What was your Father's day like?
What Was Your Father's Day Like?
By Ron Kempen, Gospel Light Ministries, Gospelfirstname.lastname@example.org
How did you enjoy Father’s Day? I received an e-mail from a local Catholic Church that made the following request or suggestion. It came from the Catholicscomehome.org website of which I will have at least three articles over the coming months. The request is, “to submit a short testimonial, either written or in a 60-second video format, about a priest or bishop you are grateful for, or one who has inspired you in some way.” Of course I did not write as they had hoped. Here is my reason:
There were a lot of priests that I liked as a child growing up. There are so many priests that have a super following and I’m sure that many, or at least most of them, would give you the shirt off their backs. I had a cousin who was a priest at Holy Cross in Kaukauna and another at Holy Name in Kimberly for a quite a few years. Nice people. There were the Parish priests of whom I always respected, for they certainly were “other-centered” and genuine friendly priests wherever I lived. Manitowoc and Freedom are two of the places that I can mention. I was so inspired by the priests that I knew that I remember, as I think back to my eighth grade, of a time where I wanted to be a priest and do what priests do: that is to serve God and man.
Are the priests that way now? I would certainly think so. So why do I not send in as a testimony of their character and share my feelings about them? The answer is a simple one, not of hate but one of love. I love God more. The love chapter tells us in 1 Corinthians 13:6 that love, “does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth.” I know that there is a whole different aspect of a Catholic priest that most people never see. That difference is magnified the more that an individual learns what the Lord’s word is. 1 John 1:6 tells us, “If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie and do not practice the truth.” This is the reason primarily. Just as any other person gets defensive when they are questioned, these people will do the same. Therefore, if I were to write about an influential priest, I would write about the Richard Bennet and Bob Bush type. These are former priests that have learned the truth about how one gets saved and no longer practice the Catholic religion. They are now trying to reach other priests with the Gospel that saves.
Let me add some other points, such as referring to them as “Father.” Didn’t Jesus tell us specifically not to call anyone “father?” (See Mathew 23:9). So when we address the priests, why have the “Father” title? Why, if they really are leaders of “the one true church” as they claim, do they practice all of the sacramental rituals and methods that go against God’s word? These priests need to repent, and follow the God of the Bible. This might be blunt but Jesus flat out calls the Pharisees snakes and vipers for doing the same things that we see today’s priests practicing. It would not be that difficult to understand exactly what I mean by taking the word “priest” and substitute it for the words “Scribes” and “Pharisees” in Matthew 23. It certainly would fit.
The Bible tells us in Hebrews 7 through 10 that God got rid of the sacrificial priests system and that He is our High Priest forever. Amazingly, Peter tells us that we (believers) “are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.” (1 Peter 2:9). The only people that I want to call me “Father” are my two children.
In closing, I know that the heart of man is desperately evil. Like all of us we must go the way of the Bible which is the only path that will get you to Heaven. Until that happens, we are to follow the Lord Jesus and not compromise in His Word. Stand firm and pray for their salvation. And remember that God does not look at the outside of a man. This year’s Father’s day had me enjoying My Earthly dad and even my spiritual Father God in Heaven, not even considering writing any other letter than this. That’s the way it should be and why I can’t send anything to encourage the Catholic priesthood. Where they say, “Thank you for helping us to encourage our holy and heroic priests,” I would have to say they are not holy, nor heroic. Take the time to check this out with your Bible. Next month a closer look at this Catholic come home web page.