- I am Catholic because of what the church understands itself to be ideally.
- What does it understand itself to be ideally?
- God is love
- God exists as a community of selfless love (this is what the Trinity means)
- God manifests this selfless love in the Incarnation (i.e., God becoming human as Jesus Christ), and in Christ’s death and resurrection
- God continues to manifest this selfless love to us through baptism and the Eucharist, by mean of which God gives himself totally to us.
- In receiving the gift of God’s very self, and in experiencing divine selfless love, we are united one to another in the bonds of this love, and ideally become communities of selfless love that imitate the Triune love that is God’s very being.
- Therefore, the church is, ideally, to exist as the imitator of God’s selfless love, living out this love concretely and in a totally uninhibited manner.
Friday, March 16, 2012
Synopsis of "Why I am Catholic: An Open Letter in Response to the Freedom from Religion Foundation"
I’ve been told that my post about Why I’m a Catholic (written in response to the Freedom from Religion Foundation) is perhaps too long and complicated, and that I should provide a summary of the salient points. So…here’s a synopsis (for the full post, see here):
I then conclude by asking the following questions:
“Yes, the Church has always and continues to fall short of this ideal. But does this fact mean that I must abandon this ideal? Does the Church’s continued imperfection mean that I should just give up? No, it most certainly does not. For I cannot help but be absolutely attracted to the beauty of what the Church is called to be by Christ himself each time Christ gives of himself in the Eucharist.
Those who have not experienced this beauty and the beauty of the selfless love that is God cannot be expected to understand. And, frankly, the Church frequently does a very good job of masking this beauty. But once it has become known, it cannot be abandoned. It can only compel.”
If you really want to know what I'm talking about, read Wendell Berry's Jayber Crow. Sometime I'll write about this novel. It really is a 'must read'.