Father Weinandy’s Story: Faith Does Not Test God
Father Weinandy’s story – which is, so to speak, the cause of the letter I have already commented – deserves a couple of considerations.
There is a mixture of arrogance and superstition in Father Weinandy’s story about how the letter came to be. No one of us has the right to even think “I will do my duty of Catholic only if you, God, send me a sign; and I will tell you exactly what kind of sign I want to have; and I want to have it tomorrow”.
Father Weinandy’s letter-writing might be right or wrong, but you don’t pose conditions to God. If it is right to write a letter, then by all means write it. If it is not right to write it, then by all means do your duty of Catholic theologian in a different way. But do not ever think that you can be exempted from doing what is right because God hasn’t sent you a pink dog dancing on his hind legs, or a chap without a number of specified passports, telling you exactly the words you want to hear, within a strict time frame.
Yes, God may use and test even the arrogant and, if the story is true, I can’t avoid thinking of Him prompting the guy to this act of arrogance in order to, rather amusingly, baffle him into doing what he had to do anyway. However, it is still not right to hide behind hugely favourable odds and perform this kind of order-giving to God for something one knows to be right and the thing to do anyway. For heavens’ sake, this is a theologian who writes books about Catholicism, and everything indicates that, had he not seen the pink dog dancing on his hind legs of sort (his condition for, generally, “writing something”), he would have taken it as an excuse not to write anything at all (much less a letter to the Pope) about the current state of affairs in the Church. Talk about a coward found out and, by God’s grace, amusingly prompted to grow a pair and do his job already, actually even going beyond his original intention. The ways of the Lord…
But this is not the way to go about our duties. You know what you have to do. Never think you can get out of it by just giving God strange ultimatums about what He has to do to let you do it.
Father Weinandy is very, very lucky that his act of presumption was used by God towards his salvation. He must have been pretty impressed to follow up on it in such a public way.
P.s. Has Father Weinandy signed the Filial Correction? If not, why, seen that the criticism is pretty much the same and is public in the same way?