Posts tagged Catholic
Posts tagged Catholic
for the first time today. Going to the N.O. at my parish in an hour. I’ll write a reflection on it if I have time.
Not that I know of, but thanks for the compliment. ; )
Hi, thank you so much for your kind message.
I do agree that there should be some degree of separation between the Church and the State, though we might differ on how much exactly. But that’s not necessarily connected to your next questions, because the reasons people oppose gay marriage is not because it is against their religion but because they believe it is bad for society and that it is a distortion of the truth. Consider it like this, imagine you asked me:
Don’t you think religiousness should be separate from the government? for example, don’t you think its a bad idea to have thousands of people forcing laws against murder? that is something I struggle with a lot. I believe people should not be killed, but I do respect murderers, shouldn’t they be allowed their own decisions? isn’t that part of their free will? why do we need to prohibit murder?
Now, I’m not saying same-sex marriage is murder, or that it is as bad, and I’m not trying to draw any equivalency between the two. I’m merely pointing out that we oppose both for the same reason, because we know they are both wrong and that legalization of either will hurt society in some way.
Now, this doesn’t take away their free will, people have free will to break laws. The law does not take away your free will, it simply holds you accountable to the choices you make with it. Also, it should be noted, from a legal perspective, we are only opposed to having the government sanction gay marriage, because the government is a civil authority, and if the civil authority distorts truth to the people who it is charged to protect, it is not doing its duty. The Catholic Church does not push for laws against people of the same-sex who want to live together and have a sexual relationship together. Therefore, we are not imposing anything on anyone, we only ask that the government not teach untruths to its people.
A very good post by the aunt of one of my friends who is studying at the Ecumenical Institute of Theology. She commented on it:
I suggest you read it before you “like” it You may change your mind!
I was at a party last night and a discussion came up about proper priestly attire during certain types of blessings. As I started to state a very decided preference I started to speak, “Even as lib,” and stopped right there staring at the man, who in some ways knows me well, to whom I was speaking. He looked at my wryly and said, “Go on finish it, you were going to say liberal; as liberal as I am.” I back tracked as best I could and tried to get out of it saying I was moderate, not really liberal, and what I was trying to say was that I even I have standards about dress for priests. He wasn’t buying it. Then someone else then made a comment from across the room to the effect that all women are moderate. I was truly lost and confounded and words, as they always do, failed me when most needed. Now the moment is passed and I have no recourse to say what I wanted.
Yes, I this man was correct, I was going to say, “Even as liberal as I am, I have standards.” The minute the word started out, I knew he would seize the word and place it into the Orthodox-Conservative-Moderate-Liberal Catholic religious continuum of viewpoints and rejoice in my final admittance of being a “liberal Catholic,” of self-placing that label upon my breast like a scarlet letter. And, I tried to stymy the remark. See, I hate these labels, because I do not believe they define the person. All to often in our church I believe Catholics become stuck on what they believe people to be—Orthodox, Conservative, Moderate, Liberal— and we no longer see the person just our vision of that person. We reduce a person to a something rather then a someone and set up situations of us versus them. Us Orthodox Catholics are the good Catholics while those Liberal Catholics are the bad Catholics. Us Moderate Catholics are going to save the church the Conservative Catholics are destroying. In the end, these labels are destructive. This is not what our church was meant to be.
Paul, in his letter to the Philippians states:
“So then, my beloved, obedient as you have always been, not only when I am present but all the more now when I am absent, work out your salvation with fear and trembling. For God is the one who, for his good purpose, works in you both to desire and to work. Do everything without grumbling or questioning, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine like lights in the world…” (Phil 2: 12-16)
Paul is extorting the Philippians to to work together in fear of the Lord desires it. He tells them to do it without grumbling. Furthermore, he says that the Lord God works in us both. In us both. Meaning Catholics that are any paring on that continuum of Orthodox to Liberal. For that matter, any Christian on that continuum, but I will leave ecumenicalism for another day.
Furthermore, Paul tells us in his first letter to the Corinthians, “ here are different kinds of spiritual gifts but the same Spirit;there are different forms of service but the same Lord, there are different workings but the same God who produces all of them in everyone.” (1Cor 12:4-6). Paul is telling us that God gives each of gifts, and part of these gifts I must believe is our outlook in life. If we all look with the same eyes, blinded by the same inadequacies of one imperfect human viewpoint and understanding, then we will indeed miss all that He intends us to see. By allowing the grace of different viewpoints, where one may miss, another may see. Where one may be lacking, another may fill. God, in his infinite wisdom has made us varied, so why must we be sit in such disdain at these differences in viewpoints rather then celebrate and use them to our advantage. As my Spiritual Advisor always tells me, “Carrie, the Catholic tent is a big one, there is room for all.”
In the end, though, I must admit honestly, my choice of the word “liberal” was meant to be a reflection not of a stance about my views of the world, but about stance of my heart. Jesus Christ left us with two Commandments: We love God with all our heart. We love our neighbors as our selves. Until four years ago I always thought the second commandment was, “Love your neighbors as you love God” Thus, I have always loved others with all my heart in the same way I love God— fully and without reservation; with His love, with agape. The meaning of what I was trying to say was, “Even I,who am liberal in the offering of my love and thus accepting people regardless of who or where they are at, have standards for dress in certain situations.” I was, in the end, admitting to my weakness, my failure to love and to accept as we are called to love; to love as God loves because of my expectations of what I perceive to be liturgically correct in the manner of dress of a priest the context of a formal blessing. In some sense I was saying my orthodox viewpoint of preference to a Priest in collar or vestments as opposed to laity clothing was limiting my liberal way of loving and accepting a Priest as an acceptable Spiritual Father, a representative of Christ, in this instance. In other words I felt slighted to be blessed in formal situation by someone wearing something I thought was inappropriate. I felt as if the blessing wasn’t as good, as sincere, as pure, as holy. The blessing was fine, it was my heart that failed. But, I never got that far because once the word was out there, the label was pasted and put.
In reflecting all day on these labels I have concluded the following about myself. I am not just one thing, I am a bit of all things. I am Orthodox. My faith in our Heavenly Father, my Lord Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit is unshakable. As a song I love says, “In Thanksgiving [I] bow humbled by your gift of Eucharistic love. The presence of our God.” I am Conservative. I conserve myself for his just service to others; to do what is right because it is right unto the Lord. I am moderate. In a society so filled with extremes, I am trying to live moderately in the radical way of a follower of the teachings of the Jesus Christ. Finally, I am liberal. My friend, with his wry smile, was correct. I am liberal. I admit it. I am liberal in offering kindness and acceptance to others. I am liberal in rejoicing in other’s joys, in crying with them in their sadness, in accepting them in their anger. I am liberal, radically, liberal, in offering love to others. Without being liberal in love, I could not be moderate in life, conservative in my understanding of just service, Orthodox in my faith. Without God’s love being liberal in my heart, my soul, my life, I could not strive toward holiness.
This is the most hilarious thing ever.
“St. Patrick’s Bad Analogies”
I plan on making a confession today that I should have made years ago. I’m very worried. Your prayers right now mean everything to me. Thank you.
There’s a lot in common between the left’s demideification of Obama, and certain elements in the Church who have demideified Pope Francis.
Don’t get me wrong, I love His Holiness, and think he’s a great Pope but let’s not pretend he’s some superhero who’s right and everyone else is wrong. Because when people see him and not Christ and the Church, when he’s gone, they will leave too. Pope Francis could do a lot more to demonstrate how his actions flow in the tradition of the Church, especially when much of his speeches and the themes he’s hit upon are derivative of Pope Benedict Emeritus.