The Confessional: I Was Once a Cathotant

the cross shining through the gleaming sun!

I grew up in a household that was split down the middle on religion. My grandmother was old-school Protestant, while my mother was a devout Catholic. This made things both interesting and confusing, but mostly confusing–for me. I was baptized and christened. Went to Sunday School and catechesis. Attended services in a cathedral and also a small corner church. I received Communion and didn’t receive Communion as it was “ever-present.” Confused? Well that was me, the once “Cathotant.”

Memories of both churches are still vivid. Some are truly special because they include my grandmother who has since passed away. Other memories…well, let’s just say they constantly remind me of why I’m now someone who believes more in spiritual things than I do scriptural ones.

One memory that really stands out, and continues to poke me in the brain, took place in the Catholic church. I went to confessional for the first (and only) time when I was 13. Like Kayne West, I didn’t prepare what would spew from my mouth ahead of time. I “wung” it…hard. By doing so, I single-handedly came up with the lamest confession known to man. And I was reprimanded. All in the same sitting. Kneeling. Still confused. See?

Here’s how it went down:

“Bless me Father for I have sinned. It’s been zero days since my last confession. This is my first time.”

>>awkward silence because I suddenly realized I was in a tightly enclosed area <<

“Can I slide open this window so it doesn’t feel so…?”

>>chastised by the priest for being such a rude Cathotant<<

“Sorry. I sinned. I…I…I pulled my dog’s tail the other day.” End of confessional.

I.Pulled.My.Dog’s.Tail.The.Other.Day. What the burning bushes was I thinking? I know damn well that I probably swore umpteenth times that week or felt hatred towards someone or something, I was a teen after all. But really? My confession was so sizzleless and so lame, I think I heard the priest hit his head off the wall, deliberately.

“Is there anything else you’d like to confess?” he asked sounding deeply agitated.

HELL NO. At that point, between the claustrophobia and fear of some higher power punishing me for sins I did not admit to, I was outta there. Out, out, out.

I looked over my shoulder for weeks after that traumatizing event, worried that Satan himself was behind me with a leather belt. I’m serious. I haven’t been right since.

Another hemorrhoid-flaring moment happened during Sunday School at the Protestant church. We were instructed to draw pictures of what religion meant to us. Prompts were even given—draw a picture of attending church with your parents or scribble a big ole’ cross onto the page. All I had to do was take a pencil and draw what looked like a T, yet I decided to unleash my inner Michel-effin-angelo at that precise moment.

Standing in front of a classroom full of kids and several teachers, I proudly held up a Crayola-created image of the Pope. I even wrote the word P-O-P-E above the distorted figure’s head, which looked like a roll of toilet paper, to make sure everyone knew who it was in the drawing. I drew a picture of the Pope in Sunday School while standing in a Protestant church. That’s what religion meant to me. I should have sneaked into a corner and ate a jar of paste, but it didn’t click until after I had already made an ass of myself. Protestants don’t recognize a Pope. That was the Catholic side of things.

Of course, the teachers reassured me that it was perfectly acceptable to be confused about religion. I still felt like a big a-hole.

That was me. The once Cathotant. What’s your funniest encounter with religion? Share in the comments!

Posted on by Crystal in Life As We Know It

11 Responses to The Confessional: I Was Once a Cathotant

  1. Katie @ Pick Any Two

    You pulled your dog’s tail? You sinner! Haha. I grew up in a very conservative Protestant church…and then went to college and went all feminist. The preachers at my home church were HORRIFIED.
    Katie @ Pick Any Two recently posted..An Open Letter to LazinessMy Profile

    • Crystal

      You lil’ rebel you! Love it!

  2. Amber Day Hicks

    I LOVE this! My daddy was a METHODIST minister, yep, I am admitting it, PK RIGHT HERE y’all, and I am the middle child and I am the last daughter so my parents were screwed!!!LOL anyways, I’m sure you can imagine, Mama C what my teenage years were like so I won’t share aloud, let’s just say, I should have been a hippie. 😉 XO. smooches….
    Amber Day Hicks recently posted..Hey y’all!My Profile

    • Crystal

      Oh dear gawd. And I thought I had it rough! LOL I secretly always wanted to be a hippie. Start a movement? 🙂

  3. Writermom Angela

    I grew up with kind of a murky church experience but when I was in Jr High I attended Catholic school for exactly one year. (Long story) and I would have run screaming too. I actually had many kids say to me that if I wasn’t catholic I must be jewish and many more say how unfortunate it was that I was going to hell for not being catholic.

    Way to be open minded people!
    Writermom Angela recently posted..My Life: Then and NowMy Profile

  4. Teri

    My mother was a devout Irish Catholic and my dad was a non-practicing Jew. So I always said I drink, I get drunk, and I feel guilty.
    Teri recently posted..Small fish, big pond. So I just keep swimming….My Profile

  5. Michelle

    Poor pup! I’m sure he got over it quickly. Dogs are awesome that way. We could probably all take a few lessons about love and happiness from them. My dad was Jewish and my mom Methodist so basically I was brought up as nothing. My husband is Catholic so I became Catholic for our family and children. I have never been to confession though.
    Michelle recently posted..#AskAwayFriday with Mrs. Tee Live Love Life & LaughterMy Profile

    • Crystal

      If you ever do go to confession, don’t ask to open the window! LOL

  6. AnnMarie

    Wow, I could write a novel on this one. Like you, I grew up Catholic but have since decided to belong to a non-denominational one. The biggest thing that stands out was trying to go to church as a family with Nico (5) and the twins (2). I had packed a baggie of Fruit Loops to keep the twins quiet. We were standing up at the beginning and Belle started crying for her Fruit Loops. I told her that as soon as the priest stopped talking, she could have them thinking she’d be quiet. Instead, she started yelling, “Stop talking! You’re taking too long!” I looked at all the people staring at us and said, “Well, we tried” and walked right out.
    AnnMarie recently posted..Five Things FridayMy Profile

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