It is no secret that our federal government is becoming an enemy of our Church. The Health and Human Services mandate has pitted law against conscience, making it impossible for Catholic health institutions to faithfully serve both God and state. America has been slipping down an ethical slope for decades, but the last few years have yielded for our nation unprecedented fruits of social acceptance of rebellion against God’s laws. The national pulse was taken at the previous election and will be taken again this fall.
Let there be no illusions. The idol of the political left is power; that of the political right is wealth. Neither can honestly be called Christian. There exist degrees of evil. Those stances which deliberately intend to deny the nature of humanity or terminate human life in any form are intrinsically evil, and therefore should not under any circumstances be upheld. The Church has identified five intrinsic evils prevalent in our time: abortion, euthanasia, embryonic stem cell research, human cloning and same-sex “marriage”.
The Catholic Church is not a political institution. Its role is to clearly communicate to the world what is right and what is wrong, and to lay down principles to be used in politics, industry, etc. that can be used to make ethical decisions. It is the duty of all to choose the lesser evil. The fact that one political party may more than another align itself with a form of evil does not transform ethical principles into political principles. Any regime that creates political issues out of matters of right and wrong places politics where politics does not belong. This tactic has been used in the past to attempt to coerce the faithful, and it may be used again.
It is indeed unfortunate that many who identify with the Catholic Church have created confusion and scandal by taking public stands on ethical issues that are at odds with orthodox Catholic teaching. However, the pope and to a great degree the American bishops have admirably stepped up to speak the truth and make a public stand for what is right. The time may be coming soon when all believers will have to choose between living a comfortable life and living a faithful life. May we all have the courage to stand in the face of persecution and witness to the truth, in our political choices and in the examples of our lives.