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The Lay Faithful Must Step Up

February 21, 2014 Frontpage No Comments

By REY FLORES

Last week, I wrote about how socialist community organizations, political entities, and politicians have infiltrated countless parishes across the nation to shove their anti-Catholic agendas down the throats of the Catholic faithful. Again, this wouldn’t have been easily done without inside help.
The insiders are often the parish pastors, associate clergy, and some of the bishops themselves who have at times served as accomplices in allowing secular agendas to permeate an entire congregation with half-hearted theology and full-blown socialism.
Never mind that the house is ablaze. If and when people complain and bring it to the attention of those bishops that certain undesirable anti-Catholic elements are infiltrating certain parishes or an entire diocese, these bishops either ignore the complaints or patronizingly douse the fire with a cup of water.
These are souls that we are talking about! Eternal souls who could be lost because of a number of less-than-devout clergy who have taken the wide road of perdition and dragged entire congregations down with them.
I can name names, but at this point, I don’t believe that it is fair and it would also be a scandal. My goal is not to besmirch any bishop or priest, but to sound the alarms louder than ever because we are in a state of a spiritual emergency.
The problem is spread out far and wide. Parishes are only one part of the infestation that is taking place across Catholic America today. Many of our hospitals and benevolent institutions are also being crushed under this modernism.
Just this week, Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of Washington, D.C., announced that it is shutting down its foster care and public adoption program.
Why? Part of the underlying problem is Church leaders who did not taking a defensive position to begin with, years ago, to defend marriage; now the mighty secular state is calling all of the shots.
The authoritarian secularists known as the District of Columbia said the charity would no longer be eligible for service because of the new law recognizing the abomination known as same-sex “marriage.”
Imagine that. Not only have some of our bishops been silent over the years as this sad state of affairs developed, but they have been complicit in certain instances. Now, practicing Catholics are in social bondage to the statist government.
We do have courageous men in the clergy, but they are too few and too often they are afraid to speak up because of the fear of persecution from within the Church.
Some members of the hierarchy and Church leadership will make a priest’s life an absolute hell on earth if he gets out of line in any way. They can be banished to the nether regions, or they will be placed in a parish where the peace and justice flunkies rule the roost.
I have met many of these good priests and bishops and they toil at their main mission to save souls through the sacraments; they know what their vocation is and that is to bring souls to God’s heavenly Kingdom.
It is up to us laity, too, to support these solid members of the clergy in any way we can.
They aren’t out there rabble-rousing and becoming tainted and entrenched in the world of secular community organizing and politics. This is a world that is focused on the temporal and ignores the eternal.
I can think of one priest in Chicago who had a mural of him painted across the street from his longtime parish. There he is portrayed as the great savior of the poor and oppressed.
The USCCB has issued a clear statement (http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/faithful-citizenship/church-teaching/catholics-in-political-life.cfm), which specifically states: “The Catholic community and Catholic institutions should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles. They should not be given awards, honors, or platforms which would suggest support for their actions.”
Why is it then that the USCCB issues such bold statements and proclaims its position using such strong terms as “act in defiance” and “fundamental moral principles” against such abuses, but then so many of the bishops do little to nothing about them and nothing is done about those bishops?
Why do the lay faithful have to write letters and e-mails, and make phone call after phone call and visit with our bishops, with few results? Cannot the USCCB intervene with these bishops on their behalf?
It seems that these complaints fall on deaf ears and are never addressed beyond a canned, pre-written and sorry excuse of an explanation, usually written by the functionaries at the local chancery: “The issue has been addressed and we believe that the matter is now taken care of.”
It should not surprise us one bit that our nation is in the state that it’s in.
We are suffering a terrorism of abortion on demand, depraved sexuality, and the redefining of marriage and family that resembles the Rocky Horror Picture Show more than it does Ozzie and Harriet.
To the fears of the body of bishops about losing the tax-exempt status, I say, we don’t need it!
We can be self-sufficient as Catholics and support our own churches without being held hostage to the social terrorism of modernism. The government has already infringed upon our religious freedom and trampled on our beliefs as if we were nothing.
One last thought for this week. I attended a Mass as a visitor a few months back and the pastor made a joke about not wanting to do processions because he didn’t want to be run over in the parking lot by people rushing to leave church. He said he wasn’t ready to be a martyr.
If not our priests and bishops, then it must be up to us, the laity.

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(Rey Flores is available for public speaking engagements. Contact Rey Flores at reyfloresusa@gmail.com.)

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