This summer, here in Saint Louis, The Catholic Theological Society has met in June and the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) will meet in August. Both organizations are know for hosting speakers and conferences that are often at odds with the Magisterium of the Catholic Church. A cursory look at their websites will verify this and it is well know that the LCWR is under investigation by the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith.
Theology and religious life were two very special interest for the Servant of God, Father John A. Hardon, S.J. His seminal work, The Catholic Catechism and his founding of The Institute on Religious Life attest to this concern.That the two organizations mentioned above are meeting in Saint Louis this summer, is a reminder that the crisis which has affected the Church over the last forty years is still very much with us.
It is true, there have been some signs of hope in recent years, new communities, colleges and other organizations loyal to the Magisterium of the Church have come into being. It is unfortunate, but many of these organizations are still marginalized in the Church.
Pope Benedict XVI has called for a Year of Faith to begin this October. He has said: The Year of Faith will give “renewed energy to the mission of the whole Church to lead men and women out of the desert they are in and towards the place of life: friendship with Christ who gives us the fullness of life”.
This calls for a formation of people in the Faith as the Catholic Church understands it and preaches it. It is almost safe to say that many, maybe even most people, under the age of fifty do know their Catholic Faith, even if they have gone to Catholic schools for the whole of the life. The Servant of God, Father John A. Hardon, S.J. certainly devoted himself to catechesis and theology. Allow me to mention that Father Hardon’s Basic Catholic Catechism Course has been revised and updated by His Eminence,
Raymond Cardinal Burke. (More information see below. )
As we prepare for the Year of Faith let us read Father Hardon’s words about faith: To believe means to accept with our minds what someone tells us it true. When we believe because we trust a person’s knowledge, we call it human faith. When the one we believe in is God, we call it divine faith.
In the Year of Faith 2012-13 let us pray for an increase and depending of our own faith and the faith of others.
Father Robert T. McDermott
Excerpt from The Father Hardon Newsletter (summer 2012)
**The Marian Catechist have announced that The Father John A. Hardon, S.J. Basic Catholic Catechism Course, Revised and Updated by Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke is now available for purchase from the Marian Catechist Bookstore. The complete set, which includes the Revised Basic Manual, the Workbook, the Question and Answer Tablet, the Modern Catholic Dictionary, and the Catechism of the Catholic Church, costs $65.00 (plus shipping and handling). For more information contact the Marian Catechist at
firstname.lastname@example.org or call 608-782-0011.