My parents were raised Catholic. They both went to Catholic school all the way through college. My father was in the seminary. My aunt and Godmother was a nun for nearly 30 years. My father's sister married a former priest late in life. I was surrounded by a lot of organized religion.
And yet, despite their traditional upbringing, when I was a kid, I was exposed to every single religion my parents were interested in. We attended a myriad of churches - Catholic, Methodist, perhaps Baptist (mom?), chapels at Hofstra University and C.W. Post College, temples, at the beach, in our living room - you name it, we experienced it. I attended a traditional Latin mass with a boyfriend and his family.
As an adult, I have been to the Spoken Word in Salt Lake City, Utah several times; a glorious experience! There is nothing, NOTHING, like the Mormon Tabernacle Choir on a Sunday morning, I can assure you. I have also attended a traditional LDS Sunday service here in NY. I went on a church tour through Italy and let me tell you, I have see hundreds of Madonna's in gilded frames and relics galore. I have studied the three major religions with an esteemed professor at Pace University who got his doctorate at Yale. I did extensive research on Wicca for a college paper. I am learning about Buddha bit by bit.
I guess you could say, I dabble in learning about how the people I love sustain their faith.
We listened to the Singing Nuns (honestly). We watched the Flying Nun. We saw the play Godspell many, many times. I would suspect my sisters and I could break into the entire soundtrack without too much effort. (I listened to it while writing this.) I could probably sing a best of Jesus Christ Superstar medley fairly easily as well.
Today though, today is for Amy and Jake and Jen. People fighting medical battles with gigantic medical bills. Amy - who single-handedly inspires me EVERY day with her deep, abiding faith. Her beautiful son, Jake - fighting brain cancer with the help of amazing technology and a bracelet that says #JakeStrong on one side and #GodStrong on the other, because at 12, Jake believes that he and God together make THE strongest team. Jen - who heals people through touch when she gives a massage.