Today I was talking with a man who is the founder of a Christian organization that distributes pamphlets in over eighteen countries. He related to me this sad but humorous incident concerning a priest who called to make an order for pamphlets. The priest said that he used parts of one of the pamphlets in a homily but omitted parts in an effort not to offend anyone. He ordered a large quantity of pamphlets to put out for his people to read for themselves, so that he would not have to tell them. Fear , it puts a damper on all of us at times. Yet, in the case of the clergy when sharing the word of God, fear should not be a part of ones vocabulary. Whom has the ability to reach hundreds or even thousands of people every week? The clergy is the answer. They are put in a teaching position to teach and lead the Christian people, but often out of fear they send out a “lets get along, I don’t want to offend you,” sermon and they wonder why so many souls are leaving the Church.
The Frenchman, Alexis de Tocqueville, came to America to study what had made America great. Since de Tocqueville came to these shores, 170 years have passed. Here is what he had seen and heard:
“I sought for the greatness and genius of America in her commodious harbors and her ample rivers, and it was not there; in her fertile fields and boundless prairies, and it was not there; in her rich mines and her vast world commence, and it was not there. Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits aflame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power.”
We Need a Revival in the Heart’s of our Clergy
“The best way to revive the Church is to build a fire within the hearts of our clergy. Too many of those most resistant to preaching on truth have been priests and pastors who fear losing power, perks, and position if they speak out firmly on Truths of the Church. They are afraid to upset the congregation, especially those who are substantial contributors. What they excuse as diplomatic and unoffensive is actually compromise and dereliction of duty. There are key issues that they know will cause difficulties, such as cohabitation, receiving Our Lord in mortal sin, homosexuality, and the list goes on. They avoid these important issues of faith like a deadly disease. The greatest problems in the Church lie in the fearful hearts of the priests who stand in the pulpit.
Preaching without fear is acutely needed in this diabolic time in which we live. When people are being blinded to the truth by the secular world, courageous, outspoken Priests and Bishops must come to their aid. In our churches today, many are so involved in trying to please non-Christians that they have forgotten their first duty is to please God.
The Church suffers, not so much from the sins of the world, but from the sins of the Church itself. The restoration of the Church can only be accomplished by a rekindled fire in the hearts of our Priests and Bishops. The Church is only as holy as its people.
As we look upon our society, religion is increasing and morality is decreasing. Religion has become somewhat of a hobby, a social gathering, not a creed to live by and even die for. With this said, I am speaking of all denominations not just the Catholic Church.
What happens when the people are not taught the true faith from the pulpit: …
91% of us lie regularly. Lying is now called “a cultural trait in America.”
Only 13% of us believe in all of the Ten Commandments.
33% of all our children are born illegitimate.
80% of our children in our larger cities are illegitimateHomosexual marriages on the rise
Only about 13% believe that Jesus is truly present in the Blessed Sacrament
To Fix a Problem, We Must Admit that There is a Problem
If a patient, who is dying, denies the disease that consumes him, he will not seek a physician to heal him. This is the case with our clergy, if they deny that there is a problem, then there is nothing to remedy.
Priests, pastors, and all those who hold positions of authority must recognize and confess the absence of God in their lives in order to correct the travesty that has taken place in the Church. They must accept responsibility. Only after this awareness is brought forth and the necessary corrections are made, can they stand in the pulpit and preach with a pure heart.
This failing to teach has been going on for many generations. I must clarify that not all clergy are in the same boat, but the boat is definitely leaning to the wrong side.
Righteousness can cause a nation to rise, but the sins of the people will tear it down.
If God is to Renew the Soul of America, His Church and its members must have a drastic change of heart. The grace of a change of heart my come through a peer, or a lay person, or maybe a book. But we all know that the Holy Spirit is the instrument that will plant the seed in a sincere heart. If we seek truth, we will find it, and once we find it, fear will be a word that is no longer a part of our vocabulary. Both clergy and laity alike must not live in fear. We are living in times of great trials and it those who speak the truth without fear that will become the future Saints of the Church.
We will close with a quote from St. Teresa of Avila: “People who do not love much are weak minded and cowardly; they are filled with a thousand fears and scruples arising from human prudence”.
Praying for our priests and bishops and encouraging them to have no fear in teaching the true message of Our Lord is essential. As laity and concerned Christians it is our obligation to correct anyone who teaches in error. Whether we are a priest, bishop or lay member we make up the Body of Christ, His Church. We must all move forward without fear and teach the true faith without compromise.