Next weekend we will be celebrating Independence Day and the signing of our Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776. We will rejoice in the freedoms won for us by that document and the War for Independence. Liberty and freedom are precious gifts here in America, but they can be abused and used in the wrong way. In the second reading (Galatians 5:1,13-18), St. Paul reminds us of that possibility. “My brothers, remember that you have been called to live in freedom — but not a freedom that gives free rein to the flesh.” In other words, freedom should be used to do good, not to engage in sin. Unfortunately, our culture has raised freedom to a form of idolatry where nothing is sinful or wrong so long as it is not against the law. And if it is against the law, then the law should be changed. Even God’s Divine Law is up for grabs if a person feels it is against his/her desires.
More and more there is the danger of intolerance with regard to freedom of religion and conscience. If a person’s religious beliefs do not agree with those of the current culture, he/she is labeled a bigot whereas religious institutions are threatened with fines or law suits should they remain faithful to their beliefs. As Catholics, we must actively engage in the culture wars and fight for freedom of religion. Our struggle for independence and freedom 240 years ago was not won overnight. It took years, and so will our struggle for freedom of religion. Let us pray for perseverance and the return of our country to being again “one nation under God.”
- Fr. Carl
“God is everywhere ready to hear your prayers.”
~ Thoughts of the Cure D’Ars