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Billy Collins

One of the most popular living poets in the United States, Billy Collins was born in New York City in 1941. Collins is the author of nine books of poetry,[…]

One’s faith can survive a split between theology and iconography.

Billy Collins:    Well I’m the kind of recovering Catholic.  I went to Catholic school from the 1st grade right through college – the full metal jacket of Catholic education.  When I got to graduate school, it was the first time I’d been in a classroom with a female since the 8th grade.  So I’m unsure of the effect of that on me.So I have all the imagery of Catholicism.  It’s still very vivid and vibrant. 

And the faith is something else.  It’s very difficult in a way to maintain a connection to a church that is so full of flaws and hierarchically-structured church.  Martin Sheen, I think, summed it up best when he said, “I don’t believe in God, but I believe that Mary was His mother.”  In other words, you can lose contact with the theology, but you can never lose contact with the iconography, the imagery and the stories.