This week's UPI column was surprisingly hard to write, even though the experience is so fresh, I can't escape it.
I wish I could get beyond the feeling of being misunderstood and judged. My editor reminded me that Jesus felt this way throughout his ministry. Isn't that ironic? I didn't know that by questioning orthodox doctrine, I'd have a Jesus-like experience. The mother who issued the warning about this blog and the column said that she has a sacred duty to pass on the Catholic faith to her children and therefore she must protect them from influences that undermine that perspective.
It occurred to me today that I hold a different sacred trust. I believe it is my duty to pass on to my children the actions and attitudes I see modeled by Jesus... to show mercy, to release people into freedom, to be transformed by encounters with others, to forgive, to bless, to offer hope, to not draw the circle too tightly around "correct" doctrine or beliefs.
I understand the impulse of the warning... I've lived there. What I haven't experienced or understood before is what it's like to live on the other side of the warning. Time for me to learn how to tolerate and forgive what hurts me.
In that vein, I think it's time to open the Gospels...