Dad and a Difference of Opinion

Warning, this may be a surprising read for some. It is not meant to be offensive.  It is simply my truth.

I was raised Catholic, attending an all-girl Catholic school in my youth for 13 years. I prayed every night for the first 18 years of my life. I believed in God wholeheartedly.

When I went to college, I met people who were atheists, who became my best and life-long friends. They were pure of heart and free of guilt. They did the right thing for the right reasons every single time.

I watched my father brought back to life 6 times after his heart failed. I watched him suffer for months. My mother made me call a priest, after she had asked that priest no less than ten times, for permission to sign an order to not resuscitate. Finally, after that tenth call, we gave him peace.

I’ve watched my mother suffer from a hereditary mental illness for years on end, clutching rosary beads in one hand and a crucifix in another. I’ve watched a Church, in which she spends most of her time and donates a tremendous amount of funding,  make not one attempt to help. I’ve had religion shoved down my throat from every angle possible.

I’ve watched a world filled with complacent people bury their heads in the sand while violence and injustice festers incessantly around them. I’ve watched world-wide violence towards women grow unchecked because they are not worthwhile enough lives to save. I’ve watched unthinkable bloodshed in the name of Religion throughout my lifetime and have read about it consistently all throughout history.

But on the other side of all that crap, which I understand is not 100 percent of the population, I know so many good people who believe in God in some form or fashion. I think it is wonderful for them. They derive great hope and peace from that and find extraordinary meaning in everyday existence. There are those who suffer a great deal and can only find peace in turning to God. I am happy for them that they have a strong faith that carries them. I wish them nothing but peace and love throughout their lifetimes. To all those close to me who believe in God, you have all touched my life in a very positive way.

But to me, there is no God.

My friends of belief, don’t sign out yet…

I believe in hope. I believe in the power of positive energy. I believe that there are so many good people on this planet who want to make this world a better place. I believe that in well-intended faith you can cure most anything. I believe there is an answer, we just can’t quite perceive it in our simple human states. I believe that true, unselfish good can go far beyond the concept of any God. I believe that there are people among us who live better than any God could ever conceive or teach.

I write this on the eve before Father’s Day because I remember having this debate with my dad. He was shocked but he was also one of the most intelligent individuals I had ever met who enjoyed a robust discussion about a controversial topic. He tried to use logic to convince me otherwise. I suspect he was disappointed and sad. But I don’t believe he was surprised.

My dad died in peace surrounded by people praying the rosary over him. That made him happy and he believed he was going to Heaven. For his sake, I hope he was right.

Published by Lisa Rocha Gubernick

My name is Lisa Gubernick. I have been working in the business world for the past twenty four years and I truly enjoy the career that I have built. I am also a wife and mother of two. Outside of those responsibilities, I take every opportunity I can to learn and to create. Those activities truly fuel my soul and ensure my well being. If you are anything like me, you often reflect on the human experience and what it means to make a positive contribution everyday. My goal is to leave this world in a better place than I found it through my writing.

12 thoughts on “Dad and a Difference of Opinion

  1. Lisa, I love and respect you. I’m so sorry you and your family went through this with your father. I’m sorry the Church failed you all but God did not. Everything happens for a reason – sometimes we’ll never understand during this life. Our priests are men, doing their best, but failing, as we all do at times. Don’t judge the Catholic faith, or God, because of one man (or even several). The Church has changed a lot, for the better. Please view this short video and I hope it helps you to heal. https://www.facebook.com/detroitfreepress/videos/191862591465721/

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  2. The Quakers believe that God is the light inside all of us. I love this definition. And when people are suffering, they say, “I’m holding you in the light.” After going to a Quaker college, I adopted a lot of these beliefs. I’ve never believed in an old white man in the sky, but I can believe in the light inside everyone. Maybe it’s about defining “God” in your own way.

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  3. Xoxoxo! Well said and of course well written! There is no greater honesty than that of truth and transparency! Love this one (may be one of my favorites)

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  4. Lisa,

    This is beautiful and I too question if there is a God. I also question the Catholic Church in which I was raised. Too often I see things happen where people are quoting the Bible and praising God at the same time they are doing their utmost to harm others. If by chance there is a god or a higher being, it is a god that wouldn’t judge, a god that wouldn’t let such travesties take place, a god that would protect everyone, not just the few that can donate enough money. The energy from us will resonate with thoughts around us and if it is positive energy it is positive energy you will get in return.
    Compassion knows no god, compassion only knows the heart from where it comes. I would rather live my life compassionately than to donate hoping that money will create the path to happiness and eternal light. The path has no cost and when you die all you can take with you are the memories and the happiness you gave and received.

    You my friend are an inspiration and I look forward to reading all your posts as they resonate and help me immensely.

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    1. Thank you so much for this thoughtful commentary. I am so glad we have reconnected so strongly!!!! You are such an inspiration to me as well.

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  5. I totally agree. And good for you to have the courage to articulate it. I too grew up in a Catholic household and Catholic schools. I remember as far back as high school, having debates with theology teachers and questioning the church’s teachings. I’d love to talk more about it one of these days. I applaud you!
    I enjoy reading your blog.

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    1. Hi Sheila!!!
      Thank you so much! I was definitely unsure of how this post would go over, but at some point I needed to own my truth. I really appreciate you commenting and it would be fabulous to catch up!!!
      Lisa

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  6. Wow Lisa this was the best piece yet. I also question God as you know my past. As I survived the 9/11 attack , I am lucky to be alive due to my quick thinking and not panicking. My company lost 22 employees who many where very good friends. Days later all I heard was God was with you. Really! And not the other three thousand plus who died. Why Me! And not them! This bothered for a while and I would let people know not say that to me. I am spiritual, I believe in peace, love, hope and positive people no matter what religion or background. So Lisa thank for your honesty and transparency. I truly miss talking to you and hope to see you soon.

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    1. Thank you so much for the amazing feedback. I can’t even begin to imagine what that experience was like. I would love to see you soon as well. I really appreciate you reading and supporting me.

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