Faith Dilemmas

Andy and I have not managed to find an Episcopal Church that has decent music where we feel welcomed. So many of the churches closeby–Hempstead, Freeport, Roosevelt–are all black. Even though they have been very friendly, we feel self-conscious. Also, their music is very different from what Andy finds integral to workship. Andy cannot forgive the Cathedral for abandoning him in the hell of my mom’s death and my mania.

The Church of the Ascension is probably the best possibility, but we have not felt welcomed. Certainly our shyness contributes. Andy doesn’t like the choir director and is lukewarm about the choir. We haven’t been to church for almost a year since Christ Church didn’t work out.
We decided to go to St. Agnes for Easter. I liked the service; it felt like home. They have a good choir, if not up to the Cathedral’s standards. It is a big church with a coffee hour once a month. If we wanted to make friends, we would have to volunteer for some ministry. But going back to Catholicism means going back to being a sinner. The Church doesn’t recognize my marriage to Andy because he is divorced. To be a Catholic in good standing, Andy would have to get an annulment of his marriage to Mel. I would be endangering my marriage asking him to do that, and it would be ever more hypocritical than Chris’s doing it. Eileen at least was a lifelong Catholic.
So I can’t make a good confession. I am committing a sin that I will continue to commit. I am not allowed to receive Communion and yet I do. Although it would help me to keep up with Catholic practices and go to Mass sometimes, I can’t become a Catholic again. The only reason I am considering it is that we haven’t found the Episcopal Church we need. If we were in the city, we would not be having this problem.
Certainly spending some time in Catholic Churches, going to Mass,  praying the rosary, possibly doing the stations of the cross, following the daily lectionary, taking a Scripture class might help me. But I hate belonging to a Church that would deny be the Eucharist the rest of my life or until Melanie dies. I don’t want to be a pick and choose Catholic.
Why not be a pick and choose Catholic? The Catholic Church is the richest source of memories that I can access. Writing the post on the penguins and reading people’s comments evoked a desire to meet some nuns, to link up with the Women’s Ordination Conference. 8/21/08

About maryjograves

Children are my passion. I have 4 daughters, 5 grandkids under 5 with another on the way, 5 younger brothers, 11 nieces and nephews, 8 great nieces and nephews. I advocate a revolution for a child friendly US. I have been an editor, public librarian, social worker, and internet educator. Tweet @RedstockingGran @ChildrensWings
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