Does faith/denomination really matter?
Lately I've been learning about a variety of "denominations" in the
Christian religion and it's intriguing to me because truly it all comes down
to doing the right thing and living a good and honest life.
I have been finding myself a bit perplexed at different views on life, love,
marriage, peace, and spiritual wholeness.
Now that we are pregnant ((FINALLY)), it seems that religion/faith has been
an interesting (to say the least) topic of conversation with some.
I was baptized as an infant and was brought up Roman Catholic. I remained
a Roman Catholic all through my school years (Catholic school grades 1-8)
and started to stray from the Church during my high school years.
Nothing officially "set me off" from being Catholic. I was now attending
a Public High School FILLED with diversity and finally asking the tough
questions and soul searching. However, I was SO naïve at the time that I
didn't even know I COULD be Christian - I thought only Catholics had the
Bible and Jesus. I officially decided against being Catholic and finding
something new when my nephew was born. The Catholic Church refused to
baptize him because he was a bastard and therefore going to hell.
Luckily, we found the Evangelical Lutheran Church through my SIL (my
nephew's mother) and my brother, mother, and I slowly "converted" to being a
Lutheran. I still have some Catholic-isms but for the most part I would
say that I identify with my faith/denomination 100%. To me, it feels
like home. I feel like all of the issues I had with the Catholic Church
are the same issues Martin Luther had. It's a good fit.
But now that this child is coming I feel almost bullied into changing my
denomination and faith. Grant it, pregnancy hormones are in full swing
some days. Example: I can cry quite easily now.
Several people feel the need to tell me that having my child baptized is
unfair to the child, it's not right. It doesn't give my child a choice.
It forces religion. Etc...
But to ME, baptism is a welcoming into the Church, into the Body of Christ.
It gives a FOUNDATION for faith. It sets a spiritual "blue print" to help
them on their way. When my child is old enough, they can choose to be
Confirmed or not to CONFIRM their beliefs. If my child were to choose not
to be confirmed, I would be OKAY with that. If my child were to convert to
another faith, I would be OKAY with that (assuming it were a peaceful faith,
if my child wanted to join Westboro Baptist it would be a different story).
I want my child to have experience in the Church, I want a foundation for
them. I don't want them growing up without prayer or God in their life.
I don't feel having my child baptized bullies them or forces them in any
But my question is WHY DO PEOPLE FEEL THE NEED TO PUSH SUCH THINGS? Sure
Catholics believe one thing, Lutherans another, Methodists another, Bible
Fellowship another... But it seems it all comes down to being more
politically centered rather than faith centered if that makes sense?
I think two prime examples of this are marriage and war.
I personally believe in love. If that love is between a man and a woman or
a woman and a woman or a man and a man - then so be it. I believe God
blessed us with love. If my future son or daughter were to find love in
another person of the same sex, I'd be thrilled that they have found love.
I do not believe that a man loving a man will result in both men going to
hell and living in eternal damnation. I just don't see God giving a
virtue half heartedly. But some faiths truly and strongly believe (and
will throw any random verse of the Bible at you which is an entirely
different post) that if you are in love with someone of the same sex then
you are destined for a one way ticket to hell. I just can't believe that.
I think God blessed people with the gift to love, and as long as you're not
careless and wreckless with that love you are ok.
In regards to war - there are several Churches making the news for
protesting and attacking our soldiers. The same soldiers who are keeping
these protestors safe. My church doesn't have pro-war rallies, but we
also don't ignore our troops. We believe in peace and we believe in
I'm not going to raise my child without morals. So when topics of
baptism, faith, reconciliation and all these things come up - I tend to feel
a bit confronted, bullied and on guard.
Yes, my child will be having a Christening. It's not just a celebration
welcoming the child into the Church but it is also a cultural belief as
well. Infant baptism is far more sacred to me than dedication. It's a
sacrament. It's what my husband and I believe in.
I feel like when people ask, "Why are you doing that?" It's really saying,
"Um - that's weird, what kind of parent are you going to be?" So to all
of those out there giving me grief about the future baptism of my child,
please zip it. Keep quiet. It's insulting and infuriating.
The bottom line is this baby is a miracle and we're all children of God,
regardless of title/denomination.