Religion: My family, a healthy mix of beliefs and culture

We went to church yesterday but left early not because we dislike going to Mass. What turned us off was the constant drivel streaming from church officials that are, well, not related to religion and faith.

Not that it was the first time this sort of thing happened. I’ve seen Mom and Dad walk out of service several times in the past, not because they’re ingrates or unfaithful, but because they are slowly getting disillusioned with the way things are being run.

Now, before self-righteous Catholic pope or saint wannabes start hurling fire and brimstone at me and my family, efforts would be better served by bringing us back to the fold. Casting stones only brings back Christ’s teachings that they who are without sin should hurl the first jagged rock.

That’s why I take comfort in the fact that my extended family is composed of individuals that have different beliefs, in different religions. These people, despite differences, do not judge. They don’t even throw their weight around to convert you to their faith.

Mom and Dad are Catholic, but they see religion more as a moral guidepost, preferring to look past the church’s more unsavory history and, instead, allowing into their lives the teachings that will suit them and their endeavors.

MommyLa, my maternal grandmother, is also Catholic, and a devout one at that. She’s more of a traditionalist, seeing the church as the one true salvation that will give her eternal life. Why, she’d probably make a good candidate for sainthood if only her martyrdom for the love of a man who has spurned her would push through.

MommyLo, my paternal grandmother, and my aunts, Pepper and Jessa, are Born Again Christians. They’ve been trying to convince us to join them in service, not because they want us to be reborn but to gain a better perspective of morality.

My Uncle Roy, Mom’s brother, is Muslim. He hasn’t gone on a hajj yet. I’m hoping I’ll be old enough when he does decide to go on that holy pilgrimage. Several talks with him have ingrained in me some idea of why Muslims are united and Christians are not. Muslims in prayer speak one language. Christians, on the other hand, do not, as exemplified by yesterday’s Mass that was in Waray, my mother’s native tongue.

Lola Remy, MommyLo’s mother, is a firm believer of the teachings of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Although she sometimes talks incessantly about her religion, about how it is the one true path to God, she never tells us that our beliefs are wrong.

To top these off, our family is also ethnically and geographically divided. Mom, Dad and I once lived in Cebu and spoke Cebuano or Bisaya. Members of my mom’s family live in Leyte and are Waray. My dad’s family, on the other hand, is based in Bataan and is comprised of a mish-mash of persons speaking different dialects like Tagalog and Kapampangan. My paternal grandfather is descended from a line that traces its roots to mainland China. And the list goes on…

How about you? Do you have religious experiences to share?

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5 Responses

  1. This is why I’m becoming more and more of an agnostic.

  2. Ah, yes … agnosticism. I forgot to touch on that. My parents have a lot of friends who claim they are agnostic. From their description, however, I doubt it can be classified as a religion. Oh, what’s their description of agnosticism? It’s believing in a higher power other than our own but don’t really give a damn. At least that’s how my Tito Relly (Carpio) describes it. 😛

  3. hahahahahahaha!!!oh well…way to go baby…good descriptions!

  4. Thanks, Mama. I do my best. Do you have something else to share regarding this topic, Mama?

  5. lolz…hmmm….when i was in college…remember i told you about how we do it in stc?hehehe remember my stories about it?

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