The Church of Saint Agnes

1680 Dixie Highway, Fort Wright, KY 41011

The Church of Saint Agnes
1680 Dixie Highway, Fort Wright, KY 41011

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Memorial of Saint Scholastica

Date: 
Tue, 02/10/2015
Author: 
Rev. Msgr. Donald Enzweiler

According to Catholic thought and tradition
the purpose of the law of the church is to promote the common good
and to promote the salvation of souls.
The concern of the law of the church is the safety and welfare of the people
with regard to the state of their soul before God.
 
The law promotes what is proper, what honors God.
We want to live in such a way so as to not destroy our relationship with God
and our relationships with one another.
 
Jesus charges the Pharisees and scribes with subverting the law….
substituting human interests for the commandments of God.
External observance of the law for the Pharisees and scribes
became more important than the meaning behind the law.
They followed the letter of the law but failed to give witness
that they were elected by God and that their hearts belonged to God.
 
Somewhere along the line,
the Pharisees and scribes became watchdogs when it came to the law.
They policed their neighbors.  They called people to task,
even imposed penalties and punishment when the laws weren’t followed.
And yet, they themselves interpreted the law in their own favor,
misusing the law to escape their true obligations.
 
It these days, when we observe many Catholics not fulfilling their obligations,
we must exercise caution lest we become like the Pharisees and scribes.
Our fulfillment of the law does not give us the right to condemn those who don’t.
And we must assure that external observation of the law on our part
is grounded in a heart filled with love.
Otherwise we will fall prey to hypocrisy and self-righteousness.
 
I know that I get angry when someone does not follow traffic laws:
excessive speeding, running stop signs and red lights.
I feel my life is being put in danger
and that with the loss of order and a growing disregard for communal authority
our civil society is slowly eroding away.
 
This leads me to ask…What is behind my concern or your concern
for someone not fulfilling their Catholic obligations?
Am I concerned for their relationship with God?  What is in my heart?
Why should I allow someone’s failure to fulfill their religious obligations
destroy my relationship with them, cause me to be separated from them?
 
Let us commend such people to Christ’s mercy; pray for the conversion of their minds and hearts
pray that they might experience God’s love and come to see the value of our Catholic traditions.
Through our love, joy, and charity, may we convince others to honor God and to follow Christ.