I was baptized Catholic, I had a bad run, ended up resenting catholic school,dropped out and went to public school instead, hated going to “confessions” hated having the “fear of God” as this person that would punish me if i made one wrong move, to say I had Catholic Guilt, would be understating it. Nuns scared me, priests made me feel uncomfortable, didn’t care for sitting in Church and listening to a mass that never seemed to mean much to me.
I don’t blame my mother for my religious upbringing, she was just following the protocol of how she was raised. ( This was the way it was and you just didn’t ask questions) When I protested in 4th grade about leaving Catholic School, my mother flipped out, my father on the other hand felt if i wasn’t “Feeling” catholic school, then I should be allowed to leave. He grew up southern Baptist, but always believed that we should have the freedom to find God however we saw fit.
Fast forward into my teen years, I decided not to get confirmed, and dropped out of catechism.
In college i really got into Yoga and exploring other spiritual avenues, Wiccan, Hindu, Buddhist, Episcopalian
It was fun learning how different religions saw different things.
I started to find my own path of spirituality and for many years it worked for me.
Then mother passed away, and that night in her hospital room, I saw something my eyes would never be able to deny, and it reaffirmed my beliefs in God and spirits. But still i refused to go back to the Catholic church, there was just too much there that conflicted with my personal beliefs.
Years passed and more “Epiphanies ” started to happen. My aunt Theresa Passed away, she had converted to Mormonism, at her memorial service I had the opportunity to go inside of a Mormon temple. I felt oddly peaceful in there, everything seemed sort of familiar to me, I liked the songs, I liked the people. I left feeling a strange sense of calm.
My grandmother passed away a few months ago and I had to go to the Mass for her memorial in a catholic church. i walked in I smelled the frankincense,I heard the organ, I remembered the hyms and the verses. I admired the church structure,I took communion, I felt “at home”.
On a flight to Minneapolis last year my first flight since 9/11. I was a nervous wreck, I pulled out my Mala beads from my yoga practice and began to silently chant Buddhist chants I learned a few years back, it calmed me down enough to make it through the flight.
I feel strangely compelled to read the Book of Mormon, and I don’t know why, I don’t necessarily want to become a Mormon but for some reason I feel a deep call to read the book.
I have been reading articles on the new pope, and I am really impressed with him he is so much more open-minded than previous popes, on issues such a gay rights, abortion and birth control views. I think those three things are what always kept me away from organized religion as a whole. The way I have seen gay friends treated by the church is terrible. because honestly how can you chastise them,if we are all “Gods Children”This is were I have a rough time with religion.
The new Pope brings hope into my soul that things may one day change.
It’s the strangest thing ever being torn in between several different religions. I feel like I am free-floating. But I keep getting odd callings from all of them. All I know is spirituality never really left me, for now I am just having a hard time pinpointing what and if I want to follow any of them, or just agree to sit back and admire bits and pieces of each.
As long as I am close to God, I guess only time will tell where I finally land and settle.