Mass: How I ended up there.
In an effort to keep these posts to the point, I will save the life-story that usually ends up getting recited when a person describes how they ended up in a religious order. To understand what happened to me better, there are a few things that need to be understood:
I have an inquisitive nature
I am a voracious reader and researcher
I am unreasonably competitive
Now that those are out of the way, I can get to the point. The short of it is that I always knew about Catholicism. As a matter of fact - I spent an inordinate amount of time in my life criticizing the Catholic church relentlessly. I happened to be researching the Mexican drug cartels and their belief in the occult. However, it is not the stereotypical satanists and devil worshippers. These men are simultaneously Catholic. While I wasn't the biggest fan of Catholicism at the time, even I knew that you couldn't believe in Jesus Christ and the witch doctor at the same time. It doesn't work like that. During my research I noticed that many cartel members where Scapulars, which are wool necklaces that have a square piece of fabric on the front and back that don a picture of Jesus, Mary or a Canonized Saint (EX: Saint Michael). What do scapulars do? They protect you with whatever the Canonized Saint represents. For example, Saint Michael wards off evil spirits. However, the scapular needs to be blessed by a Priest and the individual wearing it needs to be read in to the order of the brown scapular (there are other orders based on the color of the fabric). One of the necklaces contained a picture of who is known as, "Our Lady of Guadalupe". It is the blessed virgin Mary cloaked in colorful aura. This is how she was seen by a man named Juan Diego in Guadalupe, Mexico City in 1531. Diego was a Catholic convert and the blessed virgin Mary appeared to him 4 times. The basilica that contains the image of, "Our Lady of Guadalupe", is the most visited site in the Catholic Church and the 3rd most visited religious site in the world.
This intrigued me so I began to research more on other visions of the blessed virgin Mary. That led me to, "Our Lady of Fatima", which is even crazier than Juan Diego's vision in Mexico City. I won't elaborate on Fatima at this time because it is a complex story that mixes the supernatural, the tragic and the apocalypse into one careening storm of plausible evidence and plausible deniability.
Regardless, the extensive research struck my curiosity and I wanted to check out Mass at the Catholic church my wife and her family attended every Sunday.
This post ends with me standing on the front porch of a church I had cursed and swore to never be a part of. I will save the experience of that first Mass for later. I will also post more about the Catholic relationship with the occult and diabolical.
Violenti Naturam. Praesentia Tranquillitas.