boys goes to prison, it changes you. Also, I didn’t like other things. Their anti-abortion stance. No women priests. No married priests. It was so messed up.
I tried a few other churches but when my favorite “non-denominational” church fired our minister because she was Jewish, I lost faith. It feels really good to have faith but no matter, mine was gone. I hope there’s something after death, but chances are, there’s not. I still pray, and it works, there’s something inside me that responds to prayer. I’m comforted by the Buddha, who, when asked if there was a God, did not respond. Nobody knows, and that’s a fact. But I accept and understand the place religion has in people’s lives. I just don’t like the thing where it has to be one religion.
As for politics, I’m from a working class background and so is my husband. Our families have been union people from the beginning and we have always voted Democrat. I used to say I was an independent but I have never voted Republican. I take it election by election and I always like the Democrat candidate better. Usually they are more in line with every woman’s right to make all decisions concerning her body. I hate racism and bigotry and I see more of that in some candidates than others.
So, why did I just say all this? Well, this week I did a few political posts on Facebook, and I don’t usually do that. So I’ve been thinking about it all. Why is it a thing that we don’t talk about politics or religion? They seem like important topics to me, more now than ever. Yesterday, for 28 minutes, Hawaii believed they were being hit by a nuclear bomb. I think about that every day. That any day could be that day, and it seems this president more than any other kind of wants that. So maybe having a conversation or two about the politics and religion behind war and bombs isn’t a bad idea. Maybe it’s a very good one. Namaste.