Reaching across the aisle is a political term, but maybe we need to start using that term in church. My friend and I have a conversation last night concerning “liberal” and “conservative” Catholics. This conversation is an ongoing one; we have it at least once a week, but more often than not its 4 or 5 days a week. We both love to give little digs concerning the others point of view. Mostly it’s joking around, but not always. I can become quite passionate about my point of view, as you read in an earlier blog concerning the teachers strike, that conversation ended on a bad note. But passion is not a bad thing, so I will stick with it; I just need to learn to temper it sometimes, but back to my theme, reaching across the aisle.
The Church, like any other human run organization is made up of people, many people with many different backgrounds and ideals. And that is one of the Churches beauties. It is also one of the Churches failings. Humanity has a way of corrupting all it touches, and the Church is no different.
We have many great people that have come from the Church, some liberal and some conservative. They all were doing God’s work in one fashion or another. God has a way of using people that most would not even consider to use, Joan of Arc or St. Francis, two people God had chosen to do his will. At the time no one would have picked either one to represent themselves, let alone God. But God knows better than you or I.
So looking at the current make up of the Church, I see both good and bad form the liberals and conservatives. Each side offering up what they see as needed to bring the Church closer to God, to try and create a heaven here on earth. The intentions are pure and the actions are done in the name of God. I would not presume that anyone is willingly trying to bring downs Gods church here on earth.
Some will call me silly for such a statement; they will assure me that there are evil doers working within the Church. And I am sure they are correct, but I try to find the goodness in all, I look for the silver lining or the hand of God in each situation. So there may be evil doers in the Church, but I trust that God will use their actions of evil for the betterment of the Church.
I trust in Jesus, as our head, to protect the body of the Church here on earth, to preserve her until the New Jerusalem comes and the new Heaven is open to us all.
Jesus reached across the aisle with his ministry, he opened up his heart to all, but he also called us then to task, Jesus was a liberal and conservative, Jesus saw the need for both compassion and rules, the need for free thinking and for controlled thought. Jesus understood that we, as Humans are frail and easily lead astray. That our good intentions for the Church, may in fact be only selfish needs for ourselves. Jesus understood that we may think we are working for the betterment of the Church, when we are really removing the cornerstone on which she stands.
Be us liberals or Conservatives, we need to learn to reach out to each other, to embrace the beauty that is our common faith and learn to discern the true meaning of our faith.
Each new generation offers us new hope, each new idea is an opportunity to expand our understanding and each faithful person graces us with the presence of God, in his earth home, the Catholic Church.