Memorial of Saint Leo the Great, Pope and Doctor of the Church

Today is Martin Luther’s Birthday. No little publicity has come about this year noting the 500th anniversary of his famous 95 theses. Mistakenly, some have identified this as the 500th anniversary of the Reformation, but this error is quickly refuted by the recognition of the presence of reforming movements prior to Luther’s thesis, including the important role of female reformers such as Catherine of Genoa and Catherine of Sienna. As we move forward in advancing the Kingdom of Christ, we should heed well the guidance of Ignatius and move to what we have in common instead of jumping to what separates us. Conversation about our Catholic faith with non-Catholics should begin with listening to the stories of others and commending them on what is good and true in their own lives of faith. Matteo Ricci wisely noted the importance of friendship and trust in the conversion to Catholicism and in our efforts to share our faith we would be well-advised to follow his example.

November 10th, 2017