Wednesday, January 21, 2015

New Evangelizers Post: Philanthropy vs. Sainthood

I have a new article up at

What does it mean to be a saint?

In ancient times, this could mean anyone who is a part of the Christian community.  Today when we speak of saints, we are talking about those people of heroic grace and virtue on whom we can model our lives.

As someone obsessed with movies, I always thought that Batman Begins had a very Catholic understanding of the need for saints.  Bruce Wayne says, “People need dramatic examples to shake them out of apathy and I can’t do that as Bruce Wayne. As a man, I’m flesh and blood, I can be ignored, I can be destroyed; but as a symbol… as a symbol I can be incorruptible, I can be everlasting.”

The character understands that people need others to inspire them.  We hold our saints up as symbols of Christ like living.  

It is very human to desire role models.  We all look for heroes to follow.  This is why the Church has tapped into this very natural desire and has given us such a large and diverse communion of saints to follow.

But we must be careful about our heroes.  And we must not fall into the trap of believing good works alone make a person holy.  How often does the media hold up some Hollywood celebrity for laudatory praise because of some kind of charitable endeavor?  But good works alone do not make us holy.

You can read the entire article here.

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