The comedy writer Woody Allen once said, “I’m plagued by doubts, especially about God. If only God would give me some clear sign, like making a large deposit in my name at a Swiss bank.”
Even though many people have doubts and refuse to practice a faith, many still do remain faithful and have a sincere respect for church and the church’s priests.
One of the most helpful influences in persuading someone to return to the weekend Mass and our traditions is the encouragement of another person, relative, friend, schoolmate or a priest.
There is a renewal in America of those looking for some deeper meaning — the spiritual dimension of life. One person said, “I always loved the sense of peace I felt when I went into the church. I wish I had handed onto my children a more intense hunger for it all. To practice faith gives structure and ritual to our beliefs and a way to think about the great and really important issues of life.”
Another person comments, “Going to church did not solve life’s problems, but it gave me a sense of living in a larger context … being a part of something greater than what I could see through the tunnel vision of my little personal existence.”
A priest’s greatest joy is to help someone come home to the church.