Sunday, September 21, 2008

I didn't go to Mass today. I almost feel guilty. I went to the vigil Mass last night, so I met my Sunday obligation, but it's weird that it's the first Sunday I haven't attended Mass in over a year. Having a whole Sunday to myself was nice. I spent most of the day napping, trying to sleep off a sinus headache. It's been windy so I didn't get my yard work done yet, but maybe can do that tomorrow.

I've been thinking about some earlier posts I've made this week, most particularly a snarky one I made about the revivalists coming to town. I had a couple of anon comments, which surprised me, but didn't bother me. I don't get a lot of comments in the com box, which is ok, as this is really my quiet place. When comments come in, I'll do my best to answer most of them and of course, I reserve the right not to publish others.

Nonetheless, I still don't believe that Santa Fe needs to be revived or is a den of despair. This is a community that celebrates and welcomes diversity, whether it's diversity of race, color or creed. It's an old, tolerant and accepting place. Christianity has thrived in this place for 400 years and it will continue to thrive. While Catholicism's place in this town is obvious by the rituals, traditions and festivals that color the City year round, other Christian faiths practice here free of intolerance. There is a strong, thriving Jewish community, an Islamic community as well, Buddhists and every other faith under the sun. There is an interfaith dialog and lots of ecumenical events and functions for the people of faith (and those not of a faith) who can come together and learn from each other. Never have I heard a message of hate, intolerance or judgment been preached in any of the churches I've attended.

So from the media, it was implied that these revival santa fe people had come to pray for our city, to show us our river dried up because of our immoral and wicked ways and that is what I found offensive. These were people making judgments that only God can make. The city's strong and thriving LGBT community took offense, our Mayor stood up in protest and I don't blame them or him. I, as a citizen, also took offense. I find it truly outrageous that someone would have the audacity to say someone in my family whom I loved, a family friend, a co-worker or a stranger down the street was a sinner because he or she was homosexual. That is wrong. Even my own Church, which isn't without controversy on the subject, does not decry such a person a sinner. The Church is opposed to any sexual acts outside of marriage. Period. So, in the eyes of the Church anyone having sex who is not married to each other or those committing adultery, are committing a mortal sin. Gay or straight, the act outside of marriage is the sin, not the person nor the sexual orientation of the person.

Now there are people who believe differently and they have every right to believe so, to preach their message and say all their prayers. They believe they are sincere, so I shouldn't mock them, but I reserve the right to take their message with a grain of salt. In my own parish yesterday, we offered our prayers on behalf of others too, for the poor, the oppressed, the persecuted. For the sick, for the dead, for our loved ones, our Church, our leaders and for those struggling to get by in this weakened, almost depressed economy. I hope none of them found our prayers offensive.