Up until a few years ago Catholicism was the “biggest” religion (population wise) with 1.2 billion believers. Catholicism is now second, with Islam being the first with 1.9 billion followers. And while we can tout this statistic as still being the largest Christian denomination, I begin to wonder how many so-called “Catholics” are actually living out their faith daily, at home and abroad, and are truly entering into a relationship with Jesus.
As Catholics we are called to observe and uphold all of the teachings of the Church, not picking and choosing what to uphold and what to let go. If there is a Catholic out there that is picking and choosing which of the teachings to follow or not to follow, they are not truly Catholic, they are a Protestant. It is not man made teachings, rather each teaching of the Church has been revealed by Jesus Christ. Therefore, to reject just a single teaching of the Catholic Church is to reject Jesus Christ himself.
As the Church abroad continues to face infiltration and confusion, two things are occurring: First, the number of nones (those non-affiliated with any religion) continues to grow, that being of the majority are Catholics. Secondly, the number of Catholics who are running towards the teachings of the Church and embracing them in their full capacity is on a great incline. It must be made clear again, that any one person who denies or fails to uphold just one of the teachings of the Church is also denying Christ.
Those who are denying the teachings of the Catholic Church, Christ’s Church, are clinging to secularism, and in turn clinging to Protestantism. In his book Christus Vincit: Christ’s Triumph Over the Darkness of the Age, Bishop Athanasius Schneider says, “Secularism, in my view, is the necessary consequence of Protestantism. It is the subjectivism in virtue of which man decides what is true.” The Catholic Church does not call us to cling to what man has revealed as truth, rather to what Christ has revealed as truth.
No matter the issue, no matter the teaching, whether it be abortion, contraception, marriage, Jesus in the Eucharist, male priests, and the list very well goes on, must be upheld by every Catholic to obtain Christ and Eternal Glory. As the world continues to adhere to the secularist ways, us Catholics must turn, and embrace Christ and His Church completely with our whole selves, devoting every minute of every day to living and spreading the Gospel message - there truly is no other way.
It is easy to find truth, though it is hard to face it, and harder still to follow it.
Seth is a convert to the Church and lives in Fort Wayne, Indiana.