Monday, April 23, 2007

St. Thomas, Pray For Me

Things I believe in:
1. God
2. The Trinity
3. The One, Holy, and Apostolic Church (etc.)
4. The Love of and for My Family
5. The Love I have for All of God's Creation

Things I Just Can't Buy:
1. Most (if not all) "apparitions"
2. Visions of Mary in toast, chocolate, the clouds, etc.
3. The (so-called) Catholic Charismatic Movement
4. Those Creepy Dudes Who Pretend They "Sense" Dead People
5. Faith Healers
6. A House With A Self-Cleaning Bathroom-WAY too expensive!
(heehee, okay, I had to lighten it up a little with that last one...That would be AWESOME, though, wouldn't it?)

Okay, knowing this...Am I so bad? Am I just a rotten, non-believer for not buying a word they're saying when people come to my church and tell my fellow parishioners that they receive special messages from God and whoever else up there? I was wondering today why Father allows people like that to come to our church and I realized that he allows all kinds of "devotions" like the rosary, veneration of a picture of Mary (our lady of Guadalupe copy), and all kinds of special days and little ceremonies that aren't necessary to the faith. I suppose they are good things if they keep people involved in church and make them holier and closer to God,, I don't even know where I'm going with this one. I guess I just wish the Fathers would explain devotions and let people know that some of these things are kind of questionable and that it's not necessary to believe everything that comes down the pipe, just because the event was held in our church and got his approval. Oh, who am I kidding? I wish he would just say, "the emperor has no clothes!" and expose some of these charlatans for who they really are. There. I've said it. Unless you can prove me wrong without a doubt, I ain't backing down. Beware the wolves in sheep's clothing is all I'm sayin'.
Also, what's the deal with people always gasping that their rosaries and medals turn gold as validation that something miraculous is happening during these "events"? Am I just a cynical bi--- for snickering behind my hand and thinking, "suckers!" every time someone claims that they knew someone that that happened to? Have you ever had this happen to you for real? Is there even the remotest chance that this phenomenon could have been explained by a chemical reaction with the usually cheap metal that the rosaries are made of? I always thought that I would be REALLY impressed if one of those glow-in-the-dark, plastic rosaries turned gold. How come you never hear of THAT happening? Hmmmm?
In our adoration chapel there is a huge, beautiful painting of Thomas putting his whole hand in the wound in Jesus' side and his face registering belief. I always considered Thomas my patron (although it should be St. Francis since I was born on his feast day...but I really don't have a love of animals so...different story, different post) and always thought he got a bad rap with the whole "doubting Thomas" thingy. See, Jesus says, "Because thou hast seen me, Thomas, thou hast believed: blessed are they that have not seen and have believed." aha, right there! He doesn't say, "So you are NOT blessed, Thomas!" He merely points out the fact that people will be blessed if they, say...only HEAR about Jesus and believe. Alright, if you don't buy that one...then how come people who need to have "signs" or "visions" need them at all? I know, I know, now all of you apparition chasers are going to start praying that some miraculous event happens to me to assist me in my "unbelief". Don't bother. I already listed all the things I do believe in at the beginning of the post. That's enough for me and for the Church. I like silver better than gold, anyway. It's much shinier, and a whole, lot tougher.