Thursday, September 23, 2010

Religion, take 2...


Remember my first post about religion? That in which I spoke of being Catholic and the ways in which I sometimes feel that other "religions" exclude Catholics as being Christian?

Well, recently, a thread I had started in BlogFrog got resurrected, and in turn, I received some comments on that old post of mine.

Anonymous writes:
  • I noticed that you "enjoy being Catholic" a lot, but that statement concerns me. Christianity is about following Jesus and learning about his ways, his truths, not necessarily finding enjoyment in one set of religious traditions. Christianity is not always comfortable or enjoyable; just look at the lives of those who followed Christ in the Bible. Look at Peter (he was crucified upside down for following Christ)! What I'm trying to say is that a religion should not be chosen by the amount of enjoyment you find in its traditions, but rather it should be based on the truths you find in your own study of God's word.
Really? I mean c'mon people. If you can't put your name to your words when you disagree with someone, it's really hard to be taken seriously. Do you think that by "enjoy" I mean I dance up the aisle at church? Or that I giggle through mass because it's so much darn fun?

No. What I mean by "enjoy" is that I take great joy in my faith...which includes the traditions I participate in.

Christianity should be enjoyable, my friend. It is an amazing thing, to believe in Christ...and we should "enjoy" our faith. The "traditions" of Catholicism are the ways in which we learn and practice the truths of God's word. Just because my religion is different than yours, or your neighbor's, or the old lady's down the street, doesn't mean my beliefs are wrong.

Take Mary, for example. We ask her to pray for us. Just like you would ask your neighbor or the old lady down the street to pray for you...only, she is the mother of Jesus. Our priest said it perfectly, recently, when explaining our "belief" in Mary.

"Why wouldn't we go through Mary? After all, God went through Mary to bring us Jesus...why wouldn't we go through Mary?"

God went through Mary. So, if Mary was good enough for God...why isn't she good enough for everyone? We don't worship Mary. We simply ask her for her prayers.

Next time, Anonymous...just put your name to your words. Then we can have a friendly debate...instead of monologuing to one another.

It is not wrong to "enjoy" your faith. Not wrong at all, my friend.

Respectfully yours,

24 comments:

  1. Gotta love those anonymous comments! *rolls eyes*

    You'd think that someone with such a strong opinion would have the guts to show their face and not be ashamed.

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  2. If it wasnt somewhat enjoyable, people wouldnt want to do it!

    I have a lot of students who take on that same viewpoint as "annonymous" commentor. WHen we talk about religions in history class they says Jewish, Christian, Catholic. And always I have to say wait a minute guys! And explain how Catholic IS Christian and branches of Christianity etc.
    I'm not Catholic.

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  3. that was kind of an unfinished thought. What I meant was that I am not Catholic but I still think Catholic is a type of Christianity just like Baptist, Methodist etc are all types of Christianity (or types of churches like the Catholic Church)

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  4. Well shame on you Mama M for enjoying your faith! You'd better get lookin' for a new one that makes you uncomfortable and without joy.

    For pete's sake!!

    How does Anon know that you don't enjoy your faith because of your own study of God's word? That's a pretty big assumption to make from your statement of enjoying being a Catholic.

    I think God would want us to delight in His son, and all the traditions that go with worshipping Him!

    We aren't called to be comfortable, but we sure aren't called to be bored in our faith either!

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  5. Hellfire and Damnation upon you! :)

    If you don't find joy in your worship, then you must be doing it wrong. That's all I can come up with. God intends us to find joy in this life, and that includes joy in our beliefs.

    You've been plagued with a lot of anonymous bullcrap lately, huh? I will admit to having done it once. Just once. And I don't think I'd take that one back because it wasn't viscous or anything - just awkward to comment on the particular post being a total stranger.

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  6. Interesting that you posted on this today. More from the anon commenter aspect because I have noticed that people become especially viscious/judgemental, etc when they are sitting behind their computer as another commenter said, if you feel strongly enough to comment about it then put your name behind it as well.
    As for what the comment said, law have mercy!! My SIL is Catholic, 2 of my best friend's husband's are Catholic and the guy I'm kind of dating is Catholic. All are Christians, Catholic is the way that they grew up, just like I grew up Lutheran.

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  7. You seem to stirring up quite the controversy lately. LOL. I agree with you that we should enjoy our faith. It surprises me that someone would make an effort to write such a long comment but is afraid to stand behind it.

