Have faith in the invisible realities Print
Bishop Morlino's Column
Written by Bishop Robert C. Morlino   
Thursday, Apr. 07, 2016 -- 12:00 AM
This column is the bishop’s communication with the faithful of the Diocese of Madison. Any wider circulation reaches beyond the intention of the bishop.

Dear Friends,

This past weekend we celebrated our Second Sunday of Easter -- Divine Mercy Sunday -- and the readings point in a particular way to the way we as a Christian people are called to respond, when acting simply in faith.

In the Gospel, we saw our Lord appear in His resurrected body, and we heard him speak to Thomas and the Apostles saying, “Blessed are they who have not seen but have believed (Jn 20:29).” These are words which are terribly important for our country and for our culture and for our day and age.

Some say truth found only in science

Our country and our culture and our day and age have tried to convince us that the only truth is to be found in science, that is, seeing what is visible by some method of physical observation, by some scientific method. If there is some kind of physical seeing possible, then we have truth. I see it with my own eyes!

Our strides in science are wonderful and our knowledge impressive, but what does Jesus say to us? “Blessed are they who have not seen and yet have believed.”

The Gospel tells us that knowledge by grace, knowledge from God’s point of view, gives us far more certainty than science, which is limited to picturing how things go in the physical world. We continue to have a greater and greater understanding of how things work in our physical world, but there is far more to understand.

Believing in invisible things

We say in the Creed, “I believe in God the Father Almighty, maker of Heaven and Earth, of all things visible and invisible.” God made all that is visible and all that is invisible! We say that at every Sunday Mass. But do we really believe in things invisible? Do we believe in those things that cannot be physically observed and yet are more true than things that can be physically observed?

That saying of Jesus, “Blessed are they who have not seen but have believed,” describes for us what it means to have the mind of Christ, what it means to “put on Christ.” To have the mind of Christ means to see things the way He sees them and to recognize the world in the light of God’s Glory.

The truth of God will always be higher and endowed with greater certainty than the truth of science. To have the mind of Christ is to see how limited science is. So often — not all the time, but so often — science is tempted to act as though there is no invisible world and that when they have accounted for things visible, that’s the end of everything. That’s all there is.

If that’s all there is, we live in a world without hope. Because, if the truth of science is all there is, then nothing matters except how things go in the physical world, and everything in the physical world is going to die, sooner or later. That’s not a happy destiny.

Hope in eternal life

The truths of God, with their unshakeable certainty, do not die. And one of the great truths is that we have been given immortal souls, souls that do not and cannot die. And as we look to the victory of Jesus, we recognize that the end is not of this world. We are called to have hope in eternity and hope in eternal life.

Blessed are they who have not seen but have believed! Blessed are those who have the mind of Christ! Blessed are those who have the knowledge of Christ that comes by grace!

May you continue to have faith in the invisible realities of our God and may you have hope in the knowledge that how things go in this world are not the end of the story. (Even the way things go in a presidential election!) There is infinitely more for us!

Thank you for taking the time to read this. Christ is Risen! Indeed He is Risen! Praised be Jesus Christ!