Dear Companions on the Journey,
What can save us in our current Church situation?
We (or at least I) find ourselves in a situation of revolving crises, disillusionments, disappointments. What will be in the newspaper this week? Recent articles in the Boston Globe and a segment of 60 Minutes remind us all too often that fallible, incompetent, and even sinful people are loose in our Church. Indeed, they are often our leaders and those in positions of responsibility. And a tempting refrain might be, “I can’t belong to such an institution.”
So we might find ourselves choking on the Creed’s “I believe in One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church.”
Holy? Not from what I have seen.
But the affirmation of its holiness is not so much that the Church, as a gathering, possesses holiness, but rather within it, one can find effective means for holiness.
What moved Mother Teresa, Dorothy Day, Cesar Chavez, and Oscar Romero to heroic holiness?
But, more importantly, what moves those in our circle of acquaintances to heroic and everyday holiness?
The woman in the apartment down the corridor who takes care of her mother with Alzheimer’s. Or my classmate who struggles with dyslexia and still completes all the assignments. Or that guy who devotes his Saturdays to “Best Buddies” to accompany someone with Down syndrome. Or that receptionist at our office who always has a kind word for everyone and never a mean-spirited or gossip tidbit about anyone.
You know them, the saints on our perimeters who make up the Church. It is they that make our Church a resource for holiness.
Who are those persons in your life? Name them, now.
I believe in that holy Church. I see it, I commit myself to being it, with the grace of God.
We grieve together, we are angry together, and, I pray, we will persevere together.
What do you think?
And let us pray for/with one another.
The Paulist Center