Tuesday, May 25, 2010

No jacket required

posted Sat, 14 Jul 2007

When you get older and start to see the finish line, you don’t want to waste any time. You have things to do and not much time to get them done, so you are looking to be efficient.

Me, I have plenty of time. If genetics tell us anything, they tell me that I have a good 50 years ahead of me, so I’m in no hurry. In fact, I need to get a hobby. Or a job. Maybe I’ll start knitting again. I need a job before I can do that, though, because knitting is not cheap.

So the reason I walked to church tonight (the one by my house, not the one I regularly attend) was not that I was seeking efficiency but because I was bored and because I didn’t want to waste money on gas.

What I think happened with this old lady was she got all dressed to go for a real walk – like what they do at the mall in the winter – that fast walking thing – and forgot all about church. She put on her khaki shorts and running shoes and her black running bra and her snazzy black baseball hat that looks so good with her short silver hair. Then she accessorized: a diamond watch, a gold bracelet, diamond stud earrings, and, just because walking can get so boring if you don’t have a walkman, a rosary.

Then she must have walked past the church a little before 5:00 and thought, “Dang! It’s Saturday night! It’s time for church! Well, I’m here. And I’m even wearing my rosary already! Might as well kill two birds with one stone. I can turn the bill of my hat to the back of my head when I go to communion and that will give me a more formal look.”

And that’s exactly what she did.

It was perfectly OK. They even had her take the collection. But then, this is the parish where they sing all the prayers in (very bad) Spanish, even though there are hardly any non-English speakers in attendance. (At my regular church, they have an entire service in Spanish, but that’s because half the congregation is Mexican.) The nun in charge of the music answered me when I questioned her about the Spanish stuff by email:

Our occasional use of Spanish and other languages at IC is an attempt to keep all of us aware that the Church is bigger than our corner of the world. Although we do not have a large population of any one ethnicity in the Cathedral parish, the use of multiple languages on occasion is also to help everyone realize that they are welcome, no matter what their ethnic background.

After that slapdown, I didn’t feel like writing back to ask why we never sing anything in Swahili. Or Italian. Or Polish. Or in any of the other many languages spoken by Catholics around the world.

Now I know. This church is the PC congregation. Anything goes and it’s OK.

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