Thursday, April 19, 2007


A young lady recently came to me in quite a bind. She decided that she wanted to join the Church but was not sure how to go about certain things. She wanted to know what she was supposed to do about the fact that her husband is furious about her decision and was refusing to allow her to attend Catholic services. She also wanted to know if she was permitted to attend Sunday service at the Protestant ecclesial assembly they had recently joined. If so, was she permitted to be actively involved in worship? To top it off, how was she supposed to deal with the fact that her husband was not at all interested in seeing their 6-week-old son baptized? These questions and many others were at the center of the discussion.

Instead of giving her my half-cocked answers to these questions, I did something I have rarely ever done. Were I to be honest, I would have to admit that I cannot recount a single occasion where I had actually done anything like this. What did I do? I admitted my lack of knowledge and authority in regards to matters such as these. I also informed her that while I was more than desiring to give her my personal opinion in regards to these questions, I felt that it would be dangerous for me to do so. To paraphrase, I said,

“I fear that I would place you in potential danger were I to act like I have sufficient knowledge or authority to speak on matters such as this. While my intentions may be in the right place, I fear that I may tell you to do something that you should refrain from doing or to refrain from something that you ought to do. This being said, as much as I would love to help, I have to admit my weakness. I will do my best, though, to help find someone who would be able to give you advice worthy of full acceptance.”

While this young lady may not have understood the significance of my answer, I sure did.

Labels: , , , , , , ,