Sunday, May 20, 2012

To Be a Saint

I came across a post I wrote last year called The Message of Love:
...I'm not talking about the sappy kind of love that pervades our culture today. I'm talking about real love, as in the "let us love one another, because love is of God" and "God is love" (1 John 4:7,16) kind of love. 
It all comes down to how we define love, which we read more about in St. Paul's letter to the Romans. Many non-Catholics (and unfortunately, even some Catholics!) would cite this passage as evidence that we no longer have to follow the ten commandments given to Moses by God, in the saying that we "owe nothing to anyone, except to love one another; for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law." (Romans 13:8) Adultery? Coveting? It's okay if I do these things as long as I do them because of love. 
Yet, what does Paul mean when he says to love one another? By whose standards should we love? My standards? Your standards? The standards followed by the president of the United States? No, we are commanded to love by God's standard. This means loving the entire person, where "love does no evil to the neighbor." (Romans 13:10)

I find that we as Catholics have to constantly be reminding ourselves of what it means to Love, and what it requires of us to love by God's standards. No, it's not always easy, but we are all called to speak the Truth, especially in the current state of our society.

We have to remember that Catholics are so very blessed. We belong to the Church that Loves us, wholly and completely, and wants the best for us. We belong to the Church that wants us to get to Heaven. Sometimes, that means the Church has to say no to us. Even us Catholics don't always like it, but we have to remember that this message of the Church is always one of Love.

Recently, the Church, her leaders, her shepherds, including my priest, and her followers have come under attack for standing up for Truth and speaking out against things such as abortion, contraception, and gay marriage. In the past few weeks even, how many of us have been called intolerant and judgmental bigots, when all we are trying to do is Love the whole person? I found this quote from Peter Kreeft, and I pray that this is the message that we send to the world:
The Church is the best friend of homosexuals, both because she tells them they are made in God's image and have intrinsic dignity and rights and are called to be saints, and because she is the only social force left that insists on moral absolutes. So when they sin against themselves she says NO, just as she does to heterosexuals who sin against themselves sexually, but when others sin against them she says NO also. No one else dares to say NO. She speaks up for everyone, including homosexuals. Source
We are all sinners. Every single one of us. I'm a sinner! But, we are all worth it.

As my favorite Catholic radio host would say, "Be a Saint! What else is there?"
Christ died for each and every one of us, because we are all in need of a savior. He died for each of us because we are worth it. We are all called to spend eternity with Him in Heaven. The path to holiness is never easy, but it releases you from slavery when it is freely chosen. The Church Loves each and every one of us, for who we are in our entirety, and not by how society labels us. Yet, the Church also wants us to aspire to be the person we each were created to be. She is willing to lead us there - are you willing to accept that path?

1 comment:

  1. Yes! And unlike society, the Church does not yoke a person to a label based on one aspect of who they are. You're not a brunette, or gay, or Chinese, or any other single aspect of you. You're just a person. But society likes neat, orderly categories, and will not tolerate a world full of individuals, only a world full of labels so nobody has to think.


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