Friday, 4 March 2011

"Why I avoid both the Catholic left and the Catholic right"

H/T to A Catholic Mom in Hawaii for the link to this post. I think there is a role for Catholics to engage in controversy, but I think Heather King makes a good point that it is possible that such engagement can be about one's own status among fellow controversialists. And there is also the condition of charity that should govern that engagement, a condition that is much harder to maintain at the "distance" of the electronic media than in direct face-to-face contact.

The whole article, and its comments, are thought provoking and well worth reading. I was particularly struck by the following paragraph, though I think its real force can only be appreciated if you have read the whole post:
.... I’m always a little taken aback by the complete lack of affection, often within her own ranks, for the Church. To me, the Church is kind of like having an alcoholic mother: majestic one minute; engaging in some cringingly  non-Christ-like behavior the next. But no matter what, she’s your Mother. No matter what, you love your mother. And the way you love her is you notice when she goes wrong, you grieve for her, you mourn for her, and then you silently resolve to help her do a little better. You don’t pretend not to see her faults and get all self-righteous and militaristic if someone attacks her—but you also don’t kick her when she’s down. I think the way we feel about the Church is very much an indication of how we feel, in our hearts, about the least of our brothers and sisters.
I am not sure where I gained my perception of Pope Paul VI as being a man who suffered greatly for his love of the Church - I see this as being his particular charism for the Church of our time - but this paragraph put me in mind of that perception.

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