Thursday, August 20, 2015

To Joe by Kari Hoglund on May 18, 1990

I wrote this poem to my then fiancé, Joe, during my English 201 course at the College of St Catherine (now St Catherine University) in St Paul, Minnesota.


To Joe

It was never said that I would go to Hell
     If I decide to eat meat on Friday

I was never made to learn the names
     Of all the saints

Kneeling is not just a way to get sore knees
    And the sign of the cross is not silly

I never had to memorize the prayers
     For the Rosary

And I never go to private confession
     And tell the priest ALL my sins

I do not pray to the Blessed Virgin
     Because I think God cannot listen

Priests should not marry; they should be like Christ
     Because they love, not as a punishment

I do believe in the sanctity of life, not to
     Deny women rights but because life is a gift

The pope is not God; he is a politician
     And Vatican City is his Washington

The Church is not the focus of my life
     But my faith is

I cannot turn my back on everything I love
     And trust in for you or anyone else

But I can tell you that I know the truth
     Lutherans are simply lazy Catholics!


Bad poetry, for certain.

But back then I was still a girl and unmarried.  And I was addressing things that played a HUGE role in our marriage.

My husband was too stubborn to come to faith.  He hated Catholicism and he hated that I practiced it.

It's ironic that I have evolved into a believer who is in constant communication with my Father God and - though still a practicing Roman Catholic - I would still define myself as spiritual and faithful rather than religious.

It's more ironic that my husband is seeking an annulment and belonging in this beautiful, ancient faith considering that we had this conversation in the last days of our marriage:

Me:  I was reading about that (I can't remember what "that" referred to) in Ephesians.  It says…
My husband:  I don't even know why you read that Book anymore; it's so out of date.
Me:  Oh.

He really needs to read Ephesians before he celebrates the sacrament of marriage for the second time - and restates the vows he said to me four times for the fifth time with someone else.

He also needs to read Corinthians, the Psalms, Proverbs, and… errr a few others.  It wouldn't hurt his bride-to-be either.  Reading this beautiful love letter God gave us is never out of date.  God wouldn't have given us such a gift without it being a timeless transcript of His love for us.

As for me?  Thank GOD I held firm to my faith. I faltered for a time and did let my husband take first place in my priorities.  I came to my senses though!

And praise God for all I have and will have!  God is SO VERY, VERY GOOD!


No comments:

Post a Comment