Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Martha Goes To Hell

I grew up Catholic, which meant one thing.

I was probably going to hell.

Sinful thoughts? Going to hell.
Disrespecting my parents? Going to hell.
Lying? Going to hell.
Stealing? Hella going to hell.

Doubting God? Totally. Going. To. Hell. (although if one doesn't believe in God and then one doesn't believe in Hell, this gets a little meta)

Point being, there were so many ways to hell, I really saw no way out. So by the time I hit six or seven years old, I'd accepted the inevitability of spending the afterlife in eternal, painful hellfire.

(Granted, this was after sitting around until the second coming.)

What shocks me as an adult is how okay I was with it. How I made peace with hell. Even though I tried to be a good person just because being a bad person sucks, I never thought I could do anything to be perfect enough for Heaven.

And to be honest...I kind of figured everyone around me was going to hell, too. I'd catch a friend cheating on her homework. Hell. Parents took the lord's name in vain 24-7. Hell, hell, hell, hell, hell, hell, hell. Everyone seemed to be working on Sunday, despite it being a holy day. Soooo much hell to catch.

I couldn't understand people who felt they were going to see the Lord one day. Who talked about how excited they were that one day they'd be in the loving presence of the Father.

But uh...I'd think...don't you remember coveting my color pencils a while back? That's a hell offense if I've ever seen one!

For some reason, the fact that everyone was going to hell made it okay. It was going to be one big hellacious party. We'd burn together.

Because trust me, if I'm going to hell, I'm taking ya'all with me.

8 comments:

Liz said...

Perhaps it's a difference in age, but my Catholic upbringing included the Sacrament of Penance. I do seem to recall confession has been abolished or maybe just downgraded, like saints. As you can tell from my lack of current knowledge, I'll see you in there.

Martha Flynn said...

Haha, I'll keep a corner cozy for you, Liz. The problem with penance is that I knew I never *really* felt sorry for anything, so figured it never counted.

Sophie Littlefield said...

martha, i can just see you in my version of hell.

being catholic myself, it was not an idle threat, but because i spent so much time thinking about how hypocritical and nonsensical the sin classification was, i doubted from an early age that i was a good candidate to go there.

AnnaC said...

Love it.

Wish I had read it before my hellish day. You know, perspective.

If I still believed in hell, I would take your notion of hellacious party to the bank.

Oh, yes, recovering Catholic over here.

And penance is a wonderful thing. But sometimes I wonder how it gets reconciled with buying indulgences.

Rachael Herron said...

I used to practice -- I'd get in the hottest bath impossible and chant to myself "hell will be hotter, hell will be hotter." So I hear you. Wasn't Catholic but SHOULD have been, with the amount of guilt I chose to bear....

Martha Flynn said...

Wow, Rachael. Just....wow.

Richard Bach said...

In short, 1000 pound loans are a timely money support. Also, these are a stress buster which doesn’t let you have stress under any condition. To Find my other services please visit us.

http://www.poundstillpayday1hr.co.uk/
http://www.paydayloansdirectlenders24hrs.co.uk/
http://www.uk6monthpaydayloans.co.uk/
http://www.shorttermloansdirectlenders.co.uk/

Richard Bach said...

In short, 1000 pound loans are a timely money support. Also, these are a stress buster which doesn’t let you have stress under any condition. To Find my other services please visit us.

http://www.poundstillpayday1hr.co.uk/
http://www.paydayloansdirectlenders24hrs.co.uk/
http://www.uk6monthpaydayloans.co.uk/
http://www.shorttermloansdirectlenders.co.uk/