The entire letter of St Paul to Titus is covered in the Mass readings of yesterday and today! Okay, so the whole letter is only 3 chapters long and could easily be read over a cup of coffee but it contains some important teachings.
Paul starts by listing the qualities of a good leader. He does so to emphasise that some of the civil (and religious) leaders of the time, especially the Jewish Christians, were leading lives which were unacceptable to Christian teaching. In so doing, Paul stresses that sound doctrine can only be taught by good example. Otherwise, leaders are seen as hypocrites by loyal followers and as sympathisers by those who oppose change to their worldly ways.
Continuing further, Christians – which includes us – are exhorted to transform their lives in accordance with the teachings of sound doctrine and make a difference in all that we do. Families are mentioned in particular. Paul says, “Say these things. Exhort and correct with all authority. Let no one look down on you.” (Tit.2:15; African Bible)
The challenge and responsibility of sound Catholic Christian example is not easy but it must not be compromised. We need to put our faith into practice through good works. Full knowledge of our Catholic doctrine is a critical factor. Much speculation and scepticism is often born of ignorance or misunderstanding of what the church actually believes.
I was once asked by a teenager, “What is the pass mark for the 10 Commandments?” Humorous that this may seem, it does draw attention to the perception that religious compromise is acceptable. St Paul tells us that it is not!
God bless and stay safe.
Dc Mike & the team.
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