Why I am (still Catholic)? Well…
Obvious, I know, but still needs to be said. I’m Catholic because of Jesus. Because if it wasn’t for him, all would be lost and doomed. His birth, his life, passion and death saved me – saved us all – from everlasting damnation. He is the answer to all my angst and He is The Way, The Truth and The Life. Furthermore, Jesus is with me, with you, with all of us, individually, separately, intimately knowing us. The Prophet Isaiah says that we are each “carved on the palm of his hand” and that our “walls are ever before him.” He cares, deeply, about each of us and our every little need and worry and we can petition Him for our needs, our wants and even our whims. And He listens and responds. I have experienced it. This right here – or should I say He – is enough for me to profess Catholicism in and of itself, because Jesus is the founder of the Catholic Church. That, and it’s kind of nice to have a benevolent, omniscient deity on your side, isn’t it?
I have never experienced peace of soul like I have when I am making the effort to follow God’s Will for my life. My world can be in the worst kind of uproar, I can be bogged down with the worst kind of pain and suffering, and yet I can still rest in God and in the knowledge that He is present and taking care of business. In fact, peace of soul is a significant part of the discernment process as saints like Ignatius of Loyola have written much about how God uses it to communicate His Will to us. I don’t have to fix the world. I don’t have to control everything and everyone around me. I can do my part as I need to and then let God figure out the rest. Things may not work out exactly like I planned. In fact, the worst thing imaginable may happen. But I can still experience peace if God is present – and if he isn’t present, I can ask him to come and he will. Is there anything better than that?
Catholicism, with God at the heart of it, has been an unflagging source of hope for me – not only for life after death, which is a huge relief by the way – but for life during life. The Catholic Faith teaches us that all life is sacred and that not only does God have a plan and mission for each person he creates, but that he will bring each of us to the fulfillment of our own missions, if we allow him. He has meticulously planned an incredibly satisfying and fulfilling adventure for each of us, knowing us as intimately as he does, with no two adventures alike. So no matter what happens, no matter how far away from “the path” I think that I am, there is always hope that God has my life and future in hand and is orchestrating, and that he will use even the waywardness to his own good.
The Catholic Church gives me my history, my genealogy, my identity. Yes I have an entire physical, familial genealogy behind me for which I am grateful, but my true identity comes from my Father in heaven, through my baptism. I know who I am in Christ Jesus – I am the beloved and precious daughter of the Father. I have the body of Christ around me, my brothers and sisters everywhere, and The Son and The Spirit as brother, friend and guide. No matter what happens, no matter where I am or where I have been, I matter to Him, and so do you. This gives me the confidence and chutzpah to do whatever it is I need to do, without the incessant need to please or procure the good opinion of others. We, as Catholics, also have centuries of saints, writers, philosophers and theologians decoding the rich history of the high and holy Traditions we have been given, and making sense of difficult truths. What more can we ask for?
If publishing article online please attribute source Serviam Ministries with link to original article.