Wednesday, October 26, 2011
HOLY OBEDIENCE TO GOD AND TO LEGITMATE AUTHORITY BUILT UPON LOVE AND THE GREATEST COMMANDMENT
Holy Obedience tied into charity and not ripping apart:
In the comments on my post below on the Mass as prayer, sacrifice, meal..., Ave Verum wrote:
Excellent post, Father, and excellent, respectful comments as well (sometimes the comments here are so disrespectful that I wonder if we are still Christian, let alone Catholic!) --thank you.
I think I would want to echo those sentiments as we post. There is no need to attack anyone and critiquing comments can be done in a very positive way and there is no need to crucify anyone whom you cannot convince to come to your way of thinking. Last Sunday's Gospel about the two Greatest Commandment, complete love of God and loving neighbor as oneself, should guide any and everything we do even in commenting. There is no need to be vitriolic as I believe this does go against the virtue of charity and thus is a sin and it appears to me to go against the two greatest commandments.
But let's talk about holy obedience in religion, Catholicism in particular. When we obey the Church in the areas of faith, morals and canon law as well as diocesan regulations approved by the local bishop, we build up the unity of the diocese and of the Church.
That doesn't mean that we like all the rules of canon law or diocesan regulations. These are open to modification and change if this doesn't interfere with divine law which cannot be changed. We might want even a more democratic approach to decision making in the Church on her various levels, international, national, diocesan and parish. Can that happen? I think so, but there are many opinions worldwide as to how that can happen.
But suffice it to say, as a parish I have a great deal of authority to implement various things that are prescribed or regulated worldwide, nationwide or diocesan wide. Not everyone will like everything, like standing for Holy Communion, receiving from the chalice, Communion in the hand, the new translation, the EF Mass at a regular Sunday Mass, style of music so and so forth.
But when legitimate decisions are made whether one likes the process or not or the outcome or not, one should abide. And when things are decided that allow for caveats here and there, like receiving on the tongue or kneeling if that is one's personal preference for Holy Communion, the EF Mass, then I say what the heck as long as no one is tripped or in any way damaged by what is allowed by way of personal preference.