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Letters: What being a Catholic means

March 07, 2013

Re "Repelled, held by the church," Column, March 1

Like many Roman Catholics, Gale Holland rejects "a good deal of the dogma" of the church. She is Catholic, however, because she still hopes "to fulfill the ideals of [her] youth and do some good." She also enjoys the "pageantry of the church rites."

This is not what being Catholic means. A Catholic is someone who chooses freely to believe in and to be faithful to the teachings of church dogma. It is from this belief and faith that Catholics are motivated to do good works and to participate in the rites of the church.

Holland appears to have settled for an affection for the church out of nostalgia; I encourage her and others like her to gain an understanding of the theological underpinnings of Catholic dogma. She may very well find herself passionately and irrevocably in love with the church, warts and all.

Cecelia Grace


Like Holland, I still see myself as "one of the faithful" of the Catholic Church as well as part of "the loyal opposition." There are millions of Catholics who identify themselves in this way.

Although I am shocked and disgusted by the actions of certain criminal priests and the equally criminal hierarchy of the church, I have to acknowledge that my deepest spiritual moments — the times I have felt closest to God — have come in Catholic settings.

Likewise, the formation of my social conscience came through Catholic teachings. There were numerous lay and religious women and men in the church who were responsible for this, and they represent the true church, not the criminal priests and their enablers.

Donald Bentley

La Puente


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