Alone in a Crowd?

My husband is Catholic, I am not. My parents are both ex-Catholics with varying degrees of dislike towards the church. My mom sometimes misses the tradition of it, going to midnight mass and Easter service, but doesn’t feel comfortable with religious politics. My dad was just bitter. I was never baptized and neither was my sister, but that didn’t mean that I never prayed to God in times that seemed desperate – “Please God, don’t let the attendance dean call the house tonight,” or some such thing. I was more covering my bases than actually praying to a specific higher being. As we were becoming more serious as a couple I explained to my husband that I may never convert, but I would not stand in the way of him teaching any children we may have his religion. Now days I will sometimes go to church with them, every Christmas I go, and most Easters. I actually just missed my first Easter service since being with my husband, but he encouraged me to sleep in that day. Later that day my son came up to me and we had the following conversation,

“Why don’t you go to church mom?”

“I am not Catholic, you guys are. I was never even baptized.”

“You weren’t baptized?!?!?” He was pretty shocked about that.


He thought on it for a moment. “So because you weren’t baptized, then it’s like you’re alone in this community. You are surrounded by people in church, but you’re not like them because you aren’t Catholic or baptized so you’re with a lot of people in the building but not part of them. You’re sitting alone.”

Up to this point I had been doing other stuff while talking to him, but I had to put it down as I was floored by his perfect understanding. I looked him in the eye and told him that was a brilliant observation and great thinking on his part. We tend to only half listen to our kids, and it’s understandable because there is a lot to do in a day, and I can only give my full attention to so many knock-knock jokes before going batty. But moments like this remind me that between his beloved fart and fecal jokes, he does have a beautiful working mind.

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2 Responses to Alone in a Crowd?

  1. Dustin says:

    Funny concidence of events it was last Sunday’s Easter service (first time I had been in a LONG time) that talking to my friends son that his understand standing of a situation at the age of 4 was very aware too –

  2. iggygus says:

    hi, Amy! I was baptized Catholic, and have been re-baptized more times than I can count on one hand, but none stayed with me. It occurred to me that the ritual of baptism is deeply ingrained in patriarchal religion and I have little interest in that any more. Perhaps this means creating a new, spiritual ritual. Your mom might have some ideas. love, Synthia

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