Is there room for someone like Sarah in the Church?

Elizabeth Scalia takes note of a searching soul she once knew: 

 I never met Sarah; ours was one of those modern online friendships defined by two people who never reside in the same time zone, yet–thanks to the combox and email–become intimate, devoted friends. She was a Lutheran, a scholar, a veteran who served twenty years in the military and then took up accounting, and she wrote the most fascinating, informative missives. When I mentioned that I was considering purchasing a handgun, Sarah gave me serious advice about what weapon might best suit me and also sent along images of handbags suitable for gun-carrying. When I was slow to make my purchase she hectored me about it, because, in her considered opinion, self-sufficient, firearms-proficient women could civilize the whole world in a week.

I loved her. She was kind and funny, and generous; the sort of person who is aware of her own shortcomings and therefore quick to give everyone else the benefit of a doubt. Although a Lutheran, she loved the Rosary and prayed the beads every night along with a podcast recording I had made of each mystery. She read, and loved, Saint Teresa of Avila, Saint Edith Stein, and also Pope Benedict XVI, with whom she identified, calling him “undervalued.” Still, she declared she could never convert because “the church wouldn’t have me, as I am.”

You’ll need to read the piece at First Things to find out why she felt that way.  It’s powerful and provocative.


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