More from my dear brother-in-law...
I'm not very good with "absolutes" ...ever. Well, maybe sometimes. When I was a punk kid, friends would ask me who my favorite Beatle was, and I'd say, "Well, I guess, Paul - he gets all the chicks... no wait... maybe John - love the way he stands all nearsighted and cool at the mike with his teeny Rik... but I also really like George's "different" sorta songs and sense of humor... and the haircut always looked best on Ringo...
It seemed sorta silly to me to "need" to have a "favorite anything," let alone a fave-rave Beatle. I could never even pick a favorite color.
Colors always seem to need other colors to look their best.
I know we all use the word "favorite" pretty much all the time. We bandy it about incessantly... mostly meaninglessly. It's a colloquialism much like "paying attention..." Makes you wonder about cost-effectiveness in this self-absorbed world.
Someone once asked Jung or Watts or Kurt Vonnegut Jr. or some other smart guy if he believed in god. He said that he didn't like the word "believe..." It built too many restrictions and walls around a life. Then he said something like (and I seriously paraphrase): "If I pick one god, or one kind of god to believe in... then all of the infinite other choices and variables that might be this resplendent and powerful and awe-inspiring universe, no longer exist.
I don't see why the "Church" can't be everything to everyone. After all, they are the church - a supposedly nonjudgmental place of true freedom and infinite love. Isn't that what god is? Awright, maybe I've gone too far. But why not have a nice Pagan-like mass, prayed in that magical Latin language with the priest dressed in those regal gold and purple vestments, just for the old and young folk who dig the "Christianity" that was emulating the Earth goddess and the Romans. And maybe a nice new progressive guitar-playing, hand-shaking, English-speaking mass for the more progressive who believe in the tenor of the truth rather than the trappings. Of course then there are the singing/screaming southern Baptists who seriously bust-a-nut to kick out the jams to raise the dead every Sunday. If you haven't seen that, you're missing more than a good rerun episode of "Friends."
Why can't the priests that want to get married, get married, and show the laity hoi polloi, the preeminent grand idea of what this family that the family-values people are always shouting about, is actually about? And the pastors who feel that their homage to the supreme is the pristine celibacy of a serene and stained-glassed and holy environment... they can remain the zen-like monks they wanna remain. And all else that is good.
What a mess man makes of the "word" when all he hears is the lyrics... and not the song.