Sunday, September 13, 2009

Responding to Johnny's Comment

My Take on the Attacks on Pro-Lifers by Salt & Light

Johnny said in a comment:
I love your blog. Keep up the good work!

What do you think of the various attacks on pro-lifers appearing on the Salt&Light blog in the past week? There are at least 3 articles that take a poke at pro-lifers, starting with the article on the Kennedy funeral.

Being very involved in the pro-life movement, I was personally very offended by Fr. Rosica's statements. I appreciate his concern for mercy and compassion, but being wishy-washy or spineless about Church teaching doesn't seem to be the answer.

I'd like to hear your take on it.
Johnny's comment certainly deserved a response, not just because Johnny has good taste in blogs (note tongue firmly planted in cheek), but as I sometimes have done, I thought it deserved to be brought forward into a blog post, since most people don't read the comments. So, here was my response:

When my health has permitted, I have been involved in Pro-Life work and pray regularly for an end to abortion. I also provide a link over on the left, follow and comment regularly on the Big Blue Wave blog of Suzanne Fortin, which is a very good compendium of what is happening in pro-life circles.
I have been saddened to see both the backlash towards pro-life people over the Kennedy funeral and also the Development and Peace scandals, since it appears that that is what both are.

It is sadder still to see Church teaching take a back seat to expediency and politics. At first, I was taken aback by John Pacheco's strong statements in denunciation of Fr. Rosica, on his blog at Socon or Bust. I continue to read and write from what I know. John has a summary post on the Kennedy scandal on his blog and he is much better informed than I am.

I do know that "Love does not take offence", and so I am attempting through prayer and study to understand what is going on so that I might provide some insight if I believe that God wills it.

In the mean time, I am doing my best to stop the Human Rights Commissions/Tribunals in this country from their relentless attacks on our fundamental freedoms of speech and religion, and their inventing of new ones that make no sense to informed minds.

If, in this country we lose the ability to express our thoughts and opinions about what we feel in our hearts or even think in our heads, because of government oversight, we will be in very serious trouble.
I consider that John Pacheco is a Catholic man, possessing much godly wisdom in areas that I do not, and so I read what he writes with interest, and find that much of it challenges me to be a better Catholic Christian. I found what I read at Salt + Light particularly about the Kennedy funeral to be bunny fluff, which did nothing for me spiritually, even though written by Fr. Tom Rosica.

It seems to me, and I have not researched it to know it to be true, that the Catholic Church leadership hierarchy rallies around itself to protect itself from harm, even if it is wrong, as might be the case in the D&P scandal and the Kennedy funeral scandal, if that is what both are. It certainly was the case around molestation. It is a potential weakness of an all male hierarchy, without the female influence, and no I'm not in favour of female ordination. I am in favour of female participation fully in the life and decision making processes of the Church.

The Catholic Church will endure the weakness of its members, even if they are at or near the top. It has before, and it will still and again. That is it's beauty, and its efficacy, and above all the grace that comes with the Saviour.

Part of freedom of speech and freedom of religion is that the common man/woman is free to choose who and what to follow. That is not capricious, but comes with great responsibility, the responsibility to form one's own conscience, so as not to be swayed by the winds of change, but to be guided along the narrow path that leads to one's own salvation.

So, where once we bowed down at the feet of the great men (we thought) who were our parish priests, deacons, bishops, whomever, now we have access to all the knowledge that they have, and we also have real access to that Holy Spirit who enlightens them and us with Wisdom to know God.

After Vatican II, another movement started in 1967, when some of our Pentecostal brethren introduced several Catholics at Duquesne University to The Holy Spirit personally, which began the Catholic Charismatic Renewal within the Church. This is a reminder to all Catholics that the Holy Spirit is the guide that we all need to give us Wisdom to filter out lies from the truth, and to move towards the truth each and every day of our lives.

So, Johnny, that's a very long winded and circuitous path to probably a simple question you raised. I love the Body of Christ, and our particular Church in it. I pray for an end to abortion, and that Wisdom will enter into the hearts and minds of those in position to make decisions on the lives of the most vulnerable around us.


Johnny said...

Thank you very much for the detailed response.

I know Mr. Pacheco personally. Although his blog may seem inflammatory, he weighs his words carefully. Before writing about a topic, he gathers plenty of background information and context. If he has adopted the tone that we see on his blog, this is because he has access to incriminating information that is not available to the public and that would make most people shudder.

God bless!

mbrandon8026 said...

Thanks your your comments, Johnny. I respect John Pacheco, and his work. Someone must speak unequivocally to and for the Church.

I appreciate that he is prepared to do so, even if he gets criticized for doing so.

Only the truth will set us free.

Deborah Gyapong said...

Beautiful post, Michael. Let's agree to pray together that the Holy Spirit will bring unity in the Body of Christ.


mbrandon8026 said...

I agree with you Deborah, and where tow or more of us are gathered (even if a few hundred miles away,) there He is in our midst.

The beautiful posts that you do that show that the Holy Spirit has no denomination but is love for us all is part of the inspiration from God that will bring Unity to us all - with good healthy doses of prayer, of course.

God Bless You