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  8. What I nice way to put it! "Jesus went through Mary." I'm Catholic, but live in a place where there is another very dominant religion, and everyone wears their faith on their sleeve. You've given me a great way to answer a common question. :)

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  9. I view anonymous commenters as cowards, nothing more. And coward's viewpoints that make assumptions and are without merit are nothing but hot air. I think anonymous commenters are just THAT insecure with their own lifestyles and choices that they need to bring everyone else down. Don't fret another moment, M., about people who don't matter.

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  10. No one has ever left me an anonymous comment :o( I am not nearly as cool as you! Bummer :o)

    And well said - I live in the Bible belt and loads of people look at me like I'm some kind of freak when I say I'm Catholic... I even got turned down for a job once because of it. Weirdos.

    I think you put this really well - it's a hard concept to explain to people who haven't been raised in the faith. Shoot, it's a hard concept to explain - period! Nice!

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  11. What a great post! I am Christian and wish I understood Catholicism more. I really like the quote from your priest, it makes total sense to me.

    I want you to know that I do not at all agree with the anonymous poster. I appreciate all faiths and I am not here to look down on others.

    Thanks for being honest and sharing how you feel, it's quite refreshing!

    P.S. I hope my words are making sense...my brain is a little off today! :)

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  12. I, too, enjoy being Catholic....that is why it's called CELEBRATING Mass.

    And yes, I've also had that conversation with someone who was Catholic and didn't believe that you should enjoy going to Mass...and this same person went to the same very Catholic university Melis and I went to....

    I find it rather sad that not only do some people not enjoy their religious faith, but that they don't want to celebrate that faith as a relationship with God!!

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  13. I love your heart in this post and your intentions, but there are two things I wanted to share with you.

    The statement "God went through Mary" is symply physical.Yes, he physically went through her but God placed Him in mary through divine intervention. The verse "I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the father but through me." Jesus said that as well all know. He clearly says in order to receive God you must pray to Him. There is not one place in the entire bible that says to pray to Mary and I belive Mary herself would probably not want anyone to pray to her simply because being the humble heart God describes her as would recognize that all glory should go to Him alone. While God is a loving God, he is also a jealous God as he says throughout the bible. I would much rather pray to the one who can answer the request vs. someone who is simply in heaven celebrating it up with Jesus right now. :)


    And, the second statement, "Just because my religion is different doesn't mean my beliefs are wrong." I would have to say, while I understand where you're coming from,if we're really getting to the heart of the issue, all of us want the truth.Not a belief. Because we can't all be "right" when it comes to religion.I'm sure we would all agree that the terrorists who think they will have 90 wives in eternity after committing suicide and taking thousands of innocent lives with them are wrong in their beliefs. But that doesn't change the fact that that is what they belive.

    So, in that quest for truth I went back to the basics. As a historical reference the bible is the most accurate book ever written in history. All scholars will admit to that if asked. The only errors found have been grammatical. So with that being known then I believe the writing to be true. So, while thousands of different "religions" have come from the bible the underlying theme is this. "For God so loved the world that He gave his only son. Whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life." That's the heart of the message. God doesn't care about the rituals, etc he just wants you to understand that He is the only way to eternal life. He died an excruciating death and rose again to prove that to the world.The message is simple, the surrendering your heart to Him is the hard part because it means being wililng to give up your own desires for His.

    My name is Amber.I'm not afraid to say that and respectfully understand why some people will not agree with this entire comment. And my email is adawn_19@yahoo.com.

    "I am not ashamed of the gospel because it is the power of God."

    ReplyDelete
  14. I love your heart in this post and your intentions, but there are two things I wanted to share with you.

    The statement "God went through Mary" is symply physical.Yes, he physically went through her but God placed Him in mary through divine intervention. The verse "I am the way, the truth and the life. No one comes to the father but through me." Jesus said that as well all know. He clearly says in order to receive God you must pray to Him. There is not one place in the entire bible that says to pray to Mary and I belive Mary herself would probably not want anyone to pray to her simply because being the humble heart God describes her as would recognize that all glory should go to Him alone. While God is a loving God, he is also a jealous God as he says throughout the bible. I would much rather pray to the one who can answer the request vs. someone who is simply in heaven celebrating it up with Jesus right now. :)


    And, the second statement, "Just because my religion is different doesn't mean my beliefs are wrong." I would have to say, while I understand where you're coming from,if we're really getting to the heart of the issue, all of us want the truth.Not a belief. Because we can't all be "right" when it comes to religion.I'm sure we would all agree that the terrorists who think they will have 90 wives in eternity after committing suicide and taking thousands of innocent lives with them are wrong in their beliefs. But that doesn't change the fact that that is what they belive.

