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Prideful Catholics

In the first century, the Church in the city of Corinth was going through a serious quarrel. There was a faction in the Church that considered itself to be the "super spirituals", and treated everyone else as "second class Christians". It appears as though the biggest point of division was the fact that the super-spirituals spoke in tongues and the rest did not. Technically it does not matter what divided them, they were divided and St. Paul says their division proves they were immature in their faith and not in a state of grace.

Whenever a Catholic starts espousing the idea that he is one of the "true Catholics" or "super Catholics" or "genuine Catholics" (or any other prideful title they come up with) he has just proven the same thing as the Corinthians: he is immature and not living the life of faith. It was the Pharisees that Jesus condemned (shall we say "trashed"?) because of their prideful and judgmental attitude toward everyone else. If we cannot learn from either them or the Corinthians then we are showing that we are truly blind to what it means to be one of God's people.

I need to warn you against being taken in by this false-piety so that you will say "no" to it. None of us is sufficient to be able to judge our brother because he seems to be less than us in any area (what about the areas where we are less than him?). Take a serious look at Romans chapter 14 for an in depth look at this problem. This is what being "judgmental" is really about: condemning someone else because he is not as "genuine" a Catholic as you are. Anyone who has fallen into this self-righteous and self-serving attitude needs to be prayed for--of course--but they also need to be called to repentance. It is not a godly heart that they are displaying, and it shows that they are placing themselves in the position of Divine Judge.

A Catholic is someone who was baptized as a Catholic. We all fail to obey perfectly, and we all need to repent and obey God. Each of us can be a faithful Catholic and each can be an unfaithful Catholic. Only God is our Judge. None of us knows where another is at, and we should not presume to make a judgment call about such things. Ever.


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