Laudetur Iesus Christus!
Nunc et in æternum! Amen.
Twenty-Seventh Sunday in Ordinary Time (Feast of Our Lady of the Rosary/Victory)
I had heard through the grapevine from a rather reliable source (who happens to wear a Roman collar lol) that there was going to be someone special at Mass this weekend.
Of course, my curiosity was piqued. Knowing that a TLM happening at my parish is about as possible as an ice cube surviving more than a moment or so in Death Valley I entered back into reality. *snaps fingers* Oh darn. A girl can dream can she not?
What was the amazing surprise?
Father Frank Pavone preached at all but one Mass this weekend (at least that’s what the schedule said)! Luckily, he preached at the noon Mass! Laudetur Iesus Christus!
His homily was in no way condemnatory. It was in no way overly negative. But that didn’t mean he was a milquetoast (my new favorite non-theological word). He shot from the hip for sure. He didn’t mince words like one would do so to make pesto in a food processor. He played with an open hand and it was a heckuva winner.
He stated in no uncertain terms that abortion is the deliberate taking of a human life. A human life that is our brother or sister. He stated that abortion is intrinsically evil and that no Catholic can ever condone or justify committing this horrendous sin.
But he wasn’t all “And you will go to Hell if you get one” or “Those who have gotten abortions will surely go to Hell.”
Nope. He stated that he has counseled women who have had in excess of 25 abortions.
He stated that there is always hope for forgiveness and experiencing the mercy of God.
Can you imagine what that does to the woman? Don’t listen to the feminists who say that abortion has little to no effect on women. That’s just agenda-driven bull$#!+.
And I can say this from personal experience (not firsthand per say).
When I was in college, I had many conversations with college-aged women who had had abortions. They were dealing with what has to be a form of post-traumatic stress. One young woman said she always hates Christmastime because it was around that time that she was to give birth to the child she terminated. She called “it” a “child.”
Only someone with an evil agenda could ever say, contrary to what science even states, that life does not begin at conception. Just because it doesn’t look like a child does not mean that ontologically (in its very being, essence) it is a human life. A nascent tree looks nothing like the giant redwood it will become and yet it is protected more than an unborn life. A fetal panda bear or seal is protected more than an unborn child.
And the unborn child trumps any sentimental crap because he possesses one very special trait:
Man is made in the Image and Likeness of God. Man in his very being bears the very Likeness of God. We’re not just “slapped together.”
Father Pavone brought that up too.
Oh, in case you don’t know, Father Pavone is the National Director of Priests for Life. The largest pro-life organization in the Church (according to Father) though that’s not too hard to believe since they are everywhere.
He also used a logic to explain how abortion is not just a “personal choice.”
He said that while some would say, “If you don’t like abortion, then don’t get one!” he was quite sure that they would not use the same logic in other situations such as:
“If you don’t like child abuse, then don’t do it but leave those of us who do to do as they wish.”
“If you don’t like violent crime, then don’t do it but don’t force your beliefs on others who may not agree with you.”
Catch the train of thought? It seems pretty simple but it’s true. Sad but true.
A woman who undergoes an abortion are not really exercising the almighty “choice” that feminists are so bent on promoting.
When a woman chooses abortion is not because she is doing it because it’s one of her choices. It’s because she sees it as her only viable choice.
He said that there are so many organizations (PFL included) who are more than willing to help her with anything she needs, be it legal advice, financial or housing assistance, education and/or job training. The opportunities are there in such a way that she does not need to kill her unborn child. There are also opportunities to prepare the preborn child for adoption if that is what the mother thinks would be best for her child. There is always another option besides abortion that does not take one life and severely damage another (and let’s not forget the father).
All of that got me all happy because it was so refreshing to hear a priest preach about the inviolability of life and the intrinsic evil that is abortion.
I am sick to death of milquestoast priests tip-toeing around the issue so they don’t insult people or get nasty messages from people.
If I were that priest getting nasty letters and such, I would be pleased because obviously I touched a nerve. Obviously I roused a dormant guilty conscience.
