Considering leaving the Church


#1

For about three weeks, I've been feeling tempted to leave Catholicism. I've been feeling unhappy for almost a year and a half. It started when a scandal enveloped the Latin Mass parish I used to attend. To sum up, a bunch of parishoners didn't like this one priest, so they ganged up on him and falsely accused him of every sin imaginable. The secular and religious authorities had to get involved (including the ones in Rome), and the priest ended up resigning from the parish, but was cleared of all charges. Because I believed the priest in question was innocent, this other faction of parishoners ostracized me and wouldn't let their children attend the CCD classes I was teaching.

Then, last year the election occurred. I felt caught in the middle, because I'm black and I got all of these conflicting messages. My family thought that Obama was the natural outcome of more than 400 years of struggle, while the people at church were saying he was the anti-Christ. I was being ridiculed from both sides, and I felt like it was impossible for one to be both black and Catholic. These feelings are continuing to the present.

Lastly, I have been feeling scandalized by the Irish abuse story. As many CAF members know, the notion of separation of church and state was condemned in the 19th century, possibly before. Yet, looking at the Irish example, I really can't see how having the Church in bed with the government is a good thing. All it seems to do is make the Church look bad without improving the government or the morality of the citizenry. The government can't even be trusted to fix potholes in a timely manner. Why should I trust it with my immortal soul? Since the bulk of the abuse happened pre-Vatican II, it can't be blamed on the effects of the council. Ireland is/was perhaps the most prototypically Catholic country is the world, yet these monstrosities happened on a large scale, without the aid of "liberals" or secular humanists or the other usual boogeymen. I wonder if continuing to be Catholic would force me to take a political stance that I find to be unconsciousable. I remember reading the passage in the Gospel of St. Matthew where Christ rejected Satan's temptation of the kingdoms of the world and wonder whether the Catholic Church has taken worldly power at the expense of religious and moral power.

Suffice to say, I feel very confused. I keep going to mass, but don't take communion. I want to do what is right, but I don't know what that is anymore. I am mortally afraid of going to hell. Please help me.


#2

[quote="lucybeebee, post:1, topic:177987"]
For about three weeks, I've been feeling tempted to leave Catholicism. I've been feeling unhappy for almost a year and a half. It started when a scandal enveloped the Latin Mass parish I used to attend. To sum up, a bunch of parishoners didn't like this one priest, so they ganged up on him and falsely accused him of every sin imaginable. The secular and religious authorities had to get involved (including the ones in Rome), and the priest ended up resigning from the parish, but was cleared of all charges. Because I believed the priest in question was innocent, this other faction of parishoners ostracized me and wouldn't let their children attend the CCD classes I was teaching.

Then, last year the election occurred. I felt caught in the middle, because I'm black and I got all of these conflicting messages. My family thought that Obama was the natural outcome of more than 400 years of struggle, while the people at church were saying he was the anti-Christ. I was being ridiculed from both sides, and I felt like it was impossible for one to be both black and Catholic. These feelings are continuing to the present.

Lastly, I have been feeling scandalized by the Irish abuse story. As many CAF members know, the notion of separation of church and state was condemned in the 19th century, possibly before. Yet, looking at the Irish example, I really can't see how having the Church in bed with the government is a good thing. All it seems to do is make the Church look bad without improving the government or the morality of the citizenry. The government can't even be trusted to fix potholes in a timely manner. Why should I trust it with my immortal soul? Since the bulk of the abuse happened pre-Vatican II, it can't be blamed on the effects of the council. Ireland is/was perhaps the most prototypically Catholic country is the world, yet these monstrosities happened on a large scale, without the aid of "liberals" or secular humanists or the other usual boogeymen. I wonder if continuing to be Catholic would force me to take a political stance that I find to be unconsciousable. I remember reading the passage in the Gospel of St. Matthew where Christ rejected Satan's temptation of the kingdoms of the world and wonder whether the Catholic Church has taken worldly power at the expense of religious and moral power.

Suffice to say, I feel very confused. I keep going to mass, but don't take communion. I want to do what is right, but I don't know what that is anymore. I am mortally afraid of going to hell. Please help me.

[/quote]

It is hard to understand without more detail about much of what you are saying. But 1 thing I would like to address is your comment about being black and Catholic. It seems like you tie being black and Catholic to having to support a black president. The single most important issue with President Obama that most Catholics have is that he is so pro abortion.

