Amy Welborn is hosting an open discussion
about the dangers of working for the Church.
I'll get started by delineating the things I think people experience in church employment that can challenge faith...And believe me, it's not that I see these things as necessarily "negative," but just...life. Our faith grows through all kinds of earthquakes and aftershocks, no matter where we are.
* Having illusions about church operations and other church employees shattered.
*Faith matters becoming identified with work, losing the fire.
My own experience, to be honest, is much the opposite. The degree of cynicism among many in society, including many Catholics, regarding the internal life of the Church, caused me to enter the field with a good deal of skepticism myself. And there is good reason for it, to be sure. But, by and large, I have found those who serve the Church to be good, decent Catholics, with a sincere desire to serve the faithful, motivated by genuine charity. This is especially true for the handful of bishops and clergy that I have come to know. Certainly they don't do it for the money.
But perhaps my own experience is unique. Maybe those who begin working for the Church with idealistic, even quixotic expectations experience a difficult blow. It's easy to forget that we are a pilgrim church, both in head and members.