|laceblade (laceblade) wrote,|
@ 2013-01-13 08:03 am UTC
|Entry tags:||a: oakes kaya, books, books: non-fiction, catholicism, faith|
Feeling depressed and distant from her husband, she starts looking back into the Church, going through the RCIA process to become confirmed.
Today, we turn to shrinks, Prozac, yoga, drinking, television. Crises are supposed to come and go, and we're supposed to deal with them. But when it comes to a crisis because of a desire for faith, none of those solutions seemed to work for me. The contradictory desires for companionship and solitude that pushed me into panic and sorrow mirrored my problem with the phone: I've had a cell phone for years, but fewer than ten people have the number. I want to be able to call out, but I don't want anyone to reach me.
In addition to many of her political beliefs (supporting LGBT people in society, etc.), many facets of her faith ring true to mine, too.
I don't find a Jesus I can identify with in the stories about the miracles. They're like novels or old epic poems, just clusters of metaphors because for someone who's used to finding solace in facts and has taught literature for over a decade, they're tough to believe.
I prefer the stories of Jesus and people, particularly when he's talking to women.
Her experience going to mass feels like how I feel now.
Anyone who attends Mass by herself is guaranteed to be surrounded by what looks like hordes of loving Catholic families. There are lots of female lectors at my church, lots of women in the choir, lots of women who attend services, but they're with their families or in groups of other women.
The author seems to magically find groups of like-minded people to join, including a group of women who bitch about the Church's politics.
This sort of happened to me in high school, in that joining one group led me to join a bunch of others.
However, in college this really didn't work. I wrote the weekly intercessions for all four years, and through that was invited to join some sort of advisory board. However, I was way more liberally-minded than everyone else there, and every meeting was uncomfortable. I never felt part of the community there.
I've found another church now that has a strong commitment to social justice, but it seems like the only way to meet people is by joining a Bible study. All of the other "adult enrichment" groups are centered on around the making and eating of food.
So. Jealous, yeah.
Anyway, I like her thoughts on why the Church sucks at issues of gender equality.
Church does not love women unless they are nuns or the Virgin Mary, and some priests go into the seminary too young; they never establish deep friendships with women, and thus fail at understanding even the most basic challenges women face. Their entire knowledge of women is based on a teenage girl who lived several thousand years ago and a handful of particularly pious female saints. This is why I find myself getting along a lot better with priests who have sisters; they've had some exposure to women as human beings, not as plaster statuettes representing impossible ideals.
And politics in general.
The Catholic Church is so good at ministering to the poor, caring for the sick, educating people in forgotten communities. It is so good at encouraging its flock to injustice and fight oppression. And it is just freaking awful at understanding what it means to be a woman, or to be gay, or to want to express your sexuality without catching a disease.
IN SUM. I found a lot to agree with here, and the book makes feel less alone. There are a lot of liberal U.S. Catholics, and there are other parishes like mine that try hard to do/speak the things they think are right, in spite of being under the thumb of a right-wing bishop.
However, the book makes me miss the communities and friendships I'd made in high school, and haven't found a way to replicate since.