Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Deacon Keith Fournier

7/1/2013 (9 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

This assessment is not meant to be alarmist, but simply an objective acknowledgement of where we stand.

In one more example of the looming Church/State conflict we face as Christians in America, on Friday afternoon, in a typical Washington 'document dump" tactic, the Obama administration released the final regulations covering the implementation of the Affordable Care Act. There was no change. The Regime will soon require that all health-care programs for employees cover contraception, sterilization, and abortifacient drugs.

Martyrdom of Peter

Martyrdom of Peter

Article Highlights

By Deacon Keith Fournier

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

7/1/2013 (9 months ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: Pter and Paul, Feast of Peter and Paul, persecution, Martyrdom, HHS Mandate, Kathleen Sebelius, Marriage opinions, ant-Catholic, anti-Christian, Deacon Keith Fournier


WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - Today we celebrate an ancient Feast. The two great pillars of the Church, Peter and Paul, cry out from the witness of their heroic lives - and by the the final offering of the shedding of blood - that truth is always worth defending. They proclaim in word and deed the message we need to hear in this hour.

In an age of relativism - a philosophy which claims 'your truth is not the same as my truth' -  the culture denies the existence of any objective truth. That leaves no sure foundation upon which to ground our lives - individually, as families, or as a society. This is why we teeter on the verge of moral collapse. There is a moral foundation to a free society because there is a moral foundation to freedom itself. Freedom is never increased by choosing against what is true and good.

Our  Nation is losing its moral compass and rushing head first into a new form of slavery. Sadly, many are smiling in the descent, actually thinking they are being liberated. This assessment is not meant to be alarmist or mean-spirited. It is simply an objective acknowledgement of where we stand. The real question now becomes, how shall we respond? 

As Christians, we must become the Way to freedom for those who are rushing into the shackles of their own making by rejecting the truth. We must recognize the demands of the hour in which we live, steel ourselves by prayer and preparation, and offer ourselves to the Lord for His continuing redemptive mission.

Men and women of this age, as in similar times in the past, have, in the words of one of the apostles whom we commemorate today, "exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed for ever!" (Romans 1:25)

Yet, Christians proclaim, as we always have, there is truth, it can be known, and choosing to follow it is the only path to authentic human freedom, happiness, social well being and human flourishing. Every Nation which hopes to flourish must secure its social foundations upon that truth or it will deteriorate from within.

Our proclamation of this message is often experienced by those who have exchanged truth for a lie, as, at best, annoying - and, at worst, it becomes the cause for consternation and conflict. It always brings a reaction. Get ready, we are only at the early stages of the reaction. 

The God who is the source of truth has revealed truth to all men and women because He loves us. He wants us all to experience the fullness of life. This truth has been written on the human heart and is revealed by the Natural Moral Law accessible to all men and women through the exercise of right reason.

However, when men and women turn away from this truth, they reject right reason, and they lose their capacity for seeing it at all and experiencing its liberating effects. Instead, they follow deception and lose their freedom.They say, "We do not need God" or "We do not need truth" and devolve into idolatry saying, "We create our own truth" and "We are our own god". 

Out of His infinite love, the God who is the source of all truth - and the only path to true freedom -  sent us His Son in whom the fullness of truth is revealed to free us from our own proclivity to such deception. The One who is Truth is made accessible for us all to embrace. He alone removes the obstacles we face in embracing that truth by dealing definitively with the effect of sin. In Him we can be re-created and find the Way of life for which we long. 

This Son of God, the Savior of the whole human race, still proclaims to the men and women of this age, "and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free." (John 8:32) In fact, His words echo eternal through all time, "I am the Way, the Truth and the Life." (John 14:6)

In one more example of the looming Church/State conflict we face as Christians in America, on Friday afternoon, in a typical Washington 'document dump" tactic, the Obama administration released the final regulations covering the implementation of the Affordable Care Act.

There was no change.

The Obama Administration will soon require that all health-care programs for employees cover contraception, sterilization, and abortifacient drugs. They may even require all who offer such coverage to pay for so called gender reassignment surgery, given the trajectory of the the insanity of the age which denies there are any givens.

