Clare County Review & Marion Press Columns

May I Walk with You? Catholic

What does it mean when we say that the Church is “catholic”? Automatically, we think of the Roman Catholic Church as one of several denominations of Christians, but what is meant by that descriptor. The United States Catholic Catechism for Adults states, “The word catholic means “universal”. The Catholic Church has lived and continues to live in a diversity of cultures and languages because she is led by the Spirt of Christ to bring the Gospel to all peoples.” (p. 129)
When I think of the current DEI movement, I think of the word catholic. The Catholic Church is diverse. The Catholic Church is inclusive. The Catholic Church show equality. How? Every person, of every culture, of every gender, of every social status, of every race, of every nation is welcome. There is room for everyone. It makes no difference if you are male or female, what your skin color is, whether wealthy or poor, educated or not, or sexual preference. We are called to love and accept everyone. That is what the Church teaches and does.
However, there is a great distinction between the person and their behavior as stated in the idea that “God loves the sinner, but hates the sin”. In our modern, current culture we seem to equate personhood with behavior. People are defined by their actions. Not so in my way of looking at things. I can accept a murderer, because he is a person created in God image and likeness, and not accept his behavior. The same is true for adulterers, thieves, those of differing sexual preferences, and political views.
In my mind, the term catholic simply means that there is room for everyone. I think this is the mind of Jesus. All are welcome, regardless. God accepts and loves everyone yet rejects those behaviors that go against his teaching and the traditional teaching in faith and morality. I don’t reject anyone. I too, have a dark side. I work hard to manage it and not allow it to hinder me in my growth as a child of God. I hope that others will accept me a child of God, even though I am a sinner, called to repentance and conversion.
“May the Lord bless and keep you. May he let his face shine upon you, be gracious to you, and give you his peace.”

Leave a Reply