July 4th

Our Catholic Faith is a great gift that has been given to us by Our Lord.  The Church was instituted by Jesus, Himself, in order to lead us into all Truth.  Learning about our Catholic Faith is a life-long process.  We can (and should) go on studying our Faith throughout our lives: there is always more to learn.

The point of learning more about our Catholic Faith, however, is not simply to have more knowledge.  The purpose of the Church and all that she teaches is to help us grow in our relationship with God.  Catholicism is not merely set of ideas.  Our Faith helps us to learn about Who God IS so that we can then encounter Him.

All that the Church teaches us about God is only a kind of roadmap that is meant to help us along as we journey towards God.  Theology is knowledge about God: the whole point of having that knowledge is to lead us into a deeper love of God.

In order to grow in our relationship with God, we have to do more than just learn about God: we have to spend time with Him in prayer.  Studying our Faith can help us in our journey, but in addition to learning things about God we also have to encounter Him through prayer.

We can know lots of things about other people.  There are biographies written about all sort of famous people.  After we have read a biography of a person, we can say that we know a lot of things about that person, and yet we could not say that we have a relationship with that person.  A relationship develops only when we encounter the person and spend time with them.

Through studying our Faith we learn about God; in prayer, we experience Him.  Prayer is about talking with God and walking with Him.  How do we do that?  We should think of God often during the day.  We should tell Him all that is on our hearts.  It is good to ask Him for things, but we should also thank Him for all that is good in our lives.  We can offer to Him all that we do: before beginning whatever we are about to do, we can offer that activity to God.

God is love: He loves us and He wants us to love Him in return.  God shares His divine life with us, through His grace, and He desires that we share our lives with Him.  We can bring before Him all our joys and sorrows, all our hopes and anxieties, we should tell Him everything that is on our hearts.  God is not an impersonal force: He is our loving Father.  He wants us to come to Him and love Him.  Let us all work on growing closer to Our Lord each and every day.

God bless,

Father White