What does it mean to be a good person of faith?

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by Joshua Cadieux

Growing up as a Catholic I was taught that you should go to church on Sunday and pray to God on a regular basis. I know that those are just the basic ground rules that are made to teach children good morals and values to live their lives by. As I went from my childhood into my teenage years and even now into my early twenties, I have had a sort of disconnect from God and the church itself. Even though I do not attend church or pray as often as I should, I consider myself a good person, I treat people with respect and I would never knowingly do something that would harm someone else. I have never done any drugs in my life and I rarely ever drink even though I am of age. The Bible says that you shouldn’t pray and do things for recognition and that god is always listening, so does it really matter where I pray?

On the other hand I have a friend who is in a relationship with a guy who claims to be very in touch with God. He attends church regularly and his father is even a preacher. His actions do not match what he preaches though; he is living an almost bi-polar life. He smokes pot, has been caught sending inappropriate text messages and pictures to another girl and he verbally abuses my friend. Whenever he is in the wrong he just turns the story around and makes her feel that everything is part of God’s plan.

I know that these are two polar extremes but I always feel like I get slack from people because I don’t go to church enough. I know that if I tried hard I could make time to attend mass more often, but does it really make me a bad catholic? I treat others the way I would like to be treated, and often get treated like garbage from those same people. I live my life in a very good way. I feel like being a good person is more important than attending mass, am I wrong to believe so?


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3 responses »

  1. God knows the intentions of your heart. I believe He knows what kind of person we are, whether we avoid mass like the plague, or attend everyday.

    At the same time, God asks us to go to mass, not because it makes Him greater, but for us. If you are already a good person without regularly going to mass, imagine the person you could be if you were receiving all the graces available to you in the Eucharist!

  2. Hey Joshua!
    I just wanted to add that we don’t go to mass JUST to make us better people – We go to learn about Him, and even more than that, to make time for Him… It’s like we’re supposed to be in a relationship with him right – You probably spend time at your friends houses hanging out with them, right, so why should your friendship with God be any different?

  3. I will add to this. . .

    I think the question is not necessarily if we are a good person or not, but how do we become a better version of ourselves?

    To that end, all the elements of the Christian life are there for us to do just that. In prayer, we learn to say thank you, ask for help, say I am sorry, and think about others as much, if not more, than ourselves. At Mass we learn to do all these things in community and recognize that we are never alone. In addition, Mass offers instruction and provides a common activity that brings to life those things that usually reside only in our mind. Thus, the Mass is the embodiment and/or incarnation of our relationship with God.

    Of course, this is what it is designed to do, but I admit, the reality often falls short from the ideal. Too often we are not aware of these things or find a hard time seeing them. And far too often, the priest and ministers are not very effective in communicating or providing an environment that demonstrates all of this.

    All this to say, we all have work to do if we are to be as “good” as we could be. . .

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