Three Reasons I Love the Faith - Haters, Priests, & Time Redeemed

I'm joining up with Micaela to share three things I love about the Catholic Faith.  And hey, three things?  Trinity Sunday?  See how that works?  There are hundreds I could write about but here are some of the maybe not so obvious ones...

1.
I love that people hate it.  Except that doesn't sound right.  I mean, I love that the Catholic Church is demonized by the media and secular culture way more than any other institution or organization.  Shoot.  That doesn't sound right either.  What I'm trying to say is that when the Church is mocked and criticized and scorned by media and pop culture, that's when I know she's onto something.  It strengthens my faith.  

See, they sometimes hate on Pat Robertson or James Dobson but that's usually for something socio-political.  They don't bother with Billy Graham or Joel Osteen or Joyce Meyer or what have you.  They just sort of give them a smile of condescension or downright ignore them or make jokes.  But a Catholic priest?  The POPE?  Hoo boy.  Their claws come out and they get snarling and vicious and all objectivity is so clearly thrown out the window that I KNOW there is something deeply supernatural going on there.  They KNOW that the Church is powerful.  Not in just a political or social way (though she is) but somewhere deep inside them on an intuitive level they know that the Church is the antithesis of their secularism and that she represents God.  And they hate that.  The fact that neither kings nor dictators, disease nor famine, torture nor scandal, nor any other attack from the gates of hell has succeeded in destroying the Church?  That infuriates them.  And while more than anything I would love for hearts to turn and join the body of Christ, I know Christ pretty much assured us that there would always be enemies.  And after their hatred saddens me, it strengthens me.

2.
Let's get back to the priesthood for a second.  I think this one is related to the first a bit.  I love that people know intuitively that a priest is just, well, different.  I think this applies not only to the visceral haters of the Church but also to those who are just lukewarm or simply uncatechized.  When they find out someone is a priest there is something that they intuitively respect and revere in that.  You see that reality often in film and other media.  There is something different and other-worldly about them.  It changes that person which is exactly what we as Catholics believe happens at Ordination.  A man's soul is truly changed forever and marked as priest.  Now, you could say that every culture has it's deference to its spiritual authority, be it medicine man or lama, monk or shaman.  There's truth in that.  But I love that  Christ recognized (or more appropriately, designed) that humanity would need that societal archetype pointing them to the eternal, those that are set apart and ordained for things higher.  As Catholics we don't hide that or get embarrassed by it (or at least, we shouldn't) and we don't surrender to the secularists who cry offense and repression at the idea of hierarchy.  We simply recognize our need for them and honor it.  And then we give them awesome outfits to wear.

With capes.

Reuters
And really big hats.

3.
The Liturgical Year.  I love that our year has such beautiful rhythm.  Ebbs and flows, ordinary and special, feasts and fasts.  It all speaks right to the human condition and our need for that rhythm.  The fast of Lent better emphasizes and makes way for the joy of Easter.  The quiet of Advent makes way for the blare of trumpets announcing His arrival at Christmas.  The ordinary makes the extraordinary richer with importance.  I've found the more our family enters into the rhythm of these times, the more fuller our Christian walk seems somehow.  It gives meaning to time and I love thinking of it in term of Time Redeemed.  I think I would be more than happy to live in a completely liturgical mind frame rather than have to manage both a secular calendar and a liturgical calendar.  In fact (tangent alert), it bugs me how the secular calendar is arranged.  The seasons don't line up with months.  The months all have different amounts of days.  The school year doesn't match up with anything.  It is so messy and doesn't make sense.  I'm looking forward to the call when they ask me to help straighten things out :)  Anyway, the liturgical calendar would be the skeleton of how I would arrange things if I were to be president of the world.  And I love that it seems that more and more of our separated fellow Christians are finding the beauty in it as well and observing these seasons and feasts with us.

(Can we all just pause a moment to reflect on the quotey-quote "artwork" of this calendar?  Perhaps my next 3 Reasons will include something about sacred art that is timeless and beautiful and not something that looks like it came out of The Nightmare Before Christmas.  Really.  Are they having the Last Supper or playing checkers?  Not sure.  But I had to share it when I saw it :)

Happy Trinity Sunday!

Click on over to see more 3 Reasons at Micaela's!

2 comments

  1. Hoo boy. I am right with you on one, two, and three.

    I've always had a bit of a rebellious streak, from my parenting choices to my health choices. I think the Catholic Church instilled in me at a young age that the ways of the world don't have to be my ways, and often are not the best ways. It's sometimes good to be rebellious, and oh, boy, is it cuh-razy (!!!) to see people get in a lather over Church teachings.

    My brother is a priest. I have another brother in the seminary. You should see people's reactions when I mention it. I like to think this makes me somewhat of Catholic royalty. HA!

    Finally, YES to the liturgical year. It makes me so so sooooo happy to have Easter after Lent. If there were no Lent, what exactly would Easter be about, right? And I heartily look forward to your re-working of the Gregorian calendar. It's about time. :)

    Thanks for linking up!

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  2. I am completely loving the art on that Liturgical calendar. It kind of reminds me of European shadow puppets...

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