Its cold out today and I’m stepping back into the church of my childhood.
Its grand edifice stands as it always did, intimidating and yet majestic.
Inside the cavern of its supposed holiness still fills me with foreboding and I wonder why I have travelled so far to once again subject myself to the Church of Fairweather Friends.
Today I’m sheltering from the elements, but I still feel the age-old chill of indifference run through me. Around me, the symbols of faith stare down on me, long forgotten saints and the torturous Stations of the Cross just where I left them. A priest enters and bids us welcome, his piety on display, and I recall the friend of my youth who stood in the same spot saying the same things, and we believed. Later I stood beside his grave, his conviction bringing about his pre-mature death. I wonder as I observe the faithful how many will suffer my fate when difficulty arises, no caring, no compassion but loads of denial.
the walls that surround
ache with the sins of the past
Written for: https://dversepoets.com/2018/04/02/haibun-monday-faith/
Faith can be like that
It can indeed 💜
Hypocrisy should not exist within these buildings. Very sad when it does. I’ve seen it. Thank you for sharing.
Thanks Mish. It’s a sad reality
Such a sad story. I have also experienced a “Church of Fairweather Friends” but thankfully have a better place to go now.
As have I. Thanks so much for stopping by.
Your journey out of faith is one I believe many take….It is hard to get past the buildings, the images, the guilt, the demands, and the sins…to find compassion and love and grace!
Thanks Dwight sometimes faith exists within you not in the hands of others
It makes me wonder what happened to your friend.
I’m not a church-goer and do not take part in organised religion. But I do like the peace and quiet of our local church, which I sometimes visit when I need to think and ‘shelter from the elements’.You’ve written a deep and meaningful haiku, Michael.
each word aches. pain felt. hopeful haiku.
That’s a very powerful haiku. The Church has a lot to answer for, that’s for sure. Your photo really helps convey the deep sadness of the place. It has a real bleakness to it.
Thanks so much Suzanne.
Ended on a beautiful haiku. The church has largely failed in showing love… but since people are the church, and people are flawed…well, what next. It would be far better for church to market itself as a spiritual hospital- so we know everyone in it is ill…..and so we look elsewhere for our peace.
Yes so true, looking elsewhere is what I did.
I loved your Haiku Michael.
I’m not a church goer either as you know, but we do light candles either at home or in a special place for those departed. It’s not a religious thing for us, more of sharing the peace and tranquillity of our chosen places with our loved ones.
Thank you Di, I think your lit candles is a wonderful idea.
I can’t remember when I started doing it…….. I think when I was in Milan for the bank and lit a candle in the cathedral for my Dad.
I remember when my dad died a lot of his stuff was in the house for years, actually, I found it hard to take down his caps for such a long time and his overalls are still hanging behind the toilet door as my kids at the time insisted as they’d always been there.
I think that’s a lovely sentiment. I still have my Dad’s cardy.
Faith is so much more than buildings. And hypocrisy will always exist. Within ourselves mostly.
That’s a good point Mary.
That’s a beautiful haiku!
Thanks so much Jo.
I feel that the church too often fails in helping those in direst need…. actually from what I learned when studying the scriptures, it was not condemnation but forgiveness and seeing only your own sins and be blind to that of others.
Yes you are right Bjorn, forgiveness is all important and not pointing fingers at the sins of others more important.
Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother’s eye.
Thank you.. too..:)