How to identify a “Cosmetic Catholic” – Cathedral Administrator
Not all who come to Church every Sunday are authentic Catholics. Many are cosmetic or superficial Catholics who come to Church to show-off.
The Administrator of Maria Assumpta Cathedral Owerri, Rev. Fr. Gerard Onyekwere who revealed this in his homily last Sunday, January 22, also gave some clues on how to identify a cosmetic Catholic.
First, cosmetic Catholics don’t take the Sacrament of Confession seriously. They go to confession once in several months or even years. They don’t know how to pray the Rosary, Angelus and hardly attend any Church activity except Sunday Mass.
Second, they come to church to show-off, to display their latest cars and fashion. They want to be the cynosure of all eyes in the church, creating unnecessary distraction.
Third, superficial Catholics don’t belong to any station, sodality or prayer group. They are not members of CMO, CWO, Mary League or Youth, not to talk of possessing the appropriate uniforms. Some registered in the groups and disappeared. Turning to the Christian fathers, he asked, “How many of you belong to CMO? How many of you have CMO uniform? How many of you are active in CMO activities. Some even feel too big to wear CMO uniform”.
He informed them that the church created these groups to nourish our faith and therefore, we should take them seriously.
Another group of fake Catholics are the so called “big men” who feel they are very important and should be accorded special recognition in church or even worshipped.
This group looks down on Church wardens and church security personnel. They hardly obey instructions or rules laid down for better administration. They want to remind you how important they are in the Church and society, that they are knights of the Holy Roman Catholic Church, and how they contributed to the building of the Church.
Continuing Fr Onyekwere said that some cosmetic Catholics instead of co-operating with leaders of their various stations and sodalities prefer to form cliques and gossip group, to hinder smooth administration of the sodality and ultimately the progress of the Parish.
The Cathedral Administrator then made a special appeal to the parishioners. “Please live authentic life, stop pretending, and stop being sycophants. You are not coming to worship anybody. Be humble, be obedient, be the light, let your conduct and behaviour be a gospel to others”.
He appealed to leaders and members of various stations and groups to drop their differences and be united in Jesus Christ, in whose name we are all baptized, in this way we can be light to the world.