Monday, May 02, 2005

It is Time to Renew the Church

Father Benedict Groeschel visits his seminary. Interestingly the place where he did his novitiate, fairly close to where I work was also sold and bought by another denomination.

From Father Benedict:

"The other day I visited the old seminary I had attended as a Capuchin. Because of the loss of vocations the large building on the banks of the Hudson in Garrison, New York, had been closed and later sold. It is now a Buddhist retreat house, and the staff treated me with friendliness and courtesy. It was the occasion of great sadness, however, when I saw in the place where the Blessed Sacrament had once been reserved a large and imposing statue of Buddha. I have no hostility to the Buddhist religion. Buddha himself tried to lead people to peace; more than anything else he was an ethical philosopher. Buddhists have made him into something of a god, although that term does not fit too well. The statue certainly showed a serious artistic attempt to portray divinity. What saddened me greatly was that the presence of Our Lord Jesus Christ in the Eucharist was gone. When the Capuchin friars sold the seminary, the building was supposed to be converted into condominiums. The new owner was not able to do that, however, and resold the property to the Buddhist retreat movement. This is a sad commentary on the fact that in the last thirty or forty years Catholics in the United States have 'dropped the ball,' if I may put it that way. There may be many excuses and reasons, but history will judge that we did not do well with the vibrant faith we received from our forebears. It is time to get on with the Church's work, that is, the work Christ gives us as Catholics. It is time to renew religious education, Catholic life, and the observance of the Gospel. It is time for every Catholic who has his or her wits about them to become as fervent a Christian as possible. "