Tuesday, April 23, 2013

The Mark of the Beast Follow-up

When I wrote my post "The Mark of the Beast", it became, in 24 hours, my most read blog post in the history of my blog.

My intended audience was fellow Catholics who can see the writing on the wall: "persecution is coming."

While strengthening the "brethren" struggling with where our country is going, I wanted to clarify that the Church's opposition to same-sex "marriage" is NOT rooted, FIRST AND FOREMOST, in the concern that if it passes, our religious liberty will be threatened.

Would "redefining marriage" be a direct attack on the religious freedom of the Catholic Church - ABSOLUTELY! 

Is that the number one reason the Church opposes "redefining marriage" - ABSOLUTELY NOT!

Catholicism doesn't want to run a country - we have been better off since we got out of the state-running business.  Nonetheless, the Church still attempts to guide and help countries make solid policies, policies that will allow countries to flourish and not implode. 

The Church basically says: "Here are some basic questions that you, as a country, have to get right.  If you do, you will flourish.  But if you get these basic issues wrong, your country will collapse soon enough."

One of those is the issue of marriage.

The Compendium of Catholic Social Teaching notes:

"If, from the legal standpoint, marriage between a man and a woman were to be considered just one possible form of marriage, the concept of marriage would undergo a radical transformation, with grave detriment to the common good. By putting homosexual unions on a legal plane analogous to that of marriage and the family, the State acts arbitrarily and in contradiction with its duties.

If, from the legal standpoint, marriage between a man and a woman were to be considered just one possible form of marriage, the concept of marriage would undergo a radical transformation, with grave detriment to the common good. By putting homosexual unions on a legal plane analogous to that of marriage and the family, the State acts arbitrarily and in contradiction with its duties."


Some Catholics have said "why should Catholics care what the state or country think about marriage?"

Answer: "If the state or country gets the marriage question wrong, the state or country will implode."

18 comments:

  1. Father, Why aren't our catholic schools talking about this issue to our children? I feel as if our kids are being filled with propaganda all around them in the world. It is sad to hear my own daughter, who goes to a catholic high school and believes that homosexuality is wrong, but on the other hand says,"well, why not let them marry, they are not hurting anyone"? Why are our schools not talking about this? Especialy now since the subject is being talked about so often!! I find it sad our own schools and church pastors are not discussing this issue.

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  2. Of course!! People find it so hard to believe we are not acting out of selfish motives regarding this entire issue. It is not about "our religious freedoms" it is about the souls of others! This is about our thirst for the salvation of the world! We live in a world of instant gratification where our our selfish and self-seeking desires rule the day. It is difficult for people to even comprehend we are actually looking out for them and fighting for their salvation!

    I love your blog, Father! Please keep it up!

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  3. Still, that implosion would most certainly result in severe restrictions on the religious liberties of all God-fearing people. On his website "The Integrated Catholic Life," Randy Hain had a very insightful piece this week regarding just that fact and where all of this is most certainly leading. I offer this quick read for consideration: http://www.integratedcatholiclife.org/2013/04/randy-hain-in-the-not-too-distant-future/

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  4. So it begins...

    Archbishop Leonard of Brussels attacked: http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/archbishop-prays-while-topless-gay-activists-shout-curses-and-douse-him-wit

    And in France, a pro-traditional marriage protestor stabbed four times by same-sex marriage activists: http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/archbishop-prays-while-topless-gay-activists-shout-curses-and-douse-him-wit

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  5. Since the Catholic church is "shaping" social and civil laws, she is still involved in running a country. Allowing same sex marriage is not going to be the down fall of the civilization! Why are you people such alarmists and haters of those who are different then yourselves? God teaches love and acceptance, not hate.

    Make friends with a gay person, it might open your eyes! None of the gay catholics that I know have any desire to be married in the catholic church.

    Unless the Catholic church moves into the 21st. century it will soon cease to exist.

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  6. Since the Catholic church is "shaping" social and civil laws, she is still involved in running a country.

    Not sure what you mean here.

    Allowing same sex marriage is not going to be the down fall of the civilization!

    We already have advocates of same-sex marriage on record as saying that same-sex "marriage" is but a rest stop on the way to eliminating marriage altogether.

    Why are you people such alarmists and haters of those who are different then yourselves? God teaches love and acceptance, not hate.

    Telling people that homosexual acts are evil is not hate, it's the truth. If I saw someone walking towards a cliff edge unawares, one would not reasonably call me an alarmist and a hater for warning him. While yes, Our Lord does teach love and acceptance, He does not do so at the expense of Truth. The perfect example is when Our Lord encountered the woman caught in adultery. True, He did condemn her, but He did tell her to "sin no more". See? Adultery IS a sin. Same with homosexual acts. Both are forgiveable, but that doesn't make them acceptable.

