(Reply to letter from Ken Stuart by Art Lytle.
I apologize to you and to Father for the very inept and insulting way in which I ended my short letter re: your letter. Later, several days after I had written it, I reread it and was ashamed it had that condescending edge to it. My dear brother, please forgive me! You have every right to call my last comment "totalitarian," for that is what it was. I promise you I will try to avoid such shallow behavior in the future. Again, I ask you to accept my sincere apology.
In all sincerity Ken, I admire your tenacity and your very able intelligence. For you are "up front" in dealing with these sexual subjects that are a daily cross and challenge to people like me. I cannot cross swords with you from an intellectual point of view, because, with no false humility, I must admit that reason is not my forte, nor my center of gravity, when it comes to the Holy Church which Christ has left as a guide for us, here is this difficult and sometimes very troublesome world. There are others within the fold who cannot fall back on my position. The wonderful seapadre certainly represents the best that both reason and faith have to offer.
My center is Faith in Christ. From that Faith, I give complete allegiance to the Church I believe he founded, the Pope and the teachings of the Magisterium. I look upon these teachings, as I look upon the Bible. They come from God to man. For me, reason is a servant of this Faith.
Again, with complete respect for your ability, I believe that all human endeavor, including science and reason, are the servants of this Wonderful Spirit. Speaking for myself, I do not believe that Reason can be used as the arbiter of Revealed Truth. For me, God has put the Church here for that purpose. And when the Church, under the flawless guidance of the Holy Spirit, has exercised reason to flesh out doctrine as we must live it day by day, I say to myself, "Thy Will Be Done." For as Scripture tell us, "Trust in the Lord with Thy Whole Heart, and lean not on thine own understanding."
One may counter the scriptural position, or my own, and say, "Why that's a strange position to take. Hasn't God given us Reason by which to live our lives and to know truth from error.?" And my answer would be, "Yes!" But once reason has adequately served us in leading us to the Church and the Truths of the Faith, then she too must become a servant of that Faith, and cease to challenge the Spirit once it has spoken through the Church.
And believe me, I don't minimize the strength of the positions you aver on sexual matters. In my own life, only the Sacrament of Confession and the Supernatural Power of God is able to keep me within the sexual guidelines that come to us through the Church. At times it is a terrible Cross to remain faithful. And at times, I fail, totally. And, Ken, you know I'm not trying to infer any subtle moral superiority to you when I speak what I truly feel. You wouldn't respect me if I caved in and said things I didn't believe in order to make everybody feel good.
There is a beauty and a power in the Holy Spirit that rewards honest effort to remain faithful in sexual areas, as taught by the Church. I cannot lie about this as I have found it to be true in my own life. In the sexual area, as in many areas of our lives, Christ shows us a bloody Cross, looks over at us, and says, "Come my brother....Follow Me!"