This past Sunday we celebrated Christ the King, the end of the Church year. Next week is the first week of Advent, and the start of the new Church year. For anyone that has been to Mass the past few weeks may have noticed that the reading all had something to do with the end of times. But Last week had to do with Christ in his last few hours and he is questioned, and proclaims his kingship. The reading was from the passion of Christ, we all know it, its the one were Pilot questions Jesus and asks him if He is the King of the Jews. But that is not really what this blog is about, rather it was a comment the priest made during his homily that struck me. Funny how that works, the priest spends 10 minutes talking about the major theme, yet I pick up on one minor point, almost made in passing.
He was talking about how the newspapers and news outlets all seem to pick up on the negative aspects of the Church, how we seem to make the front page for every minor transgressions, and yes our major ones as well. Now he was not saying that the media should not cover it, they should and sometimes it’s even warranted. But his complaint was that it was not fairly done. It seems the Catholic Church is singled out over other faiths, often times if a non-catholic church does the same thing the story, if it even makes the papers, will end up hidden in side the paper or not even covered.
This is not a revelation, as a Catholic I am use to the double standard, but the spin the priest put on this never occurred to me. He went on to say that back in the day, when he was a younger man, many companies in Detroit would hire Catholics, they would seek them out, because they were known to be honest and hard working.
He went on to say that maybe that is why we are singled out by the news media, because we are expected, more than other religions, to be hones and hard working, so when we fail to meet up to this standard, it is big news. Maybe we should look at it as a complement and not a slam.
Interesting, a very positive spin on what can be seen as a very negative story. I like it! We all know that the Catholic faith is not perfect that we sin as individuals and that reflects upon our Church. We know that not all our priest are perfect, that they too can sin, and as we have seen in the past, they do! And yes sometimes the Church herself can sin. Yet we also know that the Church is not truly ours, but it is Christ’s Church. He is the head and we make up the body. As the many parts of the one body, we also know that some parts my be working harder that other parts, that some parts are truly holy and other parts are in a state of sin. We are a fallen people, and the Church is the Church of the and for the fallen people. Jesus came for the sinners, he ate with them and spent his time with them.
So the next time you read an article or see a news report that is slamming the Catholic Church for one of our many sins, write to them and thank them for pointing out our shortcomings, and thank them for having such a high and pious view of the Catholic church. And let them know that we, the Catholic church, know we are sinners and we are always striving to become a more Holy Church.
Won’t that shock them! And wont that do a great deal to help us all heal and strive to achieve the standard that was set for us, not by the media, but by Jesus himself.