What do you believe?

I haven’t written about this topic in a while, God/Religion, but it came up last week when a student asked me if I got my ashes. I told her no, but that I speak to God everyday. I told her you don’t have to be in church to talk to God or to listen to God.

I really wasn’t telling the truth, but I wasn’t lying either. Being true, showing love, caring for others, being selfless – sacrificing, those are some basic fundamental concepts of many religions. I talk to God by being thoughtful and kind to others. I listen to God when someone needs an ear to hear their problems or concerns.

I used to be very “religious” and attended church every Sunday. I even taught Adult catechism for almost 3 years. I guess I acted “religious” too, because I used wear a lot of black button down shirts and black slacks and wore a big silver cross, and would often be asked if I was a priest 😀 Shows you how much some people know. If I had been a priest I would have been wearing a crucifix 😀

When I joined my church choir, totally different experience. I was like being in a gang 😀 A nice gang. People would bring coffee up to the choir loft, sometimes even snacks. There would be conversation in between liturgical moments. A very general laid back kind of atmosphere, but when we sang, you know we meant it. I can remember often people turning around and looking up and seeing in their eyes the spiritual connection they were having to our singing.

Later on when I joined the L.A. archdiocesan choir that again was a totally different experience. Half of the choir were professional recording singers. Four or five of them wrote and recorded their own spiritual music. Many of them were music directors at their home church. I was singing with a bunch of pros, and that’s how they approached rehearsals and the gigs (I know celebrating Mass is not a “gig”, but being in that choir, they felt like gigs) The events were always huge; in arenas or large convention halls. Communion would take forever!!!

Funny story. Choir would always take communion last as we sang through most of it. At one event I approach the priest for the Host. He leans towards me and asks me if I can consume more than one host. I was like, wha????? He repeats, can I consume more than one host, and tilts the plate so I can see. There were like 40 or 50 hosts, and only 2 or 3 people behind me. Here’s the thing, at these huge events, there is no sacristy, where the dishes and cups used for communion can be cleaned, and the remaining body and blood returned to the earth. The body and body of Jesus is said to be present in the host and wine. It ALL had to be consumed 😀 At this point, also, there is no wine D: So I answered his question, yes, I can consume more than one host. He puts a poker chip size stack that barely fits in my hand. One by one I consume…dry, tasteless…I am sorry, but after the 2nd or 3rd host I was not feeling the Jesus. I don’t remember the final number but it was somewhere around 20 D:

Oh, another funny story. So I did the Methodist thing for about a year. They do communion once a month. No wine, grape juice. But no Hosts! 😀 REAL BREAD!!!! Freshly baked that morning 😀 There were always leftovers and they were put in a side room next to the alter. Well, after everyone was gone, me and another guy from the choir would go into the “snackisty” (what we called it, hehehe) and nibble on the left over bread and juice, and stick a couple of the uncut rolls into our pockets 😀

Sorry readers, got lots to do the rest of this day. Thank you! 😀 Enjoy!

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3 Responses to What do you believe?

  1. chicagoja says:

    Nice post. Too bad most believers believe that being “religious” is the only way to God. Even worse, most of them are praying to a false god.

  2. Bert Romero says:

    A side of Raymond I didn’t know–did your mother? Nice story. Very interesting reading. That reminds me of when I joined a ‘regional’ choir (about 100 people) for LDS church; we did christmas and a few ‘gigs’, but then I went to Mexico and when I got back the choir (which had a lot of promise) had been dissolved. I haven’t heard the exact reason bu I suspect it was because there were some secular (gasp)songs and traditional, latin american ditties–but I will find out when I talk to the director–who is a musician who plays in Disneyland, btw. Run.

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