The line between religion and magic, I learned in school, isn’t clear. But many scholars of religion agree that one important division is that while magic is private and crisis-oriented, religion is public and its rituals have no specific, short-term, earthly goals.
For a while during the long, hot summer I entertained the superstitious idea that things would not look up for my family until I had the clasp of my medal repaired. I did not think I was being punished for breaking it, but I thought I had damaged some trust by doing that, and that I couldn’t fix it until I did some penance by way of cost and trouble.
In my dream, I wandered down the aisle of some kind of noisy, crowded theater. At the front, where a stage should have been, were confessionals. I went inside one to repent and there was no priest there, only a screen with the face of a priest. I said to him: “Father, I’ve lost my faith.”
All in all, Elizabeth gave us an interesting story to think about.