Saturday, 17 July 2010

Conform To The Church...

I get so tired of hearing so-called educated people declaring that the Church has to change and move with the times. What they actually mean is that they want the Church to condone whichever sin they have a particular difficulty in overcoming.

I used to have the same attitude. It's what led me away from the Church.

First nail in the coffin: doubting the authority of the Church (I believe in God, I'm a Christian, but the Church just makes this stuff up because it's got a thing about sex being bad... it's just rules made by celibate men in frocks in the Vatican...)

Next nail: the Sacraments are just representations (well, I don't need to go to church, I can pray just as well at home on my own... Jesus is there anywhere I pray)

Next nail: the Bible (don't be silly - that miracle stuff doesn't happen in real life. It's just a myth, a story told to get a point across...)

Then the next nail in the coffin: Jesus is no longer Son of God (you can't believe all that Resurrection from the dead nonsense... Jesus was just a good and holy man... and he wanted us to love each other unconditionally...)

Next nail: morals. (If we love others unconditionally, we won't judge them. It's wrong to judge others. After all, if it isn't hurting anyone, it must be ok...)

And so on, and so on, until finally, God does not exist. We are just the sum of our experiences and biology, and are here for a few years, and that's it. There is no afterlife, therefore the only thing that matters is the here-and-now... and therefore I will do whatever seems good for me, because that's all there is.

My reversion was a bolt from the blue: I knew God existed, I knew Jesus was the Son of God, I knew that he had died for me, I knew that he knew I would reject him, and knowing this he still died for me... and I also knew that he had left the Church as the living deposit of the Truth. I had to make a decision, and it seemed a pretty straightforward one... It's the same decision we all have to make.

Either you believe that Jesus is the second Person of the Trinity, God the Son, or you don't.

If he is the Son of God, then you have to accept what he said, or there are rather serious implications. God cannot lie. So, the Church, founded on St. Peter, has the authority to loose and to bind.

If you call yourself Catholic, you have to accept the teaching of the Church. All of it. No pick 'n' mix. No cafeteria selection of the bits you like and find easy to swallow. It's all or nothing.

If you start to declare that the Church has to change, then you are no longer accepting the word of Jesus Christ... you are effectively calling God a liar.

And you are no longer Catholic.


Londiniensis said...

This sort of thing has always been with us - Dorothy L Sayers (1893 – 1957) said “Surely it is not the business of the Church to adapt Christ to men, but to adapt men to Christ.”

Dominic Mary said...

Amen to you, Mac . . . and Amen to Miss Sayers as well !

nic said...

I had a similar "Road to Damascus" moment that brought me back to the Church.

I do have problems agreeing with the Church on one issue. I think the Church is wrong, but am willing to concede that she has had thousands of wiser men than I run her for 2000 years with a lot more help from the Holy Spirit than I in my sinful life.

So I wouldn't start campaigning or shouting from the rooftops, because these things aren't and can not be "grassroots" movements. The real truth is the truth that comes from God alone, and that is the only method the Church can use to set her rules, opinions and beliefs.

Yours @worldofnic / Nic Doye.

Unknown said...

As Father Ray points out what is rather worrying is that people like Professor Beattie are being put up by some as being representatives and "leaders" of the faith in Britain.

Her recent blog publication about the Holy Father was third rate. It was riddled with errors as were her subsequent clarifications. It was an attempt to "swim with the tide" on the question of clerical abuse for ulterior purposes. The tone of the article was very unfortunate

Clare@ BattlementsOfRubies said...

"I used to have the same attitude. It's what led me away from the Church."

Me too!
My reversion was a bolt from the blue also.
Actually, I have the protestant evangelical church I attended to thank for leading me back to a solid faith in the person of Jesus and the divinely revealed truth of Sacred Scripture. Sadly my woolly Catholic experience pre lapse just undermined all that.
Once those pieces were firmly in place the RC Church made much more sense. So you could say the protestants made a proper catholic out of me. And I don't say that as a tease, but in all sincerity.

Catholics ushered me out of the church, and protestants helped me to find my way back.
I am no longer confused by the theological musings of Prof Beattie and her dissenting ilk, but it bothers me that this sort of stuff is so widespread and seems to have the approval of much of the church hierarchy.

Patrick Sheridan said...

Does the Church's ''teaching'' encompass Liturgy as well?

Marquis said...

I agree.

Thank you.


me said...

Our Lady melted my heart three years ago, and I felt a sense of personal belonging to my church for the first time, as opposed to a dutiful obligation which I still have ofcourse and also need, in order to kick my lazy spiritual butt into gear some days.

I also became aware of Our Lady's love for all her children, not just Catholics, so although my personal Catholic faith became imprinted on me/my soul as a consciously felt integral part of my identity, I also felt a connection and love towards other Christians and indeed non-Christians. A sort of exclusive inclusivity, if that isn't a contradiction in terms.

I hope this makes sense, as having just read through it, I'm not sure I understand it haha!!

Patricius said...

Many of these people seem to have little sense of irony- as of how God... "hides things from the learned and clever" such as themselves, perhaps!

Autumn said...

Amen and Amen!

Sponsa Christi said...

Great post!

On a slightly different note,I’ve known a lot of genuinely good people who felt at home with the more affective and devotional aspects of Catholicism, but who had difficulty accepting or understanding the significance of the institutional Church.

Granted, a simple intellectual hurdle in this regard isn’t the same thing as actually living in mortal sin, leaving the Church altogether, or doubting the existence of God, but it’s good to read a piece that does “connect the dots.”

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