Not Being (spiritually) Fed? Questions


#1

Hello, I just wanted to ask for your thoughts on this topic. I have heard of stories where people have left The Church because they felt like they weren’t being fed. So just to give some ideas on what exactly it is I’m looking for in particular, here are some questions:

    • What are some of the reasons as to why people feel like they’re not being fed and how do we address those needs in an effective and appropriate manner?
    • What were your personal experiences?
    • Are there any books out there regarding this topic?

Thanks.


#2

I have heard people say they don’t get anything out of the mass. Maybe the priest homilies are not that great. But that is the wrong attitude. You go to mass to give. Give yourself to Jesus and accept his suffering and death for my sins. It is in giving that we receive. What we receive is the body, blood, soul and divinityy of our Lord and Savior. What could be better? The problem is people don’t believe that. So how do we lead them to belief?


#3

One book I read wa “Forming Intentional Disciples”; I think Weddel was the author. I thought it was a good start nd an easy read.


#4

I’m Not Being Fed: Discovering the Food That Satisfies the Soul and I’m Not Being Fed! The #1 Catholic Eating Disorder both by Jeff Cavins are books that answer your questions. He also did and audio series with Scott Hahn.

Patrick
AMDG


#5

I personally hate the whole “being fed” concept. I even hate the wording. I’m not some helpless baby waiting for the Church to drop morsels of spiritual nourishment into my open mouth while I lay there acting entitled.

If I’m not “being fed”, then maybe it’s time for me to do some work of growing and cooking some food. You get out of it what you put into it.

Also, there are going to be times of spiritual dryness that the Church isn’t going be able to “feed” you out of.


#6

I too went through this suffering of relying wholly on the Church for my spirtual food. I now like Tis states cook and eat my own food and that is what every Christian is called to do. With the technology available to us we are no longer living in the dark ages but have all the material we need, including this forum.


#7

the only issue I could raise on Church repsonsibility is to guide the very spirtually young to the correct sense of direction. which some parishes fail to address by being to politically correct and for everyone.


#8

I will admit the sermons could be better on Sundays. I feel much more inspired leaving church after I hear a good sermon. But that’s not the point of mass. If we can’t be spiritually nourished through sermons, we must find our own way through the many spiritual treasures the Church gives us. We all should be reading; reading to inspire, to remind us, and to support us.

The Church can help in this through Eucharistic Adoration, rosary before mass, Bible studies, prayer groups, youth groups, and other organizations.


#9

I think part of the problem for people who say these kinds of things, is because their Priests constantly give wishy-washy homilies that have almost 0 mention of anything related to God or spirituality, but they repeatedly pound the drum about “social issues” (aka veiled liberal politics), climate change, and “immigration” (but they fail to mention that they’re really supporting ILLEGAL immigration… because it all helps their cash-flow).

I can’t recall the last time I heard a Priest actually talk about what sin really is, or dared to even mention the existence of Hell, never mind that it’s a real possibility that we could go there if we continue to live a life of sin while “assuming” that God will just forgive us all. They love to preach as if it’s a given fact that because God is merciful, we can all “rest in the hope” that we’re all going to Heaven. Although, that’s another subject that they very rarely mention except to imply that’s where we’re all heading. It’s all about preaching about the happy-happy, joy-joy, while sitting around singing sappy songs like Kumbaya. There is no meat to their sermons… just milquetoast. :roll_eyes:


#10

It has a lot to do with our personality type.

Some people need a dynamic prayer environment and are fed in Charismatic Prayer, while others are better suited with Contemplative Prayer.

A good book on this is “Who We Are is How We Pray: Matching Personality and Spirituality” Charles J. Keating

I read it many years ago and came to understand why we have different religions, different styles of prayer even in the Catholic Church.

However, regardless of the style of prayer one is drawn to, as long as that prayer is Christ Centered, and you open yourself to Him, your on the right path.

Jim


#11

From my personal experience I don’t doubt the sincerity of the claims; I just doubt the reality in which they are made.

The people that I’ve know who have left the Church usually make such claims; yet, from the experience that I’ve witness, it is not about a spiritual emptiness that they are running but from a control issue: they want the freedom to believe or do ‘xyz.’

There are telling sings that I’ve observed… people who make such claims were seldom involved in their parish or attended with superficial interest/intent (always running late, clocking the Mass, running out, not getting involved in the Celebration of the Mass, not Living the experience of the Mass, not getting involved past the “allotted” time they gave to God and the community); further telling signs is their willingness to participate in everything the counter religious groups offer, including but not limited to tithing, financially and physically supporting as many projects as their new congregation demanded, err, gave them the opportunity to contribute with, and advancing in “leadership” positions (translation: they can become deacons/pastors/bishops/elders, etc.); final clue: they become the lead anti-Catholics in their new communities…

Maran atha!

Angel


#12

…something that is almost always attended/integrated by the same few that the masses criticize as “pious.”

Now, tell them about a block party… the streets swell with pride and attendance, specially if “refreshments” are involved!

Maran atha!

Angel


#13

Yes, I have known several who left for this reason.

As a Protestant convert I have a different perspective.

I often feel my Catholic community is missing.

I am alone. I go to Mass, I experience Christ on a new level but then I go home and I am completely alone. There are parish activities once, maybe twice a year if I’m lucky. All the parish activities beyond that are aimed at parents. I am not yet a parent.

