Growing Apologist

Becoming a Defender of Truth

Preaching for Christian Unity

From Microsoft OfficeI don’t like to preach. Some people might ask, well Pam what is it that you are doing with this blog then? And I would tell them, I’m sharing the truth. To me, preaching is more than sharing the truth—it’s forcing it upon people without listening or respecting their own personhood. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines the word preach as “to deliver a sermon; to urge acceptance or abandonment of an idea or course of action; specifically: to exhort in an officious or tiresome manner.” Like the word ‘religion’, the word ‘preach’ tends to be a loaded word.

Lord knows that I have a lot of opinions; some are in line with the Church and others he is working very hard in me to change so that my thoughts, words and actions do not contradict the Church. Today, I have a desire to preach on my thoughts about Christian unity and this whole religious freedom, abortion, health care controversies going on in America.

The Issue

I think that most people would agree that America is having some issues with her values and morals changing. The government is elected by the people to be From Microsoft Officea voice of the people, yet so many of us truly object to the way and the direction that America is being led. Personally, I have always thought that if you have a problem with how something is done, then do something about it. Sitting around, preaching (like I do so now) and complaining does not solve anything.

And the classic question: what can one person, who is not an elected official, do? Another thing that I do not like is politics. My general opinion on that is that politics means many tics and tics can’t survive without a host. But, as just one person of this country, I can vote. And when that fails, as it clearly did in the last election, I can pray.

The Solution

From Microsoft OfficeIt all comes back to prayer. In fact, it should have started with prayer. The classic question should not have been what can one person do, but what can God do. And the answer is anything, everything and the impossible. Being that this is an election year, it feels like America is holding her breath, just waiting to see which direction she will be led in next. It feels like a turning place, like Israel in the bible—will America follow God or will she be left to her own devices to be conquered by other countries?

This battle—will we follow God or not?—feels like it is taking place worldwide, rather than just in America. For if America, the very country that was founded in the name of religious freedom, trumps on people’s religious freedoms, who is to say that other countries will not fail when faced the same issue?

Yesterday was the last official day of the worldwide, church-wide prayer for Christian unity. Whether you joined in or not, now is definitely not the time to stop praying for Christian unity. It does not matter what sect of Christianity, it doesn’t matter where you live or your race or your gender, for we all belong to one church and one body with Jesus as the head. The theme was “We will all be changed by the Victory of Jesus Christ” and 1 Corinthians 15:51-58.

Let us pray continually that God will change us all, in his mercy, for his glory and because of the Victory that Jesus won for us.

I’m done preaching… for now…

From Microsoft Office

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Litany of Saints

Even though the Catholic culture is immersed in the intercession and icons of the faithful saints, the first encounter with the saints that truly touched my heart was at the dedication of our remodeled church to God.  It was something like a three hour mass and at one point, we all were kneeling while the choir sang the litany of saints and the people responded with “Lord have mercy” and “Pray for us”.  It brought me to tears, realizing the incredible number of people we could call on to pray to God for us.  Our prayers rose to the heavens like the incense blessing the church building.  The intercession of the saints is a beautiful piece of the Catholic religion, one that is very often misunderstood.  I didn’t understand it intellectually while I prayed with the congregation that day, but I felt my heart and soul stir and knew that it was something holy.

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All Things Saintly

SaintsIt’s a busy day for me today, so just a short post for now.  As I mentioned in yesterday’s post on Halloween, November is the month to ponder our lives, the lives of the saints, heaven, purgatory and hell, and the second coming of Christ since it is the last month in the Liturgical Calendar. 

Just as October was the month of the Rosary and I focused on all things Rosary, this month I plan to focus on the saints and to learn about the traditions in the Church around the saints.  Here is a list of planned topics for posts and about when you can expect them:

  • Today, November 2:  What are feast days and days of obligation?  What is All Saints feast day and All Souls feast day?
  • November 7:  What is the Communion of Saints, and do Catholics worship the saints?
  • November 14:  How does the Church determine who are worthy of the title saint?  How does a person become a saint?
  • November 21:  What are Patron Saints and why do people take on the name of a saint when they enter into the Church?
  • November 28:  The start of Advent and a new series of posts

As always, I am open to comments, suggestions, topics, and questions.  Just leave a comment.  Enjoy!

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