End of my rope--if the Church is no better than secular institutions then why bother?


#1

The scandals of the last few months have finally taken their toll and I’m at a breaking point. I’ve heard again and again that priests commit child sexual abuse at a rate comparable or slightly lower than other organizations. That lots of organizations have had massive coverups. This is true. But if the Body of Christ is no better than the secular world, then how do we know that it is the Body of Christ? At least when I was a Protestant, I could claim that these monsters were not really Christians. I’ve never really had an emotional connection to my faith–I believe in Christianity in general and Catholicism in particular like I believe in the law of gravity so even my priest’s exhortation’s to take comfort in the Eucharist and my own prayers for faith seem to do nothing and I had no idea what to do now. Please help me.


#2

Because of God.

we bother because Jesus is the head of our church and we are its body.

so our job is to stamp out all the corruption and evil of the 20th century


#3

Because it isnt the church that is corrupt, it is the leaders. The church is perfect, our leaders are flawed. Once they are held accountable things will improve. It is the accountability that is the problem.


#4

The CHURCH is better than regular institutions. It was established by Christ. You cannot leave the Church because of wicked men. Such would be spiritual suicide.


#5

“Lord, to whom should we go? You alone have the words of everlasting life.”
If you leave the Catholic Church, where will you go? Where else will you find God’s full truth? What other institution is Jesus bodily with? There is no excuse for what has been done. But Jesus built his church on rock so that, when the storm blows in, no matter how strong it may be, we can weather it. I beg you: be strong for Jesus. Do not leave His Church. The Catholic Church is still His church, despite the scandals and corruption. It still holds the fullness of His truth, and that will never change.


#6

So you employed the No True Scotsman argument? That doesn’t exactly make Protestantism look any better.

So you believe in Catholicism, but your emotional connections are in attacks on Catholicism? Sorry, but that’s what it sounds like given that you’re “at a breaking point”, which seems to imply emotional and/or psychological toll, yet you claim to have no emotional connection to the faith.

I think you need to start addressing the fact that your beliefs and emotional connections are in two separate places. For instance, why doesn’t the Eucharist resonate with you beyond a logical argument? You clearly have the capacity to be emotional about things. Why isn’t that evoked by the beautiful?

Barring that, do consider that the Eucharist and connection we have as full members of Christ’s body are far greater than any wrong some of the members commit. That’s what makes the Church greater. After all, it would be a bit bizarre for Jesus to conquer death but, in His continued showing and presenting of Himself in the Church, couldn’t overcome corrupt members.

When I heard that in the Gospel reading today, my mind instantly turned to the recent news. It was some pretty good timing for us to have that read, since it puts into perspective how we should respond when it appears worthwhile to leave Christ.


#7

We keep our focus on Christ. He is the point.


#8

All organizations have one thing in common - man, who is sinful. Sin is the root cause of all evil. The body of Christ is composed of sinners. “Lord, to whom should we go? You alone have the words of everlasting life.” Stay and pray.


#10

Caiaphas the high priest condemned the Lord to death. Yet St John tells us that he spoke “by the Holy Spirit” because of the office he held… it’s called freewill. Even the Lord’s anointed high priests exercise that freewill.


#11

There has been improvement in how this is being handled.


#12

The truth is the church is not a bunch of men we have no control over in basilicas and cathedrals with no accountability. The church is you and me. It is Christ living in our hearts. There are people who are going to get in and do terrible things in the name of Christ, and they will be held accountable for that.

As far as I am concerned, the entire institution could be corrupt with only myself and a few others that remain faithful as as long as there is at least ONE who stays faithful, the church will never die. She may be sick, she may be wounded, but God will preserve us. This is a time for penance, cleansing, and for us all to take stock of ourselves. Why are we Catholic? Is it for the sake of being Catholic or is it to know, love, and serve Jesus? If it;'s not all about Jesus for us, the church isn’t for us. I think this scandal will make us all have to face that question. As for me and my house, it’s all about Jesus. Not the wolves in sheep’s clothing.


#13

The Catholic Church is better than secular institutions, and no amount of scandals can change this. It is absolutely horrible that these abuses happen, and we should be doing everything in our power to prevent them from happening again, but the Catholic Church is better because only she offers the sure way of salvation. The goodness or lack thereof of the people within is not what determines the goodness of the Church. The fact that the fullness of the Truth is found in Catholicism is what makes Catholicism superior.


