Friday, October 2, 2015

Lack of Civility in Society

Lack of respect for the opinions of others is prevalent in all societies and especially when we find it so easy to express ourselves. In offenses against the truth in the Catechism of the Church # 2478: "To avoid rash judgment, everyone should be careful to interpret insofar as possible his neighbor's thoughts, words, and deeds in a favorable way:
Every good Christian ought to be more ready to give a favorable interpretation to another's statement than to condemn it. But if he cannot do so, let him ask how the other understands it. And if the latter understands it badly, let the former correct him with love....

St. Thomas Aquinas many centuries ago, engaged in argumentation by first arguing for the position he disagreed, and often making it stronger, before giving his opinion. A religious priest introduces to the readers of the Catholic Times a serious problem in the community of faith when we forget we are Populus Dei (the People of  God). This is the 50th year after the close of the Second Vatican Council, and he wants us to remember our call to renewal, and adapting to new circumstances.

The Church is one of the organizations in society. It has a special object and clear boundaries, and the members' status and roll are specialized and has strict regulations. He has asked his parishioners in the past  who is the owner of the parish, and unanimously he gets the answer that the parishioners are, but he reminds them they will all one day have to leave. God is the master of the church and community.

Without this understanding, we are just like any other organization in society. To behave as our own master is one of our temptations. In the community, we have dissonance and conflict, light and darkness, good and evil. We are  not a church of the good and healthy, but a church of sinners asking for forgiveness daily.

Today we hear the words not infrequently: a follower of the North, a leftist, Red. They give these tags to some bishops and priests: impure elements. At times we even hear: "take off your clerical clothes" --  "renounce the priesthood," and the like.   In the past when they  didn't like some of the acts of the clergy, which they considered extreme, they did not express this publicly. We have now those that call themselves Patriotic Catholics for Korea and wonders about their Catholicism.  

No need to  talk about those who are pro-North but whether we are pro-God. The Church is not here for itself, but as light and salt of the earth.

"Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross is nothing else than the culmination of the way he lived his entire life. Moved by his example, we want to enter fully into the fabric of society, sharing the lives of all, listening to their concerns, helping them materially and spiritually in their needs, rejoicing with those who rejoice, weeping with those who weep; arm in arm with others, we are committed to building a new world. But we do so not from a sense of obligation, not as a burdensome duty, but as the result of a personal decision which brings us joy and gives meaning to our lives" (Joy of the Gospel 269).

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