"Following Catholic beliefs and practices in America: One man's experience"Quite a few of my posts aren't so much about me, as about some aspect of Catholicism that's been on my mind. Like the Diocese of Green Bay, Wisconsin, giving the green light to the Marian apparitions near Champion, Wisconsin.
As I recall, I forgot to mention that one reason that I was interested in the news wasn't just that "Our Lady of Good Help at Champion the first and only site in the United States of an approved apparition of the Blessed Virgin Mary." (Diocese of Green Bay)
Champion, Wisconsin, is only three or four hundred miles east of Sauk Centre, Minnesota, where I live. It's not exactly 'next door,' but Wisconsin is the next state over - so Champion is (relatively) close to home. I had a sort of neighborly interest in what was happening over in the Diocese of Green Bay.
I've wondered if I should write more about 'I, me, and myself' - which might be expected, given that 'one man's experience' blog description.
On the other hand, there's quite a bit of my attitude and viewpoint in these posts: so maybe I'm staying 'on-topic' after all.
Even posts that aren't quite so opinionated show, I think, what it's like for me to be a practicing Catholic in America. Celebrating Mass is an important - central - part of my faith. But so is learning about what the Catholic Church teaches, and why it teaches what it teaches.
It's more than just the joy of learning - although that's part of my experience, too.
If I'm going to live as a Catholic in America - or anywhere else - I need to know what's in Scripture and Tradition, as taught by the Magisterium. And, being the sort of person I am, it's a lot easier to accept instruction, if I know why the Church teaches what it does about, say, liturgical dance or how God relates to His creation.
About that last item: It hurt a bit, but I had to give up my 'clockwork universe' idea. Learning that God "...at every moment, upholds and sustains them [creatures] in being, enables them to act and brings them to their final end..." answered my question: God did not make the universe, 'wind it up,' and then let it run itself.(Catechism of the Catholic Church, 301)
One question answered - a mess of new questions raised. Like 'how can God permit evil?' That has to do with free will - and is another topic. Several, probably.
So, am I discouraged by the 'one question answered, more questions raised' situation?
In a way, it's reassuring. I don't expect to understand everything - but I have a lot of fun learning what I can.
And it looks like I won't run out of questions.
Which, for me, is a highly satisfactory situation.
- "Wisconsin Apparitions Okay: Champion, Wisconsin: Not Necedah"
(December 8, 2010)
- "A Thought for the Day, About Sin and Tomorrow"
(December 5, 2010)
- "Time, Change, Culture, and This Catholic"
(December 2, 2010)
- "Brilliant, Talented, and On Medication"
(November 30, 2010)
- " 'Only Say the Word ...' - Impressive Faith"
(November 29, 2010)