The Church, in all of her outreaches for the Common Good, will not comply with this unjust mandate. Christians in commerce should also not comply. All of this comes right on the heels of the US Supreme Court opinion in which the majority pretended to change the structure of reality by commanding from the bench to be a marriage - what can never be a marriage.The Justices acted like the Wizard of Oz - not the stewards of Justice.

Of course, for those with eyes to see the trajectory of the past, the Police Power of the State follows in the path of the pronouncement. The Church will soon face the wrath of a new Caesar.What is needed are courageous Christians who do what Christians have done for over two thousand years in the face of persecution, remain faithful.

This is one of the reasons we need the witness of the Saints. To inspire us and challenge us to reach deep within and find the Lord who will make us like Himself and give us the grace we need to participate in His continuing work.

Let us read the Words of our Brother Augustine and imitate Peter and Paul in the days ahead, no matter where it leads us. They show us the way.

*****

Homily of St Augustine of the Feast of Peter and Paul 

This day has been consecrated for us by the martyrdom of the blessed apostles Peter and Paul. It is not some obscure martyrs we are talking about. Their sound has gone out into all the earth, and their words to the ends of the world. These martyrs had seen what they proclaimed, they pursued justice by confessing the truth, by dying for the truth.
 
The blessed Peter, the first of the Apostles, the ardent lover of Christ, who was found worthy to hear, And I say to you, that you are Peter. He himself, you see, had just said, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. Christ said to him, And I say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church. Upon this rock I will build the faith you have just confessed. Upon your words, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God, I will build my Church; because you are Peter. Peter comes from petra, meaning a rock. Peter, "Rocky," from "rock"; not "rock" from "Rocky." Peter comes from the word for a rock in exactly the same way as the name Christian comes from Christ.
 
Before his passion the Lord Jesus, as you know, chose those disciples of his whom he called apostles. Among these it was only Peter who almost everywhere was given the privilege of representing the whole Church. It was in the person of the whole Church, which he alone represented, that he was privileged to hear, To you will I give the keys of the kingdom of heaven. After all, it is not just one man that received these keys, but the Church in its unity.

So this is the reason for Peter's acknowledged pre-eminence, that he stood for the Church's universality and unity, when he was told, To you I am entrusting, what has in fact been entrusted to all. To show you that it is the Church which has received the keys of the kingdom of heaven, listen to what the Lord says in another place to all his apostles: Receive the Holy Spirit; and immediately afterwards, Whose sins you forgive, they will be forgiven them; whose sins you retain, they will be retained.

Quite rightly, too, did the Lord after his resurrection entrust his sheep to Peter to be fed. It is not, you see, that he alone among the disciples was fit to feed the Lord's sheep; but when Christ speaks to one man, unity is being commended to us. And he first speaks to Peter, because Peter is the first among the apostles. Do not be sad, Apostle. Answer once, answer again, answer a third time.

Let confession conquer three times with love, because self-assurance was conquered three times by fear. What you had bound three times must be loosed three times. Loose through love what you had bound through fear. And for all that, the Lord once, and again, and a third time, entrusted his sheep to Peter.
 
There is one day for the passion of two apostles. But these two also were as one; although they suffered on different days, they were as one. Peter went first, Paul followed. We are celebrating a feast day, consecrated for us by the blood of the apostles. Let us love their faith, their lives, their labours, their sufferings, their confession of faith, their preaching.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for April 2014
Ecology and Justice:
That governments may foster the protection of creation and the just distribution of natural resources.
Hope for the Sick: That the Risen Lord may fill with hope the hearts of those who are being tested by pain and sickness.



Comments


More U.S.

