Roman Catholic Parish


May 12, 2019

Dear All,

Let me share with you this conversation with a Young Questioner and Yours' Truly.

YQ: So, Father, does the Bible say anything about pot use?

YT: No, but it doesn't say anything about abortion or atomic war or policing international borders either.

YQ: So, we can make up our own minds on pot?

YT: If you think that a thing is right because no one has prohibited it, then maybe pot is ok on biblical grounds. But why would you … anyone … want to use pot?

YQ: Pain relief, boredom, easing stress, recreation.

YT:. But what is the most instantly visible thing in our Church building?

YQ: The crucifix.

YT: What does it show?

YQ: Jesus dying on the Cross.

YT: Who is Jesus to Christians?

YQ: He's the Son of God … and the leader of our religion.

YT: Then, the better Christian you are, the more closely you follow Jesus?

YQ: mhm.

YT: Can you follow someone who was crucified when you keep backing away from pain and stress and such?

YQ: Oh! I guess not.

YT: Christianity is not about finding permanent relief from pain. It's about how to deal with pain, and sadness and, even, death without running away from them or getting depressed by them.

YQ: And how does that work?

YT: Well, Jesus obviously believed that suffering and death were less 'important' that trust in God and hope for heaven.

YQ: So, the more you suffer the holier you are?

YT: No. But the holier you are the more you are able to suffer, to forgive, to endure with patience.

YQ: But what if you can't bear any more?

YT: That is called a temptation; or an occasion of sin. The un-bear-ability of something may 'excuse' wrong behavior; but it doesn't make it right. Lack of strength, or fear, or fatigue, or laziness are never reasons for doing; they are reasons for not doing. They are strong motivators, but they do not build character or teach endurance or foster hope.

YQ: Then pot is wrong because Jesus would not have used it if it had been around.

YT: Right! In fact he had opportunities to flee, wine to drink, and compromises to make, but he did none of those. In fact, by relying on God to make things right, he reveals to us that God does just that. The problem is that he does that only after everything else has failed - when there is no more pain to be borne, no more dying to be done, when one can no longer run away or turn to someone else - so that we will know it is God who did it.

YQ: So, pot is out of the picture … (sigh).

Really and truly and highly yours,



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