Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Blessed are They Who Mourn.....Obama's Win

A nation disregarded the gravest threat against the unborn and voted their pocketbooks, to make history, for their own sense of health and economic security, and for change. That all came at the expense of the unborn who remain a class of people who aren't considered people at all.
Barack Obama vowed to fight for all Americans. That is, all Americans except the unborn. The silent slaughter will now be exacerbated with President-elect Obama's promise to sign FoCA into law within the first 100 days. All of the individual state bans on partial-birth abortion and parental notification laws will be struck down if he succeeds in fulfilling his promise to Planned Parenthood. Given Obama's doctrine on abortion, it will probably work against the Born Alive Infant Protections Act, in which babies who survive botched abortions are currently required by federal law to receive life-saving treatment.
Even if I thought Obama had the best economic plan, the best approach to health care, for jobs, for national security, voting for him would have been like selling my soul for some temporal short-lived comfort.
What is most disappointing, is the Catholic Vote. It would appear that as a nation the Catholic vote went to Obama. What's more, is that it should be of little comfort to anyone, especially the bishops, that in those states where the Catholic vote supported McCain, it was only marginal. That 46% or 48% of Catholics voted for McCain, in contrast to some 74% of white, born again evangelicals is also disturbing news. They've got it right and a good many Catholics didn't.
Holy Mother Church and her bishops have much work to do. We must pray fervently for them, that they take all necessary actions to turn this around in the next four years. Unfortunately for millions of babies, it will be too late. It will take decades to undo the damage about to be done.
Forgive me for not believing that Obama's rise is not the will of God. Rather, I believe God is permitting this nation to suffer consequences of man's own sinfulness and greed. God can turn every evil into good. I'm not talking about health care or the economy. The good I'm talking about is the effect it will have on our bishops and priests as they must now reconcile with overwhelming evidence that Catholics have much to learn and they have much to teach.

Forty years I endured that generation.
I said, “They are a people
whose hearts go astray
and they do not know my ways.”
So I swore in my anger,
“They shall not enter into my rest.”

Our bishops made one of the most valiant efforts in recent weeks, with over 120 bishops making strong statements that life itself has priority. The intrinsic evil of abortion is so great, and the magnitude of unborn being murdered far outnumbers deaths in any other category. It is the moral issue of our day. You can't compare the number of people suffering from the Iraq War to the nearly 50 million already aborted. Over 4000 babies are aborted each day here in the US, and it's very possible that the number of late-term abortions are about to increase.

None of this minimizes the suffering of living, breathing people caught up in war. Rather, it underscores that the unborn aren't considered people at all, otherwise they would be a protected class with all of the rights provided for by our founding fathers, chiefly, the right to life.

Unfortunately, ignorance, confusion, and outright disregard for Catholic teaching could not be remedied by the good bishops no matter how valiant the effort. The bottom line is that it is a problem with a 35-40 year head start and it got deeply ingrained. Such things couldn't be resolved in weeks or months. God has been patient, enduring a deafening silence for decades from the pulpits of priest and bishop alike on abortion, contraception, extra-marital and pre-marital sex, homosexuality and more. But, the zeal and courage shown by certain bishops have given me real hope for the future of our Church, especially with the manner in which they witnessed the faith for a new generation of seminarians and priests.
Let's face it, most abortions are not taking place in the context of marriage. Rather, it is often the result of promiscuous sex outside of marriage - the primary product sold by Hollywood these days. One only has to look at the pregnancy rate of teenage girls who watch racier programs in contrast to those who don't watch those programs. Do the bishops have any idea just how many adult and teen Catholics regularly snack on programs like Desperate Housewives?
Remember your leaders
who spoke the word of God to you;
consider how their lives ended,
and imitate their faith.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday,
today, and forever.
Do not be led astray
by all kinds of strange teaching
(Hebrews 13:7-9a)
The silence and ambiguity on the part of most bishops over decades with regards to these things gave rise to dissident theologians who have participated in protecting free sex, and ultimately abortion. Their specialty is loop-hole theology, by which they give Catholics various ways to justify their anti-Catholic positions.
While bishops, cardinals, most theologians and Catholic apologists make strong and consistent cases in Catholic media, the dissident Catholic theologians like Richard McBrien have proven to be the darlings of secular media sources like the New York Times and CNN. Far more average Catholics - practicing and not - are probably getting their catechesis from the New York Times than from diocesan papers. Even some of those diocesan papers carry articles riddled with namby-pambyism on the part of waffling writers who don't seem to understand or communicate the faith with clarity.

What has further complicated all of this, is that dissident theologians and professors continue to enjoy "good standing" with the Catholic Church, and with their respective Catholic insitutions. This gives them a forum. Average, unsuspecting Catholics, as well as groups bent on distorting Catholic teachings are led into great scandal by them. They are the chief architects of dissent found throughout Catholic culture and the Church should stop paying them to do it and providing a platform for their anti-Catholic rhetoric. Think about that the next time you go to send your alma mater a check and send it to a college that is actually employing faithful professors.
No matter how much the bishops speak up, as long as dissidents have good standing at Catholic institutions, and remain a "representative" of the Catholic faith for the secular, loop-hole mentality media, things are not going to change in any appreciable way.
Today while others celebrate their victory with President-elect Obama, many will be silently mourning with Our Lord. Now, we need our bishops to teach us something else: How to make acts of reparation for offenses committed by the other 50%+ of Catholics who didn't vote pro-life, especially those in leadership positions who led large numbers of Catholics astray. The outcome of the election would have been quite different had far fewer Catholic votes gone to Obama.
Pray for President-elect Obama, his supporters, and for our bishops who have a most difficult task ahead of them. Given their recent zeal, I am hopeful that in their annual bishop's conference taking place in about a week from now we will see signs that they have learned some things from this election cycle. However, the first sign I will be looking for as a member of this Church, is for the scandalizing of Catholics by dissident theologians, professors, and politicians to be brought to a clear end. These people should no longer be permitted to represent the face of Catholicism. The only way they are accessible to the sources who regularly use them, is if they remain in good standing.

Now, we get on with mourning and with reparation.
Note: Edited at 4:48pm for clarity.

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The obedient are not held captive by Holy Mother Church; it is the disobedient who are held captive by the world!