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Life update: Why Catholic?
Spiritual truth seems objective after all
My wife and I officially joined the Roman Catholic Church on January 1, 2023.
I’ve created a new section of my Substack called Catholic Experiments, where I’ll share ideas for turning theology into practice. (You’re able to unsubscribe from that section if you don’t want to hear about it, but still want everything else.)
So, why Catholicism?
A few things initially attracted me:
The Catholic tradition really wants you to become a saint. It cares immensely that everyone stop sinning and practice holiness. This makes the most sense to me in terms of what Jesus said: “Not all who call me ‘Lord’ will get into heaven” / “Seek to enter by the narrow path” / “Only those who do the will of my father will enter the kingdom of heaven” / etc.
Catholicism has a very strong mystical tradition, which appeals to me as someone who discovered God first and foremost through meditation and inner experience.
I learned long ago to prioritize advice given by people who have actually achieved what I want to achieve. Who better to learn from than the thousands of saints who achieved the heights of spiritual perfection?
I love Catholic art and architecture. Gothic cathedrals. Polyphonic choirs. Giant pipe organs. It’s all just so awesome, full of the reverence God deserves. Catholic culture seems to say “God deserves the best of human attention and beauty and gravity.”
The redemptive value of suffering. What I fell in love with about Gandhi is at the core of Catholic teaching about Jesus, and about what Jesus commands Christians to do. Will write more on this later.
A near-miracle happened. It wasn’t quite a miracle because it has a natural explanation, but its huge unlikeliness, precise timing, and huge personal benefit were miracle-like. Will tell that story soon — it’s the story of the first time I ever prayed to the Virgin Mary.