Be Catholic Americans — 23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time—Year C

I would like to begin by posing you a little riddle. Let’s see if you can get it:

What human possession do people always carry with them? Another clue: while we tend to hold on to these things dearly, we are also willing to share them with others, sometimes without them even asking. And the final clue: these things are something that we can always make more of, even out of thin air, if we want to.

The human possession I’m thinking of… is our own opinions. We always carry them with us. We tend to hold them dearly and share them with others, and we can form them out of nothing. Human opinions are abundant, but wisdom is scarce.

As our first reading reminds us, ‘rarely do human beings guess the things on earth; and what is within our intellectual grasp we only find with difficulty.’ The Book of Wisdom observes, ‘Who has ever known God’s counsel except when God has given the wisdom and sent His Holy Spirit from on high? Only in this way, with the help of God, are the paths of those on earth made straight.’

Whenever I stand here before you, I pray that I may never preach to you what is merely my own opinion. If I do that, I will do you no great or lasting good, and Jesus Christ will not be pleased with my efforts. The words that I speak must be His teachings, which come to us through the Scriptures and His Church, by the working of the Holy Spirit. Any personal views that I may have must be conformed to Jesus’ true perspective of things.

I feel this especially as a preacher, but the same goes for each of us here who claims to be Jesus’ student, or disciple. As Jesus says in the Gospel, ‘Anyone who would not renounce all of his or her possessions (including one’s own opinions) cannot be His disciple.’ We must conform our views to Jesus’ teaching; for human opinions are abundant, but wisdom (which comes from Christ) is scarce.

It’s important for us to live according to Christ’s view in all times, but I mention it this time of year because we are entering an important season for our country—election season. The Wisconsin primaries are the Tuesday after next, September 14th, and the general election nationwide is November 2nd , the first Tuesday in November.

There are more than sixty-eight million registered Roman Catholics in the United States. These elections will see them break into three different groups: some who will not vote, some who will vote as American Catholics, and some who will vote as Catholic Americans.

Some will choose to stay home from the polls, squandering the right to vote that other Americans died to give them and ignoring Christ’s call to be the salt of the earth, the light of the world, the transformers of culture. And some will vote as American Catholics, based upon mere opinions molded by the prevailing, secular culture.

But some will vote as Catholic Americans, as I urge you to do, with a worldview formed by Christ and His Spirit-led Church. As Catholic Christians, our first citizenship is in Heaven, but we are also called to be a leaven of goodness on earth. Be Catholic Americans, for our country’s sake.

As we see it over and again in the Scriptures, when a people turns away from God and His path of life their nation declines and falls. We have no guarantee that these United States will endure for a hundred, fifty, or even twenty-five more years, but we have it on Christ’s authority that His Church, history’s oldest institution, shall not perish from the earth. But if we love America and wish it to endure for generations to come, we need to live, speak, and vote as Catholic Christians.

If we conform ourselves to Christ’s teaching, and promote a republic and a culture of life, we can save this nation from becoming an abandoned, unfinished tower. As Catholic Americans, we can transform our country in Christ, and God will surely bless America.

Advertisements

One Response to “Be Catholic Americans — 23rd Sunday in Ordinary Time—Year C”

  1. pussywillowpress Says:

    Amen, alleluia! :)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: