In this podcast, Father Dave gives advice to someone from a parish mission who is afraid to publicly express their faith for fear of being judged.
Father Dave points out that the key word emerging from this question is fear: “It strikes me that there is no more common phrase in all of the Scriptures than ‘be not afraid.’ We particularly see it at very important times.” He mentions the exchange between the angel Gabriel and Mary when the angel announces that she will conceive Jesus in an unusual way and tells her to “Be not afraid.”
Father Dave also says that often our fears are worse than reality: “I think the fear that we build up in our minds is worse than what will happen, and the positive possibilities are greater than whatever we might be afraid of.”
Father Dave encourages us to be courageous when expressing our faith because it can inspire others: “For a diverse, inclusive, tolerant society we shouldn’t be silent. We should appreciate who each other are and learn from one another; and say, ‘Wow, that is not how I was raised and I don’t think I would ever believe that, but wow, that’s interesting that you do!’ Isn’t that way better than, ‘Let’s not talk about it and let’s keep neutral?’” (Original Air 1-05-17)