With all the Christian Bashing I’ve been seeing lately I want to tell you all a few stories…
About one man, who was probably the driving influence that lead me to paganism.
Growing up I was a very very devote Catholic. I went to mass twice a week, prayed every night, observed a ton of saints days, I was even an altar server. When I was a server I worked mostly with our head priest, let’s call him Father Mike.
Father Mike was the only person that I told about the voices I heard and the things that I saw and felt when I prayed. I was nine when I first told him in confession, I had been terrified that there was something wrong with me, but Father Mike just listened to me. He didn’t tell me that I was crazy, or that I was possessed, when I said that I heard saints and angels, he believed me, and told me to practice listening to them. We talked about the man in brown with the deer and the birds, who I thought was St. Francis of Assisi, kept appearing in my dreams. We talked about how when I prayed I heard answers from voices that weren’t my own.
Father Mike was the person who told a ten year old me that I shouldn’t take Holy Orders and become a nun, because it would be a waste of my gift if the best I became was a Mother Superior. When questioned the Church and its teachings we talked it through. I felt that I couldn’t worship a god who let people say such things in his name, tell lies in his name. When I told him that I didn’t feel connected to God anymore Father Mike looked at me and said, “You have the light of the divine around you, but maybe not this divine.”
He was my mentor, and my friend, and then one day when I was 11 Father Mike stopped in the middle of his homily and said, “This is my last Sunday as a priest.” He was leaving the church, “I’ve fallen in love,” he said, “I know I will have eternity to love God, but I only have one life time to love this person. And I can’t stay in an organization that tells me that the love I feel is a sin. Because I love a man.”
I was serving at that mass, and as we cleaned up Father Mike took me aside and said, “I think it’s time for both of us to moved on. Remember you have the light around, you just need to find the source.”