TWO Reblogged articles for ALL Christians to read

Pete BaklinskiFollow Pete

Not sure how to vote in the U.S. election? Here’s Cardinal Burke’s advice

https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/cardinal-burke-to-u.s.-voters-consider-candidate-who-defend-life-family-free

ROME, Italy, August 30, 2016 (LifeSiteNews) — Cardinal Raymond Burke, one of the most outspoken defenders on Catholic teaching regarding life, marriage, sexuality, and the family, weighed in on the upcoming U.S. election, telling reporters that the faithful must vote for the candidate who will do the most to “advance” the protection of human life, defense of the family, respect for freedom, and care for the poor.

“I think that what we have to do in this time is to look at both candidates to see if one of them will not, at least in some way, advance the common good, both with respect to the good of human life, the good of the family, the freedom of conscience, the care of the poor, and to look at that very carefully,” the Cardinal told reporters during an international teleconference conducted by Carmel Communications and attended by LifeSiteNews.

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton’s support for abortion has been called “extreme and unlimited.”

She asserts that unborn babies have no constitutional rights. She has promised to appoint only pro-abortion judges to the Supreme Court. She supports abortion during all nine months of pregnancy and has promised, if elected, to enact the largest expansion of taxpayer-funded abortion-on-demand in history.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump says he supports abortion restriction and has called himself “pro-life” on various occasions, but in the past he identified himself as “very pro-choice.” He believes that Roe v. Wade, which legalized abortion in 1973, should be overturned. He said he would stop funding Planned Parenthood “as long as they’re doing abortions.” He also promised to appoint pro-life justices to the Supreme Court and to defend “religious liberty” by appealing the Johnson Amendment.

Because of his former pro-abortion position as well as his disreputable past, which includes promiscuity, adultery, and owning casinos, various life and family leaders remain skeptical of Trump’s ultimate pro-life convictions, believing that he piped whatever tune he was required to play to win the Republican nomination.

Asked earlier this year by Bloomberg Business about his stance on abortion, Trump gave this answer, indicating that he is pro-life but with exceptions. “It’s an issue. I mean it’s an issue, and