November 15, 2010

Catholic Teaching

While we were at our recent provincial assembly, one of the brothers let me look at a newly published book of theology which he had brought to read. "This is a very important book, of which we should all take note," he advised me as I looked over one of the middle chapters.

Just now I read a review in which the same book is described as an example of an "intellectual dead end."

This is why you have to keep your wits about you as a Catholic, not to mention a student of theology.

Sometimes people think being a Catholic Christian absolves someone from having to think for himself. In the words of one of my childhood friends, such a position "couldn't be wronger." From the moment I came into the Church, I have found myself in a maze of divergent opinion and conflicting claims. Though it was a disappointment with which I was scandalized at first, I've been grateful for it in the sense that it has always driven me to study and make up my own mind as best I can.


Anonymous said...

Father Charles, the problem is that most Catholic faithful have neither the background nor the ability to make up their own minds about these issues. They cannot keep their wits about them because they don't know they are losing their wits. In this state, they are susceptible to the influence of well-meaning clergy who are enthralled by a particular theological viewpoint. I think that, for example, the liturgy of the Church has suffered greatly from "important" theories propounded by certain bishops and priests over the last few decades. A prime example is the liturgy, which has become replete with examples of fads, awful hymns with insipid lyrics (e.g., most of the Haugen and Hurd contributions)and an unfortunate loss of the sense of the sacred.

Anonymous said...

What was the book?

Brother Charles said...

I knew someone would ask. Forgive me if, for my own reasons, I would rather not say.

Tiffani said...

To Anonymous:

There are lots of reasons for the creation of the Catholic bonehead. Lots of reasons. It's not all the Church's fault. I, for one, am an eternal optimist, so I believe one day we'll relearn why the heck we do what we do in Mass. I just know we won't be ignorants (en masse) forever. It's a phase, a trend of Vatican II misunderstanding. The council misunderstood how lazy we generally are, because so much of our practice of faith is rote, and we misunderstand Vatican II's purpose and meaning.

Besides, there are those great and fiery converts that come into the Church each Easter Vigil. Take heart! They remind us of things we life long Catholics never knew in the first place. They are good for making we cradle Catholics jealous and irritated enough to try and outsmart them (at least it works this way for me), and so even Boneheads like myself will eventually start to argue with St. Thomas Aquinas on her lips.

Just saying...We'll come around.

Anonymous said...

So what is the name of the book?