Is It Sinful to Take a Minimalist View of Faith?
#1
I have asked similar questions (i.e. is a Catholic required to discern God's 'particular' will for their life?), but I guess the question can be simplified to this is: is it sinful for a Catholic to take a minimalist view of Faith (by this I mean a view geared towards obeying the rules and avoiding Hell...the minimum)? For me personally, because as I have discussed, I feel like my whole foray into faith (originally as a Protestant) was due to fear of Hell, why should I do anything beyond just trying to...well...avoid what I fear?

Basically, is it okay to take the stance of: I'll live life on my own terms, but I will follow the rules. Isn't that how we are in terms of secular/civil law: we do what we want, but there are certain boundaries we cannot cross without severe penalties.

Reply
#2
It depends.

You don't need to be a scholar or able to have long discussions or great learning. That is what you don't need. You can live simply in the faith, in fact, that may be preferable.

Reply
#3
So you want to know the bare minimum required to get into Heaven?  And you're not committed to doing anything beyond the bare minimum?

I'm sure you know Catholics are only required to confess once a year.  But no serious Catholic would dare give up the Sacrament for that long a time.  The "minimum" requirements of the Church are merely a suggestion, but they're not meant to be followed by the typical Catholic; a good Catholic should do much more than just these suggestions.

It's simple: be humbly open to everything the Church teaches, always try to learn more about the Faith, and pray for the gift of hope.  Don't try to look for loopholes - there really aren't any.
Reply
#4
Anyone who loves someone desires to know more about them.
If you love Christ, it will naturally follow that you will desire to know His teachings and the teachings of His Church.
Reply
#5
(12-13-2009, 06:23 PM)Louis_Martin Wrote: Anyone who loves someone desires to know more about them.
If you love Christ, it will naturally follow that you will desire to know His teachings and the teachings of His Church.

But how can I love Christ when there is a gun to my hide and the command: follow the rules or burn in Hell.

Quote:I'm sure you know Catholics are only required to confess once a year.  But no serious Catholic would dare give up the Sacrament for that long a time.  The "minimum" requirements of the Church are merely a suggestion, but they're not meant to be followed by the typical Catholic; a good Catholic should do much more than just these suggestions.

I would say going to Confession anytime you commit a mortal sin would fall under the "minimum to avoid Hell" even if it is more than Church precepts strictly require.
Reply
#6
nsper7, I recommend you study the lives of Saint Bernadette Soubirous and Saint Thérèse de Lisieux.

Reply
#7
Such a view is kind of an affront to God. Christ said "Be ye perfect" not "Be ye lukewarm" and such a minimalist view of the faith leads to a lukewarm practice of the Faith. We are called to holiness which means growing in charity. How can we possibly grow in charity if we are doing the barest possible to be a Catholic in good standing? The saints are our exemplars because they understood that this pilgrimage here below was meant to be one of continuing love of the Divine Majesty.

Is it sinful? Perhaps not grievously yet I would think you would want to give more to the Redeemer than what is strictly obliged.
Reply
#8
Quote:Is it sinful? Perhaps not grievously yet I would think you would want to give more to the Redeemer than what is strictly obliged.

But why should we want to do more? He put the threat of Hell out there--and He is God and can threaten Hell and cast people into Hell--so why should I want to do anything beyond just trying to avoid Hell?
Reply
#9
You are looking at salvation from a negative aspect. The positive aspect is growth in charity. By our participation in sanctifying grace we are united to God. Very good. However this "seed of glory" must grow or else it remains stagnant. The threat of Hell is out there but why should this view dictate how we practice the Faith? If we are constantly fearful of Hell then we are not capable of a deepening understanding of God's Mercy. Another example - avoiding sin out of fear of hell is good but what is even better is that we avoid sin out of LOVE OF GOD. It takes time to develop this keen sense of His Love.
Reply
#10
Nsper, Christ is not holding a gun to your head.  He is your SAVIOR, offering you a way into HEAVEN!

Listen, you are of the race of men - you were born with Original Sin and, in that state, your default end would be Hell.  That's the fault of men, not of Christ.

Christ is lovingly offering to save you.  It's not God's fault if you sin and therefore go to Hell.  It's your own.  Christ loves you so much that he split every drop of His Blood and died wretchedly on a cross to open to you the possibility of Heaven.  Show a little gratitude, maybe?
Reply




Users browsing this thread: 1 Guest(s)