I would bet my bottom dollar that the vast majority of Catholics would support a black pro life presidential candidate over a white pro choice presidential candidate everytime.

I think it comes down to who does a person trust more, a government who promotes abortion or one that fights against it.


#3

It seems that the issues that are bothering you have to do with the people in the Church, and not the Church itself. Of course, the people who are part of the Church are going to have flaws. Many of them. We're all sinners, and there are always (and have always been) people in the Church that don't behave as good Christian/Catholics should. But don't let the flawed people chase you away!!! You need to stay for Jesus! There is nowhere else in this world that you can go to receive the Sacraments! THAT is why you should stay....

Hugs!! I hope you stick around! :hug1:


#4

For about three weeks, I've been feeling tempted to leave Catholicism. I've been feeling unhappy for almost a year and a half. It started when a scandal enveloped the Latin Mass parish I used to attend. To sum up, a bunch of parishoners didn't like this one priest, so they ganged up on him and falsely accused him of every sin imaginable. The secular and religious authorities had to get involved (including the ones in Rome), and the priest ended up resigning from the parish, but was cleared of all charges. Because I believed the priest in question was innocent, this other faction of parishoners ostracized me and wouldn't let their children attend the CCD classes I was teaching.

sometimes these things happen... try to just find a new one :hug1:
this is not an exclusively Catholic problem. This actually happens much more in Protestant churches than in Catholic ones. That's why they keep on starting new denominations.

Then, last year the election occurred. I felt caught in the middle, because I'm black and I got all of these conflicting messages. My family thought that Obama was the natural outcome of more than 400 years of struggle, while the people at church were saying he was the anti-Christ. I was being ridiculed from both sides, and I felt like it was impossible for one to be both black and Catholic. These feelings are continuing to the present.

you can support the election of a black president but disagree with his view on abortion. Try to not get discouraged by what people think. It IS possible to be black and Catholic, many (many..) are. the Catholic Church is universal and exists in every country in the world. It's not a white European type of Church at all.

Lastly, I have been feeling scandalized by the Irish abuse story. As many CAF members know, the notion of separation of church and state was condemned in the 19th century, possibly before. Yet, looking at the Irish example, I really can't see how having the Church in bed with the government is a good thing. All it seems to do is make the Church look bad without improving the government or the morality of the citizenry. The government can't even be trusted to fix potholes in a timely manner. *Why should I trust it with my immortal soul? *

I'll try to answer your last question here... try to look at the divine and human parts of the Church separately. The divine aspects are the Sacraments and the teachings. YES you can trust that with your immortal soul... when you come to the Sacraments, it is God Himself who works in you... He works through the Church, His Body, and through the priests (even if they're sinful human beings). The other part of the Church is human.. it's made up of flawed individuals. So of course you'd hear about Catholics who aren't really great at living out their faith, or downright horrible at it. Don't let that discourage you... look at the Saints, they're examples of people who DID follow Catholicism the way it was meant to be! look how the Church helped transform them! You can trust the Church with your immortal soul because the Holy Spirit is in the Church and when you come to the Sacraments it's the Holy Spirit that's there. God hasn't left His Church alone! but the devil is trying to destroy it and that's where you get all teh other (human) stuff.

I hope this helps... try to trust God and He will give you peace.. and come back to the Sacraments. He'll help you figure this out, but trust Him.

God bless


#5
  1. Your pain is palpable...but please don't give into your feelings. The Catholic Church is Jesus Christ...with a visible head as his Vicar (the Pope) and we who make up his body...and boy is it a body that is broken and sinful (I am sadly up near the front of this line)...scandalized, yes...and probably even worse off than we can know (think about what the Pope hears/reads about the Universal Catholic Church everyday in his morning briefings)......but it is still in God's hands...it is his patient and loving Divine Providential plan to sanctify us and the World...all of his children...through this Catholic "ship"...leaking and taking on water, yes,...but he will not let it sink and if we simply...follow the Pope (Jesus' visible presence) and the bishops in communion with him and the Magisterium...we will be okay.