    So, in that quest for truth I went back to the basics. As a historical reference the bible is the most accurate book ever written in history. All scholars will admit to that if asked. The only errors found have been grammatical. So with that being known then I believe the writing to be true. So, while thousands of different "religions" have come from the bible the underlying theme is this. "For God so loved the world that He gave his only son. Whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life." That's the heart of the message. God doesn't care about the rituals, etc he just wants you to understand that He is the only way to eternal life. He died an excruciating death and rose again to prove that to the world.The message is simple, the surrendering your heart to Him is the hard part because it means being wililng to give up your own desires for His.

    My name is Amber.I'm not afraid to say that and respectfully understand why some people will not agree with this entire comment. And my email is adawn_19@yahoo.com.

    "I am not ashamed of the gospel because it is the power of God."

    ReplyDelete
  15. There are always those people out there that take our words and twist them into a whole new issue.

    Really, I just wanted to thank you for clearing the whole part about Mary. My husband's father is Catholic, but not devout so my husband has no idea what the meaning of anything is in Catholicism. We were discussing and trying to figure it out not too long ago because I just knew that it couldn't be that Mary was worshiped as God is worshiped. Now I know and can bring this to light to others that wonder the same.

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  16. I think you're supposed to enjoy your beliefs. If you didn't you probably wouldn't believe. And I'm not sure that being Christian is supposed to be hard. Well okay yeah it's hard in that we have to fight our nature to sin, but other than that, I think it's pretty easy and joyful most of the time.

    On a side note I have never understood the going through a third party when you can talk directly to the man himself. But hey, more power to ya.

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  17. Great post! My husband and I both grew up Catholic and we are raising our children the same way.

    The Virgin Mary is a huge part of Catholicism and for that I am grateful. She is like a comforting mother, always there to guide us along our journey through life. When I'm having trouble falling asleep at night, I say the Hail Mary over and over to calm my mind. For some reason, that prayer has always been comforting to me.

    I think it's super important to enjoy your faith, no matter what it is! That's what brings us back asking for more!

    And I have to say, what other religion has mass on Saturdays?! Oh ya baby, the best time to go to church is on Saturday afternoon. Can you say sleeping in on Sundays ;)

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  18. The Bible says, "Delight yourself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart". Psalm 37:3-5 The Bible also frequently talks about joy, happiness, etc. Christianity is a relationship and like all relationships, emotion is involved. I believe our God is loving and wants us to find joy in Him. People get so legalistic and "religious" and that just zaps all the fun out of life. I treat my relationship with God much like my relationship with my husband. I understand that I need to spend time with God to foster a quality relationship, I understand that I need to listen as much as I speak, etc. :)

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  19. (I just wrote but it something happened when I pressed sent, so i'm sorry if this is a duplicate!lol)

    I can totally relate. I've been having some discussions around religion lately. I'm with you.. I enjoy being catholic! :)

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  20. If I ever actually find the troll behind anonymous comments, I am going to pretend to be really nice to them for about 32 seconds, and then I am going to sucker punch them in the jaw.

    Hard.

    I seriously hate when people try to tell anyone what their faith should look like. There is very little in fact that pisses me off so greatly.

    You keep doing what you're doing lady. Your relationship with God is between you and God.

    And anyway, I'm pretty sure Satan works with anonymous postings! ;)

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  21. First off I have to say I love your blog. I kept seeing you on other peoples and obviously you have some great trends. So hi love it.

    Second I have to say I don't like the term Christian. We say no we are baptist. The reason is because some so-called Christians (and I am not talking about anyone's comments on here) use bible-thumping to be sinful and judgemental in a way that is not taught in any denomination I know of. Because of that I proudly proclaim I am Baptist.

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  22. I too enjoy being Catholic and I am so glad you addressed anonymous! A commandment says "Honor your Mother"... of course Jesus honors his Mother and would want us to honor her as well! It doesn't take away from God to honor her because he created her! I would recommend "Hail Holy Queen" by Scott Hahn for anyone that wants a sound perspective on the deal with Mary!

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I love comments! And, I welcome your thoughts that aren't in agreement with mine...as long as they are respectful!

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