I think this is the right place to ask this. Here’s my question and it’s background:
I’m in college and was debating last weekend whether to go home (home being about an hour away) for confession or to do it at the church down the street. On top of that, I was wondering whether or not to go to the Catholic Student Association’s movie night which was at 7:00. I wanted to go but also wanted to get home and I knew if I stayed for movie night that I wouldn’t get home until very late.
Anyway, I was debating all this outloud to one of my roomates and he asked why it was so important for me to go to the movie night. I thought about it and tried to verbalize the community aspect of Catholicism, that it would be noticed if I wasn’t there for the movie night and people would wonder. (Maybe it’s just every parish I’ve gone to, but they’re all very close and the CSA is that way too). Anyway trying to tell him about this got me realizing that I’ve had to explain a lot about “Catholic Culture” to my roomates. Why we cross ourselves, why some people kiss their hand, why we can automatically feel closer to someone who we know is Catholic (absent in his protestant world because church changing is so prevalent). I had an interesting conversation when I mentioned that the church frowned upon mixed marriages, not even thinking of the meaning that phrase has in regular society. How we can love the pope but never have met him. I also had to explain why I bristled over a comment that Mary had other children and why I look at the street preacher a little warily.
So it got me interested in the cultural aspect of catholicism. Are there any websites out there that sort of describe the catholic mind, that lists little mannerisms catholics have? Or can anyone else think of any? It’s just got to be interesting to me.