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Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Why I am Catholic Out Loud

The Catechism of the Catholic Church states:

1285 Baptism, the Eucharist, and the sacrament of Confirmation together constitute the "sacraments of Christian initiation," whose unity must be safeguarded. It must be explained to the faithful that the reception of the sacrament of Confirmation is necessary for the completion of baptismal grace.89 For "by the sacrament of Confirmation, [the baptized] are more perfectly bound to the Church and are enriched with a special strength of the Holy Spirit. Hence they are, as true witnesses of Christ, more strictly obliged to spread and defend the faith by word and deed."90

It was bound to happen.  Someone like me, given the gifts of the Holy Spirit through the Sacrament of Confirmation, is going to eventually become a Catholic Out Loud.  We can't help it; our very nature precludes our ability to simply ignore Truth. 

We may fight it.  We might even deny it for a time.  At some point in our life, however, we are going to be confronted by reality and that confrontation will force us to make a choice.  The choice will be difficult. If we make the right one it will be even more difficult.  It will cause pain and division and make us the focus of ridicule, harassment and rejection.  People we thought we could count on and trust are going to walk, no...wait...RUN as fast as they can from us.  They will get angry when we do not accept their version of reality.  They will be furious when we reject their self-centered version of truth.  They will accuse us of bigotry and hatred. They will break our hearts and some of them will break our bodies.

It will not be an easy road.

Never will it dawn on them that something profound occurred in our life that forced us to do something we knew the world will reject.  The question of "what happened?" will not cross their minds; rather, they will scream that we are 'forcing' our ideas on them, that we are 'rejecting' them, that we are 'marginalizing' them.

We aren't, of course.  In fact we never shut the door to our new found life and freedom; rather, we make it available to anyone.

The problem?

We won't change reality to suit their needs.

Too many of us are caught up in the belief that if we do not think something is true then it's not, that subjective truth is the only truth.  Unfortunately, that is a falsehood itself.  It is a huge lie, taught to us by a society that really, really wants everyone to just get conflict, please. 

Subjective truth - a truth when the all powerful "ME" is the subject - is true only when it is about me.  I am allergic to penicillin.  Penicillin, therefore is not a life saving medicine.  That is not true for someone facing a massive infection that is NOT allergic to penicillin, but it is true for me.  That is a subjective truth.

Objective truth is true whether I believe it or not.  A watch is not a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.  My saying it is won't make it one.  My biting into the watch and ingesting it won't make it one.  It is what it is, whether I believe it or not.

When someone says to me, "Well, that's fine but I do not believe in the Resurrection of Jesus Christ" I am always tempted to say, "And that matters, why?".  Quite frankly, if they want to reject philosophical evidence, historical evidence and sociological evidence then go ahead but that does not reflect on the Truth they are rejecting; rather, it reflects on their inability to make rational decisions.

I can't help them with is not my business.

I received the Sacrament of Confirmation and so received my marching orders.  I ignored them for years.  I rejected them in favor of being one of the popular girls at the dance.  I stomped my feet and waved my fists in the air, demanding that the orders be changed to something that I could do without losing favor with the world.

Didn't work.

I am a Baptized, Confirmed Catholic.

I am Catholic Out Loud.

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