Jesus told us to “be watchful! Be alert! You do not know when the time will come” (MK 13:33). For “of that day or hour no one knows, neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father” (MK 13:32). Yet even Peter, James, and John could not watch, keep awake, and pray in the hour our Lord needed them. In the Garden of Gethsemane, the hour His soul was sorrowful, even unto death, and His body was sweating drops of blood.
How, then, are we, modern-day Catholic Christians, two thousand years later, expected to keep vigilant when even the apostles found it difficult while the Bridegroom was present? For starters, we need to make sure that representatives of Catholicsm in the public square are representing the one, holy, Catholic, apostolic faith; and, if they are not, ask them to stand down.
Of utmost importance to St. Paul was guarding the deposit of faith. So much so he twice admonished St. Timothy to guard the deposit. If we are to join Stephen Kokx in the battle we firstly must start with articles like “Proud To Be A Cafeteria Catholic” by Huffington Post’s Catholic blogger, Rea Nolan Martin.
Martin argues that Christ was a cafeteria Jew challenging the status quo of His time. Christ was not a cafeteria Jew. He fulfilled the Old Law with the New. In turn, however, she challenges what she believes to be the status quo of our time, the Catholic Church, on four points of doctrine: women ordination, homosexuality, divorce, and birth control.
These four points of doctrine are popular today. Turning to the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) and the Sacred Scriptures, a response to Martin can be found.
Women Ordination: “The Lord Jesus chose men to form the college of the twelve apostles, and the apostles did the same when they chose collaborators to succeed them in their ministry…The Church recognizes herself to be bound by this choice made by the Lord himself. For this reason the ordination of women is not possible” (CCC 1577).
Homosexual Acts: “’Homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.’ They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved” (CCC 2357).
“You shall not lie with a male as with a woman; such a thing is an abomination” (LV 18:22 – Old Testament).
“Do you not know that the unjust will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived; neither fornicators nor idolaters nor adulterers nor boy prostitutes nor sodomites...will inherit the kingdom of God (1 COR 6:9, 10 – New Testament).
Birth Control: “’Every action which, whether in anticipation of the conjugal act, or in its accomplishment, or in the development of its natural consequences, proposes, whether as an end or as a means, to render procreation impossible’ is intrinsically evil” (CCC 2370).
Divorce: “Divorce is a grave offense against the natural law. It claims to break the contract, to which the spouses freely consented, to live with each other till death…Divorce is immoral also because it introduces disorder into the family and into society. This disorder brings grave harm to the deserted spouse, to children traumatized by the separation of their parents and often torn between them, and because of its contagious effect which makes it truly a plague on society” (CCC 2384, 2385).
As we see, a direct response is found.
Dynamic Catholic, an organization founded by Matthew Kelly, has an excellent parish book program enabling the purchase of its books and materials in cheap, bulk form for Catholic parishes across the country and throughout the world. In one of Kelly’s books available in the parish book program, Rediscovering Catholicism, he discusses the idea that today’s American Catholics are a great body fast asleep. They need only be woken up to make waves as a united front.
Jesus stood before Peter, James, and John in the Garden of Gethsemane and, with His own voice, spoke to them to wake them up. It is our turn to speak to the great body of American Catholics and wake them up with true and accurate teaching of the faith, making them hold fast to its deposit in their private lives and in the public square.
Therefore, I speak to Martin at Huffington Post. Please stand down.
Ashley and Susan
Two women asking the world to not just hope, but to Hope in Love.