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A God greater than our need to define him

December 7, 2017
Maureen O’Riordan Lundy
San Francisco

Re “Priest [Capuchin Father Thomas Weinandy] resigns as consultant on doctrine after letter to pope,” and “Private conscience and the church,” Father John Catoir, Nov. 9:

Perhaps we are all in agreement that it is difficult to follow Jesus.

Instead of forcing absolute alignment between theory and practice or between plan and reality, the challenge may be to live in the tension that connects the perfect and the effort. A teacher, I know the limits of theory only too well, and over the years have learned the importance of acknowledging the reality of the individual if teaching is to happen. A parent, I know the struggle involved in loving across all kinds of theories and compromises. A Catholic, I experience the daily tension between what may be called – for the purposes of this letter – the church of Father Thomas Weinandy and the church of Father John Catoir, both contributors to this edition of Catholic San Francisco.

It is wrenching to constantly be faced with the implication that the hard line with clear definition is somehow stronger than the gentle admission of not having all the answers, of not quite knowing the mind of God, of trusting in His infinite mercy for all of us.

My inclination, scared as I am of letting go of the security of the defined, is to listen to our Holy Father and see a God greater than my need to define him.

The lack of unity among church leaders reminds me of St. Paul in 1 Corinthians 1: 10-17, New American Standard Bible.

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