Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Those Catholic Priests. . . and the (un)faithful

Dad had high hopes that one of his daughters would follow in his footsteps and become a pastor. I remember how he encouraged my sister and me to go into ministry. And, I remember shutting him down on the spot.

It wasn't that I was against women preachers back then. It was a Protestant trend that seemed neither right nor wrong. It just was.

I had a problem with it because I saw how critical parishioners could be. I had no desire to take that on. I had enough trouble pleasing one boss (at the cafe where I worked). Preachers had as many bosses as they had parishioners.

I sometimes have the same concern for priests. They have some things easier. The theology is not up for grabs. As long as priests are faithful to the Magisterium, that shouldn't come back to bite them in the you know what.

But there are still a lot of Catholics out there with a whole lot of spiritual pride and superiority complexes. They seem to feel they are entitled to criticize their clergy and bishops and even their pope.

I don't care for that very much. One of the many things I love about being Catholic is how (at least traditionally) the faithful respected their spiritual authority.

It is something I hope we don't lose altogether. I pray that this is just a phase. But I have my doubts.

I pray that I will put a guard on my own tongue. And, I pray that I will always remember how hard it must be to have so many people who feel justified in speaking their minds.

Do something truly Catholic. Honor and respect your priest.


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