  2. Right now...you are simply being asked to share in Our Lord Jesus' sufferings...what you feel and the pain you experience is real and justified...but it is not your suffering...it is Our Lord Jesus' suffering...he is simply allowing and asking you to suffer with him..look at what Saint Paul is saying about suffering...and especially about comfort (consolation in this suffering):

2 Corinthians 1 3-11 (RSV-CE)
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 4** who comforts us in all our affliction*, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.* 5 For as we share abundantly in Christ's sufferings,** so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too. 6 If we are afflicted, it is for your comfort and salvation; and if we are comforted, it is for your comfort, which you experience when you patiently endure the same sufferings that we suffer. 7 Our hope for you is unshaken; for we know that as you share in our sufferings, you will also share in our comfort. 8 For we do not want you to be ignorant, brethren, of the affliction we experienced in Asia; for we were so utterly, unbearably crushed that we despaired of life itself. 9 Why, we felt that we had received the sentence of death; but that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead; 10 he delivered us from so deadly a peril, and he will deliver us; on him we have set our hope that he will deliver us again. 11 You also must help us by prayer, so that many will give thanks on our behalf for the blessing granted us in answer to many prayers.

Carlo Maria Cardinal Martino (Archbishop of Milan (Retired)...meditation on this passage:"...so we wonder what connection exists between the suffering and consolation [comfort] that can cause consolation [comfort] to arise in and from the suffering." **
"...The **connection
is that the consolation [comfort] results from entering into trials. The consolation [comfort] is not located alongside or next to the trials like a reward distinct from the trial; rather, it results from entering into the trials."
*"...We can enter into trials physically or even psychologically, **but when we do not enter them existentially *
*, then the core of our being is not involved in the trial. * In so doing, we close ourselves off to the consolation [comfort] of Jesus. **Not having entered into a trial with our whole being, we do not then experience the consolation [comfort] inside the trial."
**"...we consider them (trials) as phenomena alongside our existence. We believe that they should not exist, so it is better to absorb them unconsciously. We practice a kind of psychological anesthesia toward such trials."
"...I believe that sometimes we deprive ourselves of the strength we could derive from entering into the sufferings of Christ precisely because when facing them, we hold our breath, we close our eyes, and we keep moving forward the same way as always, without dealing with them specifically in prayer and conversation with Christ. Going about it this way, we do not internalize them, and the trials remain like foreign bodies; they are not integrated into our lives, and thus they cannot be transformed in to consolation [comfort]."
"...They (us) still have not understood what the apostles themselves endured many hardships to learn: **only by entering into the trial and into the cross of Christ are we able to share in his consolation [comfort].
"
3. So, I ask you to pray and ponder this with me...I am still trying meditate and grasp this scripture (2 Cor 1: 3-11) and Cardinal Martino's spiritual guidance. I find most of my failure in grasping it..is rooted more in fear and a lack of courage (than in knowledge or understanding) to really embrace the Cross...to actually embrace the real...live...up close and personal sufferings within my own life and especially those I see and experience within the Catholic Church's life...universally and here in the USA.

Lastly, I would strongly recommend that you seek a spiritual counselor/confessor so that you can get back to receiving Holy Communion...in you own good conscience. Don't let your feelings and emotions make you feel "sinful"...when you have not done anything of a serious nature...Holy Mass and Holy Communion can wipe away any minor sinful failings and strengthen you for the "rough seas" ahead...!

I hope this is helpful...and you are in my prayers, especially this evening at Holy Mass...please pray for me.

Pax Christi


#6

Hi lucybeebee,

Disenchantment with the human mistakes of our fellow brothers and sisters is a fair and human emotion. If we cannot see the imperfection of ourselves and each other how can we then even be Christian? How can we believe in God or admit that we need God?

Parish politics and character assassination is the result of our weak and faulty human nature. The actions of your fellow parishioners is uncharitable - because I don't know what really happened, I'm going out on a limb here and saying that they have forgotten the core of Christ's message: Love. Instead of striving to live the message of Christ, they have put themselves on a pedestal and succumbed to the first of all sin - Pride.

Maybe because I come from a totally different country from the USA, I don't see elections as a one-issue event. But I do know that God is not a one issue God. No, most of the world does not agree with President Obama on his economic policies, personally I do not agree with him on his pro-choice policy. But like you (I'm ethnically chinese), and like the millions around the world, we rejoiced when he was elected because he represented, as you rightly believe, a new chapter in meritocracy, a form of poetic justice of centuries of oppression.

Yes the structure of the church, might leave a lot to be desired, and again, over here we are also scandalised by the Irish report.

Remember that God is bigger than any issue we can have, and He sent Christ to redeem all of us regardless of ethnicity, race, gender etc. And despite the sins of human nature, the tendency of the people of the church to fail, he has promised that "the gates of hell will not prevail against it".

