Several years ago, a young priest officiated my grandpa’s funeral mass. My grandpa was aware when he was dying and he specifically asked for this priest to do his funeral. My grandpa really liked him. He was from the area – his dad worked in the same factory as my grandpa. He seemed passionate and thoughtful but he was also just awkward and human. Simply put, he seemed like a normal guy and I found that really fascinating. The young priest mentioned he had a Twitter account and after the funeral, I decided to follow him. I thought he would tweet something interesting or thought-provoking but I waited and waited and all he tweeted about was baseball. My curiosity was squashed a bit.
I watch a lot of shows about religion – particularly the downfall of religion. I veg out on the couch and watch programs about cults, polygamy, the Amish, Catholic church scandals, the evils of megachurches, and televangelist conmen. There is no shortage of drama and I can’t look away from the train wreck. I shake my head in disbelief but I also have so many questions.
How do people get involved in these situations? How do people believe in things that are so obviously and completely false?
I’ve also noticed the leaders of these groups share a lot of the same personality traits, especially being charismatic and controlling. Do these leaders think, “I’m going to start a cult”, or does it just happen in a progression or maybe when things get out of hand? How do you convince people you’re a prophet? Do they truly believe they’re a prophet or is it all just an act?
The saddest part is the abuse – especially the sex abuse/crimes. So many of the programs I’ve watched have involved adultery, rape, child brides, and incest. Why is that? Does religion encourage that or is it just an easy excuse?
See! So many questions! I often find myself fascinated with the things that scare me such as boats and ships, trains, tornadoes, and ghosts. Is my fascination with religion along these lines?
Do you share this interest or fascination?
On a somewhat unrelated note, I have a fantasy of seducing a Catholic priest — so much so that my husband has given me a hall pass for this one. What’s really funny about this is that my mom named me “Megan” after the main character in the Thornbirds. She read the book while she was pregnant with me. If you are unfamiliar with the book or film, it is about a young girl who falls in love with a much older priest.
Is that weird?