*takes a big swig of moxie*
Any priest who does not preach the fullness of Truth, including the stuff that can cause uneasies and anger in some, is doing a terrible disservice to the souls committed to his care. A priest who, out of vanity or fear, does not preach forcefully and in no-uncertain-terms about the intrinsic evils of abortion, euthanasia, contraception, etc.. is not living up to the duties of his office as priest.
Basically, milquetoast priests get my scapular in a knot and my mantilla all twisted.
And I am not saying that all the priests I know are milquetoasts. But I know some. I shan’t name names since it is not my place. I am glad to say that the vast majority of them are not in this category (this priest definitely isn’t a milquetoast … by any stretch of the imagination … Deo gratias).
I am sick to death of not hearing priest preach on the topics that may cause some people to be all offended and stuff.
But all I have to say to those people is “Why are you Catholic if you don’t believe these fundamental teachings of the Church? I mean, it’s not even like we’re discussing the Marian apparitions (which, as far as I know, are not mandated beliefs though why would one not want to believe that Our Lady visits her children?), we’re talking the fundamental right to life that is pretty much a part of NATURAL LAW!”
I am sick to death of priests who spend their time preaching feel-good homilies about general topics. When I can predict the outline of your homily, there’s a problem. You can make the people laugh but what good will all those jocular chuckles do if they are not formed in the Truth. A priest’s role is to be father and then companion. A good father is one who is firm but loving. Not timid and saccharine. A good father will tell his children what is what. “This is wrong … intrinsically.” and “This is the good, the true, and the beautiful; follow this model and you will not go wrong.”
Seriously. Milquetoast priests: Y U no preach on the Truth? Y U afraid of some nasty emails or phone calls?
Isn’t a priest supposed to be a Victim? I mean, besides the obvious implications, isn’t the priest supposed to offer himself for the souls entrusted to his care? Doesn’t that entail putting aside his own desires and such to insure that his flock is properly formed in the Truth in its fullness and entirety?
I don’t know. Just throwing it out there.
And now I am about the open a can of worms that, being a layperson, I can do since priests (or any ecclesiastic for that matter) cannot do for a myriad of GOOD reasons (besides losing tax-exempt status and all that jazz):
No Catholic can, in good conscience, vote for Barack Obama.
Don’t give me the social justice crap. I am fed up to here *points to the skies* with the spiel “There’s more to the ‘right to life’ than abortion.”
*takes piece of drywall*
Seriously? You’re going there?
*slams drywall into head*
“What are you doing, Allie?”
“Trying to destroy enough brain cells that that would make ANY kind of logic sense. I think I need a rock.”
(Some would probably tell me to keep going but they are mean and hateful. lulz Besides, I live to vex sometimes.)
How in Gehenna is the fundamental right to life “not the only thing pertaining to the right to life?”
What good (if we have to call it that) do all of Obama’s violations of religious liberty and socialist government nanny state programs do if a person is not allowed to be born?
Never mind that abortion has been killing off the government’s future tax base and a large chunk of the intellectual future of the nation (one of the reasons why we are in the state we are in is because we are not reproducing ourselves … thank God for large Catholic families).
How is the right to be born not THE cornerstone of all of social justice?
How the heck did the right to have a birthday become divorced from preferential option and all the other stuff related to social justice? What good does all that do if the person is not even allowed to see the light of day?
How can any person who claims to be Catholic vote for a man who is so completely and totally in hate with the Catholic Church and her Lord Jesus Christ? How can any purportedly Catholic person vote for a candidate and a party whose very platform and agenda contains one of the most (if not the most) virulently Culture of Death/religious liberty violation/individual freedom (not license)-laden beliefs ever seen in the nation’s history?
This man is in favor of the systematic killing of the unborn. HE VOTED AGAINST THE PROTECTION OF CHILDREN WHO SURVIVE ABORTION! He voted that viable children who, through the grace of God, survive abortion procedures and are born be left to die in order to not “violate the choice of the mother.”
WHAT. THE. HECK.
