For the most part, I keep my religion to myself in my main line of work. I have my own office, which is nice, so I am able to step away when discussions get risqué and indecent. I admit, its a practice I've only for the past few months, and am ashamed at the times I engaged in such conversation. To be honest, reading all the great things on Cathinfo, both via members and in the library (specifically St. A. Liguori), has helped lots and lots. Its given me an third eye with which to see myself, and which has caused much good change in my life.
In any event, yesterday, being quite unproductive with our boss was out, religion kept surfacing during casual conversations. Looking back, I may have been the antagonist (protagonist?) in the conversations. I think was a little bothered by people claiming themselves to be Catholic or being brought up Catholic. For example, a conversation went like this:
Co-worker1: "Yeah, I was brought up Catholic. Did catechism and everything. I'm glad I'm done with religion."
Me: "Sorry, you weren't really brought up Catholic, as you say."
C-w1: "Uh.. what? Yes I was. I did First Communion and all that.'
Me: "Really? Whats the Eucharist?"
Co-worker2: "That's the body and blood of Christ."
Now, it was this response from the second co-worker, his name is Andres, which created the 'discussion' for which this topic is named. Andres is my next-door office mate. A good friend, if you will, for the workplace. I actually recommended him to the position, as we worked together at another school Doesn't gossip, is quite private, and we go to lunch together when possible. I enjoy being around him, as compared to some others (mostly the females) with whom I work.
Later in the day, hard at work (on Cathinfo :roll-laugh2: ) I was approached by Andres and we were making light discussion. I don't quite remember how we got on the topic, but we started to discuss religion. It ended up being that he went to a fairly well known school nearby called Azuza Pacific University (APU). APU is "Christian" university, and his major was Biblical Studies. According to him, he studied the historical aspect to scripture, specifically, the NT.
We got into a discussion about religion. I was just blown away at some of the responses however. I knew it was bad 'out there', but this was like someone took a brain, twisted it up into a million knots, poured lime juice on it, and called it belief. I asked him if he believed Christ was God; he said yes. I asked, what was the purpose for God becoming man? "For poor people; for the defense of poor people."
Like that, but without the mustache. I then asked about sin- is there sin?
"Not like people think. I think there are very few things that are sinful. Like homosexuality. Its only mentioned four times in the bible; compare that with the many times Jesus reprimanded those who picked on the poor. That was his main purpose here."
Me: "Okay so why did he let himself be put to death?"
Andres: "He didn't, we killed him."
Me: "So you're telling me that when Pontius Pilot asked him to defend himself, and he didn't answer...."
So I think you could figure out how much of the rest may have gone. Needless to say, I was upset that I couldn't be more of an apologist at the time. I guess it wouldn't have helped. BUT what I can say, is that knowing my own faith was a bit impressive to him. He mentioned he'd never met a Catholic who knew so much about their faith. I told him, I'd never met one either (outside of Church and stuff). He ended up asking me questions about transubstantiation. He said it was amazing and "just... wow!" to him that we believed that (he was being respectful). To him, it was a powerful, and 'cool' idea. I responded, "It is amazing, actually."
He asked how our priest did mass, what specifically needed to be done to turn the bread to the Body and Blood of Christ. I explained, along with quoting as much as I could from the bible about how some of Christ's disciples left him at that time, yet the 12 remained.... "To whom shall we go?"
Anyways, don't know why I wrote this. But I was thinking about it a lot. I'm so glad to have my faith. I'm so sorry for people out there who are lost. I will pray for him, of course. I was even thinking of getting a green scapular and taping it under his chair!