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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Fr. Peter Cameron: What Would You Prefer?

Recently, I came across Fr. Peter Cameron, O.P.'s keynote address at a year of faith meeting in the Raleigh Archdiocese. Fr. Cameron is a Dominican and editor of the wonderful daily prayer book, Magnificat. In the course of his address, Fr. Cameron mentioned a test given by a teacher friend to his students who often professed to be indifferent to their faith seeing it as "irrelevant." (Fr. Cameron begins discussing the test at 19:05 in the video below.) So he developed a "test" for his students -- no right or wrong answers -- it's a preference test. He instructed them to choose the answer they preferred, not what they thought or believed to be true, but which they preferred of the two options for each question.

So here it is.

Question 1: Which possibility is better for you? (Not what you think is true or believe is true.) Which would you prefer?
       A. When someone you love dies that's it. You will never see them again.
       B. When someone you love dies they somehow live on. You have the possibility of seeing them again because you have the possibility of living on.

Question 2: Which would you prefer?
        A. Your limitless desire for happiness will be answered continually forever.
        B. Your limitless desire for happiness will last for your biological life and then your desires and you will be destroyed by death.

Question 3: Which would you prefer?
        A. You are loved.
        B. You are not loved.

Question 4: Which would you prefer?
        A. There is a God who created all of reality and who loves you like a father and wants you to exist.
        B. Life is accidental. Outside of what you see and touch there is nothing that cares if you exist.

Question 5: Which would you prefer?
        A. Your value depends on your abilities. People who have greater abilities than you are more valuable than you. When you lose your abilities, your value will diminish.
        B. Your value comes from the fact that there is a God who wants you to exist. He loves you like a Father and so even when your abilities are not the best and other people don't think that you valuable He still loves and values you.

Question 6: Which would you prefer?
         A. God exists but in this life can never be known.
         B. God exists and can be known and experienced in this life.

Fr. Cameron concluded, "If you answer those questions honestly from your heart, where do they all point to? They point to the Son of God becoming incarnate in Jesus Christ Who walked among us and called us His friend and gives us His flesh to eat. There is nothing that we want, that we desire, that we prefer that isn't fulfilled in the flesh of His humanity which He can't stop giving to us. What the test shows is that, if we dare to live our humanness  at the level of our deepest desires...all of our desires lead us then to this Lord. Our desires reveals to us infallibly that we are made for God and we cannot.truly be ourselves without Him."

Listen to the whole address. It's worth every minute!


c matt said...

Interesting questions, although to be fair, you could also point out that no eternal consequences means no true accountability, and some might find that preferable.

Lynne said...

What a wonderful quiz! I can send this to my family, all fallen-away Catholics.