Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Fr Samuel Medley, SOLT

1/18/2015 (1 year ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

I did not come to condemn the world but to save the world

Whoever rejects me and does not accept my words has something to judge him: the word that I spoke

Highlights

By Fr Samuel Medley, SOLT

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

1/18/2015 (1 year ago)

Published in Vocations

Keywords: Year of Faith Judgment, Sin, Conscience, Vatican II


HYTHE, KENT, UK (Catholic Online) - Don't judge me.  How many times have you heard this?

It is a fascinating phenomenon that the more a person or a culture strays from right conscience, from the law that is written on every human heart and is perceptible to anyone of good will, the more guilty they feel, and the more quickly they will cry out, "Don't judge me!"

When I walk down the street dressed in my religious garb it is quite common for me to get this exact look, as if by representing Jesus Christ on the street I was already manifesting a judgment on this generation.  It is not uncommon for some to scurry away as if at the sight of a religious priest the moral cops had just come for a bust.

Because we live in a faithless generation it is generation hypersensitive to judgment, kind of like someone whose eyes are really sensitive to light who has to cover their eyes when it shines out.

In the Gospel for today, Jesus explains why faithlessness brings about a guilty conscience. "Whoever rejects me and does not accept my words has something to judge him: the word that I spoke."

Yet, Jesus "did not come to condemn the world but to save the world."  Faith is a decision.  It is a moral decision.  If you choose to reject what you know is right, to believe in Jesus Christ, you sin.  If you chose to believe him, you do a good and holy thing. 

The Second Vatican Council teaches this in the beautiful document on conscience, Dignitatis Humanae, the Declaration on Religious Freedom.

"All men are bound by a moral obligation to seek the truth, especially religious truth. They are also bound to adhere to the truth, once it is known, and to order their whole lives in accord with the demands of truth." (Dignitatis Humanae 2)

Let me repeat, Vatican II says that it is a sin to not believe in Christ if he reveals himself to you.  It does not say, you can believe what ever you damn well please.  Here I would like to point out that the word "damn" is a descriptive adjective, for by believing something to be false that you know very well to be true you commit a sin and therefore incur damnation.

Vatican II teaching on conscience basically rephrases Jesus' teaching from today's Gospel:

1.  Jesus came to save us, but if we reject him we reject the salvation he offers.

2.  We are free to accept or reject him

3.  We are bound in conscience to accept him once he reveals himself to us.

4.  He has not been revealed to us if the witness - the person or culture or congregation - who is proclaiming Christ is not living a Christian life and therefore we are still not responsible for accepting him.

5.  If we respect people's consciences, we will live our faith that Christ may be revealed to them and that they might be saved.

6.  Catholics have a special moral obligation therefore to preach the truth both in word and in deed.

7.  "In order to be faithful to the divine command, 'teach all nations' (Matt. 28:19-20), the Catholic Church must work with all urgency and concern 'that the word of God be spread abroad and glorified' (2 Thess. 3:1)." (Dignitatis Humanae 14)

The first reading for today, where St Paul and St Barnabas were set apart for the preaching of the Gospel has not at all been outdated.  In this faithless generation, there is a terrible urgency for missionaries to go out, not just to people who have never heard of Christ, but to to people who have never seen real witnesses of Him.

May Our Lady, star of the New Evangelization, pray that new saints of our times may go forth to proclaim the saving truth of the Gospel.

-----
Father Samuel Medley, SOLT, is a priest of the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity, and is based in Hythe, Kent, United Kingdom.  He speaks to groups around the world on Blessed Pope John Paul II's Theology of the Body.  Visit his homily blog http://medleyminute.blogspot.com or his blog on sexual ethics http://loveandresponsibility.org

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copyright 2016 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for June 2016
Universal:
Human Solidarity: That the aged, marginalized, and those who have no one may find-even within the huge cities of the world-opportunities for encounter and solidarity.
Evangelization: Seminarians and Novices: That seminarians and men and women entering religious life may have mentors who live the joy of the Gospel and prepare them wisely for their mission.



