Obedience to authority.


#1

If someone in authority, such as a Catholic bishop or priest prevents us, say from organizing a Youth group or a Bible study or some othe good thing, must we still submit to his authority?


#2

[quote="ErricFiggy, post:1, topic:314127"]
If someone in authority, such as a Catholic bishop or priest prevents us, say from organizing a Youth group or a Bible study or some othe good thing, must we still submit to his authority?

[/quote]

I say yes. Unless he is asking you to sin.

Quoted from Bro. JR in another thread.

[quote="JReducation, post:936, topic:310865"]
...

Our faith is grounded on the obedience of Christ. Obedience and faith are inseparable. That's one point.

Obedience to God cannot be abstract. It has to be through a concrete means. So Christ says to his apostles, "Whatever you bind shall be bound and whatever you unbind, shall be unbound." God does not distance himself from the authority of the Church, especially the authority of Peter. To say that one has to obey God, even if it means that one must disobey man ignores an essential component of Christian Spirituality. That is that God is never separated from the humanity of the Church. Through the hypostatic union of the second person of the Trinity, humanity and divinity come together in Jesus Christ. One cannot blend the two, nor separate them. The Church, which is the Mystical Body of Christ, is both human and divine. Otherwise, it's someone else's body, not Christ's.

Therefore, to deny obedience to the legitimate authority of the Church is to deny obedience to Christ. Further, it is to refuse to be as Christ was, obedient even unto death.

To refuse to be as Christ was, is willfulness, not faith. Christian faith grows out of the obedience of Christ, which corrected the disobedience of Adam.

As St. Benedict and St. Francis both told their brothers . . . there is no faith where there disobedience to Peter.

[/quote]


#3

Yes, of course, we must accept the bishop or pastor's authority. You can still have a youth group somewhere off of Church property.


#4

YES! Otherwise it will be something else rather than a Catholic group with a good will,
maybe an ‘anti-catholicism’ group of people with ‘good’ will…
(whose goodness without obedience will be sharply questionable also!)


#5

Just to be clear, the Youth Group was just an example. Let me rephrase the question.

If someone in authority bars you from serving the Lord in some way, or asks you to do somethin un-godly, do you still have to obey?


#6

[quote="ErricFiggy, post:5, topic:314127"]
Just to be clear, the Youth Group was just an example. Let me rephrase the question.

If someone in authority bars you from serving the Lord in some way, or asks you to do somethin un-godly, do you still have to obey?

[/quote]

The Church teaches that

I would suggest you ready the whole section beginning at 1897.


#7

[quote="davidv, post:6, topic:314127"]
The Church teaches that
I would suggest you ready the whole section beginning at 1897.

[/quote]

Thank you David :)


#8

[quote="ErricFiggy, post:5, topic:314127"]
Just to be clear, the Youth Group was just an example. Let me rephrase the question.

If someone in authority bars you from serving the Lord in some way, or asks you to do somethin un-godly, do you still have to obey?

[/quote]

I'll echo Davidv citation of the CCC rule that answers your question--and add a bit, to supplement, in terms of the rationale. Often times, the Bishop or pastor may simply have other plans or use for your talents, and/or the talents/resources which your Bible study or youth group might tie up.

Quick illustration: in our diocese, due to constraints on the diocese's treasuries, the Bishop implemented a diocese wide rule a few years ago, still in effect to this day, that any and all fundraising by any Cat. organization within the diocese, must be presented to diocese, approved, and then coordinated with other such efforts. And so the board of directors upon which I sit for a local Cat. school, has to plan well in advance for any fundraising activities, have a plan b, c and d, ready for presenting, etc., etc. We can't even hit up our own alumni for donations, without going through this tedious process.

Hence the rationale (not that the Bishop needs to explain himself...)--is pretty obvious--so that the funds needed by the Bishop, aren't diverted and/or concentrated to a singular Cat. organization within the diocese, to the point of hurting others (especially the diocese itself).