    Make friends with a gay person, it might open your eyes!

    I've known a few in my time. I've also known alcoholics, adulterers, drug-users, and criminals. Knowing personally might help understanding, but it doesn't justify immoral behavior in any way.

    None of the gay catholics that I know have any desire to be married in the catholic church.

    There are also homosexuals that are against this whole onslaught to legalize same-sex marriage. Sadly, they are either a minority, or their voices are being drowned out by the ideologically addled.

    Unless the Catholic church moves into the 21st. century it will soon cease to exist.

    Actually, we have a pretty good indicator that that won't happen: The Episcopal Church. When it started approving homosexual behavior and even ordained an openly homosexual bishop, they thought people would flock to their "21st century" church. Well, those flocks have either been stuck in traffic for years or are coming to church disguised as empty pews. Meanwhile, Catholic dioceses that recapture both traditional liturgy and teachings are seeing increased mass attendance, more contributions, building more schools and have plenty of vocations to the priesthood.

    The virtue of Chastity never changes. Sexual contact belongs in one place and one place alone: between a man and women married to each other. This applies to heterosexuals as well. It's Good News. We are loved by God as humans and he means us to be more than overheated monkeys in the zoo.

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    1. Fifth sentence should read, "True, He did not condemn her...", etc.

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    2. American AthiestMay 18, 2013 at 11:23 PM

      Known a few gay people in your lifetime Scott? There is a difference between knowing a gay person and actually being friends with them. Then putting them in the same category as known alcoholics, adulterers, drug-users, and criminals is pathetic. A LOT of gay people in this world are some of the best people around. It's people like you and Fr. Hollowell that helped me make the decision to leave the Catholic Church and become an atheist. One of the smarter moves I made to counteract being a Catholic....which was the dumbest thing I ever did. Bunch of control freaks.

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    3. Known a few gay people in your lifetime Scott? There is a difference between knowing a gay person and actually being friends with them.

      I consider this moving goalposts. We are constantly barraged with accusations that we are totally ignorant of actual homosexuals, but when we counter that we DO know homosexuals, suddenly that's not good enough; we have to be friends. There is little point going down this road because if we object that we actually have friends who are homosexual, that won't be good enough either. That's a little too convenient.

      Then putting them in the same category as known alcoholics, adulterers, drug-users, and criminals is pathetic

      I reply that this is classic Orwellian Crimestop. "It includes the power of not grasping analogies". Of course homosexual acts are not the same as drunkeness, adultery, and drug abuse. But they are examples of acts that are wrong. All the analogy was supposed to do was demonstrate that the "You don't know gay people" isn't any kind of argument at all.

      A LOT of gay people in this world are some of the best people around.

      There is no need to dispute that. But we are all sinners (as people providing cover for perverted sex acts keep reminding us). Even the best people do wrong things. The thing is that there isn't a whole constituency trying to pretend that a particular sin isn't a sin.

      It's people like you and Fr. Hollowell that helped me make the decision to leave the Catholic Church and become an atheist.

      No offense, but the recent crop of atheism (which we sometimes call "gnu-atheism") is decidedly poor fare. Often it is indistinguishable from Unitarian Universalism, just minus the vague spirituality which isn't necessary to it in the first place. And if you can spot any substantial difference between universalism and Political Correctness, then your eyes are sharper than mine. In short, if you are going to bother with atheism, at least read a good one.

      One of the smarter moves I made to counteract being a Catholic....which was the dumbest thing I ever did. Bunch of control freaks.

      That's kinda funny considering some of the antics of prominent gnu-atheists. But as I often say, if I skip Mass on Sunday, twelve Swiss Guards don't kick in my door and drag me to church. It's a voluntary association. You can't have it both ways. That is, if they really were control freaks, you wouldn't have been allowed to leave.

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  7. When I wrote my post "The Mark of the Beast", it became, in 24 hours, my most read blog post in the history of my blog.

    My intended audience was fellow Catholics who can see the writing on the wall: "persecution is coming."

    ---I don't believe this for a second. I think you love the uproar that you cause when you post something like this and refer to people as being narcissistic and comparing them to the anti-christ. When reading through the post and how you responded to the comments, I was a little struck. It's not that I disagree with most of what you are saying (in fact I agree with a lot of it), but your confrontational, "in your face" style and lack of interest in taking an educational stance rather than one of absolute intolerance of people who may not know better is appalling. You are not the "up and coming" priest that you think you are. You are the epitome of why people are leaving the church in droves rather than coming back. The church has more than one role...the most important one is to bring people back to the body of Christ, not peel them away. Shame on you.

