I would certainly welcome an Encyclical, especially one directly aimed at abortion and euthanasia. I am not so sure about an Encyclical on religious liberty. The reason is this. Many of the Founding Fathers were Christians. Even those who were Deists came from Christian beginnings. I think all of them took it for granted that there existed a Natural Law. I don’t think most of the Founding Fathers could have anticipated an America where vast numbers of people no longer believed in the Natural Law. Perhaps I’m wrong, but I don’t believe most of them anticipated an America where Natural Law would be replaced with “absolute” moral relativism and even moral nihilism.

Religious liberty is a moral good in a society that embraces the Natural Law. But what does religious liberty mean in a society that doesn’t? Are we to allow witches and devil-worshippers to have the religious liberty to engage in human sacrifice? Some, not unjustly will say we already have that with Roe v Wade. The devil is clever. He can even use the truth to confuse men, at least for awhile. It is sad to think that we are being forced to use “religious liberty” to defend our right not to commit murder and infanticide, not to fund them. I hope and pray that this is enough. But I fear that it isn’t going to be. I have serious misgivings.

A great deal of the culture of death is rooted in fear. I think a good case could be made that the sexual revolution is driven by fear, a fear that life is meaningless without sexual addiction, substance addiction and all the rest. Fear brings woman to abortion clinics, even if it is the bad kind of fear: fear of being responsible, fear of having to make sacrifices, fear of having to give up a life of total indulgence and moral license. Fear drives men to abandon woman pregant with their own children. Fear drives the radical woman’s movement: fear of men, fear of male domination, fear of male dominated society. Sadly, fear drives politicians: fear of losing elections, fear of losing certain key blocks of voters. In politics, winning is everything isn’t it? If America was united in opposition to the culture of death, politicians would be against it too, not out of any moral conviction but for merely selfish motives. Why don’t many anti-abortionist Catholics proudly announce their feelings in their places of work? Fear, fear of losing business. The highest moral principle in business is: business is business. You don’t want to alienate pro-choice customers. Is there a fear in the Church, a fear of open schism? Is there a fear among the laity to alienating or losing friends over this issue? As a user of a social networking site, I was once told in great seriousness that the greatest evil that can befall a person is to be unfriended.
Sure that is driven by fear. There is a whole lot of fear out there; culpable or inculpable, only God can say. If Catholics win the battle against Obamunism, it will be a necessary battle victory. But it won’t end the war against the sanctity of life.

Abortion and euthanasia are murder. That is the luminous truth. People are afraid to face it because it shows selfishness at it’s absolute ugliest. How many of our daily unloving acts cause the literal death of someone? Abortion is selfishness that causes the literal death of one of God’s children. And so does euthanasia. Even the hardest hearted person cannot but feel shame and guilt for that. If it wasn’t evil then pro-choice advocates would “proudly” display the photos of dismembered and decapitated infants on billboards, walls and in their literature. But they don’t. If people who claim to be proud of abortion “services” really were proud then why is everything done is secret? Why is everything done using euphemisms? I don’t see any elementary school teachers taking their classes to Planned Parenthood to watch a live abortion. If abortion and euthanasia were so noble, people would show them. People know the truth even when they “don’t know” it. Like Cardinal-elect Dolan said: “The Church is all for disease prevention, but a baby is not a disease and pregnancy is not a disease.” Am I the only person thinking: “Wasn’t it the Nazis who said that Jews were a disease, a sickness, a festering sore on society.” Now this is being attached to pregnancy and the unborn children of God of all races, creeds, religions and genders. Boys and girls are getting killed. Catholics and Protestants are getting killed. Jews and Buddhists are getting killed. Of course, the Catholic Church will one day say the funeral for this secular society as it has all others. But I wonder if that can be accomplished without the martyrdom of many, and not just the unborn? Love conquers fear, but sometimes loves requires the blood of martyrs.


About abyssum

I am a retired Roman Catholic Bishop, Bishop Emeritus of Corpus Christi, Texas
This entry was posted in FREEDOM OF RELIGION and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.