By Rev. Robert E. Lucas
Those who live up to their obligations as Orthodox Catholics have learned by experience that the faith of Christ is not an easy one. Orthodox Catholics must obey some very serious laws and fulfill many duties, which, if they were not members of Christ’s true Church on this earth, they would not have to perform.
Nevertheless millions of members of the Holy Mother Church keep on adhering to these laws and fulfilling the duties required of them by Christ’s Mystical Spouse.
Why is it that so many millions of pious faithful on every continent, throughout the world, in every nation, speaking many diverse languages willingly accept upon themselves the yoke of Christ? There is but one reason and that is because Orthodox Catholics are convinced that theirs is the one, true religion given by Christ Himself to enable us to fulfill our obligations as creatures to Him, our Creator and help us to be as happy here on earth as we can so that we can be happy with Him forever in heaven.
As Orthodox Catholics we are sure of what we believe because we are convinced that Jesus Christ existed and that He was actually God; that He founded a Church for all men; that He asked the Father to send the Holy Spirit to guide His Church, and that consequently His Church is infallible in whatever it teaches us to believe and do in order to serve and love God truly. We know, despite all the powers on earth and in hell, that Christ’s Orthodox Catholic Church cannot deceive or fail us.
It is only in our church that the true philosophy of Christian life is expounded and taught that it might draw us closer to Christ and to eternal life. Throughout the centuries, atheists, agnostics, and various scoffers have attacked the teachings of the Church, but they have never succeeded in proving any of her teachings or doctrines false.
It is only in our Church that we can enjoy the graces and blessings that are so abundantly poured into our souls from heaven’s majestic throne through the sacramental system that our Divine Founder left to His Mystical Spouse. Joy radiates from our countenances because of the reflection of Christ in us through a frequent reception of these sacraments.
We know and firmly believe that it is our Church alone which goes back to the Apostles. When we recite the Creed, we rest assured that we profess the very same belief with the exact same interpretation accepted and taught by early Christians, and Christ Himself. The martyrs, the saints, the apostles were members of the same merry band as we.
Today as we participate in the graces of the Holy Sacrifice of the Divine Liturgy, or receive one of the seven sacraments, we realize we are bound in the same love and grace and receive the very same sacraments as did the followers of Christ in the early Christian era.
We should be filled with joy that we possess the true faith of Christ. For in reality this is the true faith. This is the faith of Jesus Christ. This is the faith of the martyrs. This is the faith of the Apostles and Saints. This is the Orthodox Faith. This is the faith through which the world can find its salvation. This is the Catholic faith. This is the faith inspired by the Holy Spirit. This is the only sanctioned faith of Christ.