I had always been seen as a spiritual person. I believe in the interconnectedness of all things. What I am finding harder and harder to embrace is the idea of a one God. I am leaning more towards the scientific explanations found through quantum physics and other sciences.
I was involved in the Church for the longest time. As a child, I was an altar person, I sang in the choir and even belonged to CYO for a bit. I was raised Roman Catholic though I always gagged when it came to reciting the Nicene Creed. Especially about believing in one Holy Roman Catholic and Apostolic Church. Despite that, I did go on to work as a Youth Minister at a retreat center and interviewed to be a priest. Of course, it would be interesting now, given what we know about me.
I always felt that something was guiding me. I was being placed in position to help people when they most needed it. I took it to be God doing this. These days, I think it is more about being empathic and feeling people’s need rather than a central God figure.
Why the big change? Well, it didn’t really happen overnight, but rather over a long drawn out period of time. As things happened I started to believe less and less in the mantra that sometimes bad things happen to good people, and just take it more as shit happens. Being good or bad has little to do with what happens to you. Rather, it is just things happen.
I think what really started to turn the tide for me was when the Roman Catholic priest pedophile scandals started exploding. I am sorry, a good and loving God would not allow such evil to be done to children. Jesus even admonishes in Mathew 18:2-6
2 He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them.
3 And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.
4 Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.
5 And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.
6 “If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea.
Yet, time and time again, we hear of more stories uncovered regarding priests abusing children. If this was just confined to the Roman Catholic Church, it would be bad enough, but recent reports relate how it is also with the Southern Baptist ministry. I think what makes things worse is the lack of action on the part of the Roman Catholic Church to rid itself of pedophile priests. Rather than turning them over to authorities, they shuffled them around to other assignments, potentially exposing even more children. It all began to be made public in the 1980’s. Yet, here we are in 2019 and the Roman Catholic Church only recently had a conclave to discuss the issue! Yet, even coming out of that, there is no push to eradicate pedophile priests and the clergical hierarchy that tried to cover it up!
It only seems to get worse with the Roman Catholic Church as new allegations of sexual misconduct towards nuns was reported last year. For a Church that is supposed to preach the love and light of Jesus, they seem to be more into orgies than sharing the blessings and teachings of Jesus.
The sad part is how the Church attacks the LGBT community despite all the darkness that surrounds them. They go back to the Old Testament to pick and choose passages to support their hate, despite Jesus very clearly stating in John 6:37:
“All that the Father gives Me will come to Me, and the one who comes to Me I will certainly not cast out.”
One Roman Catholic Cardinal even blamed the LGBT community for the pedophile priests! The Roman Catholic Church has always professed hate towards the LGBT community. It is a wonder that anyone in the community would profess to be Roman Catholic. I attempted to transition back in the 90’s and left the Church for good at that time. Given their history of professing hate and their sexual misconduct and cover-ups, I think it is a good choice.
Before I continue on, I do want to point out that not all organized religions profess hate towards the LGBT community, some are inclusive and welcoming. My friend Karen Furr is pastor of Our Lady of the Angels Catholic Community. I believe most Unitarian Universalist Churches are also affirming. I know I was asked to speak at one back in the 90’s. I believe the Episcopal Church is also affirming. Though, I believe the Methodist have chosen not to be. Wikipedia lists the Evangelical Lutheran Church as accepting. So there are few and you can look up who Wikipedia thinks are accepting on their page, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Christian_denominations_affirming_LGBT#North_America
It is sad that a Church who espouses the teachings of Jesus can turn its back on those who wish to follow his teachings. While I no longer follow any organized religion, I do try to follow the teachings of many of the great masters. While I have studied primarily Jesus’ teachings, I have also followed Buddhist teachings as well as some Hindu. I also follow the Native American teachings and wisdom. For as the Hindu koan states, “There are many paths up the mountain. The only one not getting to the top is the one who runs around and around telling everyone else they are on the wrong path.”
I do believe that we all need to come together. We need to put aside that which divides us and embrace that we are all one under the skin.
My heart to your heart, one heart, one spirit.
“Lady” Emma Morgaine Croft