Fellow Travelers

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Bad Catholic...

Yes, I am going to admit that is what I am. I have every intention of becoming a 'good' Catholic or whatever that means, but I'll be honest, I haven't been 'good' for some time.

I was raised in a fairly strict Catholic home. I attended Catholic School 1-8th, which was one of, if not the best, thing that created my educational foundation. I attended church regularly during the week and on the weekends with my mother or grandmother.

In high school, I wanted to go out on Saturday nights so I went to 1st Mass by myself, in order to appease my mother. I will admit, I did sleep in my car one morning in the church parking lot, instead of going. But that only happened once.

Since my grandmother died, church has always been different. Every single holiday I attend Mass with my family, my mother cries... and I don't be a tear, I mean full on cries. Every holiday - Easter, Christmas, Mother's Day, Ash Wednesday, Palm Sunday.... every single one. And when I sit in church it reminds me of that, I know that's a horrible excuse for not attending Mass (so no reprimand needed).

The Jetplanes where married in the Catholic Church, the church that I attended as a young girl (prior to moving due to Mama Jetplane getting re-married), the church my mother's entire family went to school at, and the church my grandma attended every Sunday for early mass. I did this more for my mother then for me. Mr. Jetplane is not religious, but has agreed to have our children be raised Catholic (which is rather impressive to me). I wanted to get married at a vineyard, Mama Jetplane wasn't having that at all.

Am I happy that I got married in the church? Yes, I feel my grandmother's presence in that church.

After my mother was diagnosed with cancer in the Fall, she delved back into her religion. While I pray on a regular basis, I still don't attend Mass. I don't have a real excuse other than pure laziness and complacency about my faith. I was angry at God for giving my mom (the most wonderful person in the world) breast cancer and I begged and prayed that he take the cancer away. He listened and heard our prayers, because my mother's cancer was Stage 1 and since she chose a double mastectomy, she has no need for chemo and/or radiation. We were very lucky. My mother knew her risks all along, my grandmother and great-grandmother had breast cancer, she was pro-active and that's what saved her.


But all that being said, you would think that would encourage me to go to Mass again.

So today, on the beginning of Lent, I'm going to start to evaluate my faith and find my way, so to speak. I want to raise my children in a Catholic home, I believe faith is important in a child's upbringing, no matter the religion.

Wow, I got really deep this morning. Excuse my ramblings, its just something that I've been feeling for some time and it all came out this morning in some form or fashion.

16 comments:

suburban prep said...

It is like you took a picture into my life because while I was raised Catholic and married in the Catholic I guess you could say I am not a very good Catholic. I am trying though.

Sara said...

I went to catholic school growing up as well, though I am technically a methodist. Denomination really doesn't matter to me. I too have neglected church for a while but because I was diheartened in high school by what I found inside our church. Many judgemental people. Made my life just as miserable at church as they did at school. Church was supposed to be a refuge, but it turned into another stressor. I never really recovered from it no matter how I try.

High Heels & Combat Boots said...

I'm with you. I'm what my grandmother calls a "non-practicing Catholic"...I too am trying to get better :)

Running In Stilettos said...

Did my mother contact you and tell you to write this b/c she knows I read your blog and is hoping I will get the message?

I have been begging my hubs to go back to Church with me (to help with my motivation) and he says, "We will go to Mass regularly when we have kids."

I am going to start going by myself (using some good catholic guilt to get him to go).

I actually do miss it though.

Miss E said...

I'm trying to be better too. It's hard because it seems life gets in the way. But that is no excuse. Good luck! Are you giving anything up for Lent?

PS - the pic of you and your mom is beautiful!

Mrs. Newlywed said...

Good for you.

I agree with you that religion is important for children no matter what it is.

If you have any questions let me know. I can gladly recommend some books that will help you ease back into it.

I'm still a practicing Catholic down to the no artificial birth control doctrine, so if you ever need anyone to chat with you know who to gchat :)

JD said...

