A son and his mother unpack groceries in the kitchen.
Son: But why? I don’t see the point of it.
Mother: Church studies are good for you. It’s good for your soul.
Son: Soul? How do you even know if we have a soul?
Mother: Of course we have a soul. What do you think is that thing in your head that tells you not to do something terrible? That’s your soul. And if you go to church, and study the words of the Lord, your soul will guide you in the right direction. And one day, God willing, you will go to heaven.
Son: Mom, you’re talking about a person’s conscience. Not their soul. That’s that voice telling you to make the right decision. And is going to Heaven like the SAT’s of the afterlife? You have to study up for it?
The son chuckles.
Mother: Ah, soul/conscience, it’s the same thing. And don’t laugh, this isn’t a joke. What happens to you after you die should matter.
You know when people talk about a devil and an angel being on their shoulders during important decisions in life? That stuff is real. That’s Heaven and Hell pulling you towards it. You need a strong willed soul to know what is right and wrong and help guide you towards God’s salvation.
Son: I don’t care about God! Or Jesus or whatever his name is.
Mother: Excuse me?
Son: I don’t. How do we know ancient people weren’t just praying to aliens, and some other guy turned it into some ghost being you pray to so he could become rich and famous? Like the evangelicals on the public access stations.
Mother: Ha! Aliens! Now that’s funny!
She smiles and shakes her head.
Son: It’s possible. In my History class the teacher showed us how pyramids made by different cultures, in totally different parts of the world, looked sort of the same. How is that possible? And they didn’t even believe in the same gods, or Jesus and the Holy whatever.
Mother: It’s the Holy Spirit. And you need to knock off this nonsense about aliens. If nothing else, going to church will teach you how to be a good person, be caring to your fellow man and believe in something more than yourself. To appreciate your time on this earth.
Son: I don’t need church for that. I learn that from the AWESOME parenting you and Dad do!
He puts his arm around her shoulder and gives her a sly smile. She returns the smile with one of her own.
Son: I’m 15 years-old now. I want to go and hang out with my friends on the weekends. I don’t want to go to Bible studies for three hours on a Saturday, then church on a Sunday. Come ooooonnn.
Mother: As long as you live in this house you are going to have some religion in your life. Same goes for your father. He needs some too. With all those damn zombie shows he watches.
Son: Mom, I get it. After Abuelo died, and then Abuela soon after, it hurt you. Hey if you want to go to church, and get some “religion in your life” that’s cool. More power to you. But why do I have to go? I mean, all of the people in the Bible class are a few years younger than me. I feel ridiculous. I’m like the oldest dude they’ve ever seen going for his confirmation.
Mother: First, relax your tone with me. Second, I’m sorry you feel ridiculous; it is me and your father’s fault we didn’t go to church long ago. But we are going now! It is the rare thing we actually do together. And more time spent together as a family is a good thing.
Son: Ugh! But Dad didn’t even go last week. I’m not going anymore if he isn’t.
Mother: Well he will, don’t you worry.
The apartment door opens and the father walks in.
Son: Oh really? Well there he is, tell him.
The father walks into the kitchen.
Father: Tell me what?