Religious [Mal]practice

We live in challenged times so I am not surprised why we cling tenaciously to our faith to keep us sane. In a poor country like the Philippines, the relevance of religion has never been more pronounced and the constitutional guarantee to religious freedom assures us that nothing will impede us from practicing our faith in whatever ways our doctrines dictate.  There is something to be said however, about our  fanaticism.  Good Friday was just a day ago and the media was bursting with calendar news on this important  occasion.  What catches my attention every time are stories of devotees whipping themselves into a bloody mass during processions and via cruces and getting crucified with giant nails as acts of sacrifice and penance.  I do not really see the logic behind these rites, much more their relation to Christ’s passion and death.  When He told us to take up our cross and follow Him, did we have to take Him literally, word for word?  The Church itself has expressed disapproval against such practices.  If we are truly Catholics as we claim ourselves to be, then we should observe the dogmas our Church has set forth on matters of reconciliation, i.e. through the sacraments of Confession and Communion.  And if we are truly repentant, these conciliatory  resolutions should manifest itself secretly in our  everyday lives.  The Bible itself discourages us from flaunting our prayers and our fasting during Lent, yet, here we are on national television, radio, broadsheets, tabloids and cyberspace making a very public spectacle of our devotion and supposed sacrifices.  Seems to me, everything’s superficial and mechanical, specially that some of us do this annually and that the cameras are rolling and shuttering.

P.S. Aren’t these people supposed to die too?  Only hitch is that they don’t get resurrected in the process.   The Easter Bunny concept puzzles me as well.Duh…i must be getting old.

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