He is risen, Hallelujah!

John is an Anglican who goes to church twice a year. I am Catholic but today went to a C of E church with John where the vicar taught us to proclaim ‘The Lord is risen, he is risen Hallelujah!” in sign language.

I am Catholic not because I believe it is the one true church – I don’t – but because Catholicism is where I feel culturally at home. I like the fact that in most countries in the world, you can find a Catholic church and follow the mass even though it’s in a different language. I like the multi-national nature of the congregation at the inner city Cathedral where I go, and the way that, in true Catholic tradition, everyone piles out of the church and into the pub after mass.

On the news yesterday was a story about a Baptist church in Nottingham which got prosecuted for being too loud.  After re-discovering faith years back I experimented with different churches, some scarily evangelical where people tended to fall over and shout a lot. There I always felt like the only sober person at the party.

Personally I feel closer to God in moments of quiet. But each to his own. As far as I am concerned the different denominations are just models of the same thing and the devil’s in the detail.

Having eventually come full circle back to Catholicism, I’m what you might call an ‘a la carte’ Catholic. I don’t deny there’s loads wrong with the Church as an institution. I take the bits I like and disregard the rest.

I love Easter. The Easter story is so powerful and the build-up to it so dramatic. It symbolises new life and renewal. And it happens at a time of year when life begins again in nature.

Max likes Easter too, because he’s got some doggie chocolate. Hallelujah!

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Christie
    Apr 22, 2012 @ 04:05:47

    Sign language, huh? I’d like to learn how to say that in sign language.

    Here in the States, you’d be called a “cafeteria Catholic.” Also, we call people who only go to church at Christmas and Easter C-and-E-ers. Nothing to do with Anglicans, mind you, just an abbreviation. My youngest sister has taken to calling them CEO’s. We regulars really dislike when you guys show up and take our usual seats! Our priest admonishes us, telling us, “Just be glad they’re here, and encourage them to come back.”

    The fact that there is loads wrong with the institution of the Church and its survival against all odds is one huge reason many people believe in the One, True, Catholic, and Apostolic Church. At the risk of sounding like a brat, do you ever wonder if taking the bits you like and leaving the rest could be considered lazy and/or disingenuous?

    Reply

  2. Clare
    Apr 23, 2012 @ 16:06:19

    Hi Christie, thanks for your comments, it’s always good to challenge! Perhaps when I said ‘take the bits I like and disregard the rest’ it would have been more accurate to say ‘take the bits that fit’ ie that fit with my intrinsic faith and core beliefs, the rest is anathema to me. I think the message of Christianity can sometimes be lost, even choked, by all the dogma. As for whether this approach is disingenuous or lazy, I’d say not, more it’s a position arrived at through 50 years of living life’s challenges and triumphs during which time I have undoubtedly come across people hurt and damaged by the Church’s unaccountability. That said, there’s lots that does fit, and for that reason I am an active member of the Cathedral community.

    Reply

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