Just before Mother’s Day, on NPR I caught the rebroadcast of an episode of This American Life that had originally aired in May 2009. The highlight for me came when erstwhile minor seminarian and now determinedly anti-Church sex advice columnist, Dan Savage, talks about the death of his devoutly Catholic mother and how it has stirred up in him longings to hope that she is in Heaven even though he no longer believes in anything the Church teaches.
I found the piece profoundly sad (and, at times, funny.) Savage, like many former Roman Catholics, is angrily dismissive of the Church and yet he admits that he longs to believe. He finds himself sitting in a Catholic Church a couple of times a week, unable to pray and equally unable to stay away. It utterly compelling stuff.
Whenever you can find 15 minutes, do yourself a favor and listen to Savage’s commentary. [Click on the “Stream Episode” button and fast forward to about 37’50” where his story begins.]