November 15, 2011

For Better Or For Worse

Sometimes I hear the complaint that the Church is more likely to canonize priests and religious than lay people, and that this somehow displays a discriminatory tendency.

But I think it's an important counterpoint to keep in mind that there is also probably a greater proportion of priests and religious in hell. So it goes both ways.

God gave me my religious and priestly vocation not because I was special, but as an act of mercy. This was God's best bet for saving me. It's the best way for me to become a saint. But I also know that if I become worse on account of religious life and the priesthood, I will be far worse than I could have ever become without them.

As the variously attributed quote goes, 'the path into hell is paved with the skulls of priests, with bishops as the sign-posts.'


The Catholic Gift Shop said...

We are all called to be Saints. Some just work harder than others to make it.

Imrahil said...

I'd find it very hard to believe that the proportion is greater with secular priests; and it'd take all the traditional primary sense of religious vocation away if it weren't the case with religious.

As for the original question, I think we should remember that a Saint is not just one who is in heaven (he is that too), but also one who is set up for veneration for the whole Church.