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Wednesday, October 21, 2009

My Ongoing Inner Struggle - Peacemaker vs. Voice of Truth

I often find myself in a dilemma...... mostly in regard to my being a Deacon in the Catholic Church and my role.
I honestly desire to serve the Church and her people to the best of my ability and in a manner that God would want.
My dilemma is, or at least in the midst of where I find myself so often, unplanned, and definitely not premeditated, but in a situation where I must choose, to be a PEACEMAKER, or firmly stand for what I believe to be TRUTH!

My personality is one that desires peace and comfort, I usually avoid conflict almost at all cost. I am a middle child, 3 older brothers, 2 younger, I fall right into the psychological profile of a peacemaker.
But, I often find that so many people around me just allow untruths to go unchecked. Untruths that have saturated our culture for so long that most people identify them as normal and acceptable, even though they are not only lies, but foster unhappiness, eat away at our souls, and are destructive in their own right. Do I speak up, or do remain silent? What is my role?
To challenge these issues often stirs up reactions, negative reactions, and at times anger.
But what is God asking of me...... To just go through life, spreading peace and love, going through the motions, backing down to people who have strong opinions, even if their opinions and ideas really have no merit, actually are counter Christian, just because they have a loud voice and threaten to make my life uncomfortable, threaten and actually do report me to authority figures with their slant of the truth. Do I remain silent while they form other's beliefs, often claiming to represent the Church's teachings? This will only perpetuate a catechises of error. This will only prolong an entity of Catholics who do not really understand even the basic tenants of the faith.

I hope God helps me with this dilemma. I would never want to act contrary to His wishes, nor do any damage to His church, rather just the opposite, I hope to be a good and faithful servant, but to also be a courageous voice of the truth in a world that is crying out for help!
I am a young deacon, newly ordained, have so much to learn, so far to grow.


Deacon Pat said...

Here is today's Gospel (Lk 12:49-53) Is there a message here?

Jesus said to his disciples: “I have come to set the earth on fire,and how I wish it were already blazing!
There is a baptism with which I must be baptized,and how great is my anguish until it is accomplished! Do you think that I have come to establish peace on the earth? No, I tell you, but rather division. From now on a household of five will be divided,
three against two and two against three; a father will be divided against his son and a son against his father, a mother against her daughter and a daughter against her mother, a mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law.”

bill bannon said...

The passage though can be used as an excuse for the fighting that seems constant in Catholic history.
Centuries ago and for about a century in China, Dominicans were telling Chinese that their ancestral rites were evil and in another part of China, the Jesuits were telling Chinese that their ancestral rites were acceptable. Rome at that time finally sided with the Dominicans and that help stop the growth of the Church in China for the next several centuries...and in the 20th century, a Pope reversed the old papal order and agreed with the Jesuits. Then at another time the Jansenists fought with other Catholics of a less strict view. At Vatican II behind the scenes, the Italian and Spanish sectors were often united against the northern Europeans with the former being more traditional and wanting their view in the texts.

Yet the New Testament holds parties and divisions to be carnal and sinful.

So your passage should be used but ask yourself if your taking a stand in a particular area is something that not even Rome does on that same issue or not as loudly as we might.

Your division passage is good and yet it provides a temptation to eternalize our position over against someone else's. That fine if the position is clearly infallible not disputedly infallible or maybe infallible. Thus abortion is condemned infallibly in section 62 of Evangelium Vitae in wording that deliberately imitated that of the Assumption wording but with the Pope having in this case acted in concert with the Bishops whom he polled worldwide on that issue.
Always take a stand on the clearly infallible. But some Catholics think the Latin Mass to be a charm almost which would change the world if it were again the common Mass. And that view is not infallible at all. But many have left the Church over the past century thinking that the superiority of the Latin Mass was as certain as any infallible dogma.

In short, separate the infallible from the non infallible before being devisive on an area.
The overstating of the infallible seems to be present in all schismatic groups at their very roots. They took a stand and divided also....and it is materially a mortal sin which they accomplished in their "courage".