Catholic Inklings

Musings and sharings on my devotion to an ancient religion.

Key and Peeling Out

Key and Peele isn’t for everyone—I love it (it’s so, so funny!!!), but sometimes it even makes me cringe. But, most of it is hilarious and clever. There was a clip recently that hit on a problem in the Christian community that I thought was worth talking about. The scene shows a Bible Study group praying together when suddenly above them illuminates and the voice of God booms out. At first, everybody is excited—what will God say to them?! They can’t wait to hear the message…until it comes. God says, “Sell everything that you own and give it to the poor.” Countenances drop, shock sets in—then panic—and they pretend to believe that the house is haunted as they peel out of there in a mob.

I wanted to share that clip, but I couldn’t find it. So, I’ll share this one instead. It’s equally awesome, and is a commentary on a nonsensical discrepancy in our society.

Anyhoo, this knock at Christians is well-deserved. Jesus did flat out tell a guy (who represents all of us) to sell his stuff and give it to the poor. The early Christian community lived it like Jesus meant it. They shared what they had and no one was in need as a result of it. 2,000 years later, we’re living like it either doesn’t apply to us personally, or like we never heard it.

[Read blog on The Rogue]

Raising Pagans

Some time ago a friend of mine shared an article written by a mom, who is an atheist, about her young son’s journey to atheism. Like many parents, she meant to leave him a blank slate so that, without her interference, he could come to his own conclusions about the existence of God and the necessity of religion in his own time. She spoke of how she wasn’t intentionally raising him atheist, and her realization that by raising him with no spiritual foundation, she actually was raising him to be an atheist.

The way we relate to God, faith and religion in our homes; whether intentionally or not, does, in fact, raise our children to be something. If we speak of God’s presence in our individual lives and in the life of our families, pray together, do charitable works together, make Mass part of our routine and celebrate holidays with their intended meaning, we are creating a culture of faith, belief and probably a lasting relationship with God and the Church that will be passed on to the generation beyond our own children. If we don’t, we are sending a different message, and imbuing our children with a different set of values.

[Read blog on Catholic365]

My Sad Devotion To An Ancient Religion

This is going to sound really messed up at first, but that scene in Star Wars: A New Hope, when the Imperial Officers are all talking about their plans for the Death Star and Vader says, “I find your lack of faith disturbing,” and then uses the Force to choke Admiral Motti expresses so perfectly what being religious feels like sometimes.

In case you don’t know what I’m talking about, it’s this part:

It’s not the part when Vader chokes him, because that’s just not right (even if there are times when I sooooooooo wish I could do that), but the conversation about how powerful the Empire thinks they are. In their hubris, they entirely overlook the power of something quiet, but much greater than themselves—something that can, and ultimately will take them down. Admiral Motti actually calls the Death Star the “ultimate power in the universe.” He taunts Vader mocking his, “sad devotion to that ancient religion.” I feel like I’ve heard that exact thing said to me before…or I might have drifted off into a Star Wars daydream…

More and more, religion is looked on with suspicion and, even worse, isn’t thought of at all. Now that I work with kids (I’m the Coordinator of Religious Education for a parish), I’m given an insight into their parents’ mindset. And before that, when I worked with young adults it was the same. Not only do most of them not have even a basic theological vocabulary, but the most basic Christian concepts are perfectly foreign to these young people. They are completely shocked when I tell them that, as people of faith, God should come first in their lives and that they should try to put others before themselves. No one ever told them that.

Our society seems to be moving in a direction that views religion as either the superstition of old people, or some vague authority that exists just to squish our fun. Like Darth Vader, I want people to recognize the power of the Force. Of course, he used it for evil for a long time, but he knew that those who used it for good and to promote justice and freedom for the oppressed—even without using fear tactics, or weapons of mass destruction—could overthrow what appeared to be an insurmountable enemy. It’s true in real life, too. With God, all things are possible. With faith lived in community, impossible things become a reality.

Martian Love

I had a couple of hours alone one evening this past week and boy, did I use it to the fullest! I watched, in perfect peace and in absolute control of the remote, “Justice League: Crisis on Two Earths.” It was delightful. Not only was it a great superhero story with lots of action and insight into Batman’s inner darkness, but there was an AMAZING scene between J’onn J’onzz and the alternate Earth’s President’s daughter, Rose.
The two felt a connection between them, and after spending some time together, discovered romantic feelings as well. Rose went to kiss J’onn to express her developing feelings, when he stopped her—and something beautiful happened…I looked and looked for a clip of this scene, but this printed dialogue was the best I could do:
J’onn J’onzz: I apologize for reading your mind before. It is considered extremely impolite to do so without permission.
Rose Wilson: I didn’t mind. It seemed, I don’t know, natural.
J’onn J’onzz: We are attuned. Our minds are in sync to a degree that was rare even among my own people. I never imagined I’d meet a human so complimentary to myself.
Rose Wilson: I feel it, attuned.
[Rose leans in to kiss him]
J’onn J’onzz: What are you doing?
Rose Wilson: Trying to kiss you. On Earth, it’s a way of sharing affection.
J’onn J’onzz: This is how we do it on Mars. Know me.

[Read on The Rogue]