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A Leaven In The World… Thou Shalt Not Kill

August 12, 2019 Our Catholic Faith No Comments

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK

Violence — whether perpetrated by means of a gun or any other weapon — and the anger and hatred which give rise to it do not have a color. The victims do: They come from a variety of backgrounds of various races, religions, and languages. This week the funerals of the slain continued.
There is still hope for us if we can avoid becoming morally numb in the face of these killings which continue to mount adding victims upon victims. Perhaps seeing the bogeyman of white supremacy as the reason for the spate of gun violence is a distraction. The red flag bill now making its way through Congress may help to decrease violence while avoiding a hazardous abridgment of the right to bear arms.
El Paso and Dayton, Gilroy and Columbine, and many other places stretching back for many years, cannot truly be explained without mention of sin as the cause of these horrific results. We have our own Cains and Abels, who make clear the continued relevance today of God’s law, “Thou shalt not kill,” and the results of faithlessness and disobedience on the part of those who disregard it.
The deaths result from a variety of factors, however, all equally tragic as they are for the destruction of human life, each one sacred. Murder, though equal in results with the loss of human life, is not equal in its cause. In some cases mental illness contributes instability to a volatile mix of other, less toxic ingredients, such as sins of envy or hatred. This can vitiate the full gravity of guilt for mortal sin.
Everyone of sound mind wants the killing to end and wants to know what we can do. People of goodwill rightly decry each new slaughter perpetrated at churches or synagogues, superstores, malls, or nightlife spots, but yet lack true goodwill if they claim to be at the same time pro-abortion — for this, too, is killing. Murder begins in the secret recesses of a heart that excludes the sacredness of any human life. Any heart that excludes love for the preborn child also violates God’s law.
“You have heard that it was said to the men of old, ‘You shall not kill; and whoever kills shall be liable to judgment.’ But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother shall be liable to judgment; whoever insults his brother shall be liable to the council, and whoever says, ‘You fool!’ shall be liable to the hell of fire” (Matt. 5:21-22).
The Lord makes it clear that His law against murder must be obeyed also in what pertains to any emotions or thoughts that lead in that direction — such as anger, hatred, envy, or malice. We must not simply avoid murder but must actively wage war against it with the Godly force of loving one another from the heart. God commands, “Love your neighbor as yourself.” In the Parable of the Good Samaritan, the Lord teaches that our neighbor is anyone we encounter, especially those in need.
America stands in need of respect for human life.
A society that wants to end any killing should begin by ending all killing. At this moment, by choice, a child is dying by means of murder. Where is the outrage? Where are the media? Where are the politicians, pundits, and press calling for justice by demanding that access to the weapons be removed from all potential killers? Instead, silence.
If one cannot intellectually accept the justice of defending the lives of the most defenseless, the preborn boy or girl in the womb, can one be truly against killing, as so many who are pro-abortion claim to be in America today?
According to the American Life League, at www.all.org, the current United States data of abortion statistics are these: Total number of abortions in the U.S. 1973-2013: 56.5 million+; 219 abortions per 1,000 live births (according to the Centers for Disease Control); Abortions per year: 1.058 million; Abortions per day: 2,899; Abortions per hour: 120; 1 abortion every 30 seconds.
Abortion is at the same time the most needless and the most common form of killing in the world. There is no true fight against killing while this abomination is ignored. As well, the climate of violence contributing to murders of other kinds in this country, made possible by legalized abortion, is left unchanged as long as we avert our gaze from the slaughter of the most innocent and defenseless among us every day.
God made us free but commands our obedience so that freedom will be used for good. We can bring back a social recognition of the utility of the Ten Commandments for our disoriented and self-destructive society. No one’s religious freedom or dignity will be violated by knowledge of the Judeo-Christian Decalogue. Even our youngest children will benefit as they learn that killing is wrong.
We all must begin to learn as young as possible how to reconcile our differences peacefully and with mutual respect. The divine precept against taking life is the background to being peacemakers.
What can we do, those of us who recognize both that free will is part of God’s plan and the right to self-defense is something we should be wary about surrendering?
We can continue to demand that all killing must end, including in the womb. A society that refuses to defend its weakest members is a community that is inconsistent about its claim to treasure human life. It is either all sacred or none of it is.
We can continue to pray and to join the March for Life each January. Every parent should bring their children to participate in the March.
As Mother Teresa taught, so can we: “It is a poverty to decide that a child must die so that you can live as you wish.”
Until abortion is included in the picture of our national dance with death, we are not being honest with ourselves about ending all violence. We are deluding ourselves about taking action to stop the senseless loss of life occurring now almost every week through the plague of violence in America if we do not also address abortion.
“Thou Shalt Not Kill” — in the womb or anywhere else. Stop all violence by beginning with that most easily brought to a halt, the crime and sin of abortion.
All of us will be judged at the end of our lives for the ways in which we welcomed the lives of the least among us. Let us be welcomed into life for having welcomed life.
Thank you for reading and praised be Jesus Christ, now and forever.
Stop by apriestlife.blogspot.com and vote for your choice for my first tweet after my 90-day Twitter fast @IntroiboAdAltar.

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