No, you shouldn't trust man with your immortal soul, but trust God, Christ and the Holy Spirit. Just as the church is made up of flawed clergy, it also has saintly clergy all over the world. The bishop, who has been given more authority than us in his teaching office as a shepherd, has eventually to answer to God for his failing and his lack of courage. No one will say a thing if you leave the church if you are lose faith in God, if you lose faith in the tenets of Catholicism but never let man, who fall through the temptation of the devil, drive you out.

What I write below will sound counter-cultural, counter-logical to secular logic, please bear with me.

I would like to suggest that the weight of your burden, the weight of your suffering is God's way of calling you into even closer communion with him, to share in His Redemptive Suffering. The rejection, the loss, the anger, the disenchantment. The burden of sadness on your shoulders, is God's way of inviting you to rely on Him completely. Maybe you might want to see it as a way, that he calls you to witness his love and mercy to your fellow parishioners.

Over here, Christianity as a whole is struggling with the bad rep of over-zealous proselytism by some Christians, the prosperity gospel, fundamentalist christian groups trying to set civic agenda, anti-homosexuality, stem-cell research. As a catholic, I am regularly put to the test by other well-meaning chirstians and non-christians, and witness the same parish issues as you. Many a times, the message of the Church, tends to get buried by issue on issue and over time, we tend to forget that the Church's fundamental message is God's not man. That the Church is God's not ours.

I'm sorry this has gone on as long as it has. I apologise if any of this comes across as moralising. Am writing what I feel and in some ways my rationalising of the issues that I too struggle with.

Praying for You,
Zach Isaiah


#7

All of these posts are excellent and stress the most important thing to remember, the Church is Christ! Humans will be human and there is nothing that can be done to change their sinfulness. But remember one more thing – the devil works within the Church to try to destroy Her. He preys on people who are weak in faith (as well as body and mind). If you leave the Church because of what men do, you are playing directly into the devil’s hands. That is what he wants you to do – he wants to separate you from God and Christ and the Sacraments. Don’t let him do that to you!! Christ loves you, and His Church loves you, don’t abandon that love and risk condemning your immortal soul to the fires of hell. Continue to pray for guidance, and for the Holy Spirit to fortify your faith and resolve. And if you need to, find a new Parish, but not a new religion!!!


#8

The devil creates all these problems in the Church in order to discourage us and get us to leave it… because he knows how powerful it really is, that it is Christ’s Body… remember we have all of Heaven, our Blessed Mother, and all the Angels and Saints on our side. Anything the enemy can do to make the Church look bad, he will…that’s why the priests, as shepherds of souls, are tempted with these sins… to make the ‘flock’ scatter.

Please read this link:
catholicgarden.com/bosco.html

and this video:
youtube.com/watch?v=lLg2YauMuiY

God bless


#9

Hey Lucy,

I just read your post and wanted you to know that I am praying for you. The devil will try to tempt you every way imaginable to leave the Church. That is what he wants.

As far was the situation at the latin mass parish, its important to remember that the Church is full of sinners. We are all sinners. I don't remember who said this, but "The Church is a hospital for sinners, not a museum of saints". Scandal is everywhere. It is unfortunate result of mans fallen nature. The situation you mention sounds like the parish has lost its way. This is how church splits start. I would find another parish.

As far as last years elections, I think our country made a bad choice. I do NOT think Obama is the anti-christ, I think that is ridicules. As far as his race, I could care less what race our President is. I do not believe that race makes someone a good or bad choice for President. In the same way, I would not discriminate against a woman running for President, because she is a woman. I do think he was the most anti-Catholic candidate and will sign more anti-Catholic policies then any of the other candidates, especially in the areas of abortion, other anti-life issues, and freedom of religion/speech. I also thought he would be the most corrupt candidate, which has turned out to the true so far.

For a long time in places like Ireland, religion has become a social classification. You are either Catholic or Protestant. I think many of the churches there lost focus long ago and it has just not been the same. The scandals in the Catholic church get big news coverage, not because it is the only church where this stuff happens, but because it is the largest and probably the most outspoken church in the world. Therefore people hold it to a high standard. I also think that the Catholic Church has more enemies than any other church that I can think of. Ask yourself why this would be? I think it is because the devil is doing everything he can to run people against the one true Church.

Matthew 16:18 says "I say also to you, That you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it." The people in the church may take to worldly power at the expense of religious and moral power, but not the institution of the Church.


