Among many of the people I consider to be casual social friends, the term "Christian" is thrown around disparagingly, the term "Catholic" even laughingly so. These conversations, which are admittedly uncomfortable for me, make me wonder, "When did the word 'Christian' become a bad word?"
The attack isn't so foreign to me. I used to disparage church life. I still sometimes shudder when I hear someone say, "Jesus" as in a pious announcement such as "Jesus wants me to do x, y, z." I can much more easily hear Jesus' name invoked in passionate explosions, such as "Jesus H. Christ, why the hell...."
So what better way for me to come to terms with this dilemma than to teach at a seminary and graduate school of religion? Every day I get to consider questions that cut into the very core of who I am and who I am becoming: How could anyone in their right mind, after all, believe in the Immaculate Conception? How could anyone belong to an institution whose leaders have tacitly supported the sexual abuse of minors and women? Why would a feminist choose to become Roman Catholic especially when women are not allowed to be ordained?
In short, how could you? How could I?
What I write here are my personal thoughts and observations. I welcome comments and ideas. I request that if you disagree with me heatedly, keep your comments respectful. No flames. We're all in this together....just searching a little each day.