Apologetics has nothing to do with apologising. That’s what Sydney’s Robert Haddad hoped to convey to young people at a conference held in Brisbane last month, The Catholic Leader reports.
“Young people might mistakenly think apologetics is somehow about apologising but at its fundamental level, it’s about giving answers to the ‘why’ questions,” Mr Haddad said after presenting a keynote address at the Ignite Conference.
“We teach young people all the ‘what’ when they do classical catechesis. Apologetics answers all the legitimate questions from Catholics, converts and questioners to give a deeper explanation.
“Legitimate questions deserve intelligent answers...(and) apologetics explains how the ‘what’ is based in scripture and the apostolic tradition of the Church.”
Mr Haddad, author of 1001 Reasons it’s Great to be Catholic, said he encouraged his four children, aged 10 to 17 years, to consider other religions through the lens “of the one, true, faith”.
“The Catholic Church is not a community of blind faith,” he said. “We are people of faith and reason and we can give explanation to what we believe. I give my children an appreciation of the fullness of truth that only the Catholic Church possesses and everything else has to be measured against that fullness.”
As well as educating his children about the fundamental truths of the Catholic faith, Mr Haddad said he did not shield them from the reality of the world.
“I make my children aware of right and wrong, good and bad and what’s out there that’s a danger,” he said. “I don’t go out of my way to isolate them because they have to stand on their own two feet in the real world. “I make them street-wise, especially about what’s in mainstream media.”
Mr Haddad said mainstream media “is either silent or negative” about the Church and he hoped young people “don’t fall for it”.
“I want young people to see through what they hear every day (about the Church),” he said. “I want them to say, ‘Hey, let’s stop and look again’ because there are many, many great things about the Catholic Church, the untold story. I want people to embrace their faith as intentional disciples.”
Robert Haddad is sharing the fullness of truth (The Catholic Leader)