There’s so much confusion in the Catholic Church today. Many people do not have slightest idea of what it means to be a 100% Catholic. The pope is saying one thing, the Cardinals another, the local bishops and priests another. Catholic family members and friends also contradict each other on what it means to be a Catholic.
A Catholic is a person can be defined a someone who has been baptized and at that Baptism their parents and Godparents give their consent to God and the priest that this child would grow up as Catholics. That implied that they were going to obey what Jesus teaches that is contained in the Bible, the Deposit of Faith and the Apostolic traditions that have been passed down to us through the Catholic Church. By the simple reality of identifying as a Catholic, this implies that we have agreed to live the way the Catholic Church teaches us.
Living a Catholic life is definitely not a life lived according to what the world teaches, nor according to what we hear on the television, nor what we see in movies, nor what is taught in schools, nor what we read in magazines, nor in the music we listen to, nor what the average person tells us is right and wrong. All of this worldly influence and teaching is definitely not what it means to be true Catholic.
As each one of you reading this knows, most Catholics are either confused, ignorant or downright disobedient when it comes to following what Jesus has taught us about what is right and wrong.
Because of this ignorance and confusion, I think it’s very important that we traditional Catholics, get out true Catholic information to the average Catholic.
Yes, there are millions of rebellious Catholics who may already know true Catholic teaching, yet have decided it is wrong and they are right. For this reason, no matter what you show them, they still do not want to know the truth about what the Catholic Church believes and teaches.
But then there are others who are sincerely confused or overly influenced by what they hear at their progressive parish or from their liberal Catholic family and friends or all the other social media they look at. Many of these people have good hearts and, if informed with Catholic truth in an educated and kind way, may be willing to accept it and eventually change their way of living.
For this reason, we need to come up with an inclusive list of the practical do’s and don’ts of what it means to say; “I am a Catholic”. When we say we are Catholics, that implies that we are willing to live accordingly.
After we inform these poorly formed Catholics, we also need to give them the real practical bad effects of disobeying God’s rules and the goodness and blessing that comes from being obedient to them.
If you happen to be someone who is trying to help other people convert to live a life the way Jesus wants us too as Catholics, you need to remember that conversion is a slow process. To remember this and to understand this we need to look at our own conversion story. Each one of us had to go through several steps in our conversion process. First we had to take in the new information. Then we had to process that information and see if we could agree with it. And then, over time, start making concrete changes in our lives according to our new found truths. All this takes time. And we need to be as patient with those who are going through this process as God was with us.
Finally we need to remind ourselves that it takes GRACE to be converted. By informing badly catechized Catholics, we become instruments of God’s Grace. But, it still has to be God who does the conversion in the actual soul of the person and they have to be willing to cooperate. God never forces anyone to love, follow and obey Him.
I am not going to include in this blog the list ACTIONS of what it means to be a CATHOLIC. But I will soon.
We are so blessed to be traditional Catholics and to know the do’s and don’ts of living a Christ centered life.
The original author of this blog passed away in July of 2016. RIP Father Carota.