Well, clearly you're going to hell. Just kidding. I think that it is wonderful to reflect on your religion and refreshing to read such an honest post! I was raised Catholic as well but now I attend a Presbyterian church (when I do go to church that is) but I still sometimes go to mass when I'm home with my mother. I read a book called "Mere Christianity" by CS Lewis about 4 years ago... really, really good... I suggest that. Oh, and don't eat fish on Fridays. :)

d.a.r. said...

Wow, gosh, thank you so much for sharing so much with such honesty. I think this time of year makes us all reevaluate where we are a little bit. It's funny what happens when you start thinking about having a family, though...all of a sudden, it seems a lot more important! I know when we got engaged, church and my faith seemed much more relevant and imperative because I wanted my marriage to be faith based and I knew that my children would be raised in the Church.

Hang in there, it's all about the journey, right?

Layne Street said...

Dear Mrs. Jetplane,

I am so excited for your journey during lent. I hope you find something unshakeable - faith that moves you instead of obligates you!

SUCH a great post. I love it.

writing4612 said...

I know everyone has different beliefs, but God doesn't cause bad things to happen to us. The devil does. He's the one that wants us to suffer. God said He would be there when bad things happen and give us grace to go through it, which is what He did for your mother.

Don't beat yourself up for what you haven't done. Just start where you're at today. You'll be fine. :) It's great that you've recognized the things that you need to work on. Some people don't take the time to reflect on things.

KatieSaysSo said...

That was a really sweet post!!! I could tell that it really came from the heart. I am having kind of a similar problem though a bit different. I do attend Catholic church every Sunday with my grandmother and it really is something special we share. I wouldnt trade it for the world. I grew up in a Catholic home. Attended Catholic school grades k-8.

I am just at a point in my life where I am not questioning God...but questioning the Catholic religion. There are many of my morals, beliefs, etc. that do not agree with the Catholic religion. There are many things I am supposed to believe that I find myself disagreeing with and I sometimes feel ashamed about it.

I cant find myself to stop going to church though because of what it means to me to go with my grandmother every Sunday.

I think religion/faith/spirituality is a great thing and it is very important to respect another persons personal beliefs. Whatever a persons journey I am always happy to hear when they are on a positive path =) Best of luck!!!

Wow sorry that ended up being so long, girl!!!! haha....I go off on my own lil mini blogs in comment sections sometimes lol

Chic Runner said...

Such a great post. I was like that way with my mom when she was sick as well. It's hard to trust in someone when they seem to be hurting you so much. It was hard and I really struggled with it a lot, but then I realized it was all for the better good and it made me a stronger person in hindsight. Though when it was going on I was one angry girl! :) I hope everything works out for you

~Mrs. Guru~ said...

I am so glad your mom only had stage 1. I am not Catholic but I used to not go to church as well. By choice. I just didn't no where my faith was at the time. But I found my way back.

Dugout Daisy said...

Thanks for sharing this, and for being so honest. I'm Catholic too and I try to go to church every week, but the way I see it, if you have a relationship with God then that's great. After reading "The Shack" I realized that being religious or your belief in God shouldn't be determined by how often you go to church, it should be determined by your relationship with God. Things like praying and beleiving that what God does is the best for us. Every individual can have their own special relationship with God and that is the most beautiful thing. :)

*~! megs !~* said...

While I am not Catholic, I was recently on the same journey you're currently on. Trying to figure out my faith and the part that I wanted it to play in my life.

I'm on that road now and couldn't be happier. It's done wonders for me, my marriage, and my relationships with those around me.

Good luck on your journey! I'm sure it will be worth it!

Miss High Heels said...

I'm a million miles away in Australia but your post could have been written about me. I too was raised a Catholic, attended Catholic schools but over the last 8 years I have not attended Mass on a regular basis. I can't remember the last time I went to reconciliation.

My mother too was diagnosed with breast cancer and is also thankfully fully recovered. As angry as I was that she was sick I know that God listened to my prayers (and plea bargains!) and helped to heal her.

Thank you for this post, it's helping me to think through some faith issues of my own.

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