Thursday, January 12, 2012

Communion and Confirmation

Stained glass at St John the Baptist's Anglica...
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As I have mentioned on numerous occasions, my son attends and lives at a school on the Eastern Shore of Maryland.  I believe I have mentioned this, but just in case I haven't, it is a Catholic school.  My religious background is Protestantism, primarily Baptist, and I have studied other religions such as Buddhism and a few other Christian denominations, including Catholicism.

My wife, on the other hand, was raised in the Roman Catholic Church.  Our first marriage occurred in the country clerk's office in Key West.  We then had a church wedding a few months later to make it official in the eyes of the church and her father.  During the early years of our married life, we did not attend church much.  However, when our son was born, we had him Christened in the Catholic Church.

From then on, we pretty much stopped attending church.  I had a few bad experiences with some of the Protestant churches that I had attended.  I do a lot of studying on my own, but quite frankly nothing on a consistent basis.  My wife eventually became totally disenchanted with the Catholic Church.  I think a lot of her disenchantment occurred during the time frame of all the reports of priests molesting young boys.  She eventually decided to seek a new church and decided on the Mormon faith.  She attended regularly for a while, but has not attended regularly for the past year or so.
Rich Mullins
Cover of Rich Mullins

The bulk of my son's religious instruction in his almost 18 years has been through children's religious music.  I also introduced him to the music of Rich Mullins.  We used to watch one of his concert videos together for hours on end.  I still remember my son reciting one of Mullins' monologues when Mullins talked about Jesus being a little boy and imagining him playing baseball.  "If Jesus was going to play baseball, just how many windows would he knock out around Nazareth, and who was going to make him pay?"

The reason that I bring all this up is that we had a meeting today at his school to discuss his IEP (Individualized Education Program).  When we got home from the meeting a couple hours ago, we had a letter from the school.  At first I thought it was going to be an incident report from the school that they talked about at the meeting where he ended up getting a bruise on his back from some behavioral incident.  Instead it was a letter from a woman at the school who prepares the kids for their First Communion and Confirmation sacraments.

I would like for my son to go through some sort of religious training.  Even though I do not agree with everything that the Catholic Church teaches, he is there and I think it would be important for him.  I do wonder if he would be able to understand what they are teaching him.  Another question that I would have is would he eat the Communion wafer, or would they have to douse it in BBQ sauce?  The biggest question would be whether or not my wife would want him to go through it given her disenchantment with the Church.    It could make for interesting dinner conversation this evening.

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  1. I am Catholic too and I very much share your wife's disenchantment with the ones who are in charge, but I love my beliefs. The decision you both make will be the right one, and how he takes the host will be memorable especially if they let him dunk it in bbq sauce! Made me laugh.

  2. We talked about it over dinner last night. Neither one of us know how he will do with it, but we both think it would be good for them to try to get him ready for it.

  3. I missed this post earlier. I think his experience will be positive if both of you are able to allow him to make it whatever he can understand.

  4. we did recently visit the school and found out that he has occasionally been attending church at school.



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