3 Reasons, Vol. 5

Welcome to the fifth installment of 3 Reasons I Love Catholicism.  If you’re new and are interested in participating, I suggest you check out the original invitation, or any one of the previous link-ups.

~1~

World Youth Day

Every 2 years, the Catholic Church hosts millions of young people from around the world.  I’ve never had the opportunity to attend one, but my siblings have.  The last one was just this past week in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.  My little brother, a seminarian with the Oblates of Saint Joseph, attended and renewed his vows while there.  Now, if you were to only know about Catholicism through the mainstream media, you might think that it was an old, outdated, irrelevant institution.  But (the estimated) 3 million youth who attended would argue otherwise.  Our Church is young and vibrant and full of people who love and cherish it.

A few photos borrowed from attendees:

 

Many souls cleansed that day.  Source

 

If you have a couple minutes, check out this Youtube video of Matt Maher singing “Lord, I Need You” at the WYD Eucharistic Adoration.

 

~2~

Clarity of Teaching

If you watch or read the news, you probably heard about Pope Francis’ quote about homosexuality last week.  The mainstream media glommed onto 5 specific words especially: “Who am I to judge?”

Now, people have great hopes for Pope Francis.  Many hope he reverses the Church’s teachings on abortion, and birth control, and same sex marriage, and all kinds of inconvenient rules that challenge us in our daily lives and separate us from the secular world view.  But the mainstream media is confused about a lot of things, and Catholicism is one of them.

Maybe next month I’ll delve into some of those uncomfortable topics.  But this month I just want to share another, longer quote from the same interview.

Patricia Zorzan:
Speaking on behalf of Brazilians. The society has changed, young people have changed, and we see many young people in Brazil. You have spoken to us about abortion, matrimony between persons of the same sex. In Brazil a law has been approved which extends the right of abortion and has allowed matrimony between persons of the same sex. Why didn’t you speak about this?

Pope Francis:
The Church has already expressed herself perfectly on this. It wasn’t necessary to go back to this, nor did I speak about fraud or lies or other things, on which the Church has a clear doctrine.

Patricia Zorzan:
But it’s an issue that interests young people …

Pope Francis:
Yes, but it wasn’t necessary to talk about that, but about positive things that open the way to youngsters, isn’t that so? Moreover, young people know perfectly well what the position of the Church is.

Patricia Zorzan:
What is the position of Your Holiness, can you tell us?

Pope Francis:
That of the Church. I’m a child of the Church.

(Shout out to the same little brother I mentioned above for the text of the quote.)

There it is, friends.  I know that might be frustrating for some people, and I understand that.  But the Church is very clear on these controversial topics, and it will not reverse these teachings.  This is a great source of comfort to me, that the Truth does not change with the times, but is eternal, regardless of popular opinion and political pressure.

 

~3~

Purgatory

Purgatory is probably one of the most misunderstood beliefs in Catholicism.  I’ve heard people call it cruel, this idea of a limbo after we die.  But it’s not!  Oh, it’s not cruel at all.  Rather, it’s incredibly merciful!

Look, (and this is my take on it, so please feel free to correct me or debate me if you disagree) what’s cruel is the idea that at the moment of death, we are taken to either heaven or hell.  Bam.  No going back, no second chances.  But our Church teaches us otherwise. If you made some major mistakes along the way, you still have the chance to make it into heaven!  Hallelujah!  Grace abounds!

I’ve heard 2 quotes recently that I absolutely love.  Both are by priests, one of whom is a family friend.

“Purgatory is like a car wash for your soul.  You go in dirty and come out shiny and ready for heaven.”

 

“The second happiest day in your life is when you get to purgatory.  The first happiest is when you get to heaven.”

 I’ve mentioned before that I’ve heard heaven described as the place where only love exists.  Purgatory, for most of us regular old schmucks, is the bonfire that burns away all our sins and transgressions, leaving us ready for the heady, indescribable eternity with our Lord in heaven

Now it’s your turn!  Have 3 Reasons you love Catholicism?  Share them in the comment boxes, or write a blog post and share it in the link up below.

 

Comments

  1. Great list!
    Not meaning to start a debate but from my understanding ours sins are gone by God’s forgiveness, but that which causes us to sin requires purification.
    Joy recently posted…Stop Raining in my SandboxMy Profile

    • Excellent point, and an important clarification. Thanks, Joy! (P.S. I always welcome respectful debate! But there’s nothing to debate about here, cause you’re right.)
      Micaela recently posted…3 Reasons, Vol. 5My Profile

  2. I love your inclusion of purgatory and your comments on it. Also the segment of the interview with the Pope that (surprisingly ;->) didn’t make it into the top 10 interview sound bites, but is – in my opinion – the best of the bunch.

  3. Great list…I especially love #2 and #3. The purgatory one is interesting because I never really think about Purgatory too much, other than to think that I’m probably going to be there for a zillion years. But you are right…Purgatory is the perfect example of God’s mercy and love!
    Amelia recently posted…7 Quick Takes FridayMy Profile

  4. Great list! I don’t understand why I can’t come up with a list of my own. I just keep reading other people’s lists and thinking, “yeah, that!”

    And yay Oblates of St. Joseph! That’s so great that your brother is a seminarian with that order. My homeschool group visited their seminary in Loomis last spring and we were all very impressed. They also have the coolest outdoor Stations of the Cross I’ve ever seen there. The kids particularly loved going in the bell tower and getting to ring the bell. 🙂
    Amber recently posted…Year End Pictures and InterviewsMy Profile

    • Amber, you live near Loomis? I have another brother that is an ordained priest and he lives there, running the seminary! His name is Fr. Matthew.

      • That is amazing, Miceala! Why are you not constantly bragging this up! I always love your three reasons. And then I get a mental block trying to write my own. Oig.
        Rebekah Es recently posted…Theme Thursday: KnotsMy Profile

        • I think I’ve mentioned it before. But yes, having an ordained priest and a seminarian in my family makes me a bit of a Catholic celebrity. When I meet priests and the topic comes up they always get really excited. Funny because of course I have no “claim” on his vocation… But I’m not too proud to use it to my advantage.
          Micaela recently posted…Back-to-Homeschool: Gearing Up for a New YearMy Profile

      • Yes!! Fr. Matthew was the priest who gave us our tour. He was wonderful! (As I’m sure you know already!!) I wish we lived closer (we’re a little less than an hour away – close enough for a field trip, but not really close enough to go there with any regularity) because the chapel there is lovely and it is such a peaceful, beautiful place. I am definitely planning on going there at least once during Lent next year – I love their Stations of the Cross!

Trackbacks

  1. […] So we are finishing off our summer vacation on Florida’s Emerald Coast, and I am inside blogging while I wait for the maintenance man to come fix our electronic locks.  No worries–I volunteered for the job so I could catch up on the blog.  Today I’m joining up with Micaela for another edition of 3 Reasons I love Catholicism. […]