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There's more than one way to fight the good fight

There's more than one way to fight the good fight

2 min. 30.05.2014 From our online archive
House spouse Dan Franch muses on faith and his son's short-lived curiosity in the church in the latest Taking a Break feature.

By Dan Franch

I took our younger son to church the other week. He’d never been and had been asking to go for quite some time. But life’s sundry interferences always seemed to get in the way. Or, and more honestly and likely, he forgot to ask and I didn't bother to remind him. But I bore my cross on Palm Sunday and off we went. There's a nice one with English masses up in Luxembourg's old town.

I wasn't always godless. In fact, I was a church goer well into my 20s. Then I stopped. I’m a nonbeliever now, which is somewhat of a thorn in my parents’ side.

My dad is a deacon in the Catholic church and my mom has been going to church since “God knows when”. So church is in the family. But I fell away while travelling around the world.

Nevertheless, and while I don't always see eye to eye with religious folk, I have no problem with those who go to chuch and/or worship a higher power. “Whatever gets you through the night,” as John Lennon sang.

Even my younger son is still interested in religion and God. In fact, we read a book of Bible stories regularly. Who am I to tell him what to and what not to believe in. Besides, Western arts – literature, music and art– are rich with Biblical references and allusions and imagery, so it's good information to know no matter what one's spiritual leanings are.

But as for church, one mass seems to have been enough for my guy. He hasn't asked to go back since our ill-fated journey to the mount in April. We didn't even make it to the halfway point in the gospel and already he was bored. “Why is everyone just standing there?” he wanted to know.

I had no plausible answer, so we walked away. Who knows, maybe one day the prodigal son will return for another mass. Then again, maybe not. Either way is fine with me. After all, there's more than one way to fight the good fight.

Read more of Dan's columns in our Taking A Break dossier.

Dan Franch is also co-creator of bi-monthly comic strip Table Manners about a US family living in Luxembourg.

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