Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

This blog is devoted to a variety of topics including politics, current events, legal issues, and we even take the time to have some occasional fun. After all, blogging is about having a little fun, right?

Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Crisis of faith, or self-doubt?

I was reluctant to pick up this topic. Not because I don't care about Mother Teresa, but more along the lines of my own personal struggles with faith. But so many are making so much out of what I think is so little in terms of importance:

A book of letters written by Mother Teresa of Calcutta reveals for the first time that she was deeply tormented about her faith and suffered periods of doubt about God.

"Jesus has a very special love for you. As for me, the silence and the emptiness is so great that I look and do not see, listen and do not hear," she wrote the Rev. Michael van der Peet in September 1979.

Due out on September 4, "Mother Teresa: Come Be My Light" is a collection of letters written to colleagues and superiors over 66 years. In the United States it will be published by Doubleday, an imprint of Random House, which is owned by German media group Bertelsmann.

The ethnic Albanian Roman Catholic nun, who dedicated her life to poor, sick and dying in India, died in 1997 aged 87.

Mother Teresa had wanted all her letters destroyed, but the Vatican ordered they be preserved as potential relics of a saint, a spokeswoman for Doubleday said.
Mother Teresa has been beatified but not yet canonized.

Time magazine, which has first serial rights, published excerpts on its Web site.
"I spoke as if my very heart was in love with God -- tender, personal love," she wrote to one adviser. "If you were (there), you would have said, 'What hypocrisy.'"

OK, aside from atheists out there that don't believe in God, how many of us that do have had moments, or even periods in our lives, where we doubt He is there? For many people, they are devout, and believe in Him. They trust in Him, and in the salvation of His Son. But for a few of us, there are doubts.

For example, I walked away from the Catholic Church about ten years ago. With the scandals just starting to roll out of the Church regarding priests molesting children, I felt that if the clergy could not keep God's house in order and clean of immorality, then why I should I listen to the preachings? To me, it was hypocritical that, when I asked priests about the scandals, they refused to answer, dodged the question or offered up the a-typical "Trust in God to do what's right" line. That wasn't good enough for me, so I exiled myself from the Church.

During that time, I never wavered in my faith in God, though I had occasional doubts. My overall apprehension towards the Church was in it's earthly clergy which was so obviously too "secular" in the world to handle the rigors of a lifetime commitment. Not that this should come as a surprise to anyone. We are, after all, quite human with needs, wants, and desires. We're not going to be perfect.

They say that God only gives us what we can handle. At times, for many, that seems to be too much. For a few we know personally, they have taken their problems in life as "God's punishment" on them. This, while it is their opinion, I find laughable. God helps those who help themselves. If He presents opportunities to someone, and they don't take it, it's not His fault. It's their fault.

I thank God that my lovely and wonderful wife brought me back to the Church. It started with attending Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve in 2004 -- the first time in ten years that I had stepped inside a Catholic Church. And while I wasn't gung-ho about going weekly, I worked my way back into that routine. (I'm hesitant to call it a "routine" because it just sounds like it's expected.) Now, we do go weekly. I still don't sing (No, you don't want to hear it. I couldn't carry a tune in a bucket with God's help), but I'm there. I pray. I have faith that God will make sure things work out.

Maybe Mother Teresa did have a crisis of faith, but I don't think she did. I think it lies more in the self-doubt realm. Not doubt that god isn't there or that He's not watching over his children, but more as to whether she was really, truly doing any good. If that be the case, then she is literally no different than any other God-fearing human being on the face of the earth. And it's hardly worth noting that one of the most beloved people in the Catholic Church's history -- a woman that should be canonized as a saint for her tireless efforts -- had moments where she doubted in herself. If it was so newsworthy, why isn't the media reporting on EVERYONE who has such doubts?

Publius II


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