Want to beat boredom? Become a Catholic.


When Jesus called me back to the Catholic Church over a decade ago, I came back with my pre-conversion prejudices intact. Were they true? If so, why would Jesus want me there? I had to find out for myself everything the Catholic Church proclaimed.

"Jim and the Treasure" by N.C. Wyeth, from Robert Luis Stevenson's Treasure Island (Scribner's Sons, 1911)

“Jim and the Treasure” by N.C. Wyeth, from Robert Luis Stevenson’s Treasure Island (Scribner’s Sons, 1911)

Looking back, I realize how laughable that last statement is. There is no way in this life we can learn everything the Catholic Church teaches and proclaims even if we devoted 24/7 to the effort.

The Catholic faith reminds me of that scene in the movie National Treasure when the group of explorers finally discover the secret treasure room. They step into the dark cavernous room and see several priceless artifacts and jewels. Each picks up a different one and is mesmerized by its value and its history. One Catholic priceless jewel would be reading the teaching of a saint. You can spend hours, for example, fascinated by the teachings of St. Catherine of Siena.

But what happens next in the movie is what reminds me most of how the Catholic faith piques our interest the more we are enlightened in the Truth. The Nicolas Cage character puts his lighted torch to an oil-filled bowl and the fire zooms through canals, revealing that the room is much more massive than it at first appeared — every inch of it is filled with treasure.

That’s the Catholic Church.

Each teaching will lead you to a discovery which will lead you to a revelation which will lead you to another teaching and on and on and on. For instance, the teachings of St. Catherine of Siena reveal the beauty of Carmelite Spirituality. The beauty of Carmelite Spirituality can lead you to the writings of St. Teresa of Avila and then on to St. Therese of Lisieux and her ‘Little Way.’ Each jewel presents — in a different way — the love of God; fascinating in and of itself but revealing there is yet even more to delight, to inspire and to transform — and never ever to bore.

About Nan Balfour

Coordinator for the annual Catholic Women's Conference, an apostolate of the Pilgrim Center of Hope - Catholic evangelization ministry in San Antonio, Texas. The Pilgrim Log is the blog of the Pilgrim Center of Hope, a Catholic evangelization ministry, providing weekly spiritual reflections to help you journey toward a deeper relationship with Christ. Learn more about the Pilgrim Center of Hope by visiting www.pilgrimcenterofhope.org.

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