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6 years ago  ::  Aug 14, 2008 - 1:56PM #1
RavynG
Posts: 120
I have a Catholic friend who has had some personal issues with the Church and who is married to a pagan (not Wiccan, more of an Asatruar but not really practicing). She has become rather Liberal and Democratic in her views and for the last year has not attended Mass because she feels she will be rejected. ( I personally do not think she will be rejected because unless she starts talking about her views I don't see how anyone would know about it and the Mass is not the place for socializing anyway--the coffee-room is! )

She says she has no problem with Confession, or sharing her ideas with the Priest and taking any suggestions he might have to readjust her thinking, so that is not really a problem. But this "not feeling welcome" is. How can I help her feel welcome again until her conscience has been tweaked appropriately to make the necessary changes she may have to make in her attitude?

I don't think she should stay away from Mass because she does not agree with all the Catholic Social-Service norms....and basically that is the problem not the Creed or basic dogma.

I think she is closer to being "in the right place" than if she was not Catholic at all, and I want her to find peace again so she can grow in maturity.

How Liberal is still acceptable in the Catholic Church? I tried to look some things up on the internet but it is so confusing. There is not even agreement on what the Pope says and means! And it seems like the opinions of what is acceptable changes from one Priest to another! ( Again I am not talking about dogma, just matters of opinion and conscience. For instance--how literal is the Bible? or How far should govt be involved in religious/personal matters?... that sort of thing. )
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Nihil domestica sede iocundius!

~~~Ravyn
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6 years ago  ::  Aug 14, 2008 - 4:19PM #2
Emmanuelle110
Posts: 108
Why don't you offer to go to church with your friend?  It's usually comforting to have someone with you if you feel awkward or nervous.  You should also recommend that she look into the Catechism of the Catholic Church which is a lot simpler to understand than the Bible (don't get me wrong, I love the Bible but it does take time to interpret it).  It has the Church's viewpoints on everything including the obvious major issues like homosexuality, divorce, chastity, etc.  If she is uneasy about attending church, just try to slowly bring her back.  Also, advise her to pray about it and she might just get some clarity.  I hope I helped :D

God Bless!
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6 years ago  ::  Aug 14, 2008 - 6:33PM #3
RavynG
Posts: 120
[QUOTE=Emmanuelle110;691194]Why don't you offer to go to church with your friend?  It's usually comforting to have someone with you if you feel awkward or nervous.  You should also recommend that she look into the Catechism of the Catholic Church which is a lot simpler to understand than the Bible (don't get me wrong, I love the Bible but it does take time to interpret it).  It has the Church's viewpoints on everything including the obvious major issues like homosexuality, divorce, chastity, etc.  If she is uneasy about attending church, just try to slowly bring her back.  Also, advise her to pray about it and she might just get some clarity.  I hope I helped :D

God Bless![/QUOTE]

I did go to church with her before she stopped going and she knows I would again. But that is not why she feels like she does not belong. She does not have a problem with doctrine and dogma. She has a problem with the grayer areas, like social reform and conscience matters and opinion.  We live in an area that is moderate-to-conservative and her views are definitely more on the liberal end of the scale. Basically she wants to know if it is still OK to think the way she thinks--how liberal is too liberal? What is allowed and what isn't? I don't really know what to tell her. As far as I can tell she isn't breaking any rules. But she is walking the edge on some issues.
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6 years ago  ::  Aug 14, 2008 - 8:48PM #4
Emmanuelle110
Posts: 108
Well then my best advice is to encourage her to talk to a priest.  He will definitely be able to enlighten her on the Church's standpoint. :D
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6 years ago  ::  Aug 15, 2008 - 4:55PM #5
mlldrl
Posts: 152
Whatever you do, don't point her to Bnet.  Most of the folks here would just steer here further away from orthodox Catholicism.

M
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6 years ago  ::  Aug 15, 2008 - 9:02PM #6
TemplarS
Posts: 6,714
Well,  I'm tempted to be cynical here and say that anyone who has not at times struggled with a few aspects of Catholicism hasn't thought about it very much.

In any case, this is certainly no reason to stay away from Mass.  As Jesus said, "They that are whole have no need of a physician, but they that are sick:"   I would think even the most orthodox Catholic might look at this as an opportunity to provide some healing and nurture the person's faith.  Look, there is a difference between holding some doubts or conflicting ideas in your mind and walking down the aisle wearing a rainbow sash. 

As regards Bnet, you need to go into it with your eyes open; but I have found that amid the noise and nonsense, there really are a number of thoughtful, articulate individuals from all parts of the spectrum.  Don't be intimidated or brainwashed, but don't shy away either; there is good discussion to be had.
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6 years ago  ::  Aug 15, 2008 - 9:16PM #7
Mareczku
Posts: 2,220
What is the big deal about rainbow sashes?  Since when did rainbows become a point of dissention?  I think the rainbow as a sign of diversity is a beautiful symbol.  I know that a lot of Catholics hate gay people but whatever happened to live and let live?  I think some Catholics have been too influenced by fundamentalist Christians and they are taking on their hatred and prejudice.  It is sad.  Many times here I have heard people say that homosexuality is a sin but newsflash folks, it isn't.  Even the Catholic Church says that it is not.  But I think prejudice and homophobia are. 

Peace - Pax - Paix - Pokoj - La Paz

Mareczku
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6 years ago  ::  Aug 16, 2008 - 12:35AM #8
rjak134
Posts: 320
[QUOTE=Mareczku;694483]What is the big deal about rainbow sashes?  Since when did rainbows become a point of dissention?  I think the rainbow as a sign of diversity is a beautiful symbol.  I know that a lot of Catholics hate gay people but whatever happened to live and let live?  I think some Catholics have been too influenced by fundamentalist Christians and they are taking on their hatred and prejudice.  It is sad.  Many times here I have heard people say that homosexuality is a sin but newsflash folks, it isn't.  Even the Catholic Church says that it is not.  But I think prejudice and homophobia are. 

Peace - Pax - Paix - Pokoj - La Paz

Mareczku[/QUOTE]


The reason that the rainbow sashes are a big deal is that the folks that wear them are an organized movement which is consciously, deliberately, and openly in opposition to the Church's ancient understanding of marriage.  It is not homophobia or prejudice to hold to the doctrine which has been taught from the beginning on this matter.

Additionally, the rainbow sash presents a major problem in terms of how one sees the mass.  For orthodox Catholics, the mass is an occasion for loving worship of the Triune God, and for reverently receiving Our Most Blessed Lord in the Eucharist.  For groups like the rainbow sash, by contrast, it is made an occasion for political maneuvering and power grabbing.  The mass is an utterly inappropriate time and place for such tomfoolery.  The rainbow sash movement is way out of line and is fully deserving of stern discipline.  Such discipline is in no way homophobic or prejudiced.  It is aimed at upholding both the Church's ancient and true teaching on marriage and sexuality, as well as protecting the mass for becoming an open field for protests, political nonsense, and other goofishness.
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6 years ago  ::  Aug 16, 2008 - 8:39AM #9
newsjunkie
Posts: 5,743
[QUOTE=RavynG;690831]I have a Catholic friend who has had some personal issues with the Church and who is married to a pagan (not Wiccan, more of an Asatruar but not really practicing). She has become rather Liberal and Democratic in her views and for the last year has not attended Mass because she feels she will be rejected. ( I personally do not think she will be rejected because unless she starts talking about her views I don't see how anyone would know about it and the Mass is not the place for socializing anyway--the coffee-room is! )

She says she has no problem with Confession, or sharing her ideas with the Priest and taking any suggestions he might have to readjust her thinking, so that is not really a problem. But this "not feeling welcome" is. How can I help her feel welcome again until her conscience has been tweaked appropriately to make the necessary changes she may have to make in her attitude?

I don't think she should stay away from Mass because she does not agree with all the Catholic Social-Service norms....and basically that is the problem not the Creed or basic dogma.

I think she is closer to being "in the right place" than if she was not Catholic at all, and I want her to find peace again so she can grow in maturity.

How Liberal is still acceptable in the Catholic Church? I tried to look some things up on the internet but it is so confusing. There is not even agreement on what the Pope says and means! And it seems like the opinions of what is acceptable changes from one Priest to another! ( Again I am not talking about dogma, just matters of opinion and conscience. For instance--how literal is the Bible? or How far should govt be involved in religious/personal matters?... that sort of thing. )
__________________
Nihil domestica sede iocundius!

