Sunday, December 09, 2007

Convert faux pas

My dad was singing in the Christmas concert at my parents' Congregational church tonight, and I went with Mom and Caleb to see it. Good concert. At the end the pastor gave a benediction, and since the Christmas concert is one of the biggest occasions of the year in that church, he finished with a seldom-heard flourish: "In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit." My hand automatically began to make the Sign of the Cross, but I just managed to suppress it when I noticed that nobody else was moving! They looked so strange just sitting there. Later I theorized with some friends that my old pastor was just trying to smoke out the Catholics. :)

The last time I was at my parents' church was Easter Sunday, again to hear my dad sing. On that occasion the pastor chatted with us a bit (we were in the front row), and to my horror, I realized I was gearing up to call him "Father." I stopped myself just in time.

Being Catholic puts all these little instincts into you and you don't realize how strong they are! I haven't genuflected in a movie theater yet, though. :)

1 comment:

Peter Sean Bradley said...

I'm a life-long Catholic, but your story made me smile.

In law school, I had a friend (Alan) who was dating a rabbinical student (Miriam). Although intellectually I knew that this was totally acceptable, unconsciously I felt a little trepidation, like he was dating a nun.