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Jan 4
When I was a child

Some of the most judgmental and unkind People I ever met were on church pews
Every Sunday with a Hymnal
And a Bible in their hands

I didn’t know how some people
Were able to disassociate their own Shortcomings and cruelty
From their religious
Obligations and convictions
But many were able to do just that

But as a child I couldn’t reconcile
The child abusers
The pedophiles
The rapists
The drug traffickers
The thieves
The alcoholics
The cheaters
The liars

From the people that stood at the pulpits.
The ones I was told to emulate.
The minister
The reverends
The deacons

The word minister embodies
Loving protection

The word reverend invokes
Reverence and inspiration

Doesn’t it?

I was a young adult
Before I realized
Church is for sinners
By that time organized religion
For me?
Was black and soiled.
Repulsive

Here I am now.
I fling mantras out into the world
Of love, hope, compassion,
Good health

I recently walked into
A cathedral in Ireland and cried.
I felt the weight of time and
Countless generations of believers.

Working in the medical field
And specializing in pediatrics
Holding a one pound baby
In my hands
Months before even
The parents were allowed to touch them
I sincerely believe in miracles
I see them almost every day

My church is in my head
Buddhism is in my heart
And in the actions of my hands
The words in my mouth
What my ears hear
The soothing of my soul

The meals I help serve the homeless
The blankets I spread on their cots

I bow my head and listen to prayers
Wherever they are offered
I quietly whisper
My wishes
Into an unknown ear  

I don’t judge many people anymore
My childhood is past
I learned valuable lessons
And peace is mind at last

That doesn’t mean I trust
Easily or broadly
It just means I am an adult
And am responsible

There is some good
In almost everyone
I don’t say that out of naivety
I have danced with monsters

But that’s another tale...
Deb Jones
Written by
Deb Jones  F/California
(F/California)   
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