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    1. "Not the up and coming priest that you think you are" - you must not know me in the least. I don't think I'm an up and coming priest, and I hope I'm in small parishes the rest of my life.

      As for "confrontational", yes, I'm confrontational, and so was Jesus. "You brood of vipers" is confrontational too. Do you have a problem with Jesus' tone?

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    2. Fr. Hollowell answered well, but to address this part:

      "You are the epitome of why people are leaving the church in droves rather than coming back"

      Is directly contradicted by the evidence as I mentioned in the response to the (other? A consistent handle policy would be helpful, Fr. :)) anonymous. People are leaving lukewarm denominations and parishes by the bushel. Ones that adhere unapologetically to proper and true Christian morals are surviving and in many cases thriving. It's no mystery why. No one needs to waste an hour on Sunday to learn how to be a secular progressivist. Now I happen to think that when the persecution comes (which Fr. and others including myself have noted the its beginning stages) many Catholics will fall away as in the parable of the sower, but this whole "get with the 21st century or fade to irrelevance" is no more than Saruman telling us that against the power of Mordor there can be no victory and we should join with Sauron.

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    3. Anonymous chose to post another comment that I have decided would be best to not publish, but I did want to address his/her claim "You're not Jesus" - I know I'm not Jesus, and nothing in my comment said I think I am Jesus. According to Catholicism, one need not be Jesus in order to try to live as he lived and to imitate and internalize His life in our own.

      anon - do you tell people "don't worry about murdering people, you're not Jesus"??? What a terrible argument

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  8. I don't understand how you can write some of the things you write without seeing for yourself how much you talk in circles. By my saying that you are not Jesus, I was referring to the fact that you implied that being confrontational is ok because Jesus was confrontational. I could come back with your last sentence, and unnecessary "terrible argument" commentary by saying that God took the lives of thousands of people, according to the bible for various reasons. Just because He did it, doesn't mean it is ok for humans to do it. The reason I wrote at all is because I think that you have really said some unnecessarily confrontational and derogatory things to people. It shouldn't matter that "the other person started it". I'm not saying that you should just roll over and get steam rolled, or not stand up for what is right, but I do think that there are more ways than one to get your point across to people and I think your tactic is wrong. I think that you do see yourself as an "edgy", up and coming priest---someone who is talking about things that have never been talked about, etc. etc. You can say all you want that I don't know you, but I don't have to...it's reflected in your posts. I think you are proud of yourself for getting some long overdue conversations started, which is great....but I think in the process, you have forgotten that you should set the example. I saw where you told one person something along the lines of "well if you feel the church is wrong, why stay?" because she said something about believing in a woman's right to have an abortion. I get that the church believes otherwise, but I can tell you that I left the church for a priest giving me a similar, careless, cold, response to something (unrelated to abortion) when I was at a faith "low". Luckily, I returned because I had a different, more compassionate, priest tell me what I needed to hear (yes, it was according to the church's practices and policies) in a way that helped me to understand. I was away from the church for over a year---feeling as if I had been shunned/excommunicated from a place where I always felt comforted. When I said "Shame on you" I meant for the way you handle people who are obviously in need of some education and care. I don't care if you publish what I write or not...I am writing it for you to read and don't particularly care who else sees it. However, I do find it a little humorous that you posted only the portion that you felt would give you a little bit of an "atta boy" feeling when you retorted. Again...case and point. We're all sinners, and I know my place. I think you should reflect and find yours.

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    1. "Why stay?" is not an invitation to leave, it is a serious question - why would you stay in a Church that is wrong? I don't have the answer to that, and so I'm asking the person to "reflect and find their place" and to reflect on what exactly their beliefs are.

      Again, to my "up and coming" status, it makes me smile, because you either a) don't pay attention to or b) don't understand what types of things people say who are looking to attain "up and coming" status. Have you read other things on my blog? This post is a perfect example - "up and comers" don't talk about such things. Again though, thanks for the smile, though, in describing me as "up and coming"

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    2. PopeFrancis says in today's homily: don't be worried about annoying people! It's zeal, baby! http://shar.es/ZqaKX

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    3. Another reason to smile is that when one wants to talk about someone's "tone" or how they come across to others; in short, avoiding what someone said to talk about the person saying it, it is tacitly conceding your point.

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