Faith and Politics

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I will be one of the last people to deny that the Church isn’t political.  It absolutely is, anything with a hierarchy and organizational struction has its own politics.  However, Church politics is seperate and from secular politics, particularly here in the United States where we have a proffessed seperation between Church and State (a call back to our days as an English colony, when the Church of England was lead by the King).  Its important that we in the Church don’t slip into secular politics and stay there permanently.

Some of us are called to evangalize, however this does not mean imposing our beliefs entirely on others.  The Church openly advocates for the freedom of religion all the time.  We are called to love others, even though we might not think alike.

But, we cannot downplay politics only because our faith takes precidance.  It is absolutely true that our faith is far more important; on my Twitter profile, I profess to be Catholic first, conservative second.  But we still have a civic duty to go out and vote and to voice our opinion.  Those that claim be “not political” are inthemselves making a statement protesting the current system, which is political.  We must comply with our civic duties to vote, serve on jurys, and aid in the justice of others.

This also means that we cannot let politics trump our faith.  We must defend our faith at all costs.  In the United States we acknowledge the right to practice our faith as we see fit and we cannot let people beliddle us for that.  I’m speaking specifically of people in Congress and in state politics that claim to be open, free minded, and accepting.  Some of these people (certainly not all of them) have openly gone after Catholics for their faith.

Last year, Sen. Diane Feinstein (D-CA) grilled Prof. Amy Coney Barrett, a Catholic judicial nominee for the US 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.  Feinstein said, “You have a long history of believing that your religious beliefs should prevail.”  The Senator then added what has already become one of the most incendiary and widely repeated comments in recent memory: “When you read your speeches, the conclusion one draws is that the dogma lives loudly within you.”

“The dogma lives loudly within you?”  I, quite frankly, and likely many other Catholics and Evangelicals would have taken that as a compliment if it has been said under any other circumstance that was derrogatory, like it was here.  Prof. Barrett responded to another question by Sen. Dick Durbain (D-IL) by saying that a judge should never “impose their religious convictions on litagates” in a decision.

The point that I bring to this brief article is this.  We are coming up on a new election cycle this year and we, being Catholics and followers of the pro-life movent, equality movement, and human digity movements, are likely to be targeted.  If someone asks for your opinion or analysis, share it with them and don’t hold back.  In November, do you civic duty and vote for qualified candidates that support life and the freedom of religion.  And most of all, pray for all politicians that they may always being doing God’s will.

May the dogma always live loudly from within you,
In Christ,
Matthew Handley

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