Christian religion already a way of life, Ma’am
Carmelita Roxas Natividad’s commentary (“A new spirituality,” Opinion, 6/20/13) suggests that we look for a new way of religion: a new way of prayer to replace novenas and the rosary—that is, a prayer life incorporated into one’s way of life and moral obligations, a new way of relationships, accepting all people without any bias. All these she puts as an alternative to the Church’s “fall/redemption” doctrine which, according to her, seems to be no longer appropriate to this generation. The Church’s teaching therefore of penance, fasting, abstinence is something to be outgrown.
As a Christian, one should know that the “fall/redemption” doctrine she is referring to is a central tenet in the teachings of the Church; it is, in fact, the story of humanity and how God, in his love, saved us from sin and death. This doctrine is not an invention of the Church, but is based firmly on the Bible and teachings of Christ. Moreover, it does not impose any rigid and baseless fear of God, but elicits a response from us to the great love shown to us by God. She may be surprised that this “fall/redemption” doctrine teaches us that the Christian religion is a way of life—a life in Jesus Christ; that the rosaries and novenas are not there just to be recited, but to be meditated upon and, thus, to help us live our moral obligations; that the story of Jesus’ death and suffering teaches us to love one another, even our enemies.
What we really need is not to invent new sets of beliefs and put them against the Church’s doctrines. What we need is to come home to the Church and to look for the true and authentic meaning of Jesus Christ’s teachings which the Church has wonderfully preserved and explained for centuries.
The Church is not an enemy of this world. The Church is one with this world in its search for meaning and purpose in this life. My prayers are with Natividad as she searches for a true spirituality. May she find God in her pursuit of meaning in life; or better yet, may God find her in her spiritual life.
—REV. KALI PIETRE M. LLAMADO,
Espiritu Santo Parish,
Tayuman, Sta. Cruz, Manila
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