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Catholic Magazine Writes Nice Article About Britney's IG Post

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A magazine dedicated to sharing news and opinion pieces relating to Catholicism actually posted a sympathetic article about Britney. It's kind of long and very religious (which I am not), but I thought it was a nice sentiment that seeks middle ground. Here are some excerpts that stand out:


Britney Spears recently wanted to get married in the Catholic Church. The controversy that followed shows us what we still need to learn about turning our churches into welcoming spaces.

Recently Britney Spears made a stir in Catholic circles, when she told her Instagram followers that she had wanted to get married in a Catholic church in Los Angeles, but had been turned away.

Pundits seemed to spend a lot of energy debating whether or not she had officially converted, but they missed the point entirely. 

In the case of Spears’ wedding, it seems that the parish had nothing to do with what happened. And if you’re ever visiting Los Angeles, I highly recommend St. Monica’s. Spears is right. It’s a great place.

Situations similar to hers come up pretty often in many of our parishes. Especially when it comes to weddings and funerals, there are times when people come to our churches wanting things that don’t necessarily fit our categories. They want a pop song at a funeral. They want a non-religious ritual included in their wedding. Or they want to get married here, even though they aren’t Catholic.

It can be very easy to get hung up on the specific problems of their requests, not only because some of the same issues come up again and again (raise your hand if you’ve had someone insist they need “Stairway to Heaven” at a funeral), but because many of our parishes are already overwhelmed with the normal demands of their regular parishioners. When you’ve got only one priest in a parish and maybe a pastoral associate, it can be hard to remember that whether or not someone’s desires fit our liturgical practices or are phrased the right way, there very well might be something deeply spiritual beneath the surface.

None of this is to say that our churches should cast aside all their rules whenever someone asks for something. But maybe we do need some sort of middle ground—between yes and no—in situations like that of Spears, some kind of service or specific hospitality we can offer to people who don’t fit our normal categories. Because right now, it seems like we’ve got a system where our buildings might invite people in, but then we’re caught flat-footed if who they are or what they want doesn’t fit our categories.

Unfortunately, the media tends to pick up a story like this and makes it as superficial and controversial as possible, because that’s what sells. Every headline has tried to make this sound like a huge ugly mess, when neither Spears nor the parish has actually talked about it in that way. And in doing so, these reports make it easy to miss that there’s more going on here, both for Spears and for us in the church. If we don’t take visitors to our churches and Catholics with unusual ideas seriously, we’re missing an invitation—or maybe a request—that God is making of us. And, to paraphrase one of the world’s great pop stars, the results can be toxic.

It's nice that someone decided to skip the drama and Britney's words made them THINK deeply about their religion :pensiveney_britney_praying_ftr_for_the_record_2008_circus_vmas_thinking:

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