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Does your Momma still wear combat boots?

June 19, 2011

I am sorry I have been off of writing.  My May was quite a busy pace, with work demands and end of school year stuff with the kids.

So our evangelized Catholic hearts have been a little piñata’d this weekend. That faithful servant, that “your momma wears combat boots” preacher, firebrand, conversion story-to-beat-all conversion stories, self-proclaimed black sheep, bass-voiced, smoothy, Fr John Corapi dropped a tactical nuke on his faithful.  Keyboards have been worn out on this topic in just mere hours. My first reaction – which I am willing to bet would be the same as a million others – is one that will remain private with an achy heart. This was the voice of the Catechism, wrapped in an unwavering, conviction that no one could look away from, like so many moths heading for a patio light.  My own heart leapt courageously at the sound of his voice, and even my wife had to admit she likes his sense of humor and delivery. I will probably wear out his Easter Triduum series.  Many intelligent points have been made already.  As a break topic of many conversations at yesterday’s Real Catholic Men Conference in Vancouver, Washington (terrific job, David, BTW!), some friends offered me their garded opinion, and even the better summary: no one knows.

My take is brief, but I think yet another vantage point.  I think of all the terrific Catholics on the speaking tour now.  Deacon Harold Burke-Sivers, Richard Lane, Hector Molina Jr, Fr Larry Richards, Michael Cumbie, Fr Don Calloway, Jesse Romero, just to rattle off a few.  Fr Corapi paved the way in a lot of respects to his on the air evangelizing (taking nothing away from Archbishop Fulton Sheen, or Mother Angelica!).  He was charismatic.  An ex-bad-boy.

It would be presumptious and sinful to guess as to all the whys.  The Lord said, in his Sermon on the Mount, “Stop judging, that you may not be judged.  For as you judge, so will you be judged, and the measure with which you measure will be measured out to you.” (Matthew 7: 1-2)  That alone has to be a little intimidating; even terrifying!

Here is my idea.  The greatest evangelist has to be St Paul.  At the end of his days, he sent out Barnabas, Timothy, Titus, and others, encouraging yet more evangelizing; the work is never done – until He comes.  It takes nothing away from Paul’s work or status.  It takes nothing away from Fr Corapi’s recorded work.  His preaching was good, and saved souls to be sure.  May God bless and protect him and us always.

I leave with a particular verse I have been reading over and over.  Near the end, Paul gave some advice to Titus. “I want you to insist on these points, that those who have believed in God be careful to devote themselves to good works; these are excellent and beneficial to others.  Avoid foolish arguments, genealogies, rivalries, and quarrels about the law, for they are useless and futile.  After a first and second warning, break off contact with a heretic, realizing that such a person is perverted and sinful and stands self-condemned.” (Titus 3:8-11).  This is not a reflection on him at all, I only think that all should be careful to – as stern Polonius reminds us – ‘tender yourselves more dearly’ and leave the facts to be as they are.  Life will continue.  The ship will self-right itself, and Christ will remain Christ.  After all, I am Christocentric, not Corapi-centric.  The only regrets I have is that I hadn’t sent him a thank-you-card for his good work that helped me in my journey.

Perhaps I will still have a chance to.

God bless you all.



ps: here is the announcement

One Comment leave one →
  1. Erik permalink
    June 19, 2011 5:31 pm

    Well said Mike.

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