Wednesday, October 14, 2015

The Real Problem Facing Marriage (and priesthood and RCIA etc.) in the West

... a lot of people don't give a rats rear end about oaths/vows anymore.

"She isn't the person I married anymore"

"The priesthood isn't what I thought it would be"

"I didn't know piresthood/marriage/religious life would be like THIS!"

That's why people walk away from marriage so much, and that's why more people walk away from the priesthood and religious life as well.

It's the same for people joining the Church.  They spend all this time coming to class for a year.  Every week.  And I tell them, multiple times, that one of the most fundamental things to being a Catholic is coming to Mass on Sunday.  Barring illness or caring for another who is ill, the obligation to come to Mass is not negotiable.

"Woohoo, I'm Catholic now.  Surely the priest didn't mean I'm obligated to go to Mass EVERY Sunday"

And people stand up at the Easter Vigil, make vows and oaths and promises to be Catholic, and half the people that join the Church fall away with a few years.  HALF!!!!

I just want to stand up sometimes and say to all of the people that break these vows in a definitive way:   "DIDN'T YOU MAKE A VOW?"

One thing is clear in the Scriptures - God DOES NOT mess around with oaths and vows and promises.  God even holds people to stupid vows that they made in order to make sure people understand that a vow is for real.  It isn't fake, and it is SERIOUS BUSINESS!

Catechsim 2147: Promises made to others in God's name engage the divine honor, fidelity, truthfulness, and authority. They must be respected in justice. To be unfaithful to them is to misuse God's name and in some way to make God out to be a liar.

The only thing that has kept me in diocesan priesthood on several occasions has been the fact that I made oaths and promises to this.  But if oaths and vows and promises are not binding, in their minds, anymore, then apparently they aren't binding.

After all, we're all our own gods now anyways, so if my mood changes, I can just rewrite or obliterate any promises I've made in the past anyway.

Do you promise...
Yes...unless it gets tough

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