Comments


More Vocations

A Look Inside: 'The World's Happiest Nuns' Watch

Image of

By Diego Lopez Marina (CNA/EWTN News)

Watch them sing, and you might be convinced of it. Cali, Colombia (CNA/EWTN News) - The Eucharistic Communicators of the Heavenly Father are a community of nuns from Colombia who have a great passion for music and an intense desire to announce God through the gifts he ... continue reading


Nun numbers on the rise - Young women flock to the church Watch

Image of More young women have joined the religious life (fiathouse).

By (CNA/EWTN News)

There is a young and vital presence of religious sisters, novices and postulants in U.S. Catholic life, a new survey has found. Washington D.C. (CNA/EWTN News) - The Council of Major Superiors of Women Religious has released its latest survey of its 120 member ... continue reading


Friars inspired to take pilgrimage after viewing Hollywood drama 'The Way' Watch

Image of Friars begin 478-mile pilgrimage on foot across United States (@friarsonfoot/Twitter).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Dominican Fathers Francis Orozco and Thomas Schaefgen were inspired to make a 478-mile pilgrimage from New Orleans to Memphis, Tenn. entirely on foot and without a single dollar between them. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Fathers Francis Orozco, of the Catholic ... continue reading


'A sign of the love of God': Why nuns wear religious habits Watch

Image of

By Ann Schneible (CNA/EWTN News)

As Pope Francis' year dedicated to consecrated life comes to a close, one nun shared her thoughts on the how her religious garb serves as a "visible sign" that God exists and loves every person. Rome, Italy (CNA/EWTN News) - Though the official Year for Consecrated ... continue reading


LISTEN NOW: Benedictine nuns release new album Watch

Image of Nuns record new album to promote faith (Churchpop).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Benedictine nuns in Missouri recently released their latest album <i>Adoration at Ephesus</i> - and it is amazing! LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Mother Cecilia, the prioress of the Benedictines of Mary, Queen of Apostles, told <a ... continue reading


A powerful MUST-READ call for prayers of priestly vocations Watch

Image of Bishop Mark O'Toole asks to pray for priestly vocations (Mazur).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Bishop Mark O'Toole, the Bishop of Plymouth, has called for a prayer of priestly vocations in a pastoral letter, which was read in all parishes across the diocese earlier this month. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The letter was simple and read: "To encourage an ... continue reading


'Chosen, don't forget this. Chosen!:' Pope Francis sends amazing message to priests Watch

Image of Pope Francis calls for prayer to bring more young men to priesthood vocations (@franciscus/Instagram).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

On the World Day of Prayer for Vocations, Pope Francis ordained eleven men into the priesthood at St. Peter's Basilica on Sunday - then had plenty to say on the subject. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to Vatican Radio, Pope Francis spoke to the newly ... continue reading


'He will be sorely missed:' Missing Florida priest's body found in Georgia Watch

Image of Florida priest Rev. Rene Robert's body was discovered in Georgia (actionnewsjax).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Church officials reported a Florida priest went missing last week. After following a trail of clues, investigators believe they found Rev. Rene Robert's body in Georgia. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - When church officials noticed Rev. Robert missed a funeral in ... continue reading


Who are the Red Nuns and what are they doing in Thailand? Watch

Image of Thailand's Red Nuns open up to share their spiritual ventures (Alex Proimos/Flickr).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

A new monastery has been opened by an American group of cloistered nuns in Thailand in pursuit of planting an aura of "contemplative monastic spirituality." LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Sister Joan Claver O.Ss.R. has been a nun for 63 years and has moved to the ... continue reading


The 'reality of the Eucharist': Don't let it become a meaningless gesture Watch

Image of The Bishop of Shrewsbury believes the Eucharist is the key to priestly vocations (Al Riccio/Corbis).

By Monique Crawford (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

During the Chrism Mass homily at Our Lady and the Apostles Church, Stockport, Bishop Mark Davies related the Eucharist to the Catholic Priesthood. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A Chrism Mass usually takes place Holy Thursday morning, though it can also occur any ... continue reading


All Vocations News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Jeremiah 26:11-16, 24
11 The priests and prophets then said to the chief men and all the ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 69:15-16, 30-31, 33-34
15 Let not the waves wash over me, nor the deep swallow me up, nor the ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 14:1-12
1 At that time Herod the tetrarch heard about the reputation of ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for July 30th, 2016 Image

St. Peter Chrysologus
July 30: St. Peter Chrysologus, Bishop and Doctor of the ... Read More