My last post elicited an interesting dialogue with David Nickol on the topic of worry. David thinks Fr. Martin’s prayer is too irenic, too reliant on the “God is in charge and he will provide” business. According to David, human freedom and the propensity to do evil, combined with what are only minimal guarantees of the Holy Spirit’s protection, give us plenty to worry about when it comes to the Catholic Church, which he views as being in decline, and possibly in crisis.
There is no question that the Church faces enormous challenges, including many generated from within, and even some whose origin can be pinpointed in Vatican City. It has ever been thus, a point Fr. Martin makes in his prayer, and the Church still stands. For myself, I don’t worry about the Church at all. But then, I don’t worry about much of anything, so you can’t go by me.So, my question for everyone else is: Do you also worry about the Church? What do you worry about? What, in your view, is the worst that could happen? Is it the institutional Church you worry about, her reputation, power, or unity? Or is it Catholics in the pew; whether they’ll leave, perhaps? Do you worry about your own faith? Or do you worry about how the rest of humanity sees the Church, and what that means for her missionary work, and the works of charity? How do you square your worries with St. Paul’s exhortation to “… not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus”?