Posted by Christine Nusse on Aug 25, 2006 | Categories: Seasons of the Spirit

A friend wrote, asking our thoughts on that topic. I am not sure exactly what she meant by ‘catholic religion’. But whatever it is, we need to find out if and how it should, or can, be practiced as a lesbian.
What’s the difference between Christian faith and Catholic religion? Is Catholic religion one of the various ways to interpret and live one’s Christian faith? If so, it’s obviously not the only one.
However for Catholics as well as for Christians of other denominations, the root of it all is our faith in the risen Christ and our knowledge of him and his message received in the Gospels. Religion should help us nourish that faith.
Religion and faith are a bit like the chicken and the egg. Without religion how would we discover and nourish our faith. And without faith, religion is simply dead in the water.
If religion is the sailboat, faith is the wind in the sails. One without the other is pretty hard. Which one comes first? Very often religion does, we are raised into a religion and draw our faith from it, except of course for converts such as St. Paul and many others.
At the end which one will last longer? Faith I bet. There will be no need of it in heaven!
What does it tell us? That religion is a mean, not an end. A mean to live, practice and nourish our faith. To turn it into an end is a sort of fundamentalism.
Indeed we need to be vigilant that religion does not become a hindrance rather than a help.
We need to be clear as of its role in our life of faith. Once we are we are free and can choose to practice our religion in a way that will help us, today and as we are.

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