So, anyway, I was sitting at my desk planning lessons for the new liturgical year where I serve to implement them within our church parish's religious education program. Like so many of you, I had my Facebook page open wide because I knew I'd hear the news quicker there than anywhere else. My expectations were ideal. People let you down. Facebook rarely does. (You can quote that with your tongue in check, my friends!)
Right before the verdict popped onto Facebook, I was accosted by an update on Fr. Corapi. Now I have never twitted, Facebooked, or blogged anything on the scandal behind Fr. Corapi or the injustice so many of his followers feel has befallen them. I never felt the need to. I didn't have the information or the insight for anything so large. I figured the case was in more capable hands than my own.
Personally I had secretly hoped that
Sad state of affairs.
I also haven't commented because of a simple fact...I never cared for Fr. Corapi and never truly listened to him. Maybe that's why I didn't care for him. In my defense I did try listening to Fr. Corapi once. There was something I didn't like about his approach. At first I questioned if it was his stern voice that side-swiped me. I don't particularly care for stern, serious voices. But no...
Now, in hindsight, I realize it's the look in his eyes that cautioned me. My mother always says you can read a person by looking in their eyes.
Which is also ironic because I've never been a good judge of character. I have been known to be the only person laughing at someone's jokes when everyone else is walking away. I've been known to trust other people's opinions of someone over my own opinion. A few weeks ago my husband and I were at a camping dealership and I was skeptical of the salesman's tactics. Too sure of himself. I didn't trust myself, however, and, once we were in the truck, I asked my husband what he thought. My husband thought he was very honest and decent. Ok, wrong again, says I. I consider myself pretty oblivious to situations and people so I hesitate to judge anyone or accuss anyone wrongly.
So with this recent scandal within the Church I can only count it grace that God shielded me from any admiration of this man.
I also hesitated (still do) to post anything about the situation because I feel my postings and my blog should lift-up instead of tear down. There's also enough media about the scandal, why add more? But, since I've already begun...
I think Jennifer at Conversion Diary wrote the most charitable post: And the Truth Shall Make You Free
"The truth that Fr. Corapi led me and so many others to did not originate with him, or from any man. The Catholic Church isn’t a bunch of guys who sit around and come up with brilliant insights about Jesus; its doctrines don’t come from the pope, the bishops, the priests, Fr. Corapi, or anyone else – they come from God himself. The men who make up the Magisterium are simply the tools God uses to convey his message."
The simple Truth is that it is always God, never us. God creates, we are his tools.
The reason I am posting now...in light of the Casey Anthony trial as well...is because it grieves me to see people pulled away from the Church Christ gave us when He told our first pope, St. Peter:
18 And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it.
19 I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."
(NAB --- Matthew 16: 18-19)
While the gates of the netherworld have not prevailed against it, the Church sure has taken quite a bashing. Yet it prevails! The Mass, the one true worship of God before us, God behind us, God around us, lives!
While sitting at my desk my main concern was how many Catholic adults the Church would lose and how many of our young, questionable young people will not return to our religious ed program this year because another priest has let them down, has disillusioned their parents, has mocked us all!
This was my main concern. I see these young people come through the doors of our religious education building on a weekly basis. They are often cynical. They are quite knowledgeable. They can be critical. And they have been disillusioned by adults, rightly so.
And I wonder which of these young people will feel "justified" in not returning to the Church which our Lord and Savior began simply because one man failed them. Isn't that why most people have left the Church? Because other human beings have told them falsehoods and lied to them and failed them when, in fact, our Church is not about what these people proclaim but about worshipping our Lord and Savior. Church is about worshipping God. That's all! We owe Him, not the other way around. God doesn’t owe us beautiful music, a heart pounding speaker, a soul-searching sermon, or an answer to the wrongs of the world. If we are given these things, they are gifts, by His grace and mercy. Nothing else.
Yes, the Church is also about caring for its members. We care for the Church because of Jesus Christ within its members. The Catholic Church worships a mighty God. It does not put its priests on pedestals. They are not Pharisees. They are consecrated men serving the body of Christ.
And so I'm sitting at my desk pondering all this. I say pondering because worrying does no good. Then I pick up my pen again and go back to planning lessons surrounding the life of Christ and the liturgical year which commemorate that way of living. And I put pray on these lessons and give them to God.
Shortly after, I get a message from my daughter that she's feeling light-headed after a tooth extraction. I quickly post my haphazard guess on Facebook and check on my daughter...showing her that I am there for her, I am trustworthy, I am someone of my word. That is where trust in God begins.
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Another post worth reading:
True Faith by Rachel Balducci