Today’s blog was supposed to be about the meaning of Lent. I wanted to write a comprehensive post so that not only could you all learn more, but so could I! I therefore went perusing along on Pinterest, looking for some pretty explanations so that I could better explain it to you all.
However, what I found was something that made me so frustrated.
Of course, it isn’t a secret that I’m a Catholic and have a strong belief in God. I take pride in that and also the fact that I’ve learned so much about my faith these past few years.
And do you want to know something? The more I learn, the more I love it. The more I believe it. The more real it is to me. It’s amazing to be a Catholic, honestly and truly. It’s not always easy, but it is always worth it.
I remember when I was that “outsider” looking in on the believers and thinking they were crazy. They sing and worship with these weird songs and look up to this invisible person in the sky. It’s insane, right? They get their morality from this book, and not from the sense of just being a good person! So twisted! So yes, I totally understand when anyone has this view of Catholicism. It can seem like just a bunch of rules that you’re forced to follow in order to get into the place in the sky one day. I totally was guilty of thinking that. Not gonna lie.
What changed my opinions? Learning. When I understood where these views came from that the Church has, I fell in love with it. I not only understood, but personally, I agreed. We aren’t just blindly following some super-long book written by white guys. If that’s what this religion was, I would be gone in a second.
There’s so much logic and truth behind it all and it just makes me excited. Of course, the weird part about being a Catholic is believing in this God that you can’t see. That adds a completely different element to the religion, so I can understand how someone might be hesitant. It’s so hard to wrap your head around.
Anyway, I digress. So, I came across this lady who shared a post on Pinterest that said, “I’ve studied the bible. That’s why I’m atheist.” Below the picture was a caption she’d written, “What’s the quickest way to become an atheist? Have him or her actually read the Bible, cover to cover. Then, it’s a done deal. No clear-thinking person can read the Bible in its entirety and come away believing a single word of it. It’s vile and immoral.”
It might just be me, as a strong Catholic, but girl! This physically hurts my heart. Yes, everyone is entitled to their opinion, but it still makes me sad. I therefore felt I had a duty tonight to share some insight to the non-believers.
Although it may not change beliefs, I hope everyone reading this can open their minds just a little.
Of course, believe in something new is never something you can force someone into, so that’s why I consider this just an invitation to learn something cool.
It wasn’t hard to find some basic questions/statements, so I picked a couple and will give my best answer!
I would like to make it clear that no, I by no means know everything. Although I’m sharing what I’ve learned to be true, there is are still things I don’t know about my faith. I may not provide as strong of an answer as a priest could, but that’s okay. Part of our faith is sharing it to the world, and so this is me doing that.
“If Christians follow the “one true god,” then why are there 41,000 Christian denominations?”
This is a great question, and one I had the privilege of learning a ton about this past summer! Although there’s a ton more I could’ve learned on the subject, here is a basic summary of the explanation.
Those denominations are called protestant religions, except for Catholicism. The reason for this is because each of those Christian religions was founded by a man, and not by Jesus (who was man, but who we also believe to be God). During the Protestant Reformation, many people were (understandably) fed up with the corruptness of Catholicism and those who held power within it. For example, people could pay a sum of money to the Church and be “guaranteed” a spot in Heaven, through having their sins forgiven. These were called indulgences. Of course, many people called bullshit on this, and rightfully so! It was wrong and a clear example of the misuse of God’s church. There was also the Crusades that occurred during this time period, but that is something I recommend researching on your own (because I don’t know much about it.) So, people began to leave and create their own religions. They would take some of the parts of the Catholic church that they liked and would take away others. One of the most famous people who did this was Martin Luther in the 16th century, who was also one of the first. Fun fact: this is where the Lutheran faith comes from!
Instead of creating a new church where people could pick and choose what they wanted to believe, I believe a better response would’ve been to reform the church that was already there, the one formed by God. What people failed to see is that although the Church was corrupt due to its leaders, God never was. Thankfully, a reform did occur, but not before many deaths and fights occurred. By the time that Catholicism was strong again, people had begun to break off and form their own churches. This is why we now have so many Christian denominations, ones who all claim to have the answers and the correct way to worship.
This is also something that still happens today. People are continuously still creating new religions.
People have many different ideas on what they’re comfortable with when it comes to religion, but the question is: is it up to them to choose?!
“Jesus regularly ate dinner with thieves and prostitutes, but you’re telling me it’s against your religion to bake a cake for a gay person?”
This question is a complete misconstrued view of our belief system. Yes, Jesus did eat with sinners. However, He did not support what they were doing. He ate with them in order to show them love and show them that there was room to change, that He was the truth and the way to Heaven. Their sins were sins, and He wanted them to repent and change.
Many believe that part of the Catholic belief system is to not support being gay. This is a very controversial topic in the news today, and one that I think Catholics get a ton of slack for. Catholics are, just like Jesus, not judging the person. They are condemning the sin. To ask someone to create something that supports something they blatantly don’t agree with is wrong. It doesn’t matter if you’re talking about Catholicism or any other thing in this world.
To bring it back to the question, Jesus would not have agreed to make a cake supporting being gay. It doesn’t mean He would be mean or rude to this person or show them any less love than any other person, in fact He wouldn’t. It does mean that He wouldn’t support what He believes to be wrong.
However, differing beliefs is never an excuse to treat someone differently or to love them any less. In fact, I believe it’s when we should show more love to the world.
Differing beliefs is never an excuse to treat someone differently or love them any less.Differing beliefs is never an excuse to treat someone differently or love them any less. Click To Tweet
“Religion’s number one fear: educated girls.”
Hi. I’m a girl. I’m also educated! Religion does not fear me and I do not fear it. In fact, I would argue that it invites me in even more.
Also, I’m always open to having conversations about this and hearing what others have to say! Leave comments below or contact me on any of my social media accounts if that interests you,