RELIGIOUS LIBERTY AGAIN - The Good Shepherd April 19, 201

May 3, 2015

I AM THE GOOD SHEPHERD. THE GOOD SHEPHERD LAYS DOWN HIS LIFE FOR HIS SHEEP.

IN THE BOOK OF KINGS WE READ THAT KING SAUL WAS LOOKING FOR A SOLDIER TO TAKE ON THE GIANT GOLIATH WHO WAS THREATENING THE FORCES OF ISRAEL. NO ONE SHOWED UP TO VOLUNTEER EXCEPT ONE SHEPHERD BOY NAMED DAVID. SAUL LAUGHED AT THE THOUGHT THAT THIS YOUNG INEXPERIENCED BOY WOULD TAKE ON THE GIANT GOLIATH. THE SHEPHERD BOY SAID TO THE KING: I HAVE FOUGHT AGAINST BEARS AND WOLVES WHEN THEY THREATENED MY FLOCKS. DAVID WENT OUT TO MEET GOLIATH ARMED ONLY WITH A SLINGSHOT BUT WITH GOD’S HELP HE DEFEATED GOLIATH. YOU KNOW THE STORY WELL.

IF YOU ARE READING THE NEWS YOU HAVE HEARD ABOUT ANOTHER SHEPHERD IN SAN FRANCISCO WHO IS TAKING ON THE GIANT ESTABLISHMENT OVER THE ISSUE OF SEXUAL MORALITY AND SAME SEX MARRAGE. THIS SHEPHERD’S NAME IS ARCHBISHOP CORDELEONE OF THE ARCH-DIOCESE OF SAN FRANCISCO. THIS COURAGEOUS SHEPHERD IS LITERALLY PUTTING HIS LIFE ON THE LINE FOR WHAT HE BELIEVES.

A FIRESTORM BROKE OUT WHEN THE ARCHDIOCESE REVISED ITS HANDBOOK FOR TEACHERS IN FOUR CATHOLIC HIGH SCHOOLS. THERE HAD BEEN A LOT OF CONFUSION ABOUT THE TEACHING OF CATHOLIC DOCTRINAL AND MORAL    ISSUES IN THE HIGH SCHOOLS.

ARCHBISHOP CORDELEONE DECIDED TO DO SOMETHNG ABOUT IT AND TO CLARIFY THE CONFUSION, ESPECIALLY ABOUT SEXUAL MORALITY.

THESE ARE SOME OF THE POINTS COVERED IN THE NEW HANDBOOK:

EVERYONE MUST REFRAIN FROM PUBLIC SUPPORT OF ANY CAUSE OR ISSUE THAT IS EXPLICITLY OR IMPLICITLY CONTRARY TO THAT WHICH THE CATHOLIC CHURCH HOLDS TO BE TRUE. ADMINISTRATORS, FACULTY AND STAFF OF ANY FAITH OR NO FAITH ARE EXPECTED TO ARRANGE AND CONDUCT THEIR LIVES SO AS NOT TO VISIBLY CONTRADICT, UNDERMINE OR DENY CATHOLIC TEACHING.

THE HANDBOOK THEN BECOMES MORE SPECIFIC AS IT REFERS TO THE TEACHING AUTHORITY OF THE MAGISTERIUM OF THE CHURCH IN SUCH MATTERS  AS THE REAL PRESENCE OF CHRIST IN THE MOST HOLY EUCHARIST, AND CATHOLIC TEACHING ON SEXUAL MORALITY NAMELY CHASTITY, SAME-SEX MARRIAGE, ADULTERY,  FORNICATON, THE VIEWING OF PORNOGRAPHY, AND HOMOSEXUAL RELATIONS.

THE ARCHBISHOP MET WITH TEACHERS AND ADMINISTRATORS AND ANSWERED THEIR QUESTIONS. I VIEWED THE YOU TUBE PRESENTATION FOR THE TEACHERS AND IN MY OPINION THE ARCHBISHOP WAS COURTEOUS, GENTLE AND KIND AS HE LISTENED TO THE RESPONSE OF THE TEACHERS.

