I’m at a three day Lutheran training about missional work, which I guess means going out in the community and doing good works. This is such a different experience from what I’m used to. I am so uncomfortable with talk about God outside of church. I want to become comfortable with this throughout this time.
Who were the people who nurtured me in my faith. Fr Rosseau had a big effect during youth ministry. And I struggled with the very concept of faith. I couldn’t really understand what he was talking about. To this day I still consider faith a firm belief in something you know couldn’t be true. Yet I have no doubt God is with me all the time. Fr. Rosseau tried to explain faith to me and I never got it. But in Catholicism there was no tradition of scripture. Maybe if the bible was involved it would have illustrated it better.
I’m not comfortable talking to people and I am particularly uncomfortable with evangelizing. Spirituality is a very inner thing for me. I am pretty much okay with whatever people want to believe, within reason. I guess that where I can help here is by being able to offer people a spiritual home if they need one.
On the first day, a woman from Chile by way of Mexico told us about her first call in the US, in the South Bronx. It was getting to be Easter time. They had Good Friday services and only a few people showed up, whereas on Easter Sunday, the church was packed. It occurred to her that this was the opposite of South America, where Good Friday was packed but Easter not so much. It was like the south was able to embrace the burden of the cross whereas the north was more interested in the resurrection. She wondered if this was reflective of the economic differences between the two hemispheres; that the struggle under the cross kept the south from success while the optimism of resurrection gave the north the attitude to make more money. But moreover, the inability of each society to recognize the other’s day belied a breach in the integrity of whole spiritual identity of the society.
Maybe if we made a bigger deal of Good Friday we would be better able to empathize with the struggles of the poor. However, it is interesting to note that one of the last American institutions that still treats Good Friday as a holiday is Wall Street.
Would South America gain some hope and confidence if they were able to embrace the resurrection? Is that what they need or do the need to emerge from under the cross?
Today we went to a church in Baltimore that was the product of a white parish and a black parish coming together. When they merged they were 50/50 but now they were mostly black. Again and again I have seen this: white flight. Black folks really scare us.
After the end of the conference when we were waiting outside at the airport having a final cigar I saw this twenty something hippie chick driving along in an old blue Volvo firing up an already half smoked joint. Had she just dropped off her parents and was just embracing the moment of freedom?
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