catholic = universal

An understanding I learned rather early (in the 1950’s) is the meaning of the word catholic (small ‘c’) as universal.  In fact, in the creeds Roman Catholics ordinarily pray, we use the small ‘c’ catholic.

What my first teachers got across to us in our young lives is how wide and broad and deep the church is in the world. We learned the Church held together a global community.

In time, I have also sadly learned, that as a Church, we still have lots to learn.  In the US, racism is a sin we still cannot rid ourselves from and so blacks and browns and, yes, whites suffer – in different ways.  This is true not only in the wider society but also among members of the US Catholic Church.

The recent horrifying massacre at a gay bar in Orlando, Florida reminded me of another group that is the source of hatred in my country and even, for some, in the Church.  LGBTQ are God’s children loved into being and capable of manifesting God’s love.  Yet this universal aspect of a loving God, expressed differently, challenges some people’s belief of what is God’s ‘right order.’

What has this most recent news taught you about our national wounds and about God’s love for all of us?  How do you/we need to be catholic (small ‘c’) in our faith in order to reflect God who loves every single one of us - everywhere?

Roberta Popara, OP
North Palm Beach, FL


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