We’re hearing an awful lot about Catholic teaching these days: social teaching, moral teaching, teaching on sexuality, teaching about the poor, who’s speaking out about particular teaching and who’s not vocal enough, etc… Catholics aren’t the only ones concerned with truth and how we’re to live it out. All the mainline denominations are struggling with how to understand, present and live out the truth of the Bible and of our various traditions. More Fundamentalist and Charismatic denominations and groups are wrestling with the same issues, but they talk about them less publicly.
Now the confession: I didn’t become a Christian or a Catholic because of teaching. As much as I value the truth of the Bible and of tradition, and as much as that truth helps me and shapes me, I am a Christian and a Catholic because I cannot resist the love of the living Christ. Jesus offers me a relationship that I want and need and thrive within. That’s what makes me a Catholic Christian–the relationship of love with Jesus, the total availability of his love in the sacraments and in the constant companionship of Christ that the sacraments lead me into.
I think perhaps, we lose sight of that relationship when particular areas of truth are allowed to take center stage. More loving and perhaps a little less teaching might dissolve a lot of our current arguments and divisions. Let’s try it.