Sunday, June 10, 2012

Change the Church!

  Every day I receive complaints and even expressions of anger and disgust from fellow Catholics about the terrible condition of our church.  Most are pessimistic, saying we can't do anything to change the hierarchy and their closed-in clerical system that's not responsible or responsive to us.  Sadly, that is mostly true.  Happily, the Holy Spirit in many ways, including using the civil authorities as in Philadelphia, is slowly causing the clerical system to crumble.  In the meantime, we can do much on our own.    

  The church is not just the hierarchy alone.  And it is not the closed-in clerical system.  The church is all of us.  And the work of the church is not restricted to what goes on in the church building.  Certainly, we receive the sacraments in the church building, especially the Eucharist at Mass.  But the principle work of the church happens outside the church building.  All the parish missions and activities are meant to prepare us to live as Christians in the everyday world.  The reason the church exists is to serve the everyday world in the saving grace of Christ.  

   That's where we come in.  Within our one, living, evolving Catholic faith, we can operate as 21st century expressions of Christ, spiritually empowered and responsible to uplift and where necessary, correct today's society and culture.  That's how Christ, through us, is saving the world.  We can and must act, as effectively as we can, according to our own vocations and on our own initiative.  We are children of God but adult Christians.

  Today, on the EXPERIENCING GOD TODAY page, I start the discussion of living and applying our sense of faith in our society and culture.  We could use guides along our way.  If we have personal counselors, all the better.  In this blog, at least, we have the PRINCIPLES OF SOCIAL JUSTICE page, the SPIRITUAL DISCIPLINES page, and THE SPIRITUALLY MATURE PERSON page, TRANSFORMING SOCIETY and PRAYER pages to guide us.  Together we are the church in today's society and culture and we can and must be a powerful force for good.        

  People are suffering.  Waiting is not an option.      

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