I drive by a Catholic church on the way home several nights a week. Like – if I need to stop by Super Target for something (like last night? We needed orange juice) or if traffic on the main highway is reportedly backed up. It just so happens that I have taken that route home almost EVERY night this week, and if you’re a Catholic, you’ll know what I saw. A packed parking lot. Almost every night.
It’s funny, it has been SO long since I’ve been a practicing Catholic that I had to stop and ask myself why the church was so crowded. Catholics don’t go to church on Thursdays. Then I remembered, Ahhh…it’s Holy Week. I know at least one or all of the days this week are what Catholics call “Holy Days of Obligation” – meaning, you kinda have to go to mass (or at least receive communion) in the eyes of the church. It’s funny that I can’t remember for sure which days are and are not. I’m fairly certain today is one…being Good Friday and all. But, I’m really not positive.
It’s a weird thing for me to think about, sometimes. My lack of religion. I went to Catholic school for 12 years. I was a Eucharistic minister, I was a leader at the Catholic retreats in high school, I went to Catholic youth conferences in Louisville and in Indianapolis. I was BEYOND an active practicing Catholic. It was my life on many levels.
I don’t think about it much anymore, I’ll be honest, but there was a little pang of loss when I drove past the full church. I don’t miss the religion, so to speak, but I miss what I felt about the religion. I quit the church long ago because I no longer felt those things, but I do miss the peace that the blind faith gave me while I was growing up. It was something that I needed and I’m not sure I would have survived the teen years without it.
I do NOT, however, miss the plaid wool skirts.