Digital artist Sr. Ellen LaCapria, D.C. offers a visual aid to enter into contemplation about ambiguity. This image arose from her reflection on #65 in Pope Francis’ Gospel of Joy and is the fourth installment of her weekly artistic variations on her community seal. Sometimes it feels as if we are in a period of continuous waiting. Will the plane and the survivors be found? Will the violent tensions around the world ever end and can the economy truly rebound? These are the temporal questions we may ask. In this period of waiting is our response and the actions taken in this environment credible and is the common good best served?
Being Credible And The Common Good
Credibility and the common good (PDF version of reflection)
Sometimes we are caught-up in the grayness of life. Things are neither just black nor white which is reflected in the image portraying beauty but also complexity. It is also a reflection, kaleidoscope image of something. So really what is real?
#65. Despite the tide of secularism which has swept our societies, in many countries – even those where Christians are a minority – the Catholic Church is considered a credible institution by public opinion, and trusted for her solidarity and concern for those in greatest need. Again and again, the Church has acted as a mediator in finding solutions to problems affecting peace, social harmony, the land, the defense of life, human and civil rights, and so forth. And how much good has been done by Catholic schools and universities around the world! This is a good thing. Yet, we find it difficult to make people see that when we raise other questions less palatable to public opinion, we are doing so out of fidelity to precisely the same convictions about human dignity and the common good.1.
If only things were black and white, or maybe not. That would encroach upon free will, conscience and human intelligence. That might undermine choice. Perhaps the critics are ready to pounce on the good done, undermining virtue, in order to soothe their own inner conflicts.
Do we strive for credible or popular? In solidarity of support we can be brave enough to weather the tides of unpopular in order to hold on for the common good. We are depended upon to be faithful.
1. APOSTOLIC EXHORTATION EVANGELII GAUDIUM OF THE HOLY FATHER FRANCIS TO THE BISHOPS, CLERGY, CONSECRATED PERSONS AND THE LAY FAITHFUL ON THE PROCLAMATION OF THE GOSPEL IN TODAY’S WORLD