Flipping around the radio dial a few weeks ago, I made a 90 second pit stop on Mark Levin’s program, about as long as I can stand most conservative talking heads lately.
It’s not that we don’t share similar objectives (e.g., the defense of marriage as one man and one woman, an end to the evil of abortion, a government that doesn’t mandate despicable practices, etc.); it’s just that they’re always hawking a remedy that’s destined to fail.
The clarion call to change the station on Levin came when he referred to those on the right side of the issues as “Constitutionalists like us.”
Speak for yourself, Mark.
Constitutionalists place their faith in the Constitution; and so the remedy they seek when faced with an Administration intent on exceeding the limits of its power is strict adherence to Constitutional precepts.
I’m a Catholic. By contrast, people like me believe in the saving power of Jesus Christ, made available through, with, and in His Holy Catholic Church. As such, we recognize that the remedy for State imposed immorality lies not in pretending that every religious confession is as valid as the next, but in calling to account those who exercise civil authority for their duty to accept what Pope Pius XI called “the sweet and saving yoke” of Christ the King.
Apparently, not all Catholics agree.
The U.S. bishops’ campaign to defend the Church against the objectively immoral demands being made by the Obama Administration’s HHS mandate has, from the earliest days of this battle, included little more than claims of recourse to “our first, most cherished freedom,” a reference to the First Amendment in the Bill of Rights.
In other words, the bishops’ response is very long on Americanism, but woefully short on Catholicism.
Don’t get me wrong, being an American is a great privilege, but that’s not going to get us to Heaven; being a faithful Catholic is what will get us to Heaven. As such, I refuse to ignore the uncomfortable truth that the U.S. Constitution, in particular its approach to religious liberty, is fatally flawed.
How is it flawed?
Put on your Catholic glasses for a moment and take a fresh look at this vaunted “first, most cherished freedom” that we hear so much about these days:
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”
This, of course, is the First Amendment, and while it may seem harmless enough at first blush, it proposes to treat Jesus Christ, who is truth incarnate, and the Catholic Church, through which He speaks even today, as just one constituency among many.
In other words, the First Amendment grants to those who exercise civil authority license to weigh the words of Christ as though they are no more worthy of consideration in the ordering of human affairs than the ravings of Allah or the quips of Confucius.
It is in this environment that objective religious truth, as given to us by the Lord Jesus Christ, through His Holy Catholic Church, is reduced to just another opinion, leaving the ruling party accountable to no higher power than the electorate as it goes about determining what is, and what is not, morally acceptable in matters of governance.
In short, the First Amendment amounts to the formal rejection of Him who said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me.”
This, of course, is a wholly unsustainable proposition, but based on the bulk email that I recently received from my bishop, you’d never know it.
With the August 1st deadline for compliance with the HHS mandate looming, the email announced that the USCCB is re-launching the “Fortnight for Freedom,” calling upon Catholics as a “people who believe in the Constitution” to join the fight.
So, the U.S. Constitution, the same that set the stage for this mess, is now being elevated to an article of faith? This is our fourth quarter strategy?
With all due respect, the bishops appear not to realize that the Church is engaged, not just in a battle over healthcare in the United States at the hands of Barack Obama; but in a war against the forces of evil throughout the world over the Church’s ability to carry out the mission that was given to her by Christ, in the fullness of freedom, which is hers by Divine right, not simply constitutional right.
Preaching as if the Constitution of the United States was inscribed by the finger of God on a tablet of stone is not the answer. Neither are such inane parish activities as “patriotic sing-a-longs for children, Pancakes for Patriotism, or Fish Fries for Freedom.” (Taken from the USCCB’s “14 Ways Your Parish Can Celebrate the Fortnight for Freedom.”)
With this in mind, I am proposing a simultaneous course of action constructed upon the solid foundation of Catholic Tradition; one that accounts for the glaring reality that the challenges we now face are truly nothing less than an organized attack against the Kingship of Christ.
Please visit ChristusRex4Freedom.org and join me in pledging to recite the Most Holy Rosary daily during the “Fortnight” (June 21st to July 4th)with the specific intention of seeking for the bishops of the entire world, through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the grace necessary to proclaim, with neither hesitation nor fear, the Sovereign Rights of Christ the King, making known the duty incumbent upon every individual and State to serve Him, honoring the uniquely absolute freedom of the Holy Roman Catholic Church that He established for our salvation.
Author and speaker Louie Verrecchio was a columnist for Catholic News Agency from April 2009 to 2013. His work, which includes Year of Faith resources like the Harvesting the Fruit of Vatican II Faith Formation Series, has been endorsed by Cardinal George Pell of Sydney, Australia; Bishop Emeritus Patrick O’Donoghue of Lancaster, England; Bishop R. Walker Nickless of Sioux City, IA, USA and others. For more information please visit: www.harvestingthefruit.com