One of my New Year's resolutions was to "get right with God." Or just go to mass a few times a month instead of a few times a year. So far - so good. Until the recessional, when I have to shake hands with the priest. My least favorite part. I can see it in his eyes - he knows I'm the stranger among his sheep.
Being the New Kid at mass is sort of like being the new person in a group exercise class. All the regulars assume the same position week after week, and give you the hairy eyeball should you dare cross the boundary line of "their spot." So, you've got that going for ya' - along with attempting to atone for missing the last 50 out 52 masses in a year.
I have been a Catholic all my life - save for that brief moment around the age of 13 when I thought, "I could be Jewish - have a Batz Mitzvah and then three years later do it up again for a Sweet Sixteen?! Have party. Will convert!" My mother, ever the Debbie Downer, quickly pointed out that conversion is a lengthy process , so my Batz Mitvah and Sweet Sixteen would end up being a combined party. And I would have to learn Hebrew. (Yiddish slang learned by just being a New Yorker, did not count.) Oy vey. I barely made it through middle school French.
Catholic, I remained.
Being relatively new to this church and still test driving our compatibility...(Do they use real wine or grape juice? Is parking a nightmare? Are the homilies relevant or about natural family planning?)...I had not officially registered and was without personalized envelopes for the collection baskets.
Since embarking on this road to redemption, I've been stuffing the monetary donation in my pocket. It's been smooth sailing. Until...
This past Saturday I slipped my hand into the wrong pocket and tossed my dry cleaning slip into the collection basket. Not realizing until the basket was two people down - I debated retrieving it rather than cause a scene. Until I recalled that MY NAME was on the slip. Oh, for the love of everything holy!!
So I had to get up, wrestle the basket from some lady who insisted on giving it to the usher at the end of the pew, grab my ticket and drop in my money. Sheez. Leave it to a heathen to ruin the flow of traffic and disrupt the vigil.
Yes, I have since ordered the damn envelopes. And no, I didn't stay after communion.
Stay tuned. More at 11.
2 days ago