If you were to ask the average man or woman, “Who is the head of the Catholic Church?” most would probably answer, “the pope.” But they would be wrong as we hear in today’s second reading. Here is what St. Paul says, “He is the head of the body, the church.” The “He” St. Paul is talking about is Christ Jesus. The Catholic Church has always believed and taught this. The pope is simply the “vicar of Christ.” He stands in the place of Jesus here on earth as a sign of unity and protector of the faith and its truth.
Today many are cynical when they think of institutions like the government and banking institutions. They have not always lived up to the faith people placed in them. The Church, too, as an institution has failed in some instances especially in the area of clergy abuse. Right now she is trying to correct past mistakes made by a few of her members. However, the Catholic Church is more than an institution; it is the mystical (spiritual) body of Christ with Jesus as the head, the Holy Spirit as the heart and soul, and we the people in heaven, purgatory, and on earth. Our country just celebrated its 234th birthday while the Church has been around for 2000 years because God is ultimately in charge. Let us pray that God will always be in charge of our lives and have a greater influence on our governments.
- Fr. Carl