Friday, May 27, 2011

De gustibus...

Matters of taste should not be argued so goes the old Latin adage.

In the gospel today, Jesus reminds us that it is not we who chose him but he who chose us.

So often in our age people shop for a church the way they shop for a house. Do I like the music? Do I like the preaching? Does the church give me and my family what I thing they need?

There is great wisdom in the oft forgotten law of the Catholic Church. You belong to the parish in whose boundaries you live. You are free to attend any Catholic church in the world for mass whenever you like, but there is one pastor and one bishop who the law makes responsible for your pastoral care.
Only in America do we have this invention of registering. We shop then register, as if the church were a gym.
We forget that in Church we are called to be community, not simply with those we like, people who think like us, or the priest who inspires us. We are called to be community with whatever other members of the body of Christ God happens to put in our path.

It is he who chooses us, not we who choose him.
If we love only those who love us...

And all those other passages that remind us how difficult it can be.
But if we think about it we realize that it is only difficult if we keep ourselves at the center of the matter. As we focus on Christ, and forget ourselves, it becomes much easier.