Saturday, February 03, 2007

Blessed Miguel Augustin Pro, S.J., a martyr for Christ the King, once said:

"Debemos hablar, gritar contra las injusticias, tener confianza, pero no miedo. Proclamemos los principios de la Iglesia, el reinado del amor, sin olvidar, como sucede algunas veces, el de la justicia." - "We must speak, cry out against injustice, with confidence and not with fear. We proclaim the principles of the Church, the reign of love, never forgetting that it is sometimes also a reign of justice."

Blessed Miguel Pro refused to compromise with the world and its counterfeit interpretation of love, a "love" devoid of justice and truth. And he was executed for his fidelity to the Church. Archbishop Oscar Romero had also insisted on the truth spoken in love. And he was assasinated during Holy Mass.

These two men of God spoke the truth in love. Even in a climate where the earthly powers were hostile to that truth. They spoke the truth in season and out of season. We are called to do the same. Sometimes this means confronting the status quo. Sometimes this means confronting the status quo within the Church. But our approach should never degenerate into an unholy anger. An individual left a comment at this Blog which I promptly deleted. This anonymous person compared the clergy to "whitened sepulchres." Such a comment betrays an anti-clericalism which is not welcome here.

I have always insisted that we confront those who dissent from Church teaching with the truth spoken in love (even when the truth is a hard truth). And this includes priests and religious who either dissent from Church teaching or who remain silent rather than confronting the evils of our day. But we must never engage in broad generalizations directed against the clergy (many of whom are good and faithful pastors) or religious who have consecrated their lives to God. Nor should we ever render a judgment against persons, against their interior dispositions - read Gaudium et Spes, No. 28).

Anyone who has taken the time to read my posts here knows full well that I firmly oppose such an attitude. At the same time, when an individual (be they lay person, priest or religious) dissents from Church teaching or neglects to speak out against dissent or injustice, such a person is not remaining faithful to Christ or His Church which is the Mystical Body of Christ.

Our attitude should be that of St. Paul, who exhorted us to preach the truth even when it is not welcome. Our attitude should be that of Archbishop Romero or Blessed Miguel Pro. Even if this means suffering martyrdom ourselves, which is the supreme witness of faith. But in so doing, we must never forget to speak the truth in love.


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