IT WAS NO SURPRISE WHEN MANY INFLUENTIAL PEOPLE, INCLUDING CATHOLICS, IN THE BAY AREA VEHEMENTLY CRITICIZED THE ARCHBISHOP’S STAND IN UPHOLDING CATHOLIC TEACHING ON SEXUAL MORALITY. THEY CALLED FOR HIS REMOVAL.

 

IT IS NO SECRET THAT SOME OF THE PEOPLE WHO ARE ASKING FOR HIS REMOVAL HAVE AN AGENDA TO PROMOTE SAME SEX MARRIAGE.  THE ARCHBISHOP WAS REJECTING THE TEACHING OF THE CULTURE AND THE CULTURE WAS SCREAMING BACK AT HIM ACCUSING HIM OF DISCRIMINATION, INTOLERANCE, BIGOTRY AND DIVISIVENESS. 

 

THE COURAGEOUS ARCHBISHOP DID NOT BACK DOWN. LIKE DAVID HE SHOWED HIMSELF TO BE A GOOD AND COURAGEOUS SHEPHERD. HE WAS NOT INTIMIDATED BY THE GOLIATH OF THE SAME- SEX MOVEMENT THAT MOBILIZED AGAINST HIM. HE SAID: THIS IS A TIME MORE THAN EVER THAT OUR CATHOLIC SCHOOLS HAVE TO STEP UP TO THE PLATE AND BE TRUE TO WHAT THEY ARE CALLED TO BE—FOR THE GOOD OF OUR YOUNG PEOPLE IN THIS LIFE AND IN THE NEXT.

 

AN ONLINE POLE POSTED BY THE SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE SHOWED VERY STRONG SUPPORT FOR THE ARCHBISHOP’S COURAGEOUS DEFENSE OF CATHOLIC TEACHING. AS OF LAST MONDAY ALMOST NINE OUT OF 10 RESPONDENTS SUPPORTED THE ARCHBISHOP.  AN OVERWHELMING 77 PERCENT SAID THAT THE ARCHBISHOP IS RIGHT TO OPPOSE SAME-SEX MARRIAGE.

YESTERDAY IN WASHINGTON D.C. THE ARCHBISHOP JOINED THOUSANDS OF PASTORS AND OTHERS IN THE ANNUAL MARCH FOR MARRIAGE IN FRONT OF THE CAPITOL BUILDING.

 

THE PEOPLE WHO MARCHED HAD A CLEAR MESSAGE FOR THE JUSTICES OF THE SUPREME COURT.

 

THAT MARRIAGE EXISTS TO BRING A MAN AND A WOMAN TOGETHER AS HUSBAND AND WIFE TO BE FATHER AND MOTHER TO ANY CHILDREN THEIR UNION PRODUCES.

 

THAT MARRIAGE IS BASED ON THE TRUTH THAT MEN AND WOMEN ARE DISTINCT AND COMPLEMENTARY. THAT IT IS A BIOLOGICAL FACT THAT REPRODUCTION DEPENDS ON A MAN AND A WOMAN, AND THAT CHILDREN DESERVE A MOTHER AND A FATHER.

 

THAT REDEFINING MARRIAGE TO MAKE IT A GENDERLESS INSTITUTION FUNDAMENTALLY CHANGES MARRIAGE: MAKING THE RELATIONSHIP MORE ABOUT THE DESIRES OF ADULTS THAN THE NEEDS—OR RIGHTS—OF CHILDREN.

 

THE SUPREME COURT WILL HEAR ORAL ARGUMENTS ON TUESDAY, APRIL 28. THEIR DECISION WILL BE HANDED DOWN SOMETIME IN JUNE OF THIS YEAR.

 

THE LAWYERS WILL ARGUE 1. WHETHER STATE BANS ON SAME SEX MARRIAGE ARE CONSTITUTIONAL. 2.  WHETHER THE CONSTITUTION GUARANTEES SAME-SEX COUPLES THE RIGHT TO MARRY?     

