History Teaches Us That History Teaches Us…..

History Teaches Us That History Teaches Us…..
I thought I would start with this tautology.  History teaches us many things,and in the study of history, we not only learn about who we are, and were we come from, but it also teaches us what errors were made, and one would hope that it would also teach us about what direction we are heading in, or what directions to avoid, and what errors we should probably not want to make again.

Now, lets suppose that we have a group of people who all want to play a game of cards.  There is an official book of card games written by Hoyle, that would teach you everything you ever wanted to know about cards in a rather exaustive way if you tried to sit down and take it all in, in one sitting or reading.

It is therefore helpful if someone has read the entire section of the book that applies to the game one is trying to play, and become conversant in the rules and subtleties of the game, in order to share this information with others to allow them to go down the correct path, and not either make errors in the play of the game, or to just make up the rules as they go along in error.

Now, if no one has read the book, and has no clue about the rules, and direction of play, then how would you expect that they will ever get to a meaningful game of cards ? Eventually everyone would stop playing and leave the game because no one understands how to play and the excitement of the gathering has worn off, they are all bored, and just leave.
The Bible, sacred scripture, and particularly the Gospels , Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, are what holds to rules to the game of life and our relationships not only to God, but to each other.  The study of the Bible is needed in a life  long class and review.
You may ask why it is that we need that.  After all if you read the Bible, you know the stories, they are familiar, so you should be fine to play the game.

Not so much.  Unlike the well known Hoyle book of card games, the Bible, is the living breathing word of God.  It is a living document, meaning that our understanding of the Bible and its application to our lives changes.  How it is that we read a passage, and we take the understanding of the passage, from Gospel to Life.. we apply what we read from the Gospel and apply that to what ever is going on in our lives today.

We know that the situations and struggles and needs we have today, are going to be different than they will tomorrow, next week, next year,etc.   So we take what we read, and discern how it is that this applies to our lives in the current day, in our situation and it speaks to us.   It can if we allow it to direct the path of our lives.

We come to understand how it is that this make the Bible come alive for us.

There is also a second part to this, because the Gospel is not just for you as a tiny branch, it is meant for all the world.
To fulfil the mission that God has given us, we need to share the Gospel !  Giving Life to the Gospel through our witness, through our own story of faith.

We share our story, and possibly someone else shares their story.  Possibly you go to Mass and you hear a Homily that is a different facet from what you saw.  It is a lesson, a spiritual feeding you get that gives you another understanding and from that feeding, you become what you receive and share Christ with others.
In the current age, we are in desperate need of on going adult catechesis, adult formation.  We need people who understand how important it is to be educated in our faith.   It is not an insult or an embarrasment to say that you don’t know something about your faith.  It should be an embarrassment that you do not go out and find the answers to that which you do not know about the faith that you profess.

I knew one man who when he met someone who was not of our faith, and was told by the other person that they were of a different faith, his  favorite answer was this.   ” What ever you are…. go and be the very best in your faith that you can be.  Ask the hard questions, and search out the answers to the questions you have,until you are at peace”.  This should be true of us as well.

We should be asking the hard questions, we should be looking to find the answers for what we believe and why we believe it.
Because of the lack of education, because we have fallen into a  spiritual reletivism of sorts, almost a Sophist-ic view of our faith, where the generation of ” I’m OK, Your OK” and cant we just all sit around the campfire and sing Kum Baya.. has caused us to raise an entire generaltion of adults who have no spiritual roots, or at the least shallow roots.

This has given rise to the state of current affairs where we have people who leave the faith, because they don’t have answers for the questions they are seeking, or they are worse yet, getting those answers from a secularized, governmental agency that pushes their view on children whos parents know no better.

Start reading, start learning, and start finding the answers you have questions for.  Talk to a priest, or deacon, and someone who  really knows their faith well.
If you are in the position where you are asked a question you don’t know the answer to, say to the person who is asking the question, that you dont know, but you will research the answer and get back to them, and then do it.  You will both learn and grow in faith.
Remember that “welcoming” and “affirming” are NOT the same thing.  We welcome everyone, but we will not affirm them in their own sin, or in our own.  Separation of the sinner and the sin are paramount.  LOVE your neighbor,and hate ALL sin, yours and your neighbors.   Our faith was based on community, and it is through community that it must be lived.

May God give you the gift of His peace !
Now is the time, and today is the day, when people of faith must stand, and live their faith, and stand for the faith that they profess.

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