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Sunday, August 19, 2007

anti-Catholic bias ... or leading edge?

At an internment for a relative yesterday, I was talking to one of the deceased's realtives from the other side of his family.

She asked whether I ever missing my Catholic faith (I'm a Swedenborgian now). I said no. She said she'd encountered a lot of anti-Catholic bias among Swedenborgians when she was growing up with her Catholic mother in the neighborhood. I asked what she meant.

First, she noted that her mother was always embarrassed when there was meat served at the neighborhood Friday night dinners, since Catholics weren't allowed to eat meat on Friday.

Second, she noted Catholics believe in the resurrection of the body and strongly discourage cremation, and Swedenborgians tend to favor cremation (mostly because it's cheaper; it's not an issue of doctrine). Catholics weren't allowed to be placed in Catholic cemeteries if they'd been cremated.

The irony, of course, is that Catholics now can eat meat on Friday, and we had just watched a Catholic priest officiate at the interment of a Catholic who'd been cremated.