My Rule for Life

I would rather live my life as if there is a God, and die to find out there isn't, than live my life as if there isn't, and die to find out there is.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Subvet/Guest Post/"The Grace of......"

From time to time we all reach a point where our priorities change.  I know mine have changed in the past 4 years.  Some would say for the better some would say for the worse but, change none the less.  Priorties change.  Such is the case of my good friend and fellow blogger Subvet.  He is a retired Navy veteran, a stay at home, full time dad to 3 very active young children.  His wife works as a nurse and they live in the southwestern part of the United States.  He has hopefully, suspended his blog to give more attention to the children's regular school work and religious upbringing.  A trait many other Americans should IMHO follow.

Subvet has agreed to write posting for Conservative Outrage as a Guest Blogger and it is my pleasure to post this first one of many, I hope, today.  So, as they say, without further ramblings on by me here is his post.  Thank you Subvet.


I’ve recently read “The Grace of Everyday Saints” by Julian Guthrie. It details how the parishioners of St. Brigid Church in the archdiocese of San Francisco fought the closure and sale of their house of worship. It’s a good read; Ms. Guthrie plainly describes how the congregation was screwed in an uncaring, offhand manner by supposed shepherds of the Church. The flock got fleeced, BIG TIME!


But in reading it I was struck by the way over time those folk fighting for their church compromised some of the core beliefs of Catholicism. One example was the gratitude show to a local politician for her support, that gratitude included marching in the annual Gay Pride parade and manning a refreshment booth during it. Both these endeavors involved plainly identifying themselves as members of a Catholic parish. For those not familiar with the Faith, these means implicit endorsement of disordered and immoral conduct, something we’re forbidden to do. No gray areas in it, it’s forbidden. Love the sinner all you want but don’t show any approval of their sinful behavior.

The book unequivocally shows the archbishop and his crew behaved in a vile, selfish manner. But getting down in the mud with your opponent only brings you to their level.

So I thought of how compromising our standards are the last thing we should do. If we’re REALLY trying to follow Christ then we’ve got to forget returning injury for injury. Think of President George W. Bush. From the first day of his first term he was forced to turn the other cheek, his staff went into their offices to find the keyboards of the computers vandalized by a removal of the letter “W” from them. Cheap, childish trick on the part of the Clintonistas, it would have been entirely justified to call attention to it. But the New Chief Executive said to forget it and move on. In many ways that attitude was displayed throughout his terms in office, how many times was he viciously attacked by his opponents and returned their lies and insults with silence? Like many others I clamored for him to respond in kind at times. He didn’t and I firmly believe it was because of his Christian beliefs.

Could we expect the same forbearance from the current occupant of the White House?

Where does this lead me? Like a lot of conservatives I have no doubt our nation has irrevocably changed for the worse. We’ll soon find ourselves pariahs for our beliefs. The more you try following traditional Christian teaching the more you’ll be insulted, attacked, vilified, slandered, etc. Kind of like what Christ promised (John 15: 18-22). Something to look forward to.

We can’t put our faith in any man either; we follow Christ and know that we and other followers are merely human. That means we’ll inevitably fail when left to our own devices. Even those who seem to be among the best will stumble at times. Here is one example: http://www.crisismagazine.com/2013/the-new-tone-of-u-s-bishops-sounds-very-familiar?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+CrisisMagazine+%28Crisis+Magazine%29

Until recently Cardinal Dolan was looked upon as a strong and courageous leader. Lately he seems to have lost his way. Hopefully it isn’t permanent, even Peter denied Christ three times.

Getting back to the book, by the end of the tale the parishioners have saved their church from demolition. It’s been sold after the outer portion was declared a historic landmark (that declaration was no easy task for them either!) They’re currently working on having the interior of the building also designated a historic landmark. This would pave the way for returning it to its former status as a house of worship. If that ever happens I’d guess they’ll try reclaiming it.

In the process of all this they’ve become more of a close knit extended family. That’s pretty heartwarming I’d guess. But if doing that involved abandoning their Faith then I believe they’ve gotten the dirty end of the stick. From descriptions of their present religious observances I’d say that is exactly what happened. Maybe I’m just an old grump, but it’s how I see it.

Mark 8-36 comes to mind.

Anyway, we who call ourselves Christians and try to follow Christ have a long row to hoe. I thought of that the other day while reading the local fish wrap. One of the editorial board members had written a piece in support of gay marriage and how he believed Christians should refrain from all judgment. He felt this was what Jesus would do.

Whoever thinks Christ never passed judgment on others hasn’t paid attention to how He spoke to hypocritical Pharisees and scribes. That whole turning over the tables of the money changers in the Temple wasn’t exactly on the touchy-feely, I’m-okay-you’re-okay level either.

If we note the public endorsement of sin and evil in our society and say nothing, we’re a part of the problem. Calling evil good and good evil isn’t such a fine idea either.

But we’ll soon see plenty of faux Christians lining up to endorse gay marriage, euthanasia, greater public funding of abortion and other evils. Those of us who try to remain truly counter cultural in this will experience the “white martyrdom” of clinging to Christ while losing all else we hold dear.

At the same time we’ll be called to pray for those who persecute us, just as Christ prayed for the forgiveness of His murderers. No easy task, but that’s the way it goes. For whatever slight comfort it offers, I recently read a book concerning the Catholic Sacrament of Reconciliation/Penance. The author claimed that the more centered on God you become, the more abhorrent your past sins and transgressions appear. That’ll be small comfort, but maybe it’s the best we’re allowed in this world.

See you in the reeducation camps; I’ll be the grumpy fat guy with a sub service logo tattooed on my right forearm.

God’s will be done, may He have mercy on us all.

Lutheran Pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Destruction of the embryo in the mother's womb is a violation of the right to live which God has bestowed upon this nascent life. To raise the question whether we are here concerned already with a human being or not is merely to confuse the issue. The simple fact is that God certainly intended to create a human being and that this nascent human being has been deliberately deprived of his life. And that is nothing but murder.

Read more about this famous Lutheran Pastor at:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dietrich_Bonhoeffer