i need some help in how to respond to my older sisters religious bs
she has thrown in my face that i am huring mom b/c i don't believe and i refuse to go to church
i moved back home to take care of her b/c of she has cancer.
my older sister and little sister are coming on easter and they are all expecting me to go to church, do i go agaist my values and go or not go?

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So, are you saying that if someone goes to a Catholic mass and doesn't get up to receive communion that the other attendees assume the person has committed a mortal sin and not been absolved yet?  Yikes!

I went to a Christmas mass once, and I thought that if I didn't get up and take communion I would somehow be insulting them.  I just did what they were all doing.  I guess I was damned either way.

Yes, you are supposed to be pure when consuming the body and blood of christ. The symbolic cannibalism is barbaric. And anybody that doesn't receive the sacrament gets noticed. That's why sinners sit in the back pew in hopes they can sorta hide. Mass really is all about communion, and the message depends on the time of year overlaid on the life of jesus. It's not at all like a baptist service with all the preaching and social stuff.

Symbolic cannibalism?  According to the RC church the wafer literally turns into the flesh of christ, and the wine literally turns into his blood.  I don't know how they explain the fact that it still tastes like a bland wafer and grade-H wine; maybe the transformation takes place in the esophagus.

I'd personally like to know if the wafer has any trans fats in it.

So that brings up an interesting question:  is this ritual cannibalism when, in the minds of the participants, it's literal cannibalism?

yep. tastes damn good too. i got a yern for a good old body o' christ wafer. wish they'd sell those suckers in stores, it'd be popular i bet, since it's lower cal. than rice cakes.

Good point - ask the priest who hands it to you if Jesus' flesh is lo-cal and low cholesterol, because you're on a restricted diet - also, ask if he washed his hands after his last trip to the bathroom. Oh, and do this in a VERY loud voice --

It might be a bit much to request hot sauce, but wouldn't it be a hoot if you brought your own?

In that case, screw 'em.  

Ask your sister if she can force herself to disbelieve in god, if not, how does she expect you to force yourself to change your belief system and believe in something you know isn't true.

On the other hand, as it says in the song I post every Christmas, "It's better to be loved than to make a point." Surely it wouldn't hurt to go to church with your family once, especially with your mom's condition as it is - other than instantly bursting into flame as you walk through the door, what's the worst that could happen?

I understand your dilemma. I am an Atheist going to a Catholic College. I deal with this by saying that I do not believe in God, but that I respect your views and beliefs, I only ask that you respect mine. I think the underlying issue is one of respect and I think that is how its going to be solved.
Hope this helped!

I use the same one at home I respect your religion but I also expect you to respect what I think. I do have a problem with just going to church to please someone . My partner is christian and for a long time I thought that if he asked me to be suportive of him if there is some function at church I would go. My thoughts around this have changed in the last year or so as if I asked him to go to a lecture by Dawkins for instance he will not be there for me. He thinks Dawkins is an idiot and I think God is an idiot. Stale mate

Of course the other difference is that god hasn't written a book.

Despite claims to the contrary.

"We know you don't want to hurt your mother, so why are you being so difficult about this?"

"We know that you love us, and to us this would mean an awful lot, so why can't you do it for us?"

"Church has always been important in our family, and you're a part of our family, why can't you just hop along, I'm sure that it's not so bad as you make it out to be."

All of the above comments are comments that I've heard hundreds if not thousands of times about going to church. I think that the best way to answer this kind of lousy emotional blackmail by retorting in kind:

"I am not going to church, not because I have the intention or desire to hurt mom, you or anyone else, I'm not going to church simply because I do not want to. If you want to make this about something else than going to church, feel free to do so, but please be aware that I am not making this about anything other than going to church."

I'm not sure going to a service would mean you are betraying your beliefs.  But, you are the one that has to answer that.  If a friend of yours got married in a church, would you go?  I usually go and it is a trip.  You get a few minutes to look around and see that most of the people are more about being seen and looking good than involving themselves in any kind of religious experience. 

If you don't want to go, don't.  

I've been thinking about Easter.  Easter celebrates the Resurrection.  The resurrection was supposed to have occurred 3 days after the crucifixion.  I understand that several of the original gospels don't even mention it.  You would think that kind of thing would command a few words if it happened.  My suspicion is that, like the virgin birth, it sounded pretty amazing to some monk copying the New Testament for the umpteenth time and he just couldn't resist embellishing in the story.  Do some research and if your sister comes on too strong,  ask her about it.  Then give her some facts. 

Or, use logic.  If the Jewish carpenter/philosopher was god,  then he knew that his human form was going to die.  So he knew he would become god again.  What's the big deal?   Wouldn't we all want to be god?  Where is the sacrifice?   And he did this why?  Because Adam and Eve committed original sin.  But we know there was no Adam and Eve so no original sin and no reason to make up the rest of this unbelievable story. 

I think early on the smart folks realized that guilt was a powerful force in controlling the not so smart folks. 


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