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Authentic Christian disciples


It takes great courage to be a disciple

of Jesus Christ and his Catholic

Church. All baptized Christians

are considered a part of the Catholic

Church and do not need to be rebaptized

to enter into the process of

becoming a Confirmed, Eucharistic

sharing Catholic, if it can be shown

that they were baptized in the

Name of the Father, and of the Son

and of the Holy Spirit, as Jesus

taught us to do.

However, back in the late 60’s and

70’s there were some, not many, but

some Christians baptizing their

children in the name of the Creator,

Redeemer and Sanctifier. They

were well intentioned, but that is

not a valid baptism because Jesus

was quite clear that we should baptize

using the formula above: “I

baptize you in the Name of the Father,

and of the Son, and of the

Holy Spirit.”

It seems many of our social problems

began in the late 60’s and 70’s

when people began to take on a

relativistic perspective with regard

to much in life, even spiritual

life. Relativism is one of the root

problems that can break down families

and relationships with God and

others.

Subjectivism asserts that there is

more than one truth, and that your

truth might be different from my

truth, and that they can even contradict

one another. Relativism,

however, takes it a step further,

and says that there are no moral

absolute truths.

But if there are no absolute truths,

how can you have a relationship

with God and one another? Is it

absolutely true that little children

need to be taken care of, that they

need food, water, and shelter? Yes,

they absolutely need those things to

live. Do they need a loving family

that will teach them moral and

spiritual truths? Yes, they absolutely

need that to grow properly.

Is it absolutely true that Jesus died

on the Cross and rose again and,

before ascending into heaven, told

his disciples: “Go, and make disciples

of all nations baptizing them

in the Name of the Father, and of

the Son, and of the Holy Spirit,

teaching them everything I have

taught you.”

Yes, being validly baptized is an

absolute spiritual truth that begins,

in a most certain manner,

our journey home to God. The Sacrament

of Confirmation completes

one’s baptism and receiving the

Holy Eucharist completes these

three rites of initiation into

Christ’s life that the Christian

might grow in perfection to attain

God.

Is it absolutely true that the MN

Twins are the best baseball team

around for the last five years, and

that they lost games only because

of bad refereeing and injuries?

That is not an absolute

truth. You can have opinions on

that, you can have relativistic

viewpoints about the Twins being

the best team.

Why? Because the nature of baseball

is different from the nature of

a child, a human being, who absolutely

needs water, food, and shelter

to live, and a loving family that

believes in God’s Holy Commandments

(not mere suggestions)

which are the proper moral and

spiritual absolutes that help us to

grow towards God.

And yet, there are some who care

more about baseball and its traditions

than they do about the eternal

truths that bring us to heaven.

Some people care more about human

traditions than the Sacred

Traditions that Jesus and his

Church established to help us stay

on the straight and narrow path to

Eternal Happiness.

For this reason, Jesus said to the

Pharisees and scribes: “You disregard

God’s commandments but

cling to human tradition.” (Mk. 7:8)

Jesus glorifies God the

Father by absolutely

following God’s holy

will. Jesus does not

want to suffer the pain

of the cross, and he prays in the

garden of Gethsemane, “not my

will, but your will be done”. However,

Jesus goes through with his

passion and death as a sign of

faith, hope and love in God the Father,

and to call us to follow him

with those same theological virtues

of faith, hope and love in order to

be saved.

Jesus lays his life down for you and

I, and takes it up again, to prove

that he is God. We, as his disciples,

are called to make sacrifices for the

absolute spiritual truths of God’s

love and eternal life flowing to us

through the Sacraments, beginning

with Baptism, and growing through

our practice of the Christian faith:

prayer, forgiveness, compassion,

loving worship, and service.

It is for this reason the Catholic

Church has more hospitals and

more schools than any other organization.

We know that Jesus

Christ gives us the courage and

wisdom to grow our families, and

our family of faith, with the loving

service that brings new life.

Jesus gives us a new commandment:

“Love one another. You will

be my disciples if you love one another

as I have loved you.” He sacrificed

his life for us, to live for God

and to be raised to heaven so as to

live for us in the Sacraments. Let

us have the courage, then, to believe

in this absolute truth and put

an end to relativism, so that we

might live in healthy families and

friendships according to God’s truth

– the truth that will set us free to

be authentic Christian disciples.

Peace in Jesus Christ,

Fr. Thomas McCabe