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    Thursday, May 25, 2006

    sentire cum ecclesia

    Does Father Neuhaus ever not speak clearly and with cutting truth? As usual, thank God for him.


    "sentire cum ecclesia." It means to think with the Church, but also to feel with the Church. In short, to love the Church.

    ...we are loved by the Church, and most particularly by all the saints in the Church Triumphant. "Sentire cum ecclesia" means being concerned never to betray St. Paul, St. Irenaeus, St. Augustine, St. Thomas, St. Theresa and the faith for which they and innumerable others lived and died.

    And, for all the inadequacies and sins of the Church and her leadership in our time, it means always doing one's best to support, and never to undermine, the effectiveness of her teaching ministry.

    She is, after all, the bearer and embodiment of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, which is nothing less than the story of the world -- without which the world, and we with it, is lost.

    The main problem in the Church today -- as it has been from the apostolic era and will be until our Lord's return in glory -- is a lack of faith.

    Our sinful nature resists, does not dare to believe, the good news of our salvation now and forever. This has intellectual, spiritual, aesthetic, moral and whatever dimensions you want to name.

    We have turned the high adventure of discipleship into something dreary, drab and predictable. This is nowhere so evident as in the long-standing intra-Church squabbles between left and right, liberals and traditionalists.

    In "Catholic Matters" I refer to the "discontinuants" of both left and right -- those who speak of a pre-Vatican II Church and a post-Vatican II Church as though there were two churches. The alternative is to gratefully and loyally take our place in the glorious, and sometimes stumbling, march of the one Church through time to the end of time.


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