“Your loved one has earned their angel wings” Eeick!!!!! That comment makes me want to scream, especially when I see it posted by someone who teaches in Catholic Education. I am not sure if there is any statement that so fundamentally demonstrates the ignorance and apathy of most Catholics in today’s society. Well, maybe there is, “What would Jesus do?” Jesus pretty much summed up every life lesson for us, quite profoundly and divinely, maybe we need to look some stuff up in Scripture instead of surmising and guessing, what Jesus would do, based of course on our own personal biases and discrimination.
Sure these are statements that are well intentioned, just like so much of our tolerance for sin is an effort to be understanding and loving, another demonstration of our ignorance and apathy toward the Catholic faith. Most of us don’t even really understand what love is. Seriously, if we think that love means allowing our loved ones to sin their way into Hell, that doesn’t seem too loving to me.
Of course, coming to understand the faith does take a lot of effort, and probably doesn’t seem all that fun. There are so many more interesting and entertaining venues to busy ourselves with, isn’t there? After all, if we are good people, we’ll get to Heaven, right? Well, that isn’t what Jesus taught us, and it isn’t what the Church he founded and left us with for guidance, teaches. We really are not interested so much in “What Jesus would do” because if we learned our Faith, we would know what he did indeed do. We would cherish what he left us – the Catholic Church, to guide us toward Sainthood. We wouldn’t so much espouse empty and heretical platitudes that might sound good, but are hollow and void.
It is very presumptuous and we take on a tremendous responsibility when we decide to go it on our own. When pride and arrogance lead us down the road of determining for ourselves what is sinful, instead of relying on the divine and magisterial teaching of the Church, we also assume the culpability that incorrect, ignorant and apathetic suppositions will lead to.
We do not turn into angels when we die. We do not earn angel wings. Angels are an entirely different and separate species from mankind. We have different roles in God’s vision and plan. Yes, it is God’s vision and plan, not our own. He has very generously gifted us participation in his plan, but be assured, that participation is according to his will, not our own.
What did Jesus do? Jesus taught us a prayer, a prayer that outlines for us exactly what to do, and how to live. How to live our lives according to his rules and his will. “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done, on Earth as it is in Heaven”. We should all know the Lord’s prayer, and understand what it means?
We need to quit making up our own rules, unless we don’t really desire Heaven. Maybe many of us don’t. Maybe many of us have a very skewed and ignorant notion and misunderstanding of what Heaven really is. Relationship with God is the climax and true reward of Heaven, but if we don’t desire that now while here on Earth, why do we desire it upon death? Don’t we realize that our life here on Earth is the preface of what comes next? Don’t we understand that our deeds now, born out of love and relationship with Christ, bears out the Heavenly Kingdom of God on Earth and in Heaven?
Probably not, which is why people still think that instead of assuming the glorious state of Sainthood which should be our one and only goal while here on Earth, we instead chase superficial ideas of Heaven and becoming angels, and earning wings. Angels don’t really even have wings. They are pure spiritual beings. That is the sad state of affairs among the ignorant and apathetic Catholics among us. We don’t know the Faith, and we really don’t care.