Faith Seeking Understanding

Reflection for the Catholic Teachers’ Guild, Sarawak (6 March 2016)

With great gratitude to the organisers, I post the slides from the talk/reflection given at the recent meeting of the Catholic Teachers’ Guild, Sarawak. I realise that the slides might make more sense with the explanation alongside. However, time and technological constraints don’t quite allow me to do that at the moment. I do hope that the slides still make a little bit of sense and help to remind us of the points that were discussed that afternoon.

Faith Seeking Understanding Slides

Perhaps one point to round off the discussion. I realise that the main point of what faith seeking understanding actually is was not resolved too well towards the end of the talk. The point that was stressed was the need to recognise and deepen the humanity of our students. We want to educate (draw out) the human person in everyone whom we meet and it is this desire that, I believe, brings us back to the need for our faith to seek understanding. Just as we are unique individuals, the faith that we each have would be different and quite unique as well. How we approach the Lord, how we believe and the little nuances of our faith would affect how we seek to understand the world around. The object is the same but our approaches are different. Thus, it is important for us to realise that our understanding of the world and the Lord differs with the individual.

Faith seeking understanding

Faith seeks understanding that in turn strengthens our faith. Truth, experience and humanity are integral to this process.

In the light of this, we should take some time to reflect on how our individual faith leads us to seek the Lord and to seek a deeper understanding of what the Lord means to me. Some questions or points for further reflection:

  • If I were to describe my faith or my relationship with God at this point in time, what would it look like? How would I relate with God at this point in my life?
  • What do I see as the most important aspect of the humanity of our students that I would want to develop? Why do I feel that it’s so important?
  • What do I see as the role of a Catholic teacher in these modern times? How can I be more expressive of my faith as a Catholic teacher in the environment that I’m in right now?
  • What kind of understanding do I seek as a Catholic, a teacher and a beloved child of God now? How does my relationship with God help me in seeking and deepening this understanding?

Our faith seeking understanding is a process that never ends. We have the faith and nurture it so that it in turn can be nurtured by the new understanding that we gain in the process. All this can occur because of love, the love that created us and the love that we in turn seek to give in all that we do. Be bold in faith and loving in action. Let’s go, set the world aflame with the love and mercy of God while also igniting the spark of learning and wisdom in all whom we teach and encounter!

Fides Quaerens Intellectum Prayer
O Lord beyond the mind’s embrace,
your truth to seek, I pray give grace.
Turn then my mind and hands to love,
toward your face I give and serve.
Hide not yourself from mine own eyes,
reveal your word through mortal ties.
Your truth, O Lord, I yearn to find,
and in that search, keep you in mind.
Amen.

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2 Responses to “Faith Seeking Understanding”


  1. 1 Theresa Jenn 9 March 2016 at 8:45 08

    Thank you, Br Stanley, for such an uplifting retreat for us Catholic teachers. I like what you said in the last paragraph quote “Our faith seeking understanding is a process that never ends. We have the faith and nurture it so that it in turn can be nurtured by the new understanding that we gain in the process. All this can occur because of love, the love that created us and the love that we in turn seek to give in all that we do. Be bold in faith and loving in action. Let’s go, set the world aflame with the love and mercy of God while also igniting the spark of learning and wisdom in all whom we teach and encounter!”

    It is true, as Catholic teachers, we cannot separate the existence of God within us, and every move we make and words we speak, is how we convey God in us. Many of us at times become lost in this secular world. We forget we can surrender to the Merciful Father, what we cannot do or carry. Amen for the “Fides Quaren” prayer, too. May the peace and grace of God be with you, and all the best to your future, Br. Stanley.

  2. 2 gymstan 9 March 2016 at 9:58 09

    Thanks for the message and yes, we do have to bring the Lord in all that we do into our work and lives as teachers. I believe that’s why we were called to teach in the first place. May we all teach with the knowledge of the Lord grace always!


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about the brushhead

had a head like a brush (it's more like an egg now). seeks to sweep through thought and faith with that brush. tries to wax philosophical but often forgets to wax off. trying to be good brush to all, while discerning what kind of brush he's meant to be.

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