Five Faith Friday

Here is this week's installment of "Five Faith Friday" which contains five, faith-based things I found interesting and am sharing on Friday.

Which Facts I Am Analyzing --
Those from The State of Theology. They came from an anonymous survey that you can take yourself. Keeping in mind that surveys aren't always accurate and the sample size (624 Catholics) is fairly limited, I still believe that the data showed the directional state of Catholic beliefs in the United States. Here are a few items that stood out to me:

  • 19% do not think that God is a perfect being and cannot make a mistake
  • 25% disagree or are unsure that Biblical accounts of the physical (bodily) resurrection of Jesus are completely accurate and that the event actually occurred
  • 34% believe Jesus was a great teacher but he was not God
  • 34% do not view abortion as a sin
  • 40% do not believe that sex outside of traditional marriage is a sin
  • 44% think gender identity is a matter of choice

Now, when you filter for Mass attendance (i.e., several times a week, just Sundays, 1-2 times a month, CEOs (Catholic and Easter Only), rarely, never) you can see high correlations between frequency and catechesis but also keep in mind that 62% of adult Catholics do not attend Mass weekly. Data sets like these should be a wake up call for our clergy (and lay people!) for the focus areas we need to be catechising on. Want to see where you stand on your knowledge of your faith? Take the (anonymous) survey and find out! And if you are a pastor, this might be a great way to take a pulse of your parish. Give it a thought!

Which Song I Listened To --
"Amazing Grace" by Penatonix (PTX). PTX is an a cappella group that composes arrangements of vocal harmonies, basslines and beatboxing so keep in mind that everything you hear is being created with their voices. At the time of this share, they have accumulated 2MM views in 8 days! There rendition of "Hallelujah" surpassed over 570MM views and "Mary, Did You Know" hit 243MM views so it shouldn't be too surprising. What a beautiful performance! I'm not crying, you're crying!

What I Think You Should Know --
You can't be Catholic and a freemason. Do you know any Catholic freemasons? If so, it is in their soul's interest that you let them know that freemasonry is incompatible with the Catholic Church. In 1738, Pope Clement XII declared that Catholics are forbidden to join the masons, and until 1983, under pain of excommunication. On Nov. 26, 1983, with the approval of Pope John Paul II, the Sacred Congregation reiterated the ban on Catholics joining the Masons: "...the Church’s negative judgment in regard to Masonic association remains unchanged since their principles have always been considered irreconcilable with the doctrine of the Church and therefore membership in them remains forbidden. The faithful who enroll in Masonic associations are in a state of grave sin and may not receive Holy Communion." (italics emphasis is mine). Beware of freemasons!

What Quote I'm Reflecting On --
"Children are not a distraction from more important work. They are the most important work." -C.S. Lewis. Too often people talk about the inconvenience of children and hence why abortion largely exists. They neglect to remember that the purpose of marriage is for the good of the spouses, for the procreation of life, and the education of those children. By its very nature the institution of marriage and married love is ordered to the procreation and education of the offspring and it is in them that it finds its crowning glory (CCC1652). For those of us blessed to be parents, make sure you are taking your vocation seriously and doing everything in your power to grow and educate your kids in the faith. On the topic of abortion, here are two good resources I wanted to share: 1) A powerful testimony from Patricia Sandoval who aborted 3 children 2) This debate between an abortionist and a pro life speaker.

What Book I Read --
"Infiltration: The Plot to Destroy the Church from Within" by Taylor Marshall. This was certainly an eye opening book and like typical Taylor Marshall, it is founded heavily in truth but elaborated in assumptions. Nevertheless, our Church is constantly under attack and it is clear that we need to fast and pray. I rated this book 4 out of 5 stars on Goodreads.

Don't forget to register for the in-person "Be Not Afraid" Men's Conference featuring Adam Minihan and David Niles from the hit podcast "The Catholic Man Show" as well as internationally renowned Catholic author, radio host, and evangelist - Jesse Romero!

Have a wonderful weekend and may God bless you and your family!

David Yingling started his weekly “Five Faith Friday” emails when the Coronavirus forced an end to his in-person “Pints & Prayers” gatherings, which he describes as “Men striving to deepen their faith over a cold one.” He’s a member of St. Jane Frances de Chantal Parish in Easton.


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