I have a coworker who has become a dear friend to me. We eat together nearly every day…she is Presbyterian…I’m Catholic. We don’t always discuss religion (after today, I now know why)
She believes that the RCC is wrong to repress women from positions of stature…she said that when she was Methodist, she ‘ran’ the financials of the church…the service programs, etc…she was ‘in charge.’ It was almost said to me in an angry tone.
So…we continued the conversation…and we started talking about Confession. She said that ‘all one needs to do is ask God for forgiveness…a priest doesn’t know if you are going to repent, even if you really mean to.’’ I said, "true, but this is something Jesus Himself told the Apostles that they could do. I choose to think that if Jesus was forgiving sins…then He wanted to appoint people to act on HIS BEHALF.’’
No no…she wasn’t buying it. I wasn’t selling it. I felt upset that her voice started raising…and I said…’‘Yes, I believe that God forgives sins when we speak to him…but as a Catholic…this is what we believe. The priest is acting in the persona of Christ. I don’t believe that Jesus intended for us to choose from a thousand different denominations.’’ She listened and then we started talking about mass. She said that she goes to church when she feels she needs it…if she doesn’t need it, she doesn’t go.
I said to her…’‘Well, we need mass …God doesn’t need us to go to mass.’’ I was surprised by all that she was saying. I felt sad that her faith seemed so…empty. Not her personal faith…but that the church she belongs to seems so…do whatever…who cares?
The RCC is sort of like a father figure to us…who guides us…leads us…doesn’t condemn us, like I think she thinks.
I don’t want to belong to a faith that doesn’t care about my soul…you know? That’s the nice thing about the RCC…say what you will…the rules are there to help us get to Heaven.
So…what’s a healthy way to debate? When someone gets heated about the RCC, what do YOU do? Any advice is helpful…because one of my husband’s brothers is Lutheran…and I know when we move closer to him, the debates will begin!
Is it wrong to just listen to them rant…in silence??:o