The following is from Carlo Carretto’s most mature book, “I Sought and I Found”. Fr. Ronald Rolheiser in his book, “The Holy Longing”, quotes it in the chapter entitled, “A Spirituality of Ecclesiology,” when he deals with The Church is the Sarx: the Exzemed Body of Christ (pp 127-129). Most powerful for these days.
Carretto offers a vision of a mature Christianity, a full-throated adult discipleship much in the same vein as St. Paul when he writes in the hymn to love of 1 Corinthians 13:
“When I was a child, I used to talk as a child, think as a child, reason as a child; when I became a man, I put aside childish things” (1 Cor 13:11).
Words that may help during these days. Carlo Carretto from “I Sought and I Found”:
“How much I must criticize you, my church, and yet how much I love you!
You have made me suffer more than anyone and yet I owe more to you than to anyone. I should like to see you destroyed and yet I need your presence. You have given me much scandal and yet you alone have made me understand holiness.
Never in this world have I seen anything more compromised, more false, yet never have I touched anything more pure, more generous or more beautiful. Countless times I have felt like slamming the door of my soul in your face - and yet, every night, I have prayed that I might die in your sure arms!
No, I cannot be free of you, for I am one with you, even if not completely you. Then to where would I go? To build another church? But I could not build one without the same defects, for they are my defects. And again, if I were to build another church, it would be my church, not Christ’s church. No, I am old enough, I know better.”