A priests homily that made me feel uncomfortable


#1

**Hello guys!

I recently attended a mass at a different time than I normally do and it was said by my non-usual priest.

When it came time for the homily he spoke of the gospel which was (I do not recall the exact phrasing) about God not recognizing people when they knock at his door. “But we ate with you, we drank with you.” Etc.

He started with that and then went on a rant about confession and how other religions do not think its right and said something along the lines of “There may be many Lutherans even among the Catholics here today.” (Referring to their dislike of the confessional tradition)

From there he proceeded to state that no one can say what a sin is and that only God can, and we cannot claim what is right and what is wrong…

By the time it was over it seemed that he was trying to say that even if you commit a sin and know it’s a sin God will forgive you and you don’t have to worry about it and people are to caught up in religion and being good…

My main concern was what if there was someone in the church who was planning on committing a sin (I.E having sex with their BF) and people were telling them that it was wrong, but they said even if it’s a sin God would forgive them…

If everyone listening wasn’t moral (or at least trying) does this not seem like justification for a sin?

Overall it made me feel uncomfortable and angry that he was saying that we don’t know EXACTLY what a sin is. (Hmm… guess he missed the ten commandments part of the bible :P)

I’m just wondering what your take is on this story?**


#2

Sometimes what we mean and what we say are two different things. It’s hard to imagine a prest not knowing which sins are, indeed,sins. Maybe he just meant that God is the ultimate judge? I can tell you his homily sounded very Protestant. Having been raised in a Protestant family/church, that is exactly the outlook in the Protestant church. All sins are forgven. It’s not that we are taught to do anything we want because we’ll be forgiven, but ultimately that is the message. I have totally changed my life, habits, lifestyle, etc since converting. I just can’t believe I considered myself a Christian before my conversion. I basically did whatever I wanted and then prayed over it later. Now I live my life and make my decisions based on the teachings of the church.

I don’t really know what else to say except it’s hard to imagine a priest not knowing which behaviors are sins and which aren’t.


#3

Well the priest (I am not judging him ^–^ just stating some facts) doesn’t exactly say the mass traditionaly. He gets off the alter during the consecration to shake hands and such and changes little words like "He broke bread and gave it to his disciples [he’ll change to friends, or the ones he loved])… and other such things like “The lord is with you!” in stead lf “May the lord be with you!” (Which is what I’ve heard all 17 years of my life. :stuck_out_tongue: :stuck_out_tongue: :smiley:

So I’m just concerned that he’s a very liberal priest who thinks that the church needs to lighten up.


#4

Hi,
It sounds like the very same Mass we attended. And then there was the times this priest liked to pretend he was a late night show host and immediately after we received the Eucharist, he would tell funny stories. He made fun
of certain saints, and finally we just stopped going there.:frowning: [ATTACH]1543[/ATTACH] We are praying so hard for the return of the Latin Mass!


#5

My pastor is something like that but to a lesser degree, with the “the Lord is with you” and such. He instituted a policy that after the opening hymn, the congregation is to greet everyone around them with a handshake, etc.:confused:

His homilies have this social justice feel to them. I hardly even recognize the parish I grew up in.


#6

Sometimes, the message that the priest is speaking, and the message that the congregation hears are not one in the same. At least in my experience, it is extremely rare for a Catholic Priest to in any way badmouth any Protestant denomination in a homily. As Catholics, we have the truth, and don’t need to mudsling any other denominations, but merely pray that they accept the fullness of Christ in the Catholic Church. When conversing with Protestants or speaking on an apologetics message board such as this one, we often need to debunk certain Protestant misunderstandings, but there is no reason to bring that into a Holy Mass, which should be composed of Catholics united to love and serve God. I know that the sin issue is your bigger concern, but in my opinion, badmouthing Protestants during a homily is completely uncalled for. Ephesians 4:29 tells us, “Never let evil talk pass from your lips; say only the good things men need to hear, things that will really help them.” A good homily will leave the listeners as better, more loving people afterwords, possibly convicting us of personal sin in which we need to repent. It should never be directed at hating the sins or misunderstandings of OTHERS, at least not in my opinion.
It is true that INITIALLY that which is sinful is sinful because God said it is sinful, whether personally, or through his divinely inspired servants, such as Moses, or St. Paul, but we can certainly reiterate what God has said and know that which is sinful. It is also true that all sins (other than the blasphemy of the Holy Spirit) can be forgiven, but it needs to be clarified that grace is not a license to sin, but a call to repentance. Also, we never know when we will die, and when Jesus will come back, and then, if we are in a state of mortal sin, in my understanding, it will be too late to repent.


#7

**Bad mouthing? I’m afriad you missunderstand me… I thought he was agreeing with them. :stuck_out_tongue:

He tried to pull the entire thing back at the end to say that even if you think you’re pure the person (such as protestant) who you may think is worse may get in to heaven and you won’t.

BUt then he said that you don’t have to worry about hell and that almost everyone goes to heaven :stuck_out_tongue: so… dunno whats up with that.

