The culture has quickly moved from complete aversion to gay "marriage" (which was unthinkable even fifteen years ago) to the beginnings of real acceptance. I've noticed that most who have moved towards acceptance have done so out of a misguided sense of compassion.
I've seen otherwise faithful Catholics publicly declare that we should not speak against, vote against or fight against gay "marriage", because a) we heterosexuals have already messed up marriage enough on our own, and b) we cannot "judge". We can practice our Faith and also give homosexuals the right to civil "marriage". No conflict, they say, and no problem.
Well, if you're a Catholic who doesn't want to hurt anyone's feelings, I'm talking directly to you: Such misguided compassion (which equates to "love without truth") will come back to bite you in the arse, and with a vengeance.
Because if you believe that gay "marriage" laws will not affect you or your Church, you're already too late.
Check the writing on the wall:
This very week, an Illinois judge ruled that the state can sever its contract with Catholic Charities' foster and adoption program because the Catholic agency refuses to place children with homosexual couples. In the wake of the state's new "civil unions" law, these Catholic ministries must either formally cooperate with grave sin or end their mission.
After the ruling (which affects 2500 foster children), Bishop Daniel Jenky of Peoria lamented that “important elements of the political establishment in the state of Illinois are now basically at war with the Catholic community and seem to be destroying their institutions.”
Already, back in May, the Diocese of Rockford, Illinois, shut down a 100-year-old adoption and foster care ministry that helped place hundreds of children with families each year. According to diocesan official Peggy Wiegert:
Catholic Charities and other religious agencies implored the State of Illinois to allow their agencies to refer such couples to other adoption and foster care agencies so as to not violate the moral teachings of their faith. Tragically, that did not happen.Supporters of Illinois' "civil union" law falsely claimed that its passage would have no effect on faith-based adoption agencies.
Yeah, right. Whoever believed that is a fool.
Attentive Catholics knew better, because Illinois is not an anomaly, it's a trend. Last year, D.C. passed a gay "marriage" law, effectively forcing Catholic Charities in that diocese shut its adoption/foster programs after 80 years of service. And in 2006, Boston Catholic Charities ended its century-old adoption/foster services rather than place children with homosexual couples, which was required by the legalization of gay "marriage" in Massachusetts.
From Catholic commentator Jack Smith:
Everywhere civil unions or same-sex marriages have become the law, they have been used to shut Catholic Charities out of adoption and foster care services. And there is no reason to expect they won’t be used to erode other religious freedoms down the road.
Now, unlike other civil union and gay "marriage" laws, the recent New York State gay "marriage" law did include a religious exemption, which placated a few nervous legislators, but which shouldn't bring Catholics much comfort. Some religious entities are protected from having to accommodate gay "marriages", but as one Christian wisely put it: "We didn't need any protection before!" True, that. Yesterday we weren't discriminating, but today we are. We are "protected" now, but protections for discriminators won't last long.
After all, dear Catholics, when grave sin is re-categorized as a societal virtue and a civil right, then you and your Church are suddenly the ones in violation and will be penalized for speaking or acting in opposition.
If you think, as I naively once did, that the general public will be horrified by the loss of so many wonderful, longstanding Catholic charities, think again. Most Americans are clueless about what's happening, and the secular left loathes the Catholic Church. We've had at least one atheist in the Bubble state with pride that she would be pleased to see a world without the Catholic Church, and she is far from alone in her desire.
Unfortunately, the secular left have a lot of political power.
Worse still, they are aided and abetted by a cadre of dissident Catholic politicians who are more than happy to betray their own Church and Lord in exchange for worldly accolades and thirty pieces of silver. Illinois Governor Pat Quinn, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Vice President Joe Biden --and a host of others -- all have a hand in the present and future persecution of the Catholic Church and her ministries, and all will bear responsibility for our individual and institutional loss of religious freedom.
If faithful Catholics don't stand up and fight with courage soon, we will see a day when Catholic hospitals are compelled to civil disobedience, crisis pregnancy centers (now targeted across the nation) are forcibly shut, and other religious freedoms and charities are gravely harmed (as with the new contraceptive mandate, which caused a "national violation of conscience and an attack on Catholic intermediate institutions"). Even today, merely speaking Christian truth as a private citizen could cost a man his livelihood.
And so I implore you, fellow Catholics: Stop trying to "get along" with the world. The world hates you as it hated Christ, an assurance we have from Our Lord Himself*. The new age of secularism is upon us, and its endless drone of "tolerance" does not apply to you.
Catholics-who-don't-want-to-offend, you will inevitably offend someone, and the only question is who. If any of us is more worried about offending our fellow man than we are about offending God, it's time to reassess our commitment to Jesus Christ, as St. Paul said:
Am I now seeking the favor of men, or of God? Or am I trying to please men? If I were still pleasing men, I should not be a servant of Christ. -- Galatians 1:10We cannot serve two masters. And if you are still confused about your responsibility as a Catholic in the public square, drink in the words of Pope Benedict XVI, who makes your choice beautifully clear:
As far as the Catholic Church is concerned, the principal focus of her interventions in the public arena is the protection and promotion of the dignity of the person, and she is thereby consciously drawing particular attention to principles which are not negotiable. Among these the following emerge[s] clearly today:Being faithful to Church teaching and courageous in the public square is our calling as Catholics! Faithful courage -- as opposed to misguided compassion -- will not only help save the Church's mission and charities in America, it might save your own butt, as well.
...Recognition and promotion of the natural structure of the family as a union between a man and a woman based on marriage and its defense from attempts to make it juridically equivalent to radically different forms of union which in reality harm it and contribute to its destabilization, obscuring its particular character and its irreplaceable social role…. (2006 speech to European politicians, emphasis mine)
Not to mention your soul.
*John 15:18 (What? You don't believe Him?)