And Catholics are voting for this man?
“I don’t think I destroyed enough brain cells.”
*is about to smack self in head with large piece of granite*
“WAIT! I FIGURED IT OUT!!! It’s not damaged brain cells! It’s a malformed conscience!”
“I ain’t touchin’ that.”
Which only reinforces my previous point: Our priests need to put their big boy cassocks on and preach on the fullness of the Truth. Not just the stuff that won’t get them nasty emails or memos from the Chancery about “Ms. or Mr. So-and-so telling them how they offended them because they preached on abortion.” Frankly, they should preach on these “controversial” issues more often. The only reason they are “controversial” is because they tweak people’s consciences (yes, people still have those) and make them evaluate their actions (Maybe what I am doing/believing isn’t necessarily right). Curse you, relativism!
I think (coming from a laywoman with no collar ambitions whatsoever) that the key is in how a priest preaches on the topic. You aren’t going to help anyone by saying, “You’re going to Hell if you contracept or if you procure an abortion.” First, only God can dictate who goes to Hell (the Church has never stated who is in Hell except Satan and his fallen angels). Second, you want to inspire fear of God in people without losing them completely. ’tis better in many cases to shoot from the hip and remind people of the mercy of God as dispensed through the Church and her sacraments (esp. Confession). One has to have some degree of sensitivity while not watering-down the Truth.
Kinda like how I refused to wear my “Abortion is homicide” hoodie after I had my first conversation with a post-abortive student. From that point on, I refused to wear it because while the statement on the hoodie was true, it did no good to rub it in the face of the person suffering from the consequences of their actions. When I began to meet more PA young women, it became clear to me that I had made the right choice. My resolve only became stronger that abortion is evil and that it does exponentially more evil than good.
But it’s all in approach. Being sensitive does not mean that one has to sacrifice the fullness of Truth. Who really cares if we offend the sensibilities of some because we stood up for Truth?
Why shouldn’t we care?
Because, at the Particular Judgement, when we each stand before God, while He is looking over our life, He will see/know when we could have stood up for the Truth and kept silent. He will see when we could have said something to save a life or even a soul from Hell but we kept our lips shut out of fear of human retribution.
Isn’t the salvation of someone’s immortal soul worth much more than suffering a bit of bad blood from someone who doesn’t like what we have to say though it’s the Truth … because it’s the Truth?
I really think this applies to priests especially. The laity (religious are laity too) ought to stand up for Truth in the world but the priest is basically ordained to live and proclaim the Truth. If he doesn’t, he isn’t living his vocation to the full. I sure as heck am not going to think that they do it perfectly because no human being is perfect. Sometimes they may slip up but don’t we all? But the key is that they (and we) strive to live the fullness of our vocations! When we live our vocations as fully as we can with the grace of God, then we have done the will of the Lord and we have nothing to fear. Sure we may be spat upon literally or figuratively but does that really count for anything in the grand scheme of eternity and salvation.
So stand up for the Truth in its fullness shameless, proudly, and rooted in charity.
To be honest, Father Pavone’s homily today only cemented my resolve to most probably choose Moral Theology as my concentration. In a world that is so mired in the work of the Father of Lies and the Prince of Death, we need more solid moral theologians (both cleric and lay) who are willing to dedicate their lives to standing up for the Truth by means of study and promotion thereof.
Besides, I love a good debate. lulz.
I’ll get off my soapbox now. Imma put some prolife resources on the blog (along the top and in the sidebar) soon. Once I can find time to do so. Things have been busy of late.
Eye on the prize, Allie. Grad school and (more importantly) regular TLM are waiting.
Please pray for me that I can get enough practice driving and pass my driving test. Curse my lack of self-confidence. I am my own worst enemy.
A dear priest-friend reminded me of a quote that, if not from Saint Augustine, is at least attributed to him, “Pray as if everything relied on God and work as if everything relied on you.” I put everything into the hand of the Lord through Our Lady everyday and I have not yet regretted it … nor do I think I will ever regret it.
Have a nice evening!