The Glimmer: Weekly Message for 2-7-17

Dear Friends in Christ,

Amid last year’s dark political clouds there seemed to be a silver lining.

Various countries seemed weary (to use a polite term) of the status quo, and many voters were willing to plunge into the deep end of uncertainty.

The dust hasn’t settled from the upheavals of 2016. But behind those upheavals lies a reason for hope.

Simply put, more people seem to understand that the world and its promises are not fulfilling their deepest desires.

Technology hasn’t delivered, for instance. The Internet, which once held out the promise of social transparency, is now assailed as a spreader of misinformation (and worse). Smart phones, which put powerful computing in our palms, haven’t made life calmer. Often they make life more frenetic.

So where is the silver lining?

The silver lining, at least glimpses of it, is in the questions that people are asking.

If the inbox of Ask a Priest is any kind of accurate gauge, people are still drawn to the person of Christ, and they are curious to know what his Church teaches.

Whatever their personal situations – divorced and remarried, gay, agnostic, skeptical, despondent, pious – they still seek answers in the realm of religion.

Perhaps they sense that a new political leader or the latest electronic gadget is not to going to bring them happiness.

Many who send questions to Ask a Priest are inquiring about deep things: how to connect with God, how to understand the presence of evil, how to reconcile with family members. They sense that the wisdom of this world isn’t enough.

All this might not seem like a silver lining to some people, but the trend does show a glimmer. For it shows that people are more and more often asking the right questions.

I invite you to follow along and decide for yourself.

Father Edward McIlmail, L.C.
Ask a Priest contributor

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