Archbishop Chaput: Nothing More Important Than Sanctity


Archbishop Chaput

We live in challenging times. These days, the pagan way of life is the norm and living a Christian life seems almost heroic, despite the fact that it’s nothing more than doing what we are supposed to do.

At the recent Catholic Life Congress in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia, Archbishop Charles Chaput gave a powerful speech in which he said:

“The only thing that matters is to be a saint. That’s what we need to be. That’s what we need to become.”

Potent words for our time.

The Archbishop pointed out that, although more than 70 million people identify themselves as Catholics, their views, appetites and behaviors are pretty much the same as non-Christians and therefore, nothing in the way they live their lives reflects their Catholicity. The greatest indicator of that is the presidential election results from a few weeks ago.

If you are reading this, I’m betting you feel differently than the average Catholic he described. My guess is you place great importance on living your Catholic faith to the fullest, which is so refreshing to see. And, as the Archbishop stated during his speech, now is the time to really define what your faith means to you.

He remarked:

“So we need to ask ourselves: What do I want my life to mean? If I claim to be a Catholic, can I prove it with the patterns of my life? When do I pray? How often do I seek out the Sacrament of Penance? What am I doing for the poor? How am I serving the needy? Do I really know Jesus Christ?”

These are fantastic reflection points for everyone. And to tailor it to your interests as a single Catholic, you might take it a bit further…

  • When you’re on a date, is your faith reflected in your words and actions, especially in the way you treat the person you are with?
  • If you are dating a lapsed Catholic, does your conversation and behavior lead that person to the possibility of renewing their faith?
  • Do you invite people to go to mass with you?

We are living in the Year of Faith and it’s the perfect time to really embrace all that the Church offers regarding building your spiritual life, because in the end, although we might feel we’ve accomplished all we need by having all our ducks in a row (relationship, financial, material, etc.) none of it really matters unless our relationship with God is solid and we work to improve each day.

Toward the end of his speech, Archbishop Chaput dispensed some homework for the audience to complete over the Thanksgiving holiday and it’s something all of us can do. He asked that people watch the 1966 film, A Man for All Seasons with their families. The film is based on the life of St. Thomas More, a sixteenth century English lawyer, statesman and chancellor under King Henry VIII. Despite the political environment of that time, St. Thomas More never gave in to political pressure and vehemently oppossed the King and his decisions to divorce, remarry and separate from Catholicism. He was martyred in 1535.

As we gather together with our families and friends this week for Thanksgiving, let us be truly grateful for the gift of our faith and renew our commitment to living it to the fullest and with friendly invitations to other to do the same.

 






14 Comments

  1. Tessa-694373 November 19, 2012 Reply

    Very Good article and made very valid points…I hope EVERYONE on CM reads this blog.
    There are so many members on CM that call themselves Catholics but by their beliefs, values, words, and actions they are quiet clearly NOT following the Catholic teachings…so sad and disappointing…I guess I expected different on a Catholic online dating website.

  2. Brandon-793395 November 19, 2012 Reply

    Wonderful article! I personally, should seek improvements in the “acts of charity” realm. It’s hard to be a saint in this day and age, but with God, all things are possible.

  3. Harry-628544 November 20, 2012 Reply

    Archbishop Charles is AMAZING he is exactly what we needed in Philly!!!

  4. Greg-850119 November 20, 2012 Reply

    Stop talking about sanctity when there are sex scandals involving priests, and yet they’re put on administrative leave for reasons not disclosed to parishioners. Whatever happened to transparency, and respecting all life??

    • Tessa-694373 November 20, 2012 Reply

      Greg,
      What you failed to realize these sickos were not priest in the true sense of the word…they are evil men pretending to be men of God… much like members on CM pretending to be Catholic.

      • Julia-487428 November 20, 2012 Reply

        THERE ARE SICK PEOPLE IN EVERY WALK OF LIFE. WE FAIL AS HUMANS TO UNCONDITIONALLY KNOW THAT JESUS CAME AS A PHYSICIAN TO HEAL THE SICK; SUCH AS ALCHOLICS,DRUG USERS, PHYSICAL, MENTAL, AND SEX ABUSERS, MURDERERS, RAPISTS…ETC. WE ALL HAVE HUMAN NATURE, WHICH IS SIN NATURE. THE WHOLE REASON JESUS CAME WAS TO HEAL THESE SICK PEOPLE NOT THE SELF-RIGHTEOUS FINGER POINTERS. THIS IS WHERE BEING A SAINT COMES IN…HATE THE SIN BUT VEHEMENTLY PRAY FOR THE SINNER…REMEMBER THE WORDS OF THE PHYSICIAN HIMSELF, “HE WHO IS WITHOUT SIN, CAST THE FIRST STONE.”

