It's official. The Catholic Knight is retired. I'm hanging up the helmet and passing the torch. There will be no more articles, no more commentaries, no more calls to action. THIS BLOG IS CLOSED. I've spent a very long time thinking about this, I believe the time has come, and is a bit overdue. I want to thank my readers for everything, but most especially for your encouragement and your willingness to go out there and fight the good fight. So, that being the case, I've spend the last several weeks looking for bloggers who are fairly active, and best represent something akin to the way I think and what I believe. I recommend the following blogs for my readers to bookmark and check on regularly. Pick one as your favourite, or pick them all. They are all great.....
Thursday, February 16, 2012
First They Came for the Catholics...
THE CATHOLIC KNIGHT: The Catholic Church has always suffered persecution. That is indeed what makes her strong, for the blood of the martyrs are the seeds of the Church. Catholics had gone a long time in America without any significant institutionalised persecution. Oh sure, there have always been Klansmen, Freemasons and Know Nothings, but as far as the government attacking the Church, we just haven't seen anything like that in a hundred years. That is perhaps why the U.S. Catholic Church has gone soft. That is perhaps why some 50% of Church members are 'Cafeteria Catholics.' That is perhaps why so many Catholic politicians not only resist Church teaching on key social issues, but actually work against it. That is perhaps why the bishops and priests have been so lax in their duties to call the faithful to a self-sacrificing faith for our Lord. That is perhaps why our shepherds have neglected to protect us from the wolves in sheep's clothing by failing to formally excommunicate those politicians and celebrities who bring scandal to the Body of Christ. Those days are over now.
The Obama administration's HHS mandate, and supposed 'accommodation,' are a carefully played hand, designed to split the Catholic Church against herself, pitting Cafeteria Catholics against Faithful Catholics, diminishing the strength of the Church in public life and preparing her for the next phase of her persecution. Not to worry, other Christians are affected by this as well, but the liberal modernists running the show know full well that once you strike the shepherd the sheep will scatter. The goal is to take down the largest Christian denomination in the United States first -- the U.S. Catholic Church -- and then going after the smaller denominations is 'easy pickings,' kind of like 'shooting fish in a barrel.'
The U.S. Catholic bishops, along with the priests under them, are not entirely without blame in all of this. Some of them would probably admit to that if you asked them. They made a deal with the devil by supporting Obamacare to begin with. Of course they did so in the interest of helping the poor, but in the process, they unwittingly signed their own arrest warrants. They assumed, wrongly, that Obama was an honest man. They assumed he would keep his word to preserve the conscience of religious institutions. They assumed too much! I submit to you however, that something like this HHS mandate was inevitable anyway, regardless of the character of the man behind it. Even if Obama had kept his word, sooner or later a man would enter the Whitehouse who wouldn't. I say, better now than later. We might as well lay out all the cards on the table before Obamacare goes into full force.
I submit to you that in making their deal with the devil, the U.S. Catholic bishops' fatal mistake was not in trusting Obama. That was just a minor mistake. Their fatal mistake was in trusting big government in general! In doing so, they forgot the most important element of Catholic Social Justice -- Subsidiarity! They turned to big-government for the solution. They ignored the most prime ingredient of a truly Christian approach. Instead, the made the same mistake as the European and Canadian bishops, by abdicating the role of the Church to the state, ignoring Subsidiarity, and in the process creating a monster that would soon come back to devour them. We shouldn't blame the victims though, for these bishops are not solely responsible for Obamacare, and they will soon pay more than their fair share in penalties. Should Obama remain in office, or should his Republican successor fail to repeal this mandate, many of these bishops will find themselves behind bars by this time next year, and I dare say, half of all U.S. Catholics won't even care.
This whole affair is not really a critique of the U.S. Catholic bishops, though I am pleased to see them finally standing up to tyranny within the United States. In truth, the whole affair is actually an indictment of the U.S. federal government in addition to the Obama administration. Good luck getting a bill through Congress that will stop this thing. Even if enough votes can be mustered to pass such a bill, there will not be enough to override Obama's veto. Good luck relying on the federal courts to stop this thing. Even if successful in the lower courts, it is highly unlikely the Supreme Court will uphold it. Obama's 'accommodation' has been carefully crafted to pull the decision away from the churches and puts full responsibility into the hands of insurance companies. This battle will be lost in the courts before it ever has a chance to be heard.
The problem is not so much Obama as it is Washington DC. We have a system of government that is so consolidated and centralised that it knows nothing of Subsidiarity any more. Federalism is a thing of the past and it's never coming back. The normal political processes (campaigns and elections) will not bring it back. Something radical has to happen now, and until the people realise that secession/independence movements are the only political option left, this problem will continue to get worse year after year.
