As my wife and I prepare to travel tomorrow I find myself reflecting on a conversation I had with an agnostic friend a few years ago. He asked me what I liked about being Catholic and wondered why I didn’t see the Church as old and outdated. I said I viewed the Catholic faith as a large rock in a flowing stream. Over time the currents rush by every day and the rock remains. Over huge periods of time, the rock may move a little due to the current but the change is gradual.
Our society clings to constant movement in life. Apps, Facebook, Twitter and the latest polls are constantly telling us to change our minds, update our lives or post our views. We are barraged with thoughts that constant change and updates are a requirement of life equal to breathing. Sometimes I find myself in a need to slow down and worry less about updating my life and start living my life. Sometimes we all need a rock.
The Church is my rock. It is what I need when everything else is about living in the moment and believing in what is popular. The Catholic faith provides stability for me…it is the mighty rock that does not change with the rush of new fads, new technology or new information. It remains steadfast. One of my favorite things to do is to go to Church on vacation. It is a reminder that with my faith I can go anywhere in the world and experience the same Mass as my parish at home. If you take a moment to reflect on that simple fact, it is an amazing view of our faith. That every hour of every day in this world someone is praying for you and me and celebrating what we hold sacred.
Are their things that I personally wish would change about the Catholic Church? Sure. But that is the best part; the church does not change for the individual or even the majority. It only changes when… change better reflect Christ’s mission of service to fellow man, to increase our resolve to protect and hold sacred every human life and to better reflect God’s love for us all.
So while politicians may attempt to use the Pope Francis’ Welcome Ceremony at the White House to bring attention to the differences of the Catholic Church and American society (see WSJ article on invited guests). I will use it as an opportunity to Stand with my Rock and pray that God continues to give Pope Francis the wisdom to guide His faithful people.