I went to church on a Saturday at 6AM. There were probably only a handful of people below the age of seventy. I don’t know if it’s because the elderly literally had more time, or that they had more time in the world to know what’s right for them, or if they simply continued the practices of their families. I for one, was one of those people who went to church for my family. I then turned 17 and realized that I was against all of it. I was so disillusioned by some of what I feel are hate-harboring and patriarchal teachings. It was then that I realized that I no longer believed in any of it. In my book, it was simple. As long as I am kind to other people, try my best to help, and do not hurt anyone, I’m okay.
I remember going to church every Sunday when I was a child and memorizing all of the parts just so that I could keep track of when the mass would be close to ending. This time, I had forgotten all the responses, the cues, when to kneel, when to stand, when to bow your head and when to look up. Everyone around me knew exactly what, when, and how to do everything. I thought some of them were over the top. Some knelt probably 20 times, some shouted and sang louder than the choir. I was indeed a bit shook, but I admired them. I was looking at everyone, from the priest to the lady who shouts a lot, and I wondered what it must feel like to be so sure of someone or something, that people around them like me, could feel their faith even in their silence.
I went to Catholic school growing up. I prayed everyday and went to church every Sunday for give or take 17 years of my life and now I see just one difference from then and now; this time I actually wanted to go.
I don’t know why I went to church exactly. Maybe my heart needed it. I don’t know if I’ll come back soon, but one thing is sure. Today I saw some good people with their faith so strong it transcended through their energies and made non-believers like me, shiver.
For the first time, I think my heart is open. I will never fully agree with what they teach, but maybe I agree with what they can’t teach; which is faith. Faith in something beyond what they will ever see and touch. A faith so pure that it can never be taught; it can only be held and nourished by anyone who chooses to.