The little baby cries at the baptism and the parents say to the priest, “We believe.” The parents speak for the child. No one believes alone. What does it mean to say, “I believe?” I can believe because others have believed before me.
Faith is a diamond.
Even the greatest saint will be tempted to doubt and unbelief. St Therese could say at the end of her life, “I am assailed by the worst temptations of atheism.” Because we are all interconnected the saint will experience the atheism of the person who claims to have no faith. And the unbeliever will share in the light of the greatest saint. Cardinal Ratzinger writes in his book ‘Introduction to Christianity’ “In other words, both the believer and the unbeliever share, each in his own way doubt and faith, if they do not hide away from themselves and from the truth of their being. It is the basic pattern of man’s destiny only to be allowed to find the finality of his existence in this unceasing rivalry between doubt, temptation and certainty. Perhaps in precisely this way doubt, which saves both sides from being shut up in their worlds, could become the avenue of communication. it prevents both from enjoying complete self-satisfaction; it opens the believer to the doubter and the doubter to the believer; for one it is his share in the fate of the unbeliever.”
Mother Theresa of Calcutta experienced 42 years of darkness, why would God allow this? In a beautiful way God weaves her life into the lives of people who have no faith. Mother Theresa experiences darkness so those in darkness can experience light.
It is when you are ‘feeling like you are losing your faith’ that God is joining you more completely to the Body of Christ. God wants the believer to feel and experience what the unbeliever experiences. And God desires the unbeliever to experience the highest moments of faith. God wants the believer to see the unbeliever as a brother or sister. And God wants the unbeliever to see the believer as a brother or sister. The reason for this is that we all share one destiny in Christ.
In the life of St Catherine of Sienna, St Catherine was interceding for the church. God said to St Catherine, “I will destroy all of them.” St Catherine said no, ” You destroy them you destroy me because I am one of them” God was pleased by this.
One of the secrets of intercession is that you take the side of sinful humanity, not God side. Because to truly have effective intercession you must see yourself as no better and in some cases worse than those you are praying for.
No Man is an island.Our Faith is woven into the fabric of everyone else experiences of doubt and faith.
As the priest says at the mass, “Look not on our faith but on the faith of the Church.”