(Photo from Father Lawrence Lew, O.P. - God’s Excessive Love - Used With Permission)
" “The trouble with the world is me.” - St Catherine of Siena

Monday, August 5, 2013

Monday Musings - Just Saying You Are Catholic Does Not Make You Catholic!

If God used Balaam’s donkey to get that prophet’s attention,

(Image from Biblebios.com)

I guess he can use me to get yours. May these periodic postings on the second and fourth Mondays of each month (God willing) generate fruitful discussion and faithful change.

It is so easy to say you are a Catholic. Just read the newspapers and watch television and you will see countless examples of those in public life claiming to be Catholic at the same time they support policies contrary to the teachings of the Catholic Church.

This has been going on for years. The silence of so many of our Bishops and priests allow this scandal to continue. How many souls have been misled from such silence? How many souls have been lost?

Far too many of our Bishops and priests utter not a single public word of instruction, correction or admonition. Yet these same men rarely miss an opportunity to immediately comment on  any "social justice" issue that is near and dear to their hearts.

Other examples abound - Nancy Pelosi, Joseph Biden, John Kerry et al. The head of the Catholic Health Association (CHA) thinks she can speak for the Catholic Church. Nothing publicly is said to correct her bogus and erroneous claim of authority.

Catholic governors and legislators zealously promote gay marriage, abortion, contraception and other intrinsic evils. Rarely are they publicly corrected.

A priest organizes a public protest against his Bishop outside the cathedral as the Bishop celebrates the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass. No public chastisement.

 A "Catholic" college publicly announces that it has no problem providing its employees and students with contraception coverage. Silence.

There is much more that should be written on this topic.   Emily Stimpson has met that challenge. Her article, entitled What Catholics Need Now: A Letter to our Bishops and Priests, first appeared on CatholicVote. org. You can read it here. Please do so.

She has written out of necessity and has done so clearly, courageously and lovingly.

May our shepherds have ears to hear.

And so we must pray!


  1. I do not understand the silence. Just correcting the errors would be a good beginning. I will read Emily's article. Thank you!

  2. Since 1997 I've been really deep into what's going on in the Church. We've made a little progress, but we have so much more to go as evidenced by the fact that we have so few standout bishops such as Morlino of Madison. We laity have to call our bishops to holiness. Too many of them are craven. I completely agree with the "social justice" comment. The Church has a clearly defined social justice doctrine, if you will, and it isn't what the bishops of America say it is and it has no reference to either Democrats or Republicans. The bishops need to quit playing politics and get busy about their real job.

  3. It goes the other way, too. There are an awful lot of people who say they're Catholic and go to church irregularly or rarely, or who go weekly but don't do anything but show up. I don't see the hierarchy trying to address that, either. And there are people who are so focused on prolife issues that they dismiss all social justice causes as unimportant. I don't hear those people being corrected, either. I pray that Pope Francis can make a difference in this culture of politics--intra-Church politicking, specifically.

  4. Colleen, Barb and Kathleen:

    I thank each of you for taking the time to comment.

    I know from having read what each of you has written in the past that we all agree that our Church must teach all the Truths of our Faith, not just a selective few.

    The damage down by public figures, however, requires a public response. The failure to do so causes scandal, and just encourages the faceless “Catholics” to pick and choose among those of the Church’s teachings they will follow.

    Catholics do not know their Faith. They are not taught it. And far too many don’t practice it.

    Zeal for the salvation of all souls should be the focus of everything our Church does. I certainly agree, for example, that we owe it to the Easter and Christmas “Catholics” to let them lovingly know that their failure to attend Mass every Sunday and every holyday of obligation is a mortal sin and if they die without confessing and repenting of that sin, they will lose their souls for eternity.

    The same must be said with respect to every other “intrinsic evil’ that the Church has recognized. But we don’t frequently hear these Truths from our pulpits. In some places it is more important that we not hurt “feelings” or jeopardize the size of our weekly collections than to zealously fight to save souls.

    We all are obligated, and should be encouraged to perform the spiritual and corporal works of mercy. No one should be criticized or ostracized for doing so. But the fundamental and most crucial social justice issue (from which all others flow) is the right to life from the moment of natural conception until natural death.

    I always pray for our bishops and priests and constantly encourage others to do so. Theirs is a supernatural task beyond their mere human skills. But everything they do must be done for the purpose of saving souls. Nothing less is acceptable.

    When anyone holding themselves out as being “Catholic” lives a life contrary to the teachings of the Church they profess to be members of, our Church cannot remain silent.

  5. Sorry..

    I meant to add the following pearl of wisdom from St. Therese of Lisieux but hit the "publish" button prematurely.

    She clearly expresses what should be the mindset of every one who professes to be Catholic - lay, religious or ordained:

    "I owe you the truth. Dislike me for it, if you want, but I will tell you the truth right up until my death."

    This is our duty. This is so difficult to do. May God forgive us when we fail to do so. May we always ask Him for the grace to start anew.

  6. You are welcome. Thanks for the encouragement.