      • Tom-919560 November 21, 2012 Reply

        Who are you to judge others? You seem to be in love more with the institution than the central theme of sanctity: love is not judgmental.

      • Tom-919560 November 21, 2012 Reply

        I must say, Tessa, that you really have the “Catholic” part down pat; it is the Christian part that you don’t seem to understand. Being Catholic is, as you correctly imply, is a way of life. Judging others, or calling them out, is not part of the equation. Are “divorced” people Catholic? Or, are they outside the sphere of “the Club?”

    • Joseph-841276 November 21, 2012 Reply

      Greg
      Most of the problem is not the Church, but our wonderful media that goes out of it’s way to attack groups that hold strong values. Yes there is a scandal in the church. Damage done by a few wayward priests and some who covered for them. But the media mostly ignores other places that have worse track records. I have heard that 10% of protestant minsters have abused their authority. Hollywood has many examples. Look at a lot of schools (there is a assistant coach that went from Penn state to State Pen. ) This is a sickness that is in many places. Right now the Boy Scouts are going through the wringer some of it is self inflicted. But I think the largest problem is the double talk of the media. On one side they get mad (rightly so) about a abuser. But get angry about the church or the scouts not wanting homosexual priests or homosexual scout masters. But it is the homosexual priests or homosexual scout masters doing the abuse! The serious problem is that the media will not recognize this. And the truth is they (the media) try to force their in(morals) on The Church and the scouts.

  5. Sue-906387 November 20, 2012 Reply

    Kudos. Indeed we should never settle for less than God’s best. I firmly believe that becoming a saint is the best gift and investment one can accomplish. The road to holiness and sainthood is far more important than any other achievement. No money, no intelligence, no academy, education can position can outwit or outwin the journey toward sainthood. It should be the ambition of every Christ follower! Period!

  6. Julia-487428 November 20, 2012 Reply

    HERE IS MY REPLY TO GREG, DO YOU HONESTLY THINK THAT SEX ABUSE ONLY EXISTS AMONG CATHOLIC PRIESTS? IF YOU DO YOUR HOMEWORK, ONLY 1% OF ALL CATHOLIC PRIESTS ARE SEX ABUSERS, GRANTED 1% TO MANY!!! A SIN IS A SIN NO MATTER WHAT KIND IT IS…ANY VIOLATION OF THE 10 COMMANDMENTS IS A SIN AND EFFECTS EVERYBODY INVOLVED IN THAT SIN, I AM A VICTIM OF SEXUAL ABUSE FOR MANY YEARS, BUT GOD GAVE ME THE STRENGTH TO FORGIVE, JUST AS HE HAS FORGIVEN ME AND THE PEOPLE OF THE WORLD THAT ALSO SIN. STOP CONDEMNING PEOPLE, BECAUSE THAT IS THE JOB OF OUR SAVIOR. WHAT YOU CAN DO, THAT WOULD BE VERY PRODUCTIVE IS SAY A ROSARY A DAY FOR THESE PEOPLE THAT THEY MIGHT TURN THEIR HEARTS TO GOD TO REPENT AND SEEK FORGIVENESS AND FOR THE SANCTITY OF THEIR SOULS.

  7. Ginny-918551 November 21, 2012 Reply

    What happened in the church is part of God’s plan that evil will not prevail. Just as the story of the prodigal son who remain faithful to his father, whereas the younger decide to do what he wants to do with his inheritance. Thus, the consequences that we do not consider when we do not God’s will in our lives. Church sustains us in our earthly live and prepare us for eternal live, evil has a way of creeping in our daily life – sin. We cannot judge others but decide our own fade in the long term – remember Judas who sold Jesus, the same goes for us with our choices. Abuse comes in many forms and cause pain/suffering, but it is our way of offering it as a sacrifice in union with the cross.through prayer and Mass. The Church obligations is to acknowledge, inform, and treat all – abuser, victim and parishioners through this heavy and dark times, same as society as a whole.

    • Ginny-918551 November 21, 2012 Reply

      Sanctity – priest and parishioner seek and strive as individual in our lives – single or married through prayer and faithfullness to God’s sacraments as faithful children. This is the most difficult to attain, but not impossible if we put our trust in God. Divorce seek annulment for peace and harmony if we as individual seek new relationship and reconcile as Catholic, to understand why it is important to take this step, begin by reading the Holy Bible, wisdom and love of God. Create us and build His church starting from the Old to New Testament, you will appreciate everything the Church gives us – eathly and heavenly treasures.

  8. Hector-898563 November 21, 2012 Reply

    Its true,the election of the black devil does shows how many catholics in this country are catholic in name only—-but in truth they are no different than most of the other religions in this decaying country of ours!!

Post a comment