1. Pope Benedict XVI’s Congratulation to President Obama
In his message, the Holy Father offered best wishes to the President, and promised continued prayers on his behalf. The Pope assured the re-elected President that he will ask God to help him in his high responsibility to the country and the international community. The Pope also said he will pray that the ideals of freedom and justice, which guided the founders of the United States of America, might continue to shine through the nation as it makes its way in history.
2. Our Bishops are United
Since Catholics largely do not submit to the Catholic teaching regarding contraception, the Obama administration likely translated the weakening practices with a weakening Church. Our bishops, proved otherwise. The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) is unanimously against the HHS mandate, which tramples religious liberty. In a news release last summer, the bishops asserted: “To be Catholic and American should mean not having to choose one over the other…We have been staunch defenders of religious liberty in the past. We have a solemn duty to discharge that duty today.”
This is very unlike the way it was during the English reformation. When King Henry VIII declared himself head of the church in England and succeeded from the Catholic Church due to Pope Clement VII’s refusal to grant him an annulment, all but one bishop followed. St. John Fisher refused publically to condone King Henry’s actions. He and the king’s Lord Chancellor, St. Thomas Moore refused to compromise their conscience and were martyred in 1535 by beheading.
St. Thomas Moore and St. John Fischer, pray for our bishops to lead us in strength and holiness!
3. We Still Have Freedom to Worship
The United States is not ruled by a regime that obstructs our worship or closes churches. Such examples are many but one recently popularized in the movie, For Greater Glory, was Mexico’s Cristero War (1926–29), a civil war fought over religious freedom. The Mexican government under the masonic, atheist ruler, Plutarco Elias Calles, suppressed the faith by enforcing anti-Catholic provisions of the constitution. Worship was severely restricted, bishops were exiled and many priests murdered. This sparked a mass popular uprising and counter-revolution.
We cannot take our religious freedom for granted and must be willing defend it with the same passion as the Catholic Mexicans did. “¡Viva Cristo Rey!”—Long Live Christ the King!
4. Free Speech is Still a Right
Those who attack Catholic values are often aggressive. It’s up to us to pray and then diplomatically inform others on the non-negotiable issues of life from conception to natural death, marriage between one man and one woman, and religious freedom. Although it often feels overwhelming and thankless, consider that some of the most influential Catholic converts once rejected Catholic teaching. The seeds of truth were planted through the words of others.
If we shy away from doing so, is it out of love of others or love of self, fearing rejection or anger. “For whoever is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will also be ashamed of him when He comes in the glory of His Father with the holy angels” (Mark 8:38).
5. There is an Arsenal of Catholic Sources
The Catholic Church is at the forefront of the movement to protect life from conception to natural death so it’s easy to access information that is scientific, logical and religious. Fighting the HHS mandate is a Catholic cause with 27 lawsuits by organizations against the government. The website, Stop HHS Mandate is a good source for the latest news and information.
Same-sex marriage advocates like to paint Catholic values as hateful and homophobic. It’s an area many shy away from discussing since it’s a more complicated argument. The value of marriage has been minimized in our culture due to no-fault divorce and the acceptance of sex outside of marriage but like all non-negotiables, the teaching is consistent and Catholic resources are abundant. One good source for logical and scientific reasons not to redefine marriage can be found in the article Same-Sex Marriage: Not in Kids Interest by George A. Rekers
6. There are No Lions’ Dens
Courage is essential to be a Christian in this world, but it’s nothing compared to the early Christians who went to the lions’ den. And any time we speak out and go against the culture, we do so out of love of Jesus. “Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me” (Matt 5:11).
One of my favorite authors, Elizabeth Matthews, in her book Precious Treasures related a stressful situation as being in the “monkey cage”. She recalled her childhood commitment to go to the lion’s den if necessary and realized that living for Christ is so much easier than being ripped apart by lions. So, if we are willing to die for our faith, we must be willing to live for it. Just consider that we are in the monkey cage, which is far preferable than the lion’s den.
7. We are Not Alone
We are the Church Militant, those still on earth fighting the good fight. We have each other and Catholic TV and radio for support. Also, the Church Triumphant, our brothers and sisters in heaven, are interceding for us. Many of them were martyred for their courageous practice of the faith.
St. Michael continues to fight for God, defending the Church and goes before us in this spiritual battle. Our Blessed Mother is the woman who will crush the head of Satan and she is our mother, interceding for us to her beloved son Jesus Christ. We have nothing to fear when fighting for righteousness in such company. Instead let us fear and pray for those who risk the eternal fires for fighting against the teachings of God.
8. Our Weapons are Lethal (to evil) and Limitless
The Mass is a refuge and strength as is Eucharistic adoration, prayer and fasting. St. Padre Pio called the rosary “the weapon”.
9. The New Media
As Catholics, we have the full truth. Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI have encouraged us to spread this truth through all avenues including social media as part of the“ New Evangelization”. Yes, we are often speaking to the choir; for instance, our Facebook friends share our disappointment over the election results. But we can also engage in conversation with those not in agreement with our values.
10. Jesus is Our King No Matter who is President
We can place ourselves under the sovereignty of the King of all nations. An old devotion that is growing in popularity in this country is to enthrone the Sacred Heart of Jesus over our family. By physically enthroning Jesus in our homes, we put Him over us in a concrete as well as physical way. Through this devotion, we publicly proclaim our allegiance to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, placing our families, schools, churches, cities, etc., under His divine protection and guidance.
When we make a covenant with the Sacred Heart of Jesus to live under His Kingship, we need not fear for we have the protection of the King of all Nations.
For an information package on how to enthrone the Sacred Heart of Jesus go to www.sacredheartapostolate.com.
Prior to the election, I witnessed a Catholic fervor I have not seen before. I pray that this is just the beginning of the fervor that will ignite the fire of the Holy Spirit in our hearts for whatever lies ahead.
Copyright 2012 Patti Maguire Armstrong