I am trying to understand the motivation behind “Catholics” who seem to find it very necessary to publicly promote their own opposing personal views regarding authentic Church teaching and doctrine on social media and other public venues and forums.
While I will admit that I myself have questioned different teachings on Church Dogma, I am sure that I would never have the pomposity to challenge such decrees publicly. I would argue that it is very natural and healthy, even responsible to question Church teachings. This type of thought process should be launched in an effort though of understanding. We should strive for a reconciliation between what the Church teaches and our own personal history and viewpoints, which are mostly very flawed and biased.
I will propose that most of us disregard and challenge Church teachings that go against our own personal desires, wants, and philosophies. We don’t want our way of life, or the way of life of a loved one, to be objected to by the Church. We don’t want our lifestyles to be deemed as spiritually unhealthy or sinful. We want to live the way we want, and we are offended that the Church finds it not pure, wrong and sinful. This is a very dangerous presumption that we are making though on our own behalf. I would also propose that those of us that fight these notions the most, are probably the ones that deep down are aware of the Truth, and the fact that their actions and ways are not of the Truth. Their convictions are an act of convincing themselves, not just others, of a falsehood that they know to be untrue in their hearts. Otherwise, why wouldn’t they simply leave a Church that was so wrong, hateful and evil. Why would they so diligently try to change the very foundation of the belief system they profess to not follow?
When approaching Church teachings, we must understand that the direction on these issues has stood the test of time, and has been scrutinized for hundreds and thousands of years by some of the greatest thinkers and theological scholars in the history of the world. We must also be mindful that although the Church is headed by human minds and hearts, it is also guided divinely by the Holy Spirit and the pretense of Apostolic Authority is very serious and scriptural.
The division that outright disagreement, protest and dissent creates is sinful and very damaging, not a behavior that reflects the true spirit of charity that should dwell within us as followers of Christ. I find it very disappointing and deflating when realizing that the basis of such dissent is oftentimes also rooted in ignorance and misunderstanding of the true doctrine. I honestly believe that Satan thrives on such misrepresentations and relishes the vice that it creates. Typically these types of altercations provide nothing positive and only serve to diminish the faith of believers not yet fully confident and established in their own knowledge and understanding of these teachings. For some believers, it may even erode the more basic message of Love and mercy which the Gospel urges at its’ core.
I would like to encourage any of us who have disagreements with basic Church teachings on issues such as divorce, same sex marriage, annulments, birth control, women clergy, (to name just a few) to research and gain a knowledge for the reasons behind the teachings. We may gain an understanding and wisdom that may shock and surprise. We may discover the Truth hidden in our emotional response to such issues. The Truth may not be at all what we thought, and that discovery may lead to a more full communion with our Risen Lord. We may come to know him, and his Bride – the Church; and grow in relationship and intimacy with them. Before passing judgment, we must be knowledgeable. We must also appreciate the arrogance we possess of a position that may go against 2000 plus years of Church tradition, Apostolic authority, divine guidance that Christ himself promised, and the greatest theological academics in history.
Dig in to understand, what we discover may rock our worlds and spirits – and reawaken an understanding embedded in all of us – deep within. God’s Law is not planted on stone, but in our hearts. We just need to quit denying it and trying to mold it to our own personal accommodations and rationalizations. That Law embedded in our hearts, will ultimately lead us to our salvation, if we quit fighting it.