What makes a "good Catholic"?


#1

What makes a “good Catholic”?

When I think of a “good Catholic” I think of my Grandpa who was faithful to his wife, loved his children, and enjoyed studying birds and the stars. He used to wake me up at 3am to peer through his telescope at bright little dots in the night sky. On his observatory was a sign that said, “the heavens proclaim the glory of God”. He never spoke to me much about God. . . he let the telescope do it for him.

Now that’s probably not the official Catholic definition of a “good Catholic” but it works for me.

What’s your idea of what makes a “good Catholic?”


#2

[quote="freerf, post:1, topic:222947"]
What makes a "good Catholic"?

[/quote]

Answer: GOD!. God makes a "good Catholic". Less of us, more of Him.


#3

Someone who tries to follow the teachings of the Church and draw closer to Christ in his or her daily life. A person who faithfully attends Mass, goes to confession often, reads the Bible, and prays at least daily. A person who passes on his or her faith to the children, by showing them the way to Heaven. A joyful, giving Christian who works in his life for the life to come.


#4

[quote="TheRealJuliane, post:3, topic:222947"]
Someone who tries to follow the teachings of the Church and draw closer to Christ in his or her daily life. A person who faithfully attends Mass, goes to confession often, reads the Bible, and prays at least daily. A person who passes on his or her faith to the children, by showing them the way to Heaven. A joyful, giving Christian who works in his life for the life to come.

[/quote]

:D

This remind me of my sister-in-law and her hubby. They are the "best" Catholics I know, and I try to emulate them, ask them for advice, etc.

One of the reasons that I love them so much is that, they are not just "faithful" but that they are joyful in their faith, they really are an inspiration.


#5

[quote="freerf, post:1, topic:222947"]
What makes a "good Catholic"?

When I think of a "good Catholic" I think of my Grandpa who was faithful to his wife, loved his children, and enjoyed studying birds and the stars. He used to wake me up at 3am to peer through his telescope at bright little dots in the night sky. On his observatory was a sign that said, "the heavens proclaim the glory of God". He never spoke to me much about God. . . he let the telescope do it for him.

Now that's probably not the official Catholic definition of a "good Catholic" but it works for me.

What's your idea of what makes a "good Catholic?"

[/quote]

Are you implying that this "good Catholic" grandfather of your did these things but did not attend Mass or otherwise practice the Catholic faith?


#6

[quote="freerf, post:1, topic:222947"]
What makes a "good Catholic"?

[/quote]

I don't believe there is such a thing. Having a target such as being a "good Catholic" implies that there's some obtainable goal at which you can't improve. I do not believe that to be possible. There's always room for improvement.

So I focus on myself (not others) and try to be a better Catholic today than I was yesterday. If I do that enough, I'll be on the right path.


#7

I have learned that being a "good Catholic" means genuinely and spiritually following God's teachings. Sometimes we get so trapped in following law, rules, order, or dogma we forget why why are following them in the first place!

I remember growing up in childhood (I wasn't raised Christian) and having to do certain things only to be told "because you have to." I really never want to see faith in that manner. I thin being a good Catholic means knowing why you are doing what you are, and that is really has a faith-driven purpose, it's supposed to be a meaningful reflection of God's relationship with humanity, and it needs to be building on your relationship with God. In RCIA we were taught about this a lot, and I am so glad that we were. There are Catholics who "go through the motions," fulfill their Sunday obligation, etc. without really thinking about whether or not those things contribute to being a genuine or good Catholic.

A good Catholic is not one without struggles. If we were perfect, would we really be striving for anything good all the time? How would we grow? There is a reason why we need Jesus' presence in our lives, and it's to aim for that "goodness" that our humanity lacks.

I don't care for the labels modernist, traditionalist, etc. really. I try to be a good Catholic because I know what I do and don't do, and you can sure bet God knows as well. I think being a good Catholic has to first come from your heart of hearts, because any other actions will be empty of meaning.


#8

[quote="CoffeeHound, post:6, topic:222947"]
I don't believe there is such a thing. Having a target such as being a "good Catholic" implies that there's some obtainable goal at which you can't improve. I do not believe that to be possible. There's always room for improvement.

So I focus on myself (not others) and try to be a better Catholic today than I was yesterday. If I do that enough, I'll be on the right path.

[/quote]

My confirmation sponsor gave me a book titled "The Good Enough Catholic." I think you'd like it. Maybe she was thinking that as a revert I would end up being too scrupulous??

:rolleyes:


#9

I would say a "good enough Catholic" would be better to avoid that. It is very possible to be good, but perfection is another thing.


#10

I think a "good Catholic" is a person who tries to remain faithful to all Church teachings. When he/she fails, he/she goes to confession. If he/she disagrees or questions a teaching, he/she tries to better understand it. In the interim, he/she still tries to be obedient to the Magesterium of the Church...since God gave authority to the Catholic Church through Peter.


#11

[quote="TheRealJuliane, post:8, topic:222947"]
My confirmation sponsor gave me a book titled "The Good Enough Catholic." I think you'd like it. Maybe she was thinking that as a revert I would end up being too scrupulous??

