I normally don’t write about religion, which to my friends from school may seem a bit odd since we all grew up in a very religious atmosphere. But to be honest, since I went to college and had that journey where I found my own identity, a big gap grew between many religious teachings of my Catholic faith and my actual life. An example being the forbidden use of contraceptives to plan your family.
Though my husband and I don’t share the same religion, we got married in the Catholic church and baptized both of our children, but our religiousness has stopped at that. I am a believer and there isn’t a day in which I don’t find time to say a prayer, but going to church and listen to the rules and expectations that no longer seem to match my life or the current times in which we live, made me walk away and have this distant relationship with a church that basically was all around me growing up.
I know I am the woman I am today in great part because of the moral guidance that my Catholic school provided, yet, I don’t seem to find much room for it in my current life. There has been too much corruption, too many conspiracies and secrecy and a huge disconnection with Pope Benedict XVI who followed the widely beloved John Paul II for me to find my place at church.
Religion (not faith) had become more of a game of politics to me. That was until today, March 13, 2013 when a Jesuit from Latin America got elected to be the new Pope. My faith and religious views were shaped very close to the Jesuit teachings, which are more liberal than others, so I am excited about the prospect of perhaps having a little modernization of the church.
The election of a Pope from an order that is so close to my heart makes me feel hopeful and proud at the same time. I just hope that it actually revives the religious affiliation that was so dear to me when growing up. I want my kids to grow up in the same type of religious environment in which I grew up, it was just hard to imagine how I was going to reconnect with the church, until today.
Good luck Pope Francis, you have a lot of Catholics to reconnect with!