Several times recently I’ve had people speak to me about “the wealth of the Vatican”, either implying it’s wrong for the Church to have money or just openly condemning it. It is declared that it is hypocritical and somehow contrary to the teaching of Jesus. A lot could be said on this subject, but I would just like to briefly make a few points…
The following question is asked by the artist on the YouTube video “Why I hate religion but love Jesus”:
“What if I told you Jesus came to abolish religion?”
Hmmm…well, I guess I’d probably tut and then roll my eyes.
Next, I think I’d open my Bible to Matthew’s Gospel:
“Do not think that I have come to abolish the Law or the Prophets; I have not come to abolish them but to fulfill them” - Matthew 5:16-18
I think I then might flip over to the Epistle of St. James:
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world - James 1:27
Today I would like to return again to the subject of discernment. In my previous post I wrote about some of the things I’ve wrestled with during my current discernment process. I explained that I find the call to be holy and the call to Holy Orders rather difficult to distinguish from one another and I expressed my frustration that many people seem to assume that the former necessarily implies the latter….
Those who become monks and nuns take vows of (1) poverty, (2) chastity and (3) obedience. These three are known as the Evangelical Counsels. I’ve found that a lot of discernment material, when you really boil it down, focuses upon these three areas. The problem is that the Church teaches that all Christians are called to live out these counsels!
“Christ proposes the evangelical counsels, in their great variety, to every disciple” – Catechism of the Catholic Church, #915
I guess this does affirm something that I’ve thought for some time – that there are many common threads which run through all the vocations. There are also common graces which all people are reliant upon to live out their vocation, regardless of what that vocation might be.