Today is the first day of school here in Nederland, Tx.
My wife Laura started teacher classes last week and the kids start today.
Everyone was excited to get back at it and meet their new teachers and friends.
I really enjoyed going to school when I was a kid, especially Grade School.
I went to Catholic School in St. Louis, Mo. for 13 years.
I started in Kindergarten and went all the way through, all in Catholic School.
St. Louis is made of parishes and I went to Holy Family School in the Tower Grove Southside
neighborhood. I had great times there and made great friends, a lot of them for life.
It was different than school today. I spent 9 years with about the same 25 kids. The classes were small
and we only had one teacher until 7th and 8th grade. I went to High School at Bishop DuBourg.
It was a Co-Ed High School with a great Theater program which I was heavily involved with.
I was in 15 full theatrical performances in High School and received a grant for College in Fine Arts.
I did not attend College, but I went to the campus for 6 months and talked to the girls.....
People will often joke about being Catholic or going to Catholic school.
"You survived?" or "Hows that Catholic Guilt?".....
and then there are always the jokes and questions about the Priests.
We did have a horrible situation with a Priest and Teacher at Bishop DuBourg when I was in school.
It was on the news and they were both found guilty and pulled from school one day.
It was quite a scene and one that none of us will forget anytime soon.
The details are not necessary, and some young people really suffered, it was sad and awful.
When the news came out in the past week about Pennsylvania, I immediately remember what happened at our school some 32 years ago.
It is awful and shameful and unforgivable.
It makes me angry and sick to my stomach.
I cannot defend Religion, I will not defend the perpetrators.
What I remember learning from our school tragedy was that these were "Men" that committed
these atrocities. These were men who were hiding in religion and using the school as their
shield. There is/was a lot of blame to go around, it goes all the way to the top and everyone has blood on their hands. There is no excuse.
This did not change my feelings for God.
My belief in a Higher Power was not challenged, my belief in "Man" was.
I knew then that I cannot fully trust a "Man" in power.
My father was of the same belief. He told me as a child many times, over and over
when I was afraid of ghosts or the supernatural he would say "what the hell are you worried about that for? Don't worry about the dead people, worry about the people that are alive."
I certainly don't want to live a life where I cannot trust people, thats not living.
I have trusted and I have been let down, and I have let others down that trusted me.....so is life.
But I have always questioned the motives of those who hold any power, especially when it
involves the "Word of God".
Obviously it is not fair to judge those who have not done wrong, but it's just as easy to not be
involved with them and move on.
I thoroughly enjoyed my life in the Catholic Church, I have no regrets.
My upbringing was classic and traditional and I am thankful for my education.
My parents had little to no money but they made sure that me and my siblings all went to
Catholic School. In the 1970's and 80's, public school in South St. Louis was pretty rough,
I count my blessings.
I guess my point is that I cannot ignore the horrible stories coming out of Pennsylvania.
It can only mean that there are many, many more stories to be told of many more young people
that suffered at the hands of a man in power. It's disheartening and sickening.
It reminds me that these are just men, they are not God.
I have found a direct line to the source in my adult life.
I have no need for intermediation.
It is not necessary for me to recite old prayers or carry old baggage from dead people.
That is not sacred to me, my personal connection is sacred.
Man will let me down, God will not.
Therefore I put all of my trust in my Higher Power, not in man.
I will not be fooled again.
The Source is alive and well and full of energy and Love, it cannot be dimmed
by the actions of men. God has no rules and regulations, only to Love and be Loved.
It seems too good to be true, but it is the absolute Truth.
This is a heavy topic, I know, but I needed to get this out there and share.
Go direct to the source, much less heartbreak and pain.
Peace, Love, Zito