How Not to Lose Your Faith During the Present Crisis The items that are filling the newspapers daily now, are the same items that I had to deal with daily almost twenty years ago when I was involved in the daily life of the church. I came very close to losing my faith. I contemplated joining the Orthodox Church among other things, but ultimately through a very trying period, that tested the very core of everything that I had been taught and believed--I have remained a Roman Catholic. Now, it is like reliving a nightmare, only everyone is in on it this time. I would like to share some points to contemplate on if you, like me, find yourself at a loss in the present situation in the Church. None of them by themself will convince you to stay, but I think if you try most of them you'll find that God has a mission for you; to rebuild and to enliven the Church, that as St. Francis was told years ago by Christ, is falling into ruin.
(1) Do not deny that there is a problem This is the usually the first sign that someone is losing their faith, when they can't face reality. They want to make believe problems either don't exist or are being made up. Sort of like the famous scene in the Gospels where Peter says after the crucifixion, "I'm going fishing". Whenever I post anything unpopular on here (like the sins of a founder of a conservative order or the reported homosexuality of a famous bishop), I receive a lot of email from angry readers. Why are they angry? Because they cannot believe that so and so might have sinned and sinned seriously. Reflect on this:
If we say, "We are free of the guilt of sin," we deceive ourselves; the truth is not to be found in us. But if we acknowledge our sins, he who is just can be trusted to forgive our sins and cleanse us of every wrong. If we say, "We have never sinned," we make him a liar and his word finds no place in us. 1 John 9-10
We can apply this passage to ourselves, everyone else in the church and indeed the Body of Christ (the Church-minus the head of the Church--Jesus and of course his mother Mary). We deceive ourselves if we think of anyone besides Christ as sinless and often reveal something of idol worship in the process.
The true apostles whose sins are for all to see in the Gospels, did not for a minute allow the early church to worship them when they carried the healing power of Jesus with them. They reminded the people that they were mortal men just like the rest.
We must remind ourselves that there is only one God and that the founder of a religious order or bishop is not him. Many of the leaders of the Church need to be reminded of that too and not allow people to worship or pay them undue respect which is the command of Christ himself in the Gospel. Have you worshipped an individual within the church in the past? Has your faith been shaken in that individual? Good--there is one God, him alone shall you worship!