I have tried integrating so I could experience more community by joining the music team but that didn’t work. We meet, we practice, we go home. There is no community, no bonding, no sense of having a family.

In my experience, being Catholic is the most lonely thing I have ever experienced. There is nothing that helps me grow spiritually/intellectually, nothing to help me grow or maintain the path. The homilies are childish and never touch on deep issues. They’re like little blurbs you find in Christian journals. They don’t require much of me.

I won’t leave the Church. I know I have found the truth but I totally understand why some do.

This is the loneliest place to be while simultaneously being the one with the largest prayer group ever (the saints).

When people say they’re not being spiritually fed it usually means they have a desire to learn more, grow and be more immersed in their faith but that their parish does not offer any of those things for them (like mine).

I know people from cities can’t understand, their parishes have opportunities and etc. I have heard many times that I need to start something myself… but nobody is interested. not the priest, not the laity… everyone likes how things are and has no desire to change. I’m the only one, besides those who leave, who is discontent.


#14

I don’t find Catholicism to be particularly lonely, but I have always been a fairly solitary person anyway and never relied on a parish to provide much of anything for me outside of Masses because growing up, the church experience in USA was really kind of a hodgepodge of “new” and not particularly helpful ideas.

I’m happy if I can find daily Mass, an Adoration chapel that has fairly regular, convenient, posted hours and maybe an occasional devotional novena here and there (often after Mass), as well as Confession, and Anointing or a funeral if I should need one.

The priest is going to pitch his schtick to the lowest common denominator. Actually, some of those simple homilies are awesome in their sheer simplicity. I’ve seen priests get it down to one sentence and the one sentence stays with me more than if the guy had talked for an hour with all kinds of deep apologist references.

I find it helps to go around to different churches - you don’t feel like you’re going to lunch at the same place every day.

The rest of the spiritual growth stuff I can do on my own. We have the Internet, books, prayers, all kinds of online groups to join. So much that I can’t fit everything I’d like to do spiritually into my day.


#15

Not an option to church hop here.

All I know is for me I miss bible studies, I miss weekend luncheons and socials, I miss having that church family. I guess I’m just a different type of person but for me it’s a definite ‘loss’ that I feel daily.

I also miss learning in groups. Now I’m stuck learning on my own and that can get very … tiresome.

And yes, I know, the general consensus on this forum seems to be if a person longs for these types of things they’re somehow less of a Catholic but I do… and I understand why people leave because of lack of these things.


#16

It’s just different from what you are used to. That’s understandable. I was raised to be a solitary Catholic, you weren’t.

I personally would probably go a little up the wall if I were expected to be part of a “church family” and doing things in groups or having a lot of social time at church.

Is there some group offered diocese-wide that you could join?


#17

Not yet. I’ve been trying to help get something spear headed but nobody is interested.

100km north my brother-in-law started a bible study with priest approval and one person shows up weekly. It just doesn’t seem to be something Catholics do.

The one couple I know who left were also Protestant converts and they used the ‘we aren’t being spiritually fed’ line. At the time I was like: They don’t understand the Eucharist… and I still kind of think they didn’t but on the same hand I totally understand the loneliness and frustration of coming from a community to a lack of community.


#18

This is one reality of Catholicism that is shared amongst the parishes. I’ve seen and experienced it myself.

Sometimes is due to the numbers–people don’t trust “strangers;” but I think that mostly is about not internalizing the Mass–how can we claim to Love God that we only visit once a week or during Mass and yet be reluctant to spend time with our brethren with whom we Partake the Body of Christ?

Part of it is also the culture; most small communities are at ease sharing their lives (past the religious gathering) with their members–which means they spend less time seeking to escape into the tech/entertainment culture and more time interacting in actual reality.

I love my Spanish Bible’s take on John 1: “El Verbo se hizo hombre.”

Jesus is not just a Word but the Verb: Action!

Catholics must, at least in the US, become more as Christ by engaging our fellow Catholics past the pulpit and Mass!

Maran atha!

Angel


#19

somecanadian: “In my experience, being Catholic is the most lonely thing I have ever experienced.”

Because you also say, “I won’t leave the Church. I know I have found the truth,” I will suggest that God is working in you, in a difficult way for you, but it was difficult for Jesus also. And in a way, for the same reason. Imagine how lonely it was for Him: He lamented over Jerusalem - the city of the Temple, the city where God met with His chosen people, where they had made His House of prayer into a marketplace!

Luk 13:34 O Jerusalem, Jerusalem, killing the prophets and stoning those who are sent to you! How often would I have gathered your children together as a hen gathers her brood under her wings, and you would not!
Luk 13:35 Behold, your house is forsaken. And I tell you, you will not see me until you say, ‘Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!’"

The closer we come to Him, the more we are invited to share His sufferings. It is in His sufferings - if we are willing - that we find His holy charity in our own hearts! So, blessed are those who mourn in HIs sorrows and rejections - and loneliness - blessed, for they shall be comforted, in Him and with Him, later - and even now, in supernatural hope, even in the midst of suffering.

Meanwhile, pray for the Church, and her members so many of whom are lonely too, but they are looking for comfort in all the wrong places. Pray for them, as Mary and the saints do.


#20

Well they hear the Word of God proclaimed and they receive OUR LORD HIMSELF in Holy Communion so I don’t know what more they want except maybe to be entertained.


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