Have you ever noticed that most of the time, when people, both secular and otherwise, criticize Catholicism, that they criticize NOT the Catholic Church, but people who profess to be Catholics not acting according to the Catholic faith? We get criticized because of the priest sex abuse scandal, the Crusades, the Inquisition, and a myriad of other things, all of which have to do with people not acting according to what Jesus wants us to be.
I think it’s right to say that, if you are not going to act Catholic, don’t profess to be Catholic. Priests, bishops, cardinals, and lay should take this advice. God wants us to search ourselves, search for Him, and learn to be the best version of ourselves. What does that mean? It’s different for each person. The best advice I got this weekend was to get a coach. The best athletes in the world have coaches that help them correct their issues. So, if you want to be the best Catholic in the world, find a coach-a spiritual director. This means letting that person get to know you. It’s not totally necessary, but if that person is a priest, he can get to know you through the sacrament of confession. Letting a person know your weaknesses is the best way to strength yourself to overcome those weaknesses.