 

THE U.S. CONSTITUTION, IS SILENT ON WHAT MARRIAGE IS AND WHAT POLICY GOALS THE STATES SHOULD DESIGN IT TO SERVE.

 

SO FAR THE DEFENSE OF MARRIAGE AND THE RIGHT OF THE PEOPLE OF EACH STATE TO GOVERN THEMSELVES ON THE QUESTION OF MARRIAGE WAS PASSED BY OVERWHELMING MAJORITIES IN BOTH HOUSES OF CONGRESS AND SIGNED BY THE PRESIDENT IN 1996. IT WAS CALLED THE DEFENSE OF MARRIAGE ACT.

 

THE PEOPLE HAD SPOKEN THROUGH THEIR REPRESENTATIVES.

 

SINCE THE CONSTITUTION DOES NOT SAY ANYTHING ABOUT MARRIAGE  WE HOPE AND PRAY THAT THE JUDGES WILL NOT IGNORE THE MAJORITY OF THE PEOPLE AND INSERT THEIR OWN POLICY PREFERENCES ABOUT MARRIAGE AND THEN DECLARE THEM TO BE REQUIRED BY THE U.S. CONSTITUTION. JUDGES HAVE BEEN KNOW TO DO THIS IN THE PAST.  

 

THE WILL OF THE MAJORITY OF THE PEOPLE IN THIS COUNTRY SHOULD NOT BE IGNORED BY JUDGES WHO CLAIM TO SPEAK IN THE NAME OF A CONSTITUTION THAT SAYS NOTHING ABOUT MARRIAGE.

THE MAJORITY OF PEOPLE SHOULD NOT BE DEPRIVED OF A VOICE TO DEFEND THE FAMILY AND THE INSTITUTION OF MARRIAGE.

WE ARE SPEAKING ABOUT THIS BECAUSE WE ARE CONCERNED NOT ONLY ABOUT THE ISSUE OF SAME-SEX MARRIAGE BUT ALSO ABOUT RELIGIOUS LIBERTY THAT IS A BIG PART OF THIS THIS DEBATE. THE RELIGIOUS LIBERTY ISSUE POSES A DANGER FOR THE CHURCH AND FOR INDIVIDUALS.

THE GAY RIGHTS LOBBY IS ON A COLLISION COURSE WITH THE MORAL AND RELIGIOUS SENTIMENTS OF THE MAJORITY OF PEOPLE IN THE UNITED STATES AND THROUGHOUT THE WORLD.

THE LOBBY HAS AN UNLIMITED BUDGET AT ITS DISPOSAL. THEY ARE USING THAT MONEY AND POWER IN A MASSIVE PUBLIC RELATIONS CAMPAIGN. IN A SPAN OF 30 YEARS THEY HAVE MANAGED TO BULLY AND MARGINALIZE ANY PERSON OR ANY INSTITUTION THAT DOES NOT AGREE WITH THEIR OPINION ON GAY MARRIAGE. THEIR ULTIMATE GOAL IS TO HAVE THE CHURCHES TAKE HOMOSEXUALITY OFF THE SIN LIST.

 

 

THE NEW YORK TIMES RECENTLY REPORTED THAT TOP-RATED LAW FIRMS ARE REFUSING TO DEFEND PROPONENTS OF TRADITIONAL MARRIAGE. DEFENDERS OF MARRIAGE, AS IT HAS BEEN UNDESTOOD FOR THOUSANDS OF YEARS IN MULTIPLE CULTURES, ARE NOW TOO HOT TO HANDLE. THE DEVIL SEEMS TO BE WORKING OVERTIME ON THIS PROJECT.        

THE REPEATED THREATS OF BOYCOTT, THE USE OF SOCIAL MEDIA AND THE BIAS OF MOST NEWS MEDIA TO PUBLICLY SHAME DISSIDENT OPINIONS ON THIS TOPIC HAVE BEEN SHAMEFUL.