Besides the practical rationale, Obedience is one of the greatest virtues of the Church, and one of her strongest unifying characteristics.

...and from our vantage point--that of the Faithful--it is excellent 'seasoning' and practice if you will, for surrendering our Will, to the Will of God.

St. Therese of Lisieux said it beautifully in her auto biogoraphy, the Story of a Soul--

"My God, I choose everything! I am not afraid of suffering for thee; I won't be a saint by halves; I only fear one thing--and that is to do MY will."

Or perhaps you prefer St. Augustine's immortal quote:

"Lord, grant what thou commandest, then command what thou wilt

...and of course, there is the fella who started it all:

"...Father, if thou wilt, remove this chalice from me: but yet not my will, but thine be done.

One the greatest gifts we can give to the Lord, is to surrender our will to Him--and obedience to authority (especially to the authority vested in the one, true, holy, catholic and apostolic Church that Yeshua himself founded) helps prepare us for the humility and challenge of this grand calling.

Peace.


#9

[quote="ErricFiggy, post:5, topic:314127"]
Just to be clear, the Youth Group was just an example. Let me rephrase the question.

If someone in authority bars you from serving the Lord in some way, or asks you to do somethin un-godly, do you still have to obey?

[/quote]

Ah, now you have changed the question.

Certainly if somebody asks you to do something ungodly, even if he is a person in authority, you do not have to obey.

BUT. . .'"serving the Lord in some way?"

That's a horse of a different color.
]
Many many saints have wanted to serve the Lord in some way. Some wanted to be missionaries, but their superiors wished them to serve 'at home'. So __THEY OBEYED.

Just because you might THINK, "I want to serve the Lord with a youth group, but my pastor says no. He is STOPPING ME from serving God, I don't have to obey him' ==doesn't mean you are correct.

You do not HAVE to 'serve the Lord with a youth group'. There are many ways to serve the Lord.

You can be SERVING THE LORD through obedience of YOUR will to that of your priest, who is your shepherd. He is not keeping you from serving God. He is not stopping you from doing good; he is asking you to do good through obedience to something he has deemed necessary for YOUR good.


#10

[quote="ErricFiggy, post:5, topic:314127"]
Just to be clear, the Youth Group was just an example. Let me rephrase the question.

If someone in authority bars you from serving the Lord in some way, or asks you to do somethin un-godly, do you still have to obey?

[/quote]

God told Abraham to slay his son...and also told Saul to slay someone.

And this is what Samuel said to Saul after Saul disobeyed:

1 Samuel 15:22-23
22 But Samuel replied:
“Does the Lord delight in burnt offerings and sacrifices
as much as in obeying the Lord?
To obey is better than sacrifice,
and to heed is better than the fat of rams.
23 For rebellion is like the sin of divination,
and arrogance like the evil of idolatry.
Because you have rejected the word of the Lord,
he has rejected you as king.”


#11

[quote="Tantum_ergo, post:9, topic:314127"]
Ah, now you have changed the question.

Certainly if somebody asks you to do something ungodly, even if he is a person in authority, you do not have to obey.

BUT. . .'"serving the Lord in some way?"

That's a horse of a different color.
]
Many many saints have wanted to serve the Lord in some way. Some wanted to be missionaries, but their superiors wished them to serve 'at home'. So __THEY OBEYED.

Just because you might THINK, "I want to serve the Lord with a youth group, but my pastor says no. He is STOPPING ME from serving God, I don't have to obey him' ==doesn't mean you are correct.

You do not HAVE to 'serve the Lord with a youth group'. There are many ways to serve the Lord.

You can be SERVING THE LORD through obedience of YOUR will to that of your priest, who is your shepherd. He is not keeping you from serving God. He is not stopping you from doing good; he is asking you to do good through obedience to something he has deemed necessary for YOUR good.

[/quote]

Thank you :) that makes a lot of sense.


#12

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.