The whole thing is a critique on big-government in general. It's an experiment that has failed wherever it's been tried. Why should it be any different here?
The U.S. Catholic Church will remain at the forefront of this battle for the long haul. This news story is not going away. Regardless of what happens in the world, even the advent of World War III, this story will continue to simmer in the background. Religious freedom is coming to an end in America. The government has separated religious conscience from religious worship. What that means is, you can worship God in any kind of religious ceremony you want, but you just can't believe in anything that has an effect on your behaviour in public. You can give academic assent to the notion that abortion is murder, but in practical reality, you must provide for it in the medical insurance policies you offer. The same goes for contraception and sterilisation. Mark my words, it won't be long before a similar mandate is made to accommodate gay marriage. Obama's mask was already pulled back months ago when he attempted to force churches to hire religious school teachers based on government standards rather than religious standards. (see story here) Thankfully, the Supreme Court swatted him down on that pretty hard in a 9 to 0 ruling against his argument. Nevertheless, the mask was pulled back a little and we got a peak at what was underneath. Yes, Obama is a tyrant, but it is the political system in Washington DC that gives him the power to actually be one. We can get rid of Obama in November, Lord willing, but that does not guarantee our safety. If we are lucky the man who replaces him will reverse his policies and give us four to eight years of peace. Again, that is if we are lucky. Who is to say however that the next man who occupies the Whitehouse will not do something worse than Obama!?! We have no guarantees. Why? Because we have created a system of government that makes corrupt politicians into tyrants, because it gives them all the necessary power to become this. We have created a system of government that can rule us with a iron fist. All it takes is a man in the Whitehouse willing to do it.
That the American experiment has failed there is no doubt. Just look at us! We have become everything our founding fathers despised and fought a bloody revolution to escape. We are their worst nightmare. The only question that remains is where do we go from here? Obviously, to remain on the course we are on is suicide. To my faithful Catholic readers, if you have tracked anything I've been writing for the last few years, you know what is to come eventually. After a period of trial the Great Monarch will come and give us some temporary relief from these sufferings until the advent of Antichrist. However, this does not absolve us from our responsibility to act in accordance with our beliefs now, in whatever limited way we are able. Lest we end up becoming like the dispensationalist Evangelicals who sit on their thumbs waiting for the mythical 'rapture' to sweep them away, we must act in accordance with our beliefs and become engaged in the public square. I point to Hungary as a recent example. For better or worse, Catholics in that country have seized control of their republic, much to the shock and condemnation of the Secularist European Union. They have instituted strict immigration laws (especially against Muslims), declared the place of Christianity in the founding of their culture, and made abortion and gay-marriage illegal! (read story here) Yes, it can be done here, and it should be done here, but anyone reading this knows it can't happen under the Secularised federal government in Washington DC. Any American reading this knows the cultural difference between various regions within the United States make this impossible for it to occur on a national level, and the Secularist federal government would never let it happen anyway. Any American reading this knows it CAN'T happen in the United States, unless some states take it upon themselves to secede and start over independently.
My regular readers know that I am a Catholic monarchist at heart, but they should also know that a truly godly monarchy is something that is given, not something that is made. By that I call into contrast the Biblical examples of David and Saul. King Saul was the first king of Israel. He was effectively 'elected' to be king by the people. In other words, they created a monarchy for themselves. The result of that was disastrous. King Saul went insane and led his kingdom into economic and military ruin. God then replaced him with a king of his own election. King David was elected by God, not the people, and he was given to the people by God. He was a king that was given and not made. So until God gives us a king of his own election, we are forced to deal with the republican system that currently exists in our present world. The Catholic Hungarians have chosen to tackle this problem head on. They have taken over their republic and are now in the process of trying to correct its course. Likewise, the people of Scotland are soon going to hold a secession referendum, in which the public will vote on whether or not to stay within the United Kingdom. We do not know what the outcome of this secession referendum will be, or even if successful, will it produce a country more conservative and traditional? Who knows! We can't fault the Scottish people for trying however. They know the problems are too big for the normal political processes (campaigns and elections) to fix. At least they are thinking outside the box. At least they are trying something different. The whole thing may go down in flames, but at least they are trying. That's more than I can say for most Americans. Until we start getting a little radical in dealing with radical Secularism, these radical Secularists are going to walk all over us. It's a fact. It's happening. Look around!
Until then, let us offer this suffering of our bishops up as a sacrifice to God. Many of them may soon go to prison for the Gospel's sake, and I thank God for every one who has the courage to do it. Yes, mistakes were made on their part that contributed to the problem, but they are making atonement for it right now, and before this is over, they will pay more than their fair share. I can only pray we all have the courage to stand with them during this time of suffering, and that if faced with prison ourselves for the Gospel's sake, we will have the courage to join them.