Monday, November 17, 2008

Neighboring Faiths

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Yesterday I gave my first sermon on Organ Donation. I think it was very well received and I wasn't as nervous as I thought I was going to be. I think we handed out over 100 donor cards yesterday. The funny thing is that in a UU church most everyone is already a donor. We are very into recycling...body parts too. Many thought they were donors but weren't sure so it was a good reminder for them to check their license and talk to their families about their wishes.

Patrick also took a field trip with his RE (religious education) class to a nearby Catholic church. In UU tradition the kids are required to attend many different faith groups for a well rounded Religious Education. The kids are encouraged to participate or observe as much as they feel comfortable with. They then go back to their RE classes for discussion on differences and likenesses between the two faiths. Last time they visited a Buddhist Temple and will visit a Baptist church, synogogue, Jehovas Witness, and a few others. Now, anyone who knows me knows that I find all of Religion (and Life in general) humorous. Over dinner last night we had the best conversation. We were laughing so hard we were crying. And if you know my kids, you'll understand the following conversation.

Me: "Patrick, how was Our Lady of Mercy Today?"

Patrick: "Pretty cool-I liked the mosaic (stained glass)windows but the cow on the podium was kind of gross."

Me: "Cow?"

Patrick: "Yeah it was some sacrificial depiction but it was all slaughtered and nasty."

Me: "I'll have to check on that one-I remember a lamb but not a cow."

Patrick: "Oh and the baptismal fount looked like a big steamer pot that you'd put clams in to cook."

Me:"But what about the sermon-how was that?"

Patrick:"I don't know-I couldn't understand a thing-he was mumbling-And I'm pretty sure he forgot the words at some point."

Patrick;"Oh and there was this urn in the lobby with holy water like we use during coffee hour at our church."

Me:"You mean bowl of holy water that the congregation can use before entering the church?"

Patrick: "No mom-I mean an actual urn with a spigot and everything.The Priest said that they go through a lot of holy water and this was just easier."

So then we started talking about the different rituals and things quickly went downhill from here. But my son is 12 so just keep that in mind. Most of his conversations go back to burping and farting so let's put this in perspective.

Patrick: "And they had this room with a curtain and doorbell. Not very private for the bathroom. And why does it need a doorbell?"

Me: "I'm pretty sure it was the confessional and not the bathroom."

Patrick:"Can't they just put an occupied sign up?" Oh and they said this prayer that I don't get-it told us to hail mary. That's mean."

Larry: "The confessional is where you go to confess your sins, like if you were always getting in trouble with your parents."

Tae:(raising his hand and pointing to himself) "OOOOhhh, OOOOHHHH That's me-I'm in trouble a lot."

Me: (sitting in silence for a few minutes not quite getting it) "HAIL-as in to praise Mary, not hail-as in to stone her."

Patrick: And they had this room where the babies went because they were really annoying."

Me: "The crying room?"

Patrick: "Yeah that was it-it was all sound proof so I don't know how anyone in there heard what was going on."

Me:"They pipe the sound in there."

Morgan: "Oh-like the Verizon commercial. Can you hear me now?"


Marybeth said...

As a Cradle Catholic I personally want to thank you for the unique and humorous look at some of the traditions and rituals I take for granted...
I'm gonna share Patrick's revelations with our Pastor, Fr. Michael...He'll love it.

hsmamma said...

It was really a wonderful experience for him as are all the places of faith he attends. He has a great sense of humor. He also mentioned the "opera singer." I'm guessing the soloist.