Sermons

Summary: Although the coming election is a "watershed," we cannot think that our problems will be solved by anything other than turning our country to Christ, being converted and healed.

28th Sunday in Course 2012

Verbum Domini

“Put Not Your Trust in Princes”

Wisdom! Prefer a spirit of wisdom to any other created good. No wealth, not even gold at $64 a gram, is equal to wisdom. No power comes close to wisdom. No beautiful thing or person surpasses her beauty. And what is this wisdom? Where do we get it? How do we attain wisdom that is customized for us, that molds to our spirits, souls and bodies like a hand-tailored suit? We attain wisdom by openness to the Word of God, that living reality who lives to be incarnate in us, acting like a surgeon’s knife to cut out the imperfections. Acting like a spiritual molecular engine to repair our damaged souls. Working like a master engineer to tune us up for our mission. This is the Wisdom we come seeking today, the only Wisdom who can make us happy: our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Here is he in our midst, teaching us, feeding us, and sending us forth to do good and avoid evil.

The opposite of Wisdom is folly, the folly that first pursued our ancestors in the Garden. It goes by many names, but the most accurate is Satana, Satan, which means “the enemy.” The enemy is the embodiment of arrogance. We who have lived a long time know that God works in our lives constantly to bring good out of the evil we encounter, even the evil that we through ignorance or malice do. God is a master of repair, of healing, of forgiveness. Seventy times seven? He has forgiven me seventy thousand times seven. God is the master repairman, taking the beautiful pottery of my soul that I have shattered into uncounted pieces and putting them together into a mosaic of His Son and Our Lord.

The enemy is constantly tempting us in the opposite direction. He has no creativity. He can only destroy. He tempts us not to bring good out of evil, but to do evil in order that good may come out of it. He does that as individuals, as a community, as a nation. It’s the only thing he is master of. Does your family need a new car? Cheat on your taxes, or steal from your clients. Did you come home after curfew? Tell a little white lie about car trouble and escape punishment. Are school taxes too high, or quality too low? Move twenty or thirty miles out into the country to a lower-taxed district, or one with a brand new school all the great teachers want to be at. Multiply that kind of behavior by a few hundred million and you get a nation that murders one out of three conceived children, pays its bills by borrowing 40% of its expenses from tyrants, and tramples on other basic rights, like the freedom of religion.

Look back on the watershed year 1965. This was the birth of the so-called “war on poverty,” which Lyndon Johnson decided to wage on top of the Vietnam War. Daniel Pat Moynihan warned him that it would be wrong to encourage the poor to practice contraception, to limit their fertility in the hopes that having fewer poor people would kill poverty itself. That year, the Supreme Court struck down all laws against the sale of contraceptives, and the government got into the business of preventing poverty by preventing the poor. What do we have, forty-some years later? More poverty, destroyed families, a third generation of young people who think having babies outside marriage is a good thing, a skyrocketing breast cancer rate among women, and cities where half the children are killed before they are born. We pretended that shutting down or manipulating the fertility of women is health care, that murder is compassion, and we are reaping the sick harvest of trying to accomplish good ends by evil means.

Moreover, the Church, during the four years that followed, was cowed by the media and by so-called “progressive” Catholic theologians and politicians to keep Her mouth shut about the evils being done. As Cardinal Dolan of New York recently commented, it was clerics’ decision to not preach an essential part of the Gospel of Life that inevitably led to politicians to believe that they could force Catholics and Catholic institutions to pay for sterilizations and abortion-inducing poisons. That is the untenable position we are forced into between now and next August, unless the coming election offers relief. It’s either that or, in the words of the false prophet Nancy Pelosi, “get over” our “conscience thing.”

There is no way I’m going to tell you how to vote in November. If you haven’t figured out yet that one outcome is going to lead to four years of ever-intensifying pressure on the Church to do evil, nothing I say today will convince you otherwise. But to you who, as I once did, count yourselves members of a party whose platform supports the murder of the unborn, the corruption of the institution of marriage, and assaults on the first amendment, I say this: work vigorously to reform your party into one that promotes truth and goodness, or risk losing the only thing that is really important in life–your immortal soul. And to those of the party whose platform still claims to support human life and natural marriage, I say something similar: work vigorously to reform your party into one that cares about more than the economy and taxes, or risk the same thing. We cannot hang our faith outside the door of the precinct convention. We have to bring it into every corner of our lives–especially politics and business.

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