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The Truth, the Whole Truth, and Nothing but the Truth; So Help Me God.

[Important Note: this post is not saying that anyone has left St. George at any time in the recent past, nor is it written with specific reference to anyone who ever did leave the parish--really!]

You may have heard this story from me before; sorry if it is a repeat. Before I converted and became Catholic, but after I had decided that I wanted to do so, I was speaking with a friend who also wanted to convert. He told me that there were people who were ready to convert but they needed not to be told about certain aspects of the Catholic faith or they would be scared away.

I said to him, "but if they are converting under false pretenses then that is not right". He said it was more important that they convert than that they understood everything about the faith. We did not come to a meeting of the minds. Yes, I wanted those people to convert and join the Catholic Church; I want everyone to do so--no question about it. Yet, is that the right way to convert someone: by, essentially, telling lies?

Similarly, we do not want anyone to lose the faith and fall away from the Church. Yet, if the only way we can keep someone in the Church is to feed them a false view of the Faith, then that is wrong. Like my friend in the first paragraph, there are many today (including some clergy) who want to dilute the faith. They truly believe that is a good thing to avoid any "touchy" or "hot-button" issues. One clergyman even told me that if he gave the people the full truth they would leave the Church and then he would not have enough funds to keep the doors open.

A diluted and weakened theology that is spoken to the people of God for the sake of being "nice" (whatever that means today) might keep bodies in the pews, but it will not get their souls into Heaven (which is what we clergy are supposed to be concerned with). A harmful application of the idea of compassion or tolerance which involves moral or doctrinal compromise is not something I want to have to give account for on Judgment Day. No Priest should be happy that someone has left his parish--it means one less soul that he can minister to--but even more so, no priest should lie to God's people in order to keep them in Christ's flock.


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