Today, my little brother told me he wants to be Catholic, so that if he falls in love with a girl that’s Catholic, they can get married in the church (he’s 12 by the way). And honestly, in all of its humor, it breaks my heart a little bit.
It breaks my heart that the religious stigmas of the world are so salient, that even a twelve-year-old is aware of them on such a personal level. It breaks my heart that the title of a church dictates how we as a people love and are loved. Because in a world with so much pain and hatred and awfulness, it shouldn’t matter where or how we find our peace, but rather that it is found. It shouldn’t matter who or what we place our hopes and dreams in, but rather that we have them to hold onto. It shouldn’t matter what religious incentive holds us to a standard of goodness, but rather that goodness still exists amidst so much suffering.
Love and be loved is the greatest common message that any religion or not religion has ever advocated, and it is a shame that we allow titles and names and definitions to stand in our way to fulfilling something whose worst possible ramification is a people who care. So I don’t give a damn who you pray to or if you pray at all, because there is not a title in the entire world that replaces a good heart.