Went to church today, to celebrate the marriage of one of Beloved Husband's colleagues. It has been a very long time since I attended mass. (So long, in fact, that several of the rote responses have changed slightly... and the laminated sheet with the indicated responses was six years old. Oh, dear.) It was remarkable, though, how the rituals and words and actions came to mind immediately.
It was odd, too, how setting foot in the church brought out my inner supplicant. There among the stained glass windows and the light and the wood of the pews and the cushioning of the kneeler, it was natural to reach out my thoughts and ask for what I need. That is the beauty of prayer: it is a silent request, private even among the people.
Who hears our prayers? Can a wish within a single creature's neurons alter the course of the Universe? And which is more terrifying -- a yes, or a no?
The reasons I became Catholic while in graduate school, and the reasons I stopped attending mass when the Offspring were young, are multiple and varied and personal, and far too complex to do them justice by attempting to write them down. I will state, though, that part of my current disillusionment stems from strong feelings about religious bureaucracy and hierarchy and exclusionary tactics and form-over-substance; and most of all, from the terrible, terrible things that people do in the name of their religions.
I have no trouble with God. It is Man that troubles me.
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