Deacon Rick Wagner serves as Vice President for Mission and Ministry at Bishop Chatard High School here in our North Deanery. He also serves as deacon at our neighboring parish of Saint Pius X Catholic Church. With Deacon Rick’s permission, I am sharing with you the homily that he offered at the Masses at Saint Pius on the weekend of June 29-30. You will find Deacon Rick’s homily as an insert in this week’s bulletin.
Deacon Rick is in a unique position to understand the issues that have presented themselves in the Archdiocese of Indianapolis in these last weeks. His approach for a way forward includes prayer, mutual respect, dialogue and greater understanding of some very challenging issues that face the Church and society. His homily is based on Saint Paul’s words to the Galatians: “If you go on biting and devouring one another, beware that you are not consumed by one another.”
Deacon Rick tells us that it’s OK not to know and understand what the Church teaches. It’s not OK to be unwilling to seek knowledge and understanding. If someone begins the discussion with the words, “I don’t know and I don’t care what the Church teaches,” there can be no true dialogue.
I cannot call myself a Catholic and not care what the Church teaches, At the same time, I cannot call myself a Catholic and be unconcerned about the suffering of others, especially my brothers and sisters who are gay and lesbian Catholics.
The present situation affords all of us an opportunity to study and grow in our understanding of the Church’s teachings, especially in the area of sexual morality. To this end, I would like to invite parishioners to use the great parish resource that is FORMED. In a special way I invite parishioners to watch the series called SYMBOLON and to view Session Six of the section entitled ‘Living the Faith’. Session Six is an introduction to the Catholic Moral Vision. Many have never been presented with this vision and FORMED offers us many resources to grow in our understanding. SYMBOLON is an excellent one.
Let us not devour one another, but rather let us pray for one another and grow in understanding together. Let us not take our clues from the political and social climate of our country today which divides everyone into camps. In the Church there is not a ‘them’ and an ‘us’. There is only an ‘us’.
See you at Mass! Fr. Todd