Interview on February 9, 2023 with Maria, who is studying to be an elementary school teacher, in the central quad at Cypress College.

Do you consider yourself religious?
Maria: In a sense, yeah. I set time aside for myself and speak to God if I have any worries, any concerns. My parents are very religious, Catholic, so anything in the religious aspect, I learned from them and from church school.

Why do you think there’s a God?
Maria: In order for there to be a universe, there has to be something bigger. There are things that are unexplainable and the way I explain it is that maybe God had something to do with it.

Who is Jesus?
Maria: He is Someone Who knew nothing else but love and had enough love in Him to sacrifice Himself for others, as well.

Do you think Jesus really lived?
Maria: I think so. From the stories me and my siblings were told every night growing up – I think that a lot of the actions that He did were out of love.

Do you believe there’s life after death?
Maria: I would hope so. I believe in God, but I also believe in things such as other lives that we have. Like a past life and new life – this may be my last life – I don’t know, stuff like that. I’m still exploring the things that I believe, but I think there is a life after this one. In my mind, the life after this one is one where you can redeem yourself for all your previous mistakes in your past life.

How do you decide what’s a mistake, what’s right and wrong?
Maria: I think that’s all dependent on what we believe is right and wrong. Or if there is such a thing as right and wrong. That’s a tricky one.

Do you live by the Ten Commandments? Do you think they are accurate guideposts or does it depend on the person?
Maria: I think it would depend on the person. There are a couple that I follow, like one of them is in regards to parents, that one I would agree to, but I think it would also depend on the person. Because let’s say someone has a parent who abandoned them, how do they go about honoring their father and mother?

Would you say that killing innocent people is wrong for everyone?
Maria: Yes, I would. Completely.

What about abortion, which ends the life of a human being? Is abortion wrong?
Maria: That’s a hard one. I wouldn’t know how to answer that one because there’s so much more than it being the small life that is within the woman. I think it’s the woman’s life, as well. But I don’t know, it’s hard. Whenever I see stuff about abortion and pro-life and all that stuff online, I’m kind of divided, in the sense where we’re in an age where women’s rights are very much thrown in your face, but there’s also the aspect of what about the life within. I don’t know. That one’s hard. I wouldn’t be able to answer that one. I’m still too divided.

Click here to see part of Maria’s interview.