IN THE MEANTIME CONSCIENCE RIGHTS AND RELIGIOUS LIBERTY RIGHTS ARE BEING ABUSED. IF A PERSON DOES NOT ACCEPT THIS IMPOSITION ON THE CULTURE HE WILL BE PROSECUTED FOR DISCRIMINATION AND HATE, OR JUST TOLD TO SHUT UP.

THE BOTTOM LINE IS THAT PEOPLE SHOULD HAVE THE RIGHT NOT TO COOPERATE WITH AN ACTIVITY THAT IS AGAINST THEIR CONSCIENCE ON A MORAL ISSUE THAT HAS 5000 YEARS OF HISTORY BEHIND IT. THEY SHOULD NOT BE PERSECUTED FOR OBEYING THEIR CONSCIENCE.

SOME JUSTICES OF THE PEACE IN MASSACHUSETTS WHO CONSCIENTIOUSLY REFUSED TO PRESIDE OVER THE MARRIAGES OF SAME-SEX COUPLES LOST THEIR JOBS AS A CONSEQUENCE.

A METHODIST CHURCH IN NEW JERSEY WAS SUED FOR NOT OFFERING ITS FACILITY FOR USE DURING SAME-SEX WEDDINGS. A JUDGE RULED AGAINST THE CHURCH.

A SAME-SEX COUPLE FROM CALIFORNIA SUED A HAWAIIAN BED AND BREAKFAST PRIVATELY OWNED BY A CHRISTIAN WOMAN FOR NOT ALLOWING THEM TO RENT A ROOM.

AN EMPLOYEE OF ALLSTATE INSURANCE WROTE AN ESSAY ONLINE DISAGREEING WITH SAME-SEX MARRIAGE AND WAS REPORTED AND FIRED FROM HIS JOB AS A RESULT.

CATHOLIC CHARITIES WAS BARRED FROM ASSISTING IN ADOPTIONS IN MASSACHUSETTS, WASHINGTON, D.C., AND ILLINOIS AND EXCLUDED FROM FUTURE CONTRACTS BECAUSE IT DECLINED TO ACCEPT SAME- SEX COUPLES AS ADOPTIVE PARENTS.

CHRISTIAN AMERICANS ARE BEING HARRASSED AND PROSECUTED FOR THEIR REFUSAL TO ACCEPT AND CELEBRATE SAME- SEX MARRIAGE.

WOULD THEY PROSECUTE A BLACK CATERING COMPANY WHO REFUSED TO CATER A KU KLUX KLAN AFFAIR?

WOULD THEY PROSECUTE THE NAACP FOR NOT OPENING ITS MEMBERSHIP TO RACIST SKINHEADS?

WOULD THEY PROSECUTE THE CONGRESSIONAL BLACK CAUCUS FOR NOT OPENING ITS MEMBERSHIP TO WHITE MEMBERS OF CONGRESS?

WOULD THEY PROSECUTE THE OWNER OF A JEWISH DELICATESSEN WHO REFUSED TO PROVIDE SERVICES FOR A NEO-NAZI AFFAIR?

ALL THESE QUESTIONS ARE ABOUT COOPERATING WITH SOMETHING THAT A PERSON, IN CONSCIENCE, DOES NOT AGREE WITH. WE EITHER HAVE RELIGIOUS LIBERTY OR WE DON’T. FREEDOM SHOULD NOT DEPEND ON THE ISSUE.

REGARDLESS OF WHAT THE SUPREME COURT DECIDES CHRISTIANS KNOW THE TEACHNGS OF DIVINE AND NATURAL LAW. ST. JOHN AND ST. PETER IN THE ACTS OF THE APOSTLES TOLD US, A LONG TIME AGO THAT WE MUST OBEY GOD RATHER THAN MAN.

WE APPLAUD ARCHBISHOP CORDELEONE. WE PRAY THAT HE WILL CONTINUE TO BE A GOOD SHEPHERD AS HE CARES FOR HIS FLOCK IN SPITE OF HATE, BIGOTRY AND THREAT OF PROSECUTION.