Responding to Scandal in the Church
Like many of you, we were deeply disturbed to read news reports about the grand jury report out of Pennsylvania last week and the evil that has been running rampant throughout the Church.
Does this report mean that we give up hope or stop evangelizing? Does it mean that we have been abandoned by leadership in the Church? No.
Scandals will be with us until that Second Coming.
As evangelists we can:
|1.||Pray for healing for the victims, fast, offer reparation for the sins of the perpetrators, seek justice, and work towards our own holiness.|
|2.||When we speak to someone about the scandal, we can agree that what took place was horrifically evil and there is no excuse for it. It is terrible and it makes us angry. Matthew 18:6-7 reminds us to beware the millstone.|
|3.||We can explain that we shouldn't leave Jesus because of Judas. There are good priests and bishops who are just as angry as we are. We need to make sure that righteous anger does not devolve into unrighteous anger, but is directed towards positive change in the Church.|
|4.||We can explain that it is not people who are following the teachings of Jesus who perpetrate these offenses but those who do not follow Jesus as His disciple who do are committing these acts. Just as Judas, who was counted among the twelve, betrayed Jesus so too have some of our Catholic leaders betrayed Him.|
|5.||We can explain that we still need to forgive those who sin against us. "It is not in our power not to feel or to forget an offense; but the heart that offers itself to the Holy Spirit turns injury into compassion and purifies the memory in transforming the hurt into intercession. Christian prayer extends to the forgiveness of enemies...Forgiveness is a high-point of Christian prayer." (CCC 2843-44) We can ask for the intercession of St. Maria Goretti, St. John Vianney, Our Lady, and St. Michael.|
We don't stop evangelizing and bringing people to Jesus and the Sacraments because the church is filled with weeds and wheat (Matthew 13:24-30). As Jesus said, both will grow up together. In the end, the wheat goes into the barn an the weeds into the fire. Let's keep working towards the conversion of the whole world.
St. Paul Street Evangelization is a grassroots, non-profit Catholic evangelization organization, dedicated to responding to the mandate of Jesus to preach the Gospel to all nations by taking our Catholic Faith to the streets. We do this in a non-confrontational way, allowing the Holy Spirit to move in the hearts of those who witness our public Catholic presence. St. Paul Street Evangelization provides an avenue for you to share the Person of Jesus Christ and the truth and beauty of the Catholic Faith with a hungry culture.
In order to build a civilization of love, we must first create a culture of evangelization.