The journey of faith and its impact on relationships can be a delicate and complex matter. A Reddit user was recently grappling with the decision of whether or not to attend a church service dedicated to his late son, Jonah.
A Happy Family
The Original Poster (OP) is a 34-year-old who has been married for more than 10 years and has four boys.
OP’s oldest passed away from cancer over three years ago. During his son’s battle with cancer, OP began to realize that he was an atheist.
He Was Raised in a Religious Family
OP was raised as a Catholic and tried to remain one for many years despite having numerous concerns.
Test of Faith
OP’s first started to question his faith when his sister came out as gay. Their parents and everyone they knew, rejected her. This didn’t sit well with OP.
The worst part was when she passed away at the age of 17, the priest and a few of OP’s parents’ friends told them it was God’s way of saving OP’s family from her sin.
He Left His Religion
That was the moment OP truly realized he didn’t fit with religion or really any kind of religion. He had friends of various faiths who talked about their parents disapproving of OP’s sister’s “choices.”
He Loves His Wife and Family
OP’s wife, who is a devout Catholic, was aware of OP’s doubts about his faith when they first started dating. But OP loved his wife and even went to church and prayed with her although he didn’t believe in what he was doing.
When they had their first child, Jonah, OP’s heart was filled with love, but his illness broke his heart and taught OP a lot.
His Wife’s Faith Increases, but Not His
OP’s wife’s inclination toward religion increased after Jonah’s death, even more so than it had throughout his illness. But it was the opposite for OP.
A month after Jonah’s passing, OP’s wife brought up the fact that OP no longer prayed, didn’t join her in prayer, or go to church.
OP explained his reasons to her. And when she questioned how he could reject God, he said that he didn’t think there was a God. Many more arguments followed and their marriage struggles, but they sought counseling, which was helpful.
A Special Service Is Being Organized
Currently, a special service for Jonah is being organized by OP’s wife’s church, a service that her parents played a significant role in planning.
He Stopped Going to Church
However, OP stopped going to church a year ago. He stopped when the local priest wanted to talk to OP about God, religion, the bible, and healing.
He Should Be at Ease Knowing His Son Was Secure
During that conversation, he brought up OP’s sister, Jonah, and how they were being kept apart because of OP’s sister’s wickedness and how OP should be at ease knowing his son was secure.
His Wife Wanted Him to Be There
But OP was quite upset about what he heard and decided to stop going to church. His wife wanted OP to attend this service for their son, but OP informed her he was unable to do so.
He Doesn’t Believe In Religion Anymore
She mentioned that OP used to believe, but he responded by saying that although he attempted to believe, he was only fooling himself and that the topics discussed at church make him sick to his stomach and just serve to infuriate him.
He Should Be Prepared to Do Anything for Their Kid
His wife said he should be prepared to do anything for their kid, who was raised Catholic, or for the other boys in their family, all of whom she claimed were beginning to speak more like OP.
He Should Be There for Her
She informed OP that, at the very least, as her spouse, OP should be there for her.
OP is now thinking about what to do and whether he is wrong in deciding not to go to the service. He took to Reddit for opinions and several Redditors showed their support for OP.
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