There is a lot of pressure from mainstream society for the Catholic Church to begin compromising our values. Should we give in to this mounting pressure?
Our goal is to evangelize and bring as many souls to Christ as possible, but the moral values of the Church can make that difficult sometimes.
Recently, the New Evangelizers blog had posts on same-sex marriage and pro-life issues. For some, these topics drive them away from the Church, but should we change our stance simply to bring them back home?
Some Christian denominations have changed their values to a more “modern” view. This has made them more effective at evangelization, but unfortunately, it has also watered down the message of the Gospel.
Many of these churches and denominations offer a very passionate, emotional faith, but they lack the strong foundation of the Church’s teaching, unpopular as it may be. It is very attractive to the rest of society, but lacks in qualities that build strong disciples.
It reminds me of a budding romantic relationship. At first, there is the romantic high of passion that drives a relationship – the feeling of being hopelessly in love. Over time, that feeling can begin to wane, and the relationship may begin to suffer.
Meanwhile, a relationship that is built on a more solid foundation – namely, the truth – has the ability to overcome the highs and lows. Romantic highs will come and go, but a relationship built on the truth will last a lifetime.
Compromising our values will only lead to one thing: a shallow view of the Gospel. When evangelizing, we must not compromise for the sake of winning more souls, because even if we fill the pews, they are not likely to stay that way for any length of time.
Doubt this? Well, what did Christ do in the same situation?
In John 6, a popular portion of Scripture for explaining the Eucharist, Jesus was teaching some unpopular ideas. Many of His followers and disciples rejected His teaching and decided to leave. Did He chase after them? Did He water down His teaching? No. In fact, He questioned the Apostles on whether they wanted to leave too.
Jesus did not cave in to the pressure of mainstream society. The Apostles, the earliest members of the Church, stood by His side. And today, we must continue to do so in the face of mounting pressure.
Our goal is to evangelize the world with the full truth of the Gospel, not society’s view of it. From time to time, we may fail in our evangelization efforts, but that’s okay. It’s better to stand alone with the truth than in a crowded room surrounded by false teachings.
The truth can make evangelizing difficult, at times, but compromising our values will make it impossible to truly win any souls.
Copyright © 2013, Chad R. Torgerson
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