Alabama Supreme Court Recognizes Child in the Womb Has Fundamental Rights

Image of The Alabama Supreme Court

By Deacon Keith Fournier

Because a human life with a full genetic endowment comes into existence at the moment of conception, the self-evident truth that all men are created equal and are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights encompasses the moment of conception. Legal ... continue reading


Help Make the Story of the Serial Killer/Abortionist Kermit Gosnell Into a Movie Watch

Image of

By Deacon Keith Fournier

In 1852, the great abolitionist leader Frederick Douglass was invited to speak on the Fourth of July and delivered the now famous speech entitled What to the Slave is the Fourth of July. Here is a stirring quote from that famous speech: 'For it is not light that ... continue reading


Their Eyes Were Opened: Walk With Jesus on the Road to Emmaus Watch

Image of On the Road to Emmaus: In the light of the encounter with the Lord in the breaking of the bread, their eyes were opened. So it is meant to be with each one of us. The Holy Eucharist is more than a commemoration; it is an invitation into communion with the Living God - right now because Jesus Christ is Risen from the dead and walks with us on the road of life.

By Deacon Keith Fournier

We are those disciples on the road to Emmaus, living our lives in the real world, walking along with Jesus who is always there accompanying us on the road, whether we recognize Him or not. He listens to us, and understands us, because he became like us, in "all ... continue reading


Made for Beauty: Liturgy and Music

Image of

By Deal W. Hudson

Some might flinch at my use of the word "satisfying" to describe a liturgy, but I used it deliberately because I want to think aloud about the fact that we were made for beauty as much as we were made for goodness and truth.  To be satisfied by the shape, ... continue reading


'COME AND TAKE IT' Texas AG blasts BLM scheming to seize state land, threatens fight Watch

Image of Texans are rallying against the federal government and its habitual overreach.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

A major land war between the Bureau of Land Management and the state of Texas is brewing as Texas lawmakers push back against the feds plan to seize 90,000 acres of land along the Texas/Oklahoma border. AUSTIN, TEXAS (Catholic Online) - The Bureau of Land Management ... continue reading


SHOCKING NEW TWIST: Autistic boy defends teenage girls who filmed his sexual assault Watch

Image of The parents of the victim are insistent that they want their son's abuser, 17-year-old Lauren A. Bush to be tried as an adult.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Abused beyond belief by two teenage girls, who filmed their despicable activities with their cellphones, a 16-year-old autistic boy now says he doesn't want to press charges against them - concerned that it would damage their - "friendship?" LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


Time to Live the Easter Way of Life Watch

Image of Easter is more than a Day; it is a way of living our lives in Jesus Christ. Darkness has been scattered by the Light which broke forth from that empty tomb. That Light is meant to infuse our daily lives with the radiance of Resurrected love.

By Deacon Keith Fournier

The early Christians lived their lives in the Lord, for the sake of the world. They exhibited a holy boldness; because they internalized the faith they professed and allowed it to transform every aspect of their lives. They experienced the transforming power of ... continue reading


50,000-strong OK Militia declares they will resist federal takeover attempts Watch

Image of The Oklahoma Militia is ready to defend property against unlawful federal seizure.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

An Oklahoma militia which claims the allegiance of 50,000 members has sided with Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy in his recent clash against the feds. Although the standoff appears to be over, and is not likely to resume, the militia says it is ready to defend the rights ... continue reading


BLOODY EASTER WEEKEND IN CHICAGO: Six children shot in widespread violence Watch

Image of Five of the six children wounded, aged from 11 to 15 years, were shot during a drive-by shooting Sunday night.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

With 36 people wounded, and nine people dead, it was one of the most violent Easter weekends in Chicago within recent memory. Far more shocking was the fact that six young children were among those injured. Gang violence remains prevalent on Chicago's windy ... continue reading


Militant atheist organization seeks to ban schools from reciting the Pledge of Allegiance Watch

Image of The AHA says that the line

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

An organization of militant atheists is suing a New Jersey school district of discrimination, on the behalf of a family who take offense to the line "Under God," within the Pledge of Allegiance. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The lawsuit against the ... continue reading


All U.S. News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Acts 3:11-26
11 Everyone came running towards them in great ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 8:2, 5, 6-7, 8-9
2 even through the mouths of children, or of babes in ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 24:35-48
35 Then they told their story of what had happened on ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for April 24th, 2014 Image

St. Fidelis of Sigmaringen
April 24: Franciscan Capuchin martyr. He was born Mark Rey is Sigmaringen, ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter