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Christmas isn't Jesus' Birthday. Login/Join 
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".....Catholic religious orders were feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, teaching the ignorant, etc......"
... and preserving much of the world's best writings as well. During the "dark ages" they are the ones who preserved our heritage.

How can someone so right about so much be so wrong about computers? Confused

LOL
Wanda
 
Posts: 278 | Location: Pennslyvania | Registered: 12 September 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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"If you ever want to share the clergy story, I'm interested."
That's a hard question actually. Bottom line though I think it had a lot to do with my expectations. As a child I though that all clergy were somehow holier than the rest of us - or should be anyhow. When I realized that they were not fitting into my definition of what it means to be holy (which has been adjusted a bit over the years) I saw them as being hypocritical... they preached one thing and lived another. I remember one guy in particular. There were kids in his congregation whose families I knew had next to nothing and he drove around in a new cadillac - which they had helped buy. It just didn't seem right. My friends were getting killed in Vietnam, the whole civil rights movement was going on and so few were saying anything. Church became for me a "sing the song, pass the plate and listen to a lecture exercise in hypocracy". Anyhow, to make a long story short - or shorter, I grew up. I guess you could say they evolved from "gods" to "fallen gods" to wonderfully imperfect guides/leaders/friends.... Smiler



Wanda,

Thanks for sharing this story. As a child, I also learned that clergy were somehow holier than the rest of us. The Catholic Church went to some lengths to get this idea across. They would show us paintings of penitents in the confessional with Christ, not the priest, in the other side. They taught us songs about priests being 'like Christ'
because of Holy Orders. The emphasis was on the priest as Christ. It was and, still is, for many, a pyramidal structure.

Although I am a contemplative by nature, I was never taught centering prayer (as a child) or the fact that the Christ that was within 'Father' was also EQUALLY within me. That would rock the boat! Smiler

Thank God for the Rosary. It was my mainstay and a natural outlet for my contemplative nature....until I was later lead to forms of meditation that suited me best.

My point is that the idea of one class of people being holier than another is destructive and dangerous. It can lead to all sorts of abuse.

In your case, it was a simple matter of adjusting your perceptions and expectations. However, our expectations come from somewhere. I think it's important to explore the source. It's not always the fault of the individual's perception. Sometimes that perception is deliberately weighted in a specific direction to accomplish the goals of a particular organization. Sometimes we are not aware of the implications of things we are asked to assent to......and it isn't until far later that
the destructive results of this way of thinking appear.

I'm glad it worked out for you. Thanks again for sharing your story.....and for listening to my tangential comments.

qt

Also....Phil,

Yes, some people in the Church did do wonderful things during the times of the Crusades and the Inquisitions. That can't be denied. However, to
pretend that people in the Church don't, at times,
(perhaps unknowingly) promote evil, would be naive and dangerous. Thousands of people were killed because of the excesses of the Church. The Church should be held accountable....and the evil that it sometimes does should NOT be forgotten.

As we grow, I think our childhood loyalities must shift from Church to Truth.....and the pursuit of Truth can exact a great price.

qt
 
Posts: 203 | Registered: 21 September 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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As we grow, I think our childhood loyalities must shift from Church to Truth.....and the pursuit of Truth can exact a great price.


Church and Truth are on the same team, uraqt. That's my view, at least.

And just because one says that good things were also happening during the times of the Crusades and Inquisition doesn't mean that one is pretending that bad things don't or didn't happen. Give me a break, eh? Wink

Phil
 
Posts: 7539 | Location: Wichita, KS | Registered: 09 August 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Church and Truth are on the same team, uraqt. That's my view, at least.

I'll respond to Phil's statement first. I have to agree with you Phil, I think they are on the same team but that doesn't mean that they are the same thing. "I am the way, the truth and the life." The church which we so often identify with is not the Church. I don't believe any church contains or can contain the entirety of Truth so while the church may be on the same team, the church is not the team. Am I making any sense here?

As we grow, I think our childhood loyalities must shift from Church to Truth.....and the pursuit of Truth can exact a great price.

Oh how incredibly true, uraqt, but it also offers great rewards as well.

Although I am a contemplative by nature, I was never taught centering prayer (as a child) or the fact that the Christ that was within 'Father' was also EQUALLY within me.

Sure we were uraqt - we just didn't listen. The message got lost for some of us in the midst of all of the other stuff or maybe the message was simply too powerful for us to comprehend. I still have trouble with this idea at times - Christ in me? Christ in me! We can understand the walking with us, holding us up, judging us part, but Christ in us - Wow that is something else indeed!

It was and, still is, for many, a pyramidal structure.
Of course it is and this was brought home so well for me today. I helped host Clericus ( a meeting/ discussion group for the priests in the diocesis) today. Two of us were in charge of lunch - both lay people, the other woman is the wife of a retired priest. They graciously invited us to share in their celebration of the Eucharist and as was perfectly correct, they then went off to their meeting while we prepared the luncheon. When they finished and came to eat though, they did not immediately ask us to join them, but waited until the meal was almost over. Now, I am sure they did not intend this to exclude us but it in truth did. They were the priests, we were the lay people. Included in this group was the Bishop and Arch-deacon of the diocesis as well and they too were given their proper place. I know many of these people personally and they are wonderful people and I have a great deal of respect for them... but in a group, they separate themselves - elevate themselves above. It is a pyramidal structure and each part has its place. The entire blame for this cannot be put on the shoulders of the clergy however, because we elevate them and others as well. The ordering of gifts- the ordering of people. We all do it in one way or another. How can we condemn others for that which we do ourselves?

Peace all and thanks for you thoughts... once again you made me think.

Wanda
 
Posts: 278 | Location: Pennslyvania | Registered: 12 September 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Church and Truth are on the same team, uraqt. That's my view, at least.

That's the ideal, Phil, in my opinion, anyway....and it's a great ideal. However,
I can think of far too many examples (past and present) where some of the people in it, either through ignorance or plain mean-spiritedness were not.


And just because one says that good things were also happening during the times of the Crusades and Inquisition doesn't mean that one is pretending that bad things don't or didn't happen. Give me a break, eh? Wink

Well, since it's Christmas.... Smiler
Break granted....lol

Now.... I found this quote yesterday in a book by Adi Da called, "The Knee of Listening". You are going to love it!!!!!

Adi Da says, "...So that the Truth of the Catholic Faith, the verity of the church and its doctrine, a host of details, and, above all, the devotion to our Lady, were given me in a flash of comprehensive insight. All of this in spite of the fact that I have never been trained as a Catholic, or ever sought it out in the least overt manner......"

I am astounded by what I am reading. What do you make of it?

qt
 
Posts: 203 | Registered: 21 September 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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.... I don't believe any church contains or can contain the entirety of Truth so while the church may be on the same team, the church is not the team. Am I making any sense here?

Yes, Wanda, you're making sense....however,this brings me to a need for a common definition of Church.

As we grow, I think our childhood loyalities must shift from Church to Truth.....and the pursuit of Truth can exact a great price.

Oh how incredibly true, uraqt, but it also offers great rewards as well.


Thanks Wanda....and yes, I agree it does offer great rewards.


Although I am a contemplative by nature, I was never taught centering prayer (as a child) or the fact that the Christ that was within 'Father' was also EQUALLY within me.

Sure we were uraqt - we just didn't listen.....


Speak for yourself Wanda....lol.... Smiler

In my formation, the emphasis was definitely placed on the priest as God's rep.

Thanks for your comments Wanda.

Smiler

qt
 
Posts: 203 | Registered: 21 September 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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Definitions are definitely not my strong suit but I will try to explain what I think of as the difference between church and Church. The short version is church is the institutions that we call church - Roman, Episcopal, Methodist, Baptist - all of that. Church is the Body of Christ and encompasses all of these and yet is more than all of them combined. I guess you could say that church speaks more of the parts and Church as the whole. I do believe that Truth resides within Church and because it resides within the Body it also resides within the parts - ergo Phil is right but again the parts are not the whole.
I think the biggest problem Christianity - the Church faces today is this fracturing. A house divided and all of that....

I liked your quote by the way... a lot. May have to give this guy a closer look. Definitely food for thought. Smiler

You do come up with some good ones!
Peace,
Wanda
 
Posts: 278 | Location: Pennslyvania | Registered: 12 September 2001Reply With QuoteReport This Post
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