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Dear Father Angelo,

I have just started a Christian path for just over three or four months. My family is heterogeneous in terms of faith. My maternal grandmother was very attached and devoted to the Church and, according to all the village elders, her life was a testimony of her faith. She had five children, three of them retain the title of Christians, but they just keep traditions and customs as they are not practicing. Another is an atheist. A great conversion radically changed the eldest son (for the better, I would add) after the death of a friend of his, the reading the Gospel and a pilgrimage to Lourdes.

My paternal grandmother, on the other hand, was not in the least tied to religion and my father gives even less importance to faith than my mother does. As for me, I have never been really interested in faith and, in recent years, I became absolutely indifferent. One day, however, I was attracted by the Bible, among the books in a bookshelf, which a priest had given us some time ago. It was almost like the Book had called me, and when I started reading it, faith slowly awoke in me, and began to grow (I have eradicated, I hope forever, the sin of masturbation) despite my defects which I keep seeing as countless. Doubt is one of the problems plaguing me. Sometimes, even without my or someone else’s solicitation, I think like “But what am I wasting time doing?” or “How the greater part of Catholic doctrine can possibly spring from simple theology?”. The priest, after confession, told me that these are common questions and that, indeed, I should offer my doubts to God. And I have tried.

However, even if I want to give the answer that the Church gives to the unbelievers, how can I argue about the righteousness of this Church despite the involvement in scandalous chronicles? We heard of great scandals about IOR, clerics abusing minors, others often caught in the act of homosexual relations, fraud, etc.

Please, help me to find an answer.

Sorry for the prolixity. I would like to conclude by telling you that the site has helped me a lot in recent months by resolving issues of great importance to me and giving confidence to my belief. I thank you and I am pleased to remember you in my prayer.



Dear Luca,

1. First of all, I thank you for the beautiful witness you have offered us.

You met Jesus by opening the Bible.

2. The Bible is a book, sure, but it is not just a book.

It is the instrument which Jesus used to meet you and become your Savior.

3. As you read it, Jesus peeled the scales off from your eyes and gave you sight.

He did not give your bodily sight because, thanks be to God, you already have it.

But He gave you faith which is the sight of the soul, that sight which allows you to grasp the deepest truth of all things because it shows them as through God’s eyes.

4. And, as the sun enlightens, heats and transforms mud into dry earth, so God purged your impurity by His heat, while penetrating your heart with His light, “eradicating” (here you used a very significant verb) “the sin of masturbation”.

Probably, you didn’t previously pay much attention to it.

But on meeting Jesus, you immediately felt that the mentioned sin is incompatible with the personal presence of God in the heart.

You have understood that sin prevents you from feeling communion with God, from heart to heart through sanctifying grace.

5. You now feel the desire to communicate to others the hidden treasure you have discovered.

But you find a stumbling block in the bad testimony given by prelates and men of the Church.

Well, concerning that, I like to report what the Eternal Father said to St. Catherine of Siena:

“You know well that if a filthy and badly dressed person brought you a great treasure from which you obtained life, you would not hate the bearer, however ragged and filthy he might be, through love of the treasure and of the lord who sent it to you. His state would indeed displease you, and you would be anxious through love of his master that he should be cleansed from his foulness and properly clothed. This, then, is your duty according to the demands of charity, and thus I wish you to act with regard to such badly ordered priests, who themselves filthy and clothed in garments ragged with vice through their separation from My love, bring you great Treasures — that is to say, the Sacraments of the holy Church — from which you obtain the life of grace, receiving Them worthily (in spite of the great defects there may be in them) through love of Me, the Eternal God, who send them to you, 

… Their sins indeed should displease you, and you should hate them, and strive with love and holy prayer to re-clothe them, washing away their foulness with your tears” (Dialogue, n.20).

6. So, even while finding yourself to hear so many bad testimonies caused by men of the Church, do strongly try to bring your interlocutors’ attention to the preciousness of the ministry that Christ confers over priests.

“Although clothed in rags, they carry a great treasure”.

If possible, lead them to love priests even more, striving with love and by holy prayer, so that they may be according to the heart of God and stop disfiguring the face of the holy Church.

God is very pleased by holy prayer made for His ministers.

7. Finally, without being scandalized, we must remember that the devil particularly tempts Christ’s ministers because, when one of them falls, he so causes the fall of many because of the scandal aroused.

St. Thomas says that Christ also wanted to be tempted so “we might be warned, so that none, however holy, may think himself safe or free from temptation. Wherefore also He wished to be tempted after His baptism, because, as Hilary says (Super Matth., cap. iii.): “The temptations of the devil assail those principally who are sanctified, for he desires, above all, to overcome the holy.” “(Summa Theologiae, III, 41,1).

8. I am glad that our site has contributed to the strengthening of your faith.

Thank you very much for your prayer and I too, with pleasure, will pray for you.

I bless you.

Father Angelo