This morning I was reflecting on the church and how we must be merciful to her too!

At times it’s easy for us to think that the church somehow started off perfect and that men messed it up!

But no! From day one the church has been fragile and has been run by fragile men!

Instead of coming down from heaven with a ‘divine catechism’ and a set of beliefs God gave the church the Holy Spirit and more or less let her figure things out over time!

Things we now take for granted like Jesus being one person with two natures or Mary being ‘Mother of God’ which us catholics take as obvious took centuries of disputes and misunderstandings to clarify!

For centuries the church believed that the earth was flat, something laughable to us now!

So you see the church is like each one of us! Profoundly human and still working bits out!

It is easy for us to expect too much from the church! We are used to this in the business world where we expect perfection!

But in some ways the church is more like a hospital, it treats patients and is still researching some illnesses and treatments that it still doesn’t fully understand!

Some illnesses it knows how to handle expertly while for others it is still at sea!

The area of sexuality and gender is one of these areas where more research is needed!

Of course it would have been far easier had Jesus left a ‘lgbt manual’ for us all to follow but He didn’t!

The result is that we are still wrestling with it and trying to figure it out and it will take time to solve!

In the meantime we must be patient, merciful and persevering. We must never lose hope even when at times things seem pretty hopeless!

We must trust in God’s ways and trust that God loves to be searched for and He enjoys the hunt for truth!

If God was as obsessed about dogmas as some make out then He’d have surely come in the form of a divine wikipedia rather than as a little baby!

So today let us not lose track of what is really important, seeking Jesus. Let us not get over upset with ourselves or with the church who are still figuring some things out and remember that God will honour us for following our consciences even if we find out in heaven that we got many things totally wrong!

Come Holy Spirit! Give us love, give us patience, give us understanding and give us wisdom!

Have a great day!

Mike