Saturday I'm joining my husband and in-laws to visit the "St. Peter and the Vatican" exhibit at the Milwaukee Public Museum. I'm very excited about this, as I know the collection will be beautiful. Art & artifacts tell the tale of the 264 Popes who have headed the Roman Catholic Church.
Some of the exhibit includes:
A reproduction of the Tomb of Saint Peter
The Mandylion of Edessa, a third- to fifth-century image on linen considered the oldest known representation of Jesus
The Papa Tiara of Pope Pius IX, the symbol of the papacy, made of silver, gold, pearls and diamonds, emeralds and other precious stones
A 16th-century chalice encrusted with pearls, rock crystal, silver gilt and enamel
The first known map of Australia
A Buddhist Thanka of embroidered cloth and pearls, presented by the Dalai Lama as a gift to John Paul II.
I know in this current day and age alot of people have opinions about the Catholic church, most of which I find highly unjustified. I'm proud of my faith and the history and legacy it intales. I wasn't "damaged" by my Catholic upbringing, and had alot of priests in my life who encouraged my love of learning, and my need to question things.
I have educated myself about many world religions, and found one truth intrinsically true...we all have faith in a Higher Power, and the "Golden Rule" applies to everyone. We chose different ways of celebrating that faith. I respect others in their beliefs. With knowledge comes wisdom, after all.
I get sick of the attacks the Catholic church endures, usually from the uneducated, simply because it is one of the largest and oldest instituations in the world. When I hear these attacks, I am reminded that the Reformation didn't destroy the Church, and more importantly no man can destroy my faith and love in God or the community in which I choose to practice.