WE HAVE BEEN HERE BEFORE – GOD’S MORAL ORDER AND THE BIRTHDAY OF OUR NATION

From the dawn of the Republic, America’s quest for freedom has been guided by the conviction that the principles governing political and social life are intimately linked to a moral order based on the dominion of God the Creator. Pope Benedict XVI, 2008 U.S.A. visit.

It is impossible to rightly govern a nation without God and the Bible. George Washington

Two hundred and thirty-nine years ago, 56 men laid their signatures on a document declaring that a new nation was now in existence. This document and the final constitution which would be presented later had as their foundation the ideal that “all men are created equal.” The realization that men could not be trusted to secure these rights immediately took hold, however, and the Bill of Rights was added to the constitution. The first article of the Bill of Rights was put in place specifically to protect freedom of religion and of free speech.

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances.

Despite these lofty words and intentions of the framers, Catholicism was originally banned or at least marginalized in a number of the original states, and as late as 1850, 13 of the 34 states still allowed slavery. Real liberty must be fought for through just action, and can never be taken for granted or considered secure. Catholics had little influence on the politics of this nation in the early years, although we participated in the cause of independence as strongly as any other group. With the massive immigration of Catholics at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century, we began to bring greater influence to the political debate.

The Supreme Court of the United States recently handed down two monumental rulings which will impact the lives of Americans and the concepts stated in the founding documents for generations to come. I chose to wait a bit before writing a post about this so as to read the many articles that have been written by Catholic as well as non-Catholic authors since then; as well as to read the comments of influential leaders throughout the nation. I have waited to respond to this so as to let the dust settle, if you will, and try to bring it into perspective around the Independence Day holiday.

The many responses published and the statements made by Catholic and political leaders range from acceptance in a newly-defined society to calls for major civil disobedience and for the greatest of Church sanctions against the Catholic individuals who brought about these decisions. First it must be stated that neither of these rulings would have been decided as they were if the Catholic members of the Supreme Court had not supported them. This is the issue at hand, and I wish to focus on the Catholic dilemma which we are facing, as well as how this relates to the Fatima message.

On Thursday June 25, the Supreme Court ratified the Affordable Care Act, virtually enshrining the anti-Christian mandates attached to the bill. Certainly, many Catholics support the general idea of universal health care and this column is not meant to be a forum to discuss the merits of this. The mandates to accept and financially support practices contrary to our faith, however, are unacceptable. Procuring contraception and abortion directly violates the teachings of the Church, and requiring the taxpayers to support such practices endangers the very right to practice our Faith. The next day the court made what some are calling the most radical ruling in the history of the Republic by completely redefining the institution of marriage. Again little commentary on the political debate surrounding this is necessary, but the magnitude of the effect on all churches, not only Catholic, has yet to be realized. The effect on other private businesses and institutions is also of great concern.

What is it that allows people, who should by virtue of their Catholicity, understand the basis for the institution of marriage, or to realize the inherent dangers in allowing the state to force on believers the beliefs of those who disagree with these teachings? The answer is simple. It is a true lack of understanding of the Faith, its teachings, and the basis of those teachings. When St. Pope John Paul II called for a new evangelization he was calling for a re-evangelization of Catholics who did not fully understand or embrace the Faith.

Indifference is the poison of the day. We now live in a society which tells us the actions of others cannot be judged through any moral prism. Pope Benedict XVI referred to this as the tyranny of relativism. We are told that our beliefs must be kept to ourselves. We are told that we can worship as we please, but when we apply the beliefs of our faith in the public square we are violating the rights of others. The same people, however, see nothing wrong with requiring Catholics and others to financially support things that we are prohibited from supporting by this belief. Good and evil cannot coexist. One will always dominate the other and it is our duty to work by prayer and action to re-instill a desire to obey the Will of God. Freedom of religion has no meaning if we cannot influence the society in which we live. The term “the right to worship” is now used in place of “freedom of religion.” One does not worship God unless he can put these teachings into action in daily life and influence society.

As an apostolate and as a Church, our mission is to help bring as many people as possible to living lives in adherence with the rules given by almighty God and reiterated by the Queen of Heaven at Fatima. We must once again instill in people the sense of God and a desire to live in His Light. This is our mission. By doing so the political situation in which we find ourselves will correct itself. One author said that we are now strangers in a strange land. We have always been so. We are not of this world although we are in the world. Despite the influence that Christianity has had on life in the West the devil is still the master of this world, and he will be until the end of time when he will be forever banished. We must continually fight for the rights of God if we want Him to recognize us as His own. We must catechize the world. Actions have consequences and we must stand on the housetops proclaiming this.

The Irish orator and lawyer John Philpot Curran is quoted as saying: “The condition upon which God hath given liberty to man is eternal vigilance; which condition if he break, servitude is at once the consequence of his crime and the punishment of his guilt.”

We have been here before and we can once again bring the influence of our beliefs to the forefront of society. As disciples of Our Lord and His Blessed Mother we have no choice. We must stand strong in this task. As an apostolate of prayer each member should make a commitment to increase his or her prayer life. Perhaps we can all offer an additional rosary each day, or to fast for the intention of bringing back the grace of Catholic thought to this country and to the world. Prayer moves mountains. We have moved these mountains before and we can do it again. Let us once again become vigilant and stand at the gate fighting for the principles of our Faith.

God bless you

David Carollo
Executive Director

 

 

 

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