:rolleyes:

[/quote]

If I'm not mistaken this book does not include an Imprimatur and perhaps even excuses certain Catholics for disagreeing with certain Church teachings.


#12

*He said to his disciples..."Who among you would say to your servant who has just come in from plowing or tending sheep in the field, 'Come here immediately and take your place at table'? Would he not rather say to him, 'Prepare something for me to eat. Put on your apron and wait on me while I eat and drink. You may eat and drink when I am finished'?

Is he grateful to that servant because he did what was commanded? So should it be with you. When you have done all you have been commanded, say, 'We are unprofitable servants; we have done what we were obliged to do.'* Luke 17:7-10

Or more to the point:
"An official asked him this question, "Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?" Jesus answered him, "Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone." Luke 18:18-19

It concerns me very much when there is a movement to make a division into Good Catholics and, well, the Other Catholics. I don't mean we ought not recognize those who deserve a reputation for holiness. Let's face it: that is not, generally speaking, what is meant by a "good Catholic." For most of us, it is better to ignore where a particular person comes in the ranking of holiness, at least not until there is a real reason. It is better to imitate the particular ways in which a person reflects Christ or avoid the ways in which they do not, rather than to feel a need to give their spiritual lives a seal of approval.

BUT-- for your own grandparents and parents, this is different. Your mom's cooking is the best cooking in the world and your grandparents can be the best Catholics you ever knew, and that is different, because for you it is totally true. Someone you are mourning, that's a different story as well! There is a day to think of some particular others in terms of eulogy, even when they're not dead. That's OK!


#13

[quote="EasterJoy, post:12, topic:222947"]
*He said to his disciples..."Who among you would say to your servant who has just come in from plowing or tending sheep in the field, 'Come here immediately and take your place at table'? Would he not rather say to him, 'Prepare something for me to eat. Put on your apron and wait on me while I eat and drink. You may eat and drink when I am finished'?

Is he grateful to that servant because he did what was commanded? So should it be with you. When you have done all you have been commanded, say, 'We are unprofitable servants; we have done what we were obliged to do*.' Luke 17:7-10

Or more to the point:
"An official asked him this question, "Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?" Jesus answered him, "Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone." Luke 18:18-19

It concerns me very much when there is a movement to make a division into Good Catholics and, well, the Other Catholics. I don't mean we ought not recognize those who deserve a reputation for holiness. Let's face it: that is not, generally speaking, what is meant by a "good Catholic." For most of us, it is better to ignore where a particular person comes in the ranking of holiness, at least not until there is a real reason. It is better to imitate the particular ways in which a person reflects Christ or avoid the ways in which they do not, rather than to feel a need to give their spiritual lives a seal of approval.

BUT-- for your own grandparents and parents, this is different. Your mom's cooking is the best cooking in the world and your grandparents can be the best Catholics you ever knew, and that is different, because for you it is totally true. Someone you are mourning, that's a different story as well! There is a day to think of some particular others in terms of eulogy, even when they're not dead. That's OK!

[/quote]

But my mom's cooking is the best in world! :p

And I'm in the "Other Catholic" camp. Do I get a t-shirt? Or just the "Good Catholics" get to judge me? I could wear a Scarlet O to let others know my inferior status! :p

One of my friends says I'm the best Catholic she knows. And I tell her she needs to know more than one Catholic in order to say that. The only way I would win that would be if I was up against Mel Gibson. :)


#14

There's no such thing. ;)


#15

Ding ding sing! We have a winner! :slight_smile:


#16

All I Ever Have to Be


#17

[quote="CountrySinger, post:15, topic:222947"]
Ding ding sing! We have a winner! :)

[/quote]

The saints are good Catholics, and certainly Our Lady is.
Did I just say that the only good Catholic is a dead Catholic? :eek:
No--although the only truly good Catholic, I suppose, is the finished after-death Catholic, the members of the Church Triumphant.
The members of the Church Militant (& Church Expectant) are all more or less works in progress.


#18

I know many good christians, many of whom are Catholic, but based on many of the criteria I've read here, I know no good Catholics,


#19

[quote="EasterJoy, post:12, topic:222947"]

It concerns me very much when there is a movement to make a division into Good Catholics and, well, the Other Catholics. I don't mean we ought not recognize those who deserve a reputation for holiness. Let's face it: that is not, generally speaking, what is meant by a "good Catholic." For most of us, it is better to ignore where a particular person comes in the ranking of holiness, at least not until there is a real reason. It is better to imitate the particular ways in which a person reflects Christ or avoid the ways in which they do not, rather than to feel a need to give their spiritual lives a seal of approval.

[/quote]

A movement? Perhaps a better way to describe "good Catholic" is a Catholic who is in good standing with the Church and therefore with God. For example, was Henry VIII a good Catholic? I would suggest that he was until he started his heretical policies and beliefs. Unfortunately, there are a number of Catholics today who have similar heretical beliefs and want to still be considered good Catholics.


#20

[quote="Lutheranteach, post:18, topic:222947"]
I know many good christians, many of whom are Catholic, but based on many of the criteria I've read here, I know no good Catholics,

[/quote]

lol with posts like # 5 in this thread it's no surprise.


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