Thursday, August 31, 2006

Forgiving the Church

"When we have been wounded by the Church, our temptation is to reject it. But when we reject the Church it becomes very hard for us to keep in touch with the living Christ. When we say, "I love Jesus, but I hate the Church," we end up losing not only the Church but Jesus too.

The challenge is to forgive the Church. This challenge is especially great because the Church seldom asks us for forgiveness, at least not officially. But the Church as an often fallible human organization needs our forgiveness, while the Church as the living Christ among us continues to offer us forgiveness.

It is important to think about the Church not as "over there" but as a community of struggling, weak people of whom we are part and in whom we meet our Lord and Redeemer."
Henri Nouwen

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

I get what you mean...

confused christian said...

Bishop Aringarosa leaned across the table, sharpening his tone to a point. "Do you really wonder why Catholics are leaving the Church? Look around you, Cardinal. People have lost respect. The rigors of faith are gone. The doctrine has become a buffet line. Abstinence, confession, communion, baptism, mass--take your pick--choose whatever combination pleases you and ignore the rest. What kind of spiritual guidance is the Church offering?"

"Third century laws," the second cardinal said, "cannot be applied to the modern followers of Christ. The rules are not workable in today's society."

THE DA VINCI CODE

P.S. The ideal becomes prohibitive as it approaches reality.

luke said...

Does coming full circle mean you have to start the circle all over again or does the circle stop?

Tom said...

I think it's more like a spiral...

Anonymous said...

I think the church is also in the shape of a cross -- His cross. What does it say to us today? Where does it lead us? How does it speak to the 21st cc? What does it say to ME?

Pilgrim