HHS Mandate: Stand up for what is right
By Sean Martin
As I sat in the pew during Sunday Mass a couple of weeks ago, and listened to the celebrant read aloud Bishop Nickless’ letter regarding the HHS Mandate, I could not help but think, “this is it”, this is the battle of good and evil that is alluded to many times throughout Scriptures. This Mandate is a direct attack on Our Holy Mother Church. We are the Church Militant that God has called and chosen to defend His Holy Church. We must engage ourselves in this fight. We have been chosen, by virtue of being Baptized and Confirmed, to be the soldiers for Christ. We are to stand up time and again for the Church and her moral principles.
Just like every other doctrine, the Church will not change her teaching, including the teaching on contraception. The fundamental right to life and the rights of the basic necessities of life (basic food, shelter, and clothing) is owed to all humans, even the smallest of humans. Anything that threatens the inherent dignity of a child, or the indissoluble bond of matrimony is not of life, thus it is not of the Lord. As members of the Catholic Church, we are called to protect our Mother Church and all her teachings.
The mandate is effectively damaging not only the Catholic Church medical facilities and other such institutions; it also causes a threat to marriage and family life. The Catholic Church defends the sacredness of the bonds of Holy Matrimony and explicitly teaches that the marital union is to be both life-giving (procreative) and unitive. The only acceptable practice which honors both such principles is the use of Natural Family Planning. Through using Natural Family Planning, married couples can enhance their marriage, and can rest assured that each and every marital act is nothing short of a total self-gift and a total self-acceptance of the spouses. The Church desires nothing but the best for her members. NFP has a 99% effectiveness rate and among couples who use NFP the divorce rate is fewer than 2%. Statistics alone speak volumes of the benefits of using Natural Family Planning.
We are called to be the warriors, we must stand up for what is right, we must stand up for freedom. Not only did our forefathers fight for our freedoms, not only do our beloved military fight daily to preserve our freedoms, but also Christ Himself, fought and died so that we may be free to go to Heaven. “If you remain in my word, you will truly be my disciples, and you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free” (John 8:31-32). Our freedom is a gift from God Himself, we must preserve this gift. Remember you have already been called, and you have been equipped with the graces necessary, the Gifts of the Holy Spirit. Now is the time to use them.
Now is the time, Catholic married men and women, to wake up from your sleep! We have been lulled asleep by the culture of death! “Awake, O sleeper, and arise from the dead, and Christ will give you light” (Ephesians 5:14). A challenge goes out to you, Catholic married couples, to stop using contraception if you find yourselves in that situation. Repent of your actions and run to the Lord in his love and mercy in the Sacrament of Reconciliation. The world has lied to you. Medical professionals have lied to you. As Pope John Paul II “told his fellow-countrymen, in so many words: ‘you are not who they say you are. Let me remind you who you are’” (George Weigel The 2000 Templeton Lecture on Religion and World Affairs). You are a Christian, a follower of Christ. "Christian, recognize your dignity and, now that you share in God's own nature, do not return to your former base condition by sinning. Remember who is your head and of whose body you are a member. Never forget that you have been rescued from the power of darkness and brought into the light of the Kingdom of God” (Catechism of the Catholic Church 1691).
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