The great question: So what?

I heard a great story recently about a man making pancakes for his two boys. When he finished the first pancake, the two immediately began fighting for control of that one pancake. Seeing an opportunity for learning, he stated (rather solemnly, I might add), “Boys, if Jesus were here he would say ‘you take the first pancake.’ ” Stepping back, the father looked at his two boys who were deep in thought. Suddenly, the older boy grabbed the pancake, threw it on his plate and said to his younger sibling, “You get to be Jesus first.” Now, THAT is applying theology to everyday life! Joking aside, applying theology to everyday life is what we are called to do.

While I was attending the seminary, our prof ran through a review of some theology on the Trinity and asked a very important question: “So what?”

We paused for a moment. “This is theology! What does he mean, ‘So what?’”

Every time someone teaches you something about the Church or what She believes, ask the big question – “So what?” Then see where it takes you. By doing this, we might find theology and faith moving from the category of “Spiritual Trivia” to “Life Changing in Your Face Truth.” It’s that good, folks – I promise.

Sometimes people come to me and say they feel bad because they are questioning their faith. I always try to encourage people that the Church is precisely FOR those who have questions. We don’t go to a doctor because we feel great, and we don’t go to Church because we have all the answers. We come to God because we realize we need something more. We come to God because we are sinners who need the unconditional love of Jesus so badly.    If God can take something as horrible as crucifixion and death and make it beautiful, think of what He can do with our questions and sinfulness.

What is the most important thing we believe as Catholics?

The Catechism of the Catholic Church calls the Trinity the “Central Mystery of Our Faith.” That little statement says a lot.

First, it is central to what we believe because of how the Trinity exists.What we believe as Catholics (and most Protestant denominations believe this as well) is that you have three distinct persons who are somehow one yet give of their total selves to the other two. They hold nothing back in their love for one another and give until they should be empty. But they are never empty.

THAT is central to our faith because that is what our lives are to be as well. We give all of our love, our life, our strength and, indeed, our very being to our Trinitarian God and His people who fill us with love. It’s something we can’t comprehend because it’s so vast. It’s also called a “mystery” because we can never understand precisely how it happens.

Now, it’s important to note that when the Church says “mystery,” it doesn’t mean the same thing as a television mystery. It means, in the words of one of my teachers, “constantly revealing.” We could literally spend our lives taking this apart and learning something new each day.

Enjoy another day in God’s presence!