Archive for September 27, 2011


For those who do not have a relationship with God, do not know what it means to be in one and have no experience of God in their lives then just continue to do what you are doing.  You are on the right track of how NOT to have a relationship with Him let alone a deeper one.   Am I trying to drive you further away from God our Father? No on the contrary, I am trying to create an awareness of what are the ways that might keep us away from Him. 

From personal experience it is harder for someone to experience God when he/she is looking at life through tinted lenses and clogged ears.  What do I mean? Well because of our sinful ways, we often times choose to see the world the way we want to, act on our every desires and do not care that it is not God’s will for us.  The tint and clogged ears refers to sin in our lives hence the discoloured view and the inability to listen to the Word of God.

Here are some of the obstacles i.e. thoughts or actions that prevents us from a meaningful relationship with God our Father :-

  • Not worshipping Him and not rightfully giving Him thanks and praise for all He has provided for us.  Thinking that whatever we have is by our own doing.
  • Not praying and seeking His wisdom and counsel in all things.
  • Think we are in control of everything.
  • Thinking we have lots of time to repent and turn our lives around, so we do what we want to do. Live life like that is no tomorrow, party on…
  • Treat the Sunday Eucharistic Celebration as a day of obligation.
  • Arriving late for Mass and leaving before the last hymn is sung and not praying in thankgiving thereafter.
  • Receiving the Eucharist even though we have committed grave sin/s.
  • Letting our addictions control our lives without actively seeking help egs. Alcoholism, pornography, gambling, receational drug taking etc.
  • Believing that most of the traditions and Sacraments of the Church are man-made and hence can be ignored afterall God knows our heart.
  • We are only human and so God will understand if we give in to our weak nature.
  • Read scripture like we are reading a book or magazine.
  • Not doing a proper examination of conscience before going for the sacrament of reconciliation.
  • Not making every effort to refrain from committing the sins we confessed.
  • Cursing and swearing is okay because everyone is doing so.
  • Believing that modesty is only in the heart.
  • Intentionally exposing ourselves to explicit movies.
  • Thinking it is okay to oggle hunks and babes in egs. swimsuit magazines etc.
  • Not making every effort to increase in faith or knowledge of our Faith.
  • Not praying regularly.
  • Viewing the world as a ‘dog eat dog’ one and survival is only for the fittest.
  • Watching Television for hours on end.
  • Thinking that community service is only for those who have the time.
  • There is Me, Myself And I.
  • Work, work and more work 7 days a week.  I will rest when I’m dead or when I’m too old to.
  • Life is all about happiness and the pursuit of it.
  • Life is all about money and the pursuit of it.
  • The ten commandments are only guidelines or just a movie.
  • Communion is between me and God only.

The list provided is by no means exhaustive as there are many other areas not explored here like idolatry in things, items, celebrities, money etc. then there is relativism and much more.

Let us pray for one another, that we may all grow in faith and deepen our relationship with God our Father who loves us.  Amen.

 

 

Clarifying Marriage By Fr Dwight Longenecker

Posted: September 27, 2011 by CatholicJules in Great Catholic Articles

Previous posts on homosexuality have raised some interesting discussions in the combox. What interests me is how some readers who are Catholic have such a non-Catholic understanding of marriage.

We are told that because George and Harry love one another and are committed to one another that this is the same thing as marriage and that they should therefore be allowed to be married.

However, romantic or erotic feelings of love are not the criteria for a valid marriage, nor are they pre-requisites. An arranged marriage in which there is no subjective erotic or romantic feelings of ‘love’ as popularly understood, would be a valid marriage (and if the history of humanity has anything to say about it–may end up be a very good marriage). Neither can feelings of ‘love’ be the sole criteria to justify for an action.  Note the adulterer who ceases to ‘love’ his wife and leaves her because he ‘loves’ his mistress. Regard the ethnic cleanser who ‘loves’ his country so much that he kills its enemies. Don’t misunderstand the argument–I’m not degrading love or saying it is a bad thing. I’m saying the romantic and erotic feelings we call ‘love’ are not what validates a marriage (or any other action). Moral judgements are made on more solid factors.

For Catholics, marriage is a sacramental covenant which springs from the order of creation. God created the mystery of man and woman. “For this reason a man leaves his father and mother and cleaves to his wife.” The nuptial relationship is bound up in the natural complementarity of the sexes and the intimacy between man and wife is part of this profound natural order, and from this intimacy new human life is created. The commitment that is expected within this marriage is one that reflects the eternal commitment of God to his people.

Thus St Paul speaks of the love that Christ has for his church and compares it to marriage. Christ is the bridegroom and the church the bride. Christ penetrates the Church with the dart of longing love which is the Holy Spirit. From this intimate union of love a new order of creation is brought forth. Because of the eternal, life giving nature of this covenant between Christ and his Church we believe that marriage is also a life long covenant between male and female.

We should be clear about certain things: to affirm marriage in this way is (by definition) to reject homosexual unions as equivalent. Nevertheless, it is possible to affirm that two men or two women might love one another very deeply. They may have a lifelong partnership and deep commitment. That friendship and commitment may be noble and good and true and self sacrificial. This is what the church has termed ‘friendship.’

However, the church has also rejected any idea that this friendship should be expressed through sodomy, and it (along with every other civilized society–even those that accepted homosexuality) have never pretended that such friendships were equivalent to marriage.

The reason people in our society push for homosexual marriage is therefore, a misunderstanding of what marriage is. Too many believe that marriage is the final culmination of a romantic and erotic relationship. They see marriage not only as a desirable contract of commitment, but most of all, they see marriage as a societal (and ultimately religious) validation of their chosen sexual behaviors.