Dwight Longenecker has a good post on Churches, Hypocrisy and Stolen Umbrellas. Religious utopianism is always a problem and it often leads either to church shopping, church creating, or despairing grumbling. I consider myself fortunate to have been able to listen to shows like Catholic Answers live on my way into the Church. I developed no pretentious of a perfect and scandal free Church. The scandal of Judas is not an new story, but an old one. I have learned, slowly though it be, to be more scandalized by the fact that I am a Catholic. Gee they will let just about anybody in.
Catholic call-in shows are not exactly loaded with calls from people asking for advice on how to move from the Teresian sixth mansion of prayer to the seventh. Many calls are people scandalized on one thing or the other. Protestants scandalized about Catholics practices and Catholics scandalized by liturgical abuse, the clergy, and other Catholics.
It is easy to admit on our lips that we are all sinners, though sometimes are hearts just aren’t quite in it. We know that it is the Publican and not the Pharisee who walked away justified, but sometimes we want to say to the Pharisee "Preach it brother." I consider it a mixed blessing to be a mid-life convert. Like Alec Guinness my one true regret is not becoming a Catholic sooner. On the other hand it helps me to see that I have no idea where other people are on a conversion timeline only that that God wills all men to be saved, if only they cooperate. Great sinners have become great saints. There are the Sauls to Pauls, though there are also always the Judases. My concern has not been to try to pick out others who might go to Hell, but to ensure that I don’t increase the population of Hell by one myself.
Dwitght like G.K. Chesterton enjoys standing things on their head. Being a long time fan of Groucho Mark I am reminded of his famous quip "I would not join any club that would have someone like me for a member." Well I would not belong to any church who would not have me as a member. That a cross has been closely associated with hospitals and medical organizations is no surprise in that it is the Church which was the first hospital. As Jesus said "Those who are well have no need of a physician, but those who are sick; I came not to call the righteous, but sinners."