#10

Just out of curiousity, where would you go?

Remember that the Catholic Church is bigger than the people running the earthly part of her, and especially is bigger than a nasty faction at a single so-called "Latin Mass parish".


#11

People are imperfect. As long as people make up the Church, then the Church will be imperfect. There is no perfection outside of God. Imagine the imperfection African-American slaves experienced when they were allowed to go to church (if and when they were even allowed to go to church)!

Then, last year the election occurred. I felt caught in the middle, because I’m black and I got all of these conflicting messages. My family thought that Obama was the natural outcome of more than 400 years of struggle, while the people at church were saying he was the anti-Christ. I was being ridiculed from both sides, and I felt like it was impossible for one to be both black and Catholic. These feelings are continuing to the present.

Look, you live in Atlanta, one of major centers of the former Confederate States of America. :eek: Still, there should be a lot of Black Catholics in Atlanta with whom you can commiserate.

Lastly, I have been feeling scandalized by the Irish abuse story. As many CAF members know, the notion of separation of church and state was condemned in the 19th century, possibly before. Yet, looking at the Irish example, I really can’t see how having the Church in bed with the government is a good thing. All it seems to do is make the Church look bad without improving the government or the morality of the citizenry. The government can’t even be trusted to fix potholes in a timely manner. Why should I trust it with my immortal soul? Since the bulk of the abuse happened pre-Vatican II, it can’t be blamed on the effects of the council. Ireland is/was perhaps the most prototypically Catholic country is the world, yet these monstrosities happened on a large scale, without the aid of “liberals” or secular humanists or the other usual boogeymen. I wonder if continuing to be Catholic would force me to take a political stance that I find to be unconsciousable. I remember reading the passage in the Gospel of St. Matthew where Christ rejected Satan’s temptation of the kingdoms of the world and wonder whether the Catholic Church has taken worldly power at the expense of religious and moral power.

A saint once said that evil and good are not external forces that attack us. Evil and good are in the human heart, and we humans can choose which side we will feed and make grow. The problem is not liberalism, or humanists, or gay people. The problem is in the human heart, and wherever you have humans, you will have problems.


#12

[quote="lucybeebee, post:1, topic:177987"]
As many CAF members know, the notion of separation of church and state was condemned in the 19th century, possibly before.

[/quote]

Huh? :confused: That's not what the CCC says: "The Church, because of her commission and competence, is not to be confused in any way with the political community" (2245). My understanding was that the Church has no problem with separation of church and state, but does have a problem with the idea that religious beliefs and faith must be kept separate from politics, which is a new idea invented by secularism anyway and not the original understanding of "separation of church and state" that the men had who wrote the constitution.

Please correct me if I'm wrong.


#13

We have two levels of failure that have occurred. One represents those deeds committed by individuals, who in this case represented the Church but whose actions are still individual. Then you have the institutional failure to properly deal with those evil acts by those it controls, and this failure extends from the individual dioceses up to the Vatican.

How does one remain committed to the Church when it commits offenses (both moral and legal) against God, against Canon Law, and against the people it claims to be shepherding?

How can one remain committed to a Church that requires strict obedience to its doctrines yet desicrates the Commandments and the Gospels in how it fails to address the immorality within in its own walls and protect those it has abused and harmed?

How can they tell us to follow the Golden Rule, as given directly to us by Jesus, yet continuously fail to follow it themselves?

Other posts say that the Church represents Christ on Earth and is the "One True Universal Church". Perhaps in an historical context, but not even close in a moral context.

I constantly read posts that say that the Church must be obeyed in everything, yet those in authority do not themselves obey their own rules. All I can think is that the Magisterium of the Church takes us all for idiots or fools.

I share some of the same feelings, concerns and doubts as LucyBeeBee. It does seem that the institutional Church has been sorely tempted by worldly power at the expense of moral authority. I feel ashamed to be connected with a religious body that embraces lies and corruption. Yet at the same time I have great respect and strong feelings for my Parish and those who labor there for the good of the Parish family and our community.

There is a great gap between THAT Church and the one that exists in the polished halls of the Vatican.

Can one be a follower of Jesus and a supportive member of the local Catholic Parish, while feeling no allegiance to Rome or a national or regional hierarchy?

I certainly hope so, for I don't how one can be a Catholic today any other way.


#14

Praying for you Lucy. :crossrc:


#15

I think all the human imperfections show even more that we need a Savior, that we need the Church... :)

like someone said, the Church is a hospital for sinners....so expect to find many sinners there (myself being one of them!)