I also forgot to mention that he said that many people will dissagree with him and be offended.**


#8

Sorry that I misunderstood. I’ll further edit my above post. Either way, I want to make it clear to any Protestant who is reading this that it is NOT a common practice for Catholic priests to badmouth Protestants during a homily. One of the things that really disgusted me with evangelical protestant radio is that they seem to be constantly badmouthing someone, whether its Catholics, Mormons, Muslims, Jehovah’s Witnesses, homosexuals, liberals, or even other Protestant denominations. Sermons such as that don’t build people up, or bring people closer to God, but instead sow discord, and fill the listeners with anger.
As far as most people going to Heaven, well, that would be nice, and through God all things are possible, but Jesus said, “But how narrow is the gate that leads to life, how rough the road, and how few there are who find it.” Matthew 7:14


#9

Well, it looks like I need to contact an administrator to edit that post. I don’t feel like going through the agita of that, personally. I apologize to you, that priest, and everyone reading this or who read that in that I misunderstood what was said.
Another thought I’d like to add is that the more we sin, the more it becomes a habit, in some cases an addiction, and the more difficult it becomes to repent. Furthermore, if we love God, we need to keep His commandments.


#10

Hi AndrewA,

It’s very possible you heard and interpreted accurately what the priest was saying. It makes it very evident why it is so necessary to be well catechized in the official teachings of the Church. I think it was Pope Paul VI who was approached by someone concerned about the errors being spread and wondering what action should be taken. The Pope replied (paraphase) - “Teach them the truth. The best defense against error is knowledge of the truth.” It’s up to each of us to learn it. Praise God for the Catechism.

Something I often hear is “God loves you just the way you are.” Many times it’s been at a children’s Mass and was not further clarified or expanded upon. Now, I never checked with any of the children to verify their understanding, but the way I’ve heard it presented it certainly leaves one with the impression that there’s no need to worry about sin because God loves you anyway - “just the way you are”. I keep waiting for the additional words that should be there - “God always loves you. That’s why He doesn’t want to see you end up in hell because of living in serious sin.” (or something similar)

Nita


#11

I think from time to time, we’ll meet priests like that. Disillusioned and confused … well, at least I hope it’s just that.

I guess that’s why it’s just so important that we know what our church teaches … that way we can spot these padres. I’ve met some who are pro-gay and preach that church teachings change from time to time … in fact, this priest I know has his sentiments in a clip on youtube! Sigh …

Perhaps, you could alert your parish priest? … or Bishop?


#12

Hello,
Concerning the priests comment about confession, he right, there are protestants and some Catholics that do not agree with it. I see nothing wrong in pointing that out.
As to the sin part. He may hve been stating what other viewpoints are. I don’t know I didn’t here the homley in it’s whole context. I don’t agree with the part about not needing to worry about sin, because God will forgive you. God will forgive you no matter how horrable the sin, but that does not give someone justifacation to sin.
He may have been meening something more like, your not perfect and your going to fall, don’t give into sin just because God will forgive you. But the fall will happen, And God will forgive you.


#13

The only sin that connot be forgiven is refusing to be forgiven out of pride, etc. That is the meaning of “blashemy against the Holy Spirit,” as I understand it, anyway.

If you sin thinking that God will forgive you anyway or that you can go to confession afterward, that is the sin of presumption, which in and of itself requires repentance.


#14

Sins against the Holy Ghost:

  1. Presumption of God’s mercy.

#15

Yeah, something like that:D


#16

My priests always leave the altar when giving the homily, but we learned from one of them that even though they know the prayers by heart, they read them as they are NEVER supposed to change the words because then you are changing the words of GOD! Has he been a priest for very long?


#17

Consider the reading we had yesterday (Luke 13:22-30):

Jesus passed through towns and villages,
teaching as he went and making his way to Jerusalem.
Someone asked him,
“Lord, will only a few people be saved?”
He answered them,
“Strive to enter through the narrow gate,
for many, I tell you, will attempt to enter
but will not be strong enough.
After the master of the house has arisen and locked the door,
then will you stand outside knocking and saying,
‘Lord, open the door for us.’
He will say to you in reply,
‘I do not know where you are from.
And you will say,
‘We ate and drank in your company and you taught in our streets.’
Then he will say to you,
‘I do not know where you are from.
Depart from me, all you evildoers!’
And there will be wailing and grinding of teeth
when you see Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob
and all the prophets in the kingdom of God
and you yourselves cast out.
And people will come from the east and the west
and from the north and the south
and will recline at table in the kingdom of God.
For behold, some are last who will be first,
and some are first who will be last.”

Jesus is not saying yes or no to the question, he is saying it is harder to get into heaven than you might think. He is also apparently saying that who does, and who does not get through the “narrow gate” is probably not who we, using our human judgements might think.

Whenever these sorts of readings (basically Holy Scripture support for the idea that just accepting Christ is not enough - a belief of some non-Catholic denominations) come up, ‘fire and brimstone’ Homilies are the norm. They probably should make you uncomfortable.

In this case, the celebrant appeared to be using devotion to Catholic teachings and the Sacrements as an example. In our case, we were reminded of some of the high bars that Christ set for us in terms of Love and Service to others. But the messages really aren’t all that different. Basically, don’t be too smug and self assured that you are one of the lucky few. Instead, strive to be a better Catholic…

Best Regards


#18

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