I was reared in Ft. Collins, Colorado, in a nominally Catholic home. We went to Mass most Sunday mornings and midnight services on Christmas Eve. I endured three and half years of Catholic education before my parents, for financial reasons, pulled me out to attend public school. Praise Yahweh, none of the Catholic teaching stuck. As a boy, I was much more interested in hunting and fishing than in anything the priests or nuns had to say. The only thing I recall about those formative grade school years is the day my best friend and I beat the tar out of the school bully and got into trouble with the nuns. There’s not much I remember about my early years in public education either, but, regrettably, more stuck from my years in public schools than did from Catholicism – not so much from the academics as from those whom I fell in with during my junior high and high school days. Left to myself, I probably would not have been a “bad” kid, but I took up with a neighbor who did not have any compunction about stealing and other illicit activities and, of course, what he did, I did as well (1 Corinthians 15:33). The most ironic part about our relationship was that, although he was usually the instigator of our scandalous activities, he had more (as little as it may have been) regard for God than I did. I recall him being alarmed at the fact that I would unabashedly place my hand on a Bible and swear I was telling the truth when we both knew I was lying. During those teenage years, God was not even a passing thought in my mind.

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