God bless


#16

Hi Lucy,

I might be restating what others have said because I haven’t read all the posts, but just so you know, you’re in my prayers.
I’m living in Ireland, in the Archdiocese of Dublin where the scandals are all over the media at the minute. But when the Church is rocked by scandal, as it has been many many times in its history, it’s important, I think, to differentiate between the Church of Christ, and the sinners bringing it into disrepute. The scandals in the Church are especially painful when they are brought about, as in the Dublin scandals, by the shepherds of the flock, but even priests and bishops are human sinners, though this in no way excuses their crimes.
Hold fast to the eternal truths of Jesus, his way of love, the rock of the Church that is supported by the infallible teachings of the Pope.
It is the task of Satan to attempt to destroy the Church by luring people away from her. Read the start of the book of Job, where the devil shakes Job’s faith by ruining his life, then his friends start saying that his misfortunes are his own fault. Job stays faithful and gets rewarded. Pray for courage, but don’t give up!!!
Pray for me too:)
God bless:)


#17

Lucybeebee I can fully understand your concerns and I’m Irish. However these unspeakable acts were committed by mortals and the other thing to consider is that the police in Ireland at the time didn’t pursue the complaints; that’s not being highlighted in any media reports I’ve seen. I also agree that the election of Barrack Obama, symbolically is a wonderful representation of progress and human (mortal) freedom amongst mortals. However, my post alluded earlier to all the issues you have are with mortals and the problems they create. Believe me Lucy, abortion is wrong and anyone, Colour or Nationality (Black or Irish), Kennedy or Obama is wrong in even offering understanding of it. That said, I would not alienate anyone for disagreeing with me and I would always offer a listening and loving ear. I think the thing to do is to write to your bishop, find a way of expressing and discussing your issues. You sound extremely intelligent and the blessed Eucharist would find a graceful place so please reconsider. The Catholic church is the body of Christ. We as Catholics have to rise about violations and convert people (hopefully all) to it’s loving embrace.
God bless Lucy


#18

***At last, Lucebebee read this because it stands next to the words of Jesus in the bible. ***when Jesus was asked if the people should pay tithes to the government what was His answer? After asking for a penny He asked the leaders who’s head was on it. they told Jesus Caesars, and Jesus told them to give to him what was His and to God what was His.

The truth is that, that worthless penny was all that government is worth, for ALL belongs to God. Even the metal on the ground to make a penny AND the tools man fashioned are made from the ground that GOD made. So taking into consideration what is God’s really nothing belongs to mankind all belongs to God.

So looking at your problem …there is none that is of or from God??
No, only satan puts these doubls on our mind, and it is hard to remove them unless you tell satan to be removed. Jesus tells us that if we ask for any thing in HIS name it shal be, just be weary about what you do with that though.
The right you have is to tell satan “in the name of Jesus Christ i command you be GONE from my mind to the feet of Jesus Christ for your judgment” Believe, have faith, stand on the “TRUTH” of god.
Remember Jesus tells us that "if his people donot give praise to God then even the stones will! Have faith, for even now satan could be telling you don’t read this or don’t believe it.

God bless
littleone


#19

There are a lot of comments to reply to, so I’ll probably have to write several posts. First, there is a lot of talk on the Internet and in various print publications about “building a Catholic culture.” But what does that mean exactly? A society where the Church’s rules on bioethics and life issues are followed? A society where holy days of obligation are federal holidays? A society that look like Brazil or Argentina? A society that looks like the pictures from the New St. Joseph Baltimore Catechism? It’s hard to say. Maybe I’m simply tired of the culture war rhetoric that’s so common in American politics. I feel caught in the middle, probably because blacks to a certain extent fall outside of the culture wars. I wonder sometimes if my current problem is based on the fact that I’ve felt like an outsider at the parishes that I’ve attended thus far. Maybe if I had some friends to help encourage me, it would help. I’m trying to ascertain whether my current problem is due to actually not believing in the Church or simply being depressed and needing to find a new parish.


#20

I think sometimes it helps to just take a break from politics, church news, parish events, and simply focus on the essence of our faith... on the Blessed Sacrament, Mary, growing closer to God, devotions, Adoration, Catholic doctrines, books by the Saints... in other words, all the spiritual things. Through that, I've found God gave me the peace to deal with the other stuff.

God bless


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