January 16, 2012

Shootout At the Sci-Fi Corral

I dusted myself off and checked my hat for holes. Nope, nary a one. I was still standing - surprised, but unscathed.

It happened so fast. "So, what church do you go to?" my questioner asked while assuming the pose of an Old West gunslinger, fingers twitching, poised for the fast draw. Thoroughly, unashamedly, joyfully Catholic, I answered simply and with a smile, "St. Mary's."

At that moment the town clock struck noon - high noon. A tumble weed blew by. Where was that funky music coming from? Oo-ay-oo-ay-oooo, wah, wah, wah!

Before I could react the sincere soul before me unloaded both barrels. Scripture verses near and dear to my heart whizzed by my head in rapid succession. Apparently this verse-slinger packed a machine gun in place of a revolver. Without a pause for breath or letting me get a word in edgewise, the barrage continued.

"Peter was a big sinner - there was nothing special about Mary - you worship idols - and your spurs don't jingle like mine!"

My turn finally came.

"I love St Peter. If Mary was good enough for Jesus, she's good enough for you and me. I most certainly do not worship idols. And I'm not wearing spurs. They annoy my horse."

I doubt any of that was heard. Probably believing I was mortally wounded, my shooter quickly moved on to other targets. A quote from the late Bishop Fulton Sheen crossed my mind.

"There are not a hundred people in the United States who hate the Catholic Church. There are millions, however, who hate what they wrongly believe to be the Catholic Church....As a matter of fact, if we Catholics believed all of the untruths and lies which were said against the Church, we probably would hate the Church a thousand times more than they do."

Well said, Bishop! There is a ton of misinformation out there! Disagree with me if you'd like, but at least disagree with what I really believe. Of course, I might be tempted to put it more along the lines of another quote that suddenly popped into my head.

"If we’re going to be damned, let’s be damned for what we really are!"

So, who said that one? The (slightly embarrassing) answer - Captain Jean Luc Picard of the starship Enterprise. Yeah. I know. My geek is showing.

Perhaps the next time I encounter my new friend I will actually be able to hold a two-sided conversation. That would be nice. I'd hate to have to stun 'em with my phaser.


Anonymous said...

Such good writing! You put a funny spin on a frustrating situation. A woman once approached me and said, "You're Catholic?! You don't believe in salvation!" What? Then she just moved on and I was standing there thinking that's a new one. Love the post! Great writing! At least your creativity doesn't seem to be dampened by all the sickness you've been dealing with. Still praying for all of you....

Lisa said...

Ha! Me, too! Love the framework of this post. Heehee. And, sympathize totally with the conundrum. How do you argiu with someone whose whole premise is wrong or twisted -- and who will. not. be. corrected. My husband's only brother and his wife are like that. We tried for a while to set them straight; then after a while of talking to brick walls, tried to call a truce; and then they disowned us. Seemed they didn't want to associate with anyone on the "damned ship." And seemed like WWJD didn't pertain to the situation for them. Whadda ya gonna do? We just figure if words don't work, try to teach by example (and continued charity) -- and then PRAY.

Lisa said...

I really do know how to spell argue. Just can't type some mornings. :0)