‘Star Wars’ fans found faith in the Force - Catholic Courier
Two adults stand with Star Wars characters.

(Photo courtesy Leonor Rivera)

‘Star Wars’ fans found faith in the Force

My late husband, Ed, and I were Star Wars fans. We first heard “May the Force be with you” when we saw the Star Wars movie as teenagers. As Catholics, our reflex response was, “And also with you.” We saw the movie and its sequels in the light of our faith. We believed that the Force was God.

In 2008, the Catholic Church changed the response to “The Lord be with you” to “And with your Spirit.” Yet, in our minds, we still said, “And also with you.”

We imagined that the best of our Catholic priests, religious and catechists were like Jedi masters. They were the good guys training us, the Jedi students, to defend against the evil one and his bad guys.

(Photo courtesy Leonor Rivera)

In the movie, the main good guy was Luke Skywalker. He didn’t know he was a Jedi but discovered it slowly and was strengthened by his Jedi training. My husband and I thought our training was studying Scripture and receiving the sacraments, especially the Eucharist at Mass. Our training inspired us to serve God and try our best to accomplish the missions we thought God was sending us on. We practiced our faith hoping we and our sons would be like the Jedi, the good guys, fighting evil with the Force of God on our side.

A few years ago, the Rochester Philharmonic Orchestra showed the Star Wars movie while playing the music score live. I thought this was the perfect special birthday gift for Ed. He loved it! We even took pictures with the movie characters.

That night, Ed said, “Thank you for the most memorable birthday gift ever! May the Force be with you,” then Ed tenderly kissed me good night. I smiled happily and said, “And also with you.”


Leonor “Leo” and Ed Rivera were members of the local Worldwide Marriage Encounter community for 32 of their 34 years of marriage until Ed unexpectedly died of a genetic heart defect on Aug. 1, 2020.

The 2023 Worldwide Marriage Encounter Weekends are Sept. 15-17 and Nov. 10-12. All weekends take place at Notre Dame Retreat House in Canandaigua.

To read more of Leo and Ed’s blogs, visit https://catholiccourier.com/viewpoints/blogs/to-have-and-to-hold.

Tags: Catholic Marriage
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