Thoughts of a Catholic convert

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Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Posting about religion

Sorry I haven't been writing much about religion lately. I'm feeling kind of discouraged with it, both with the Catholic church and with my own beliefs.

I can remember how excited and hopeful I was when Francis was chosen as pope. The day after the conclave, there was a story in the news that he had visited the Basilica di Santa Maria Maggiore, the church where the notorious Bernard Law holds sway, and had banished him. The story was completely erroneous. The disappointment I felt in the pope has only been compounded as time has gone by. While he's loved by the press and by moderate Catholics, I see a man who has done nothing for women in the church, has done nothing either for LGBT people, has made no real change in the clergy sex abuse situation, has clung to a failed teaching on birth control even in the face of its effect on climate change. The list goes on, but you get the idea.

And meanwhile, my prayer life is pretty yucky. I had read Teresa of Ávila's The Interior Castle and Ignatius of Loyola's Autobiography .... they both had mystical experiences that seemed to be undoubtable ... and that's what I've used as a benchmark for prayer life. But I don't think I've ever really achieved that, and over the years the bad things that have happened to me and to others have made it increasingly hard for me to believe there's a God who really cares about us.

So, I'm feeling less attracted to writing posts on religion, but I haven't completely given up on religious posting or religion. Yet. ;)


Blogger Dina said...

Gosh Crystal, I don't know what to say. You sound in a bleak midwinter time.
For myself I've learned that I just have to lower expectations in the religious sphere.
We can't all reach the heights of Theresa and Ignatius, not even Papa Francesco, whose birthday it is today.
Good luck to you, my friend.

12:27 PM  
Blogger crystal said...

Thanks, Dina. It does feel kind of bleak. Maybe it's just the icky weather and I'll get a better perspective when it warms up.

1:02 PM  
Blogger Dina said...

You and me too.
Shabbat shalom from the cold desert.

9:39 AM  
Anonymous Richard said...

I've been thinking about this for awhile and happened today upon this podcast interview with the late John O'Donohue (who I had never heard of til today) which may not answer all or any of it. But it is provocative and at point he talks about a place in our souls that we can visit that despite the rest is never wounded. Worth listening too I think. Have a wonderful Christmas Crystal, all :-) Rich

2:16 PM  
Blogger crystal said...

Thanks, Richard. I'm listening to it now. Some other theologians write about beauty too, like Hans Urs von Balthasar and David Bentley Hart, but I've always been wary of it, I guess. This is the part you mentioned? I hope it's true ....

"Your identity is not equivalent to your biography and that there is a place in you where you have never been wounded, where there is still a sureness in you, where there's a seamlessness in you, and where there is a confidence and tranquility in you. And i think the intention of prayer and spirituality and love is now and again to visit that inner kind of sanctuary."

Merry Christmas! :)

7:59 PM  

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