~~~Ravyn[/QUOTE]

A 2008 survey found that 41% of Catholic registered voters are Democrats and 38% are Republican. Latino Catholics are overwhelmingly Democrats -- 57% to 18% Republican. Here is the survey; you can look at the tables at the end and see repsonses of Catholic voters to issue like abortion, gay marriage, the war in Iraq, environmental regulations, and other issues: http://www.calvin.edu/henry/civic/Civic … ection.doc.

What, in your opinion, makes someone a Liberal?

From what I've seen, US Catholics are often quite "liberal" when it comes to helping the poor, helping immigrants, calling for reforms to insurance so that it's available to all, opposing the Iraq War, which the Pope said was not a just war, and other issues that many "conservatives" would disagree with. Catholics tend to be conservative when it comes to issues of sexual morality. I have had discussions with religious who are very "liberal"; I went to Catholic elementary school back in the 1960s, and the sisters who taught there would likely be seen as very liberal today. The Catholic church is diverse; I hope you'll let your friend know.

In contrast to Emmanuelle's response, I'd suggest your friend read the Gospels rather than the CCC. I find the CCC quite difficult to read and understand, compared to Jesus's message in the Gospels. I think the New American Bible, the version used in the RCC lectionary, is easy to read. It's available online at the US Conference of Catholic Bishops' website: http://www.usccb.org/nab/bible/. I find St. Paul's letters are often more difficult to read than the Gospels, even in the NAB version.

Your friend may not be feeling religious, but perhaps she is still interested in spirituality. Catholicism spirituality is very diverse. She can explore the different forms of prayer and spirituality with a spiritual director, if she is interested in spirituality.
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6 years ago  ::  Aug 16, 2008 - 9:39AM #10
mlldrl
Posts: 152
[QUOTE=newsjunkie;695063]In contrast to Emmanuelle's response, I'd suggest your friend read the Gospels rather than the CCC. I find the CCC quite difficult to read and understand, compared to Jesus's message in the Gospels. [/QUOTE]

Maybe try the Compendium of the Catechism of the Catholic Church would be more helpful for those who find the CCC difficult to read.

In Christ,
Michael
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