#14

The Holy Spirit is assumed…I have a problem with that argument. It sounds an awful lot like presumption to me. We want the Holy Spirit’s protection? Pray for it, don’t assume that the protection will be given, even to the Church. We are instructed to “pray without ceasing” by Paul in his Epistle to the Thessalonians, and that is precisely what we should do, that we are given the Holy Spirit’s protection from scandal and from evil things that have the tendency to wear our faith down.

That said, after prayer must come an actionable effort to ensure that God’s will is established in the Church.


#15

The Catholic Church offers in the mass an opportunity to receive Our Lord in the Eucharist. It is only in the Catholic Church that you can receive the Real Presence; the body, blood, soul and divinity of Jesus.

“Lord, to whom should we go? You alone have the words of everlasting life.”

Where else would you go?


#16

Following. Not an “ex,” but I’ve been struggling with a similar question: if the Holy Spirit protects the Pope from teaching error on faith and morals (despite free will), why can’t the Holy Spirit protect the Church’s leaders from committing horrors like this?


#17

God doesn’t force His grace on us.


#18

I note in most non-Catholic religions where their ministers are not ordained to the True Church, the congregation are given free reign to publically critique their ministers. A lay committee decides if a minister is not qualified to fulfill his duties. Catholic parishes have fallen into this trick as well, where assigned ministers who’s tasks are to publically inform the congregation on appropriate reading may forget to get final approval from a priest. In the past, literature in every form destined for the eyes of the Faithful was given a Nil Obstat(no obstacle) approval from a priest assigned to that task. On older books you will find on the inner jacket the sign of approval Nil Obstat, and the date of approval and by whom. This is a standard form that should still be a practice in either ritual.

This is the approach from the inside. Of information from the outside, Catholics should be suspicious what they learn from the media who are not held to any religious standard or measure of accuracy.

I know your frustration and the discouragement it brings but do not be dismayed by what you learn. I have chosen this site for your reflection.

http://ccgaction.org/respectpriestsandbishops3


#19
  1. [quote=“Zurf, post:9, topic:506099”]
    The problem is that the Holy Spirit is assumed to protect the church in the matters of faith and morals . [/quote]

Christ promised that the Holy Spirit would protect Church teaching error in the areas of faith and morals. Can you see the difference there?

In addition, God gives us the grace we need to withstand temptation.

The way I see this is that it is like when we are watching a movie and we are saying no, no, no! as the girl walks into the room where the killer is. Except of course God is actually sending grace whereas we can’t do that. But God and all the saints and angels are saying no no no! as we walk into sin, but we do it anyway, just like the girl in the movie.


#20

Why would you hold the actions of those who act against Church teaching against the Church? Consider what those who have thoroughly followed Church teaching have done!

Mother Teresa picked up people dying in the streets with her bare hands, held them against herself, these people who smelled terrible and were covered with flies. I could not do that, I mean, I can certainly hope God would give me the grace to do that if I needed it, but on my own? No way!

That is why I remain Catholic despite the fact that there are still Judases, betrayers of Christ, in His Church.


#21

There are currently 90,616 REGISTERED sex offenders in the State of Texas alone. The vast majority of these crimes never get reported because it involves a family member, mainly parents but uncles and cousins as well.

2% pf the clergy in all religions have issues with sex crimes. 5% of the general population face the same issues. While certainly I would agree that with religious people that should be 0%, but the fact is that they were men with the same drives and flaws of other men before they were priests. I can say with absolute certainty that some of these men became religious with the hope that emergence into a religious way of life would help them live a good life. With some it worked, with others it didn’t.

Crimes like this are present with people of EVERY walk of life. At one time or another some member of the clergy of all faiths has committed virtually every crime, including murder. I knew a priest who was a thief. Certainly a priest committing a crime is a tremendous betrayal of trust, and we definitely should feel disappointed, but we shouldn’t be surprised when it happens. Likewise the fact that some members of the clergy have committed crimes and even have risen high in rank of the institution they represent, that fact says NOTHING about the validity of the teachings and the message that the institution itself teaches as truth.


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