Monday, September 22, 2008
Perplexed in Church
In the middle of my "church search" I've become complacent. I found a group of Catholic Lesbians and a Jesuit run Catholic church which seems to welcome their lesbian and gay parishioners, with announcements in the bulletin for our meetings! (We're having a recently ordained woman priest at our next meeting and in yesterdays bulletin there was an announcement in a with a border! If the archbishop finds out we'll all be excommunicated...)
Well, to get to the point, I went to an actual mass, after attending meetings for a year and a half, when my Ohio family visited. It wasn't so bad and all my friends were there. They went to brunch after. So I've been going to mass every once in awhile, maybe twice a month. It's been...pleasant, although not quite what I'm looking for, but part of what I'm looking for is community and that was there. Yesterday I attended mass. One of my group said to me, "What are you doing here?" I was dumbfounded. Then I felt guilty-from my years of Catholic schooling. Then I became defensive-with my whole spiel about discernment and searching and attending other churches. I sat through the beginning of the service unable to concentrate on spiritual things, obsessing on what I perceived to be a slight or comment on not attending every week (like a good little Catholic girl.) I finally passed a note saying "I should have said to you: 'I'm here doing what every one else is doing.'
After the service, my regular group disappeared, some to do tabling in the church, my critic to have coffee with her special friend. I was alone to process my thoughts. It may be time to stop my complacency and find a place that will truly serve my needs with a woman on the altar and no childhood baggage.