Thursday, August 20, 2015

The Catholic Writer - Why Bother?

It seems to me both Right and Just to wonder sometimes why I bother writing about Catholicism or myself in Catholicism at all. Not because of the usual authorly insecurites, but simply and patently obviously because, What have I to offer?

If a Catholic, or near-Catholic, or non-Catholic - if my son, for Pete's sake - were to ask me where to go to read about my faith I certainly would not point them here. To write about "religion" in any way strikes at my heart as the greatest possible imposition and display of lack of faith. What. Scripture isn't enough? The Gospel, the letter of Paul, et al. The Roman Catholic Catechism doesn't suffice? Really. You don't say?

So. Let's do this. Let me say that this entire blog, all columns, postings, opinions, relations, and assertions are offered in the way of prayer. That is all. I can testify that I have written nothing without close thought and consideration of the Church, to be sure. But after all, my errors are many. My presumption is clear as day. I mean no disrespect. God forbid that I should negate or seem to want to erase his Word. Though, to be sure, I am guilty of confusion.

How can one write about God and not confuse?

At best, one who writes about religion or from their experience might - might - provide a kind of personal support or maybe - maybe - prompt a heart to come closer to God in that person's experience. All this is of course by the Grace of God through the Holy Spirit, that proceeds through God the Father and the Son.

Who am I, as a writer, except what I am by the grace of God?

In this light, writing about God is a form of modeling. Just like service at Mass. Our priest, Father John Boyle, insists that men serve in part that they may model reverence for the Lord. Is this not why we kneel for the consecration? Is it not why we bow our heads at the mention of His name? Of course it is. And so, we who write, write in the same frame of mind, to model engagement with God in the sphere of the written word.

I think that writing of this sort should be something like, when you go to Mass, seeing someone you know and trust in the pews, who you see just about every Sunday, who does a bit of this or that as a volunteer, who sings and prays out loud, who you want to talk to after Mass because they know your name and have a sense of humor.

In truth, thinking this way, I would give anything to attend Mass with every person who has even clicked on this blog. Of course, I believe that one day I will do just that.

Thank you, all. And may the Lord have mercy on all of us. Amen.