Sunday, February 19, 2012
THANK YOU PRESIDENT OBAMA FOR WAKING THE SLEEPING GIANT OF CLERGY AND LAITY AND AUTHENTIC ECUMENISM WITH THE CATHOLIC CHURCH
23. And now We wish to speak to rulers of nations. To you most of all is committed the responsibility of safeguarding the common good. You can contribute so much to the preservation of morals. We beg of you, never allow the morals of your peoples to be undermined. The family is the primary unit in the state; do not tolerate any legislation which would introduce into the family those practices which are opposed to the natural law of God. For there are other ways by which a government can and should solve the population problem—that is to say by enacting laws which will assist families and by educating the people wisely so that the moral law and the freedom of the citizens are both safeguarded.
MY COMMENT:In 1968, I think most Americans who read Humanae Vitae never would have thought that government intrusion into the Church's moral teachings and practice would be done by a sitting president of the United States of America! Certainly, Americans would have thought in 1968, that Pope Paul VI was referring to despots in other parts of the world, like the dictators of eastern Europe, South and Central America, Spain and the USSR not to mention Red China! Pope Paul VI was prophetic in so many ways. He needs to be considered for canonization for he realized by 1968 the havoc unbridled liberal progressiveness as an experiment in the post Vatican II Church was wreaking upon the Church and which it was also wreaking upon the secular world as it turned to godless religion to solve its problems.
By Craig Douglas Albert and Ph.D.
Letter to the Editor (Augusta Chronicle, February 18, 2012)
Before you chastise me for agreeing with President Obama’s health-care mandate that may cause religious people to go against major elements of their faith, let me state clearly: I do not agree with his choices, and I fear their negative consequences on America’s liberty.
Nevertheless, his decisions are actually helping the Catholic Church. Obama’s health-care policy will cause people to possibly go against their faith’s teaching on the right to life. Even his recent “compromise” carries with it the possibility that some religious insurance providers must go against their religious tenets or face the consequences of the federal government.
However, it has positive consequences. These consequences include reminding peoples of all faiths, but especially Catholics, why the church teaches that contraception is against God’s will, and opens the door to discuss why the right to life must be preserved at all costs.
Never before as a Catholic have I seen so many of my religious brothers and sisters discussing the right to life and the church’s stance on these decisions. I have also never been so encouraged at the church’s willingness to defend life as I have been in the past three weeks. Each day at Mass, our priests have been teaching and explaining why these policies are producing a culture of death. Afterward, I hear comments by parishioners stating that they never understood what was wrong with contraception and pro-choice stances because the church has done such a terrible job explaining it – possibly contributing to the terrifying much-cited statistic that 85 percent of Catholic women use contraception.
With Obama’s policies, the church has stepped up its pro-life explanations. It has started to bring not just Catholics together, but people of all faiths who defend the right to life. We are uniting against this portion of the president’s mandate. It is helping bring people into conformity with the teachings of religious institutions. Some good can come from terrible political decisions.
Craig Douglas Albert, Ph.D.
(The writer is an instructor in Augusta State University’s political science department, and is associate director of the school’s Quality Enhancement Plan.)
MY COMMENT: Thank you President Obama, I and other clergy and laity have been forced to teach Humanae Vitae and ask my parishioners who have never read it to read it. It isn't long. But I've also had to ask my parishioners to be patriotic Americans and read the First Amendment to the Constitution which speaks about religious liberty and freedom of conscience.
The issue is government intrusion into the affairs of Church and by that intrusion clearly mandating a change of mission and identity of the Church. That's obscene by true American standards.
But this has been a teaching moment and actual grace is being poured upon the Church to help us to be what we are meant to be and to prune from the Church in the most visible way those branches that do not produce fruit and are good for nothing except to be burned.