It’s easy to forget what something means when you’ve said it a million times. It’s kind of like when you say a word out loud over and over. Somehow it manages to lose its meaning. Fork. Fork. Fork. Fork. Fork. Fork. Fork. Does it sound funny now?
It is possible that this happens to us in our everyday lives? That we say something over and over again until it sounds funny, or doesn’t really resonate like it did the first time. At Mass, we recite the same prayers, we say the same things and it’s easy to haphazardly end up ‘going through the motions.’
I’ll be the first to admit to this. Sometimes I realize that the whole Eucharistic Prayer has gone by and I haven’t remembered a word of it. There was something else rolling around in my brain (page numbers for the Communion Hymn or what I’m doing later (yes, I know, it’s horrible)) and I ended up spaced out.
There was a video that floated around on Facebook among my Catholic friends a month or so ago. At first, it seems like it’s just a video on what the Creed means. I mean, come one, we all went to CCD when we were in middle school. We all worked hard to memorize the words, and then re-memorize when the new translation came out. But 20 seconds into the video, it slowly became about something else.
Don’t be a robot.
It’s not what the words are – it’s what they mean. What we believe is so much more than prayers, text excerpts in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, and just something we tell our friends. It’s what we live.
I can’t help but feel like now is the time where we, as Catholics, need to be strong in our convictions. Some of these ‘hot button issues’ are hitting close to home (anyone having to decide on health insurance?). These aren’t just issues that are some abstract idea in the halls of the House of Representatives or the Senate. Sooner or later, we will have to deal with the consequences right here in Austin and on a personal level.
We can’t just go through the motions on some of these big issues. We have a big part to play in this whether you write your representatives, pray or encourage others to take a stance on the issues. We can’t be content to just say we’re Catholic, we have to live it out and be an example to others.
Don’t freak out just yet. There are plenty of places that you can go to ‘read up’ on all of the important issues. Here are just a few resources that I’ve found helpful.
- Fortnight for Freedom
- Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship
- National Catholic Register
- Diocese of Austin
So, please, in the wake of very important decisions. Do not be a robot. Know what you believe in, but more importantly know why.