Tuesday, June 15, 2021

How Not to Lose Your Faith During the Present Crisis - part 2

  

"michael dubruiel"
Following is a series of posts originally written and published by Michael Dubruiel in 2002 - almost twenty years ago. 


How Not to Lose Your Faith During the Present Crisis The items that are filling the newspapers daily now, are the same items that I had to deal with daily almost twenty years ago when I was involved in the daily life of the church. I came very close to losing my faith. I contemplated joining the Orthodox Church among other things, but ultimately through a very trying period, that tested the very core of everything that I had been taught and believed--I have remained a Roman Catholic. Now, it is like reliving a nightmare, only everyone is in on it this time. I would like to share some points to contemplate on if you, like me, find yourself at a loss in the present situation in the Church. None of them by themself will convince you to stay, but I think if you try most of them you'll find that God has a mission for you; to rebuild and to enliven the Church, that as St. Francis was told years ago by Christ, is falling into ruin.

2) Read the Gospel of Mark 

We have a tendency to think of the early Church as a pristine time when everyone believed and their were no problems. Although we may accept the fact that among Jesus' followers there was a traitor--Judas, we often forget how frustrated Jesus was with his Apostles. If it was that way when he was with them physically, why should we expect perfection from the successors to the Apostles today?

 The Gospel of Mark brings out the deficiencies of the Apostles in a remarkable way. 


Traditionally it has been held that the author of Mark's Gospel was John Mark, who first accompanied Paul and Barnabas, but left them during one of their missionary journeys. Later when John Mark wished to return to the ministry, Paul forbade him. Paul and Barnabas had a falling out over this and tradition has it that John Mark ended up with the Apostle Peter, and served as the Galilean fisherman's interpreter on his journeys. 

The Gospel of Mark, is then thought to be Peter's remembrance of Jesus' interaction with the Apostles, and has the marks of someone who had failed his Lord at the crucial moment and remembered well that this was not a solitary occurence. The Gospel of Mark is short and in it we see the Lord who is frustrated time and again with the lack of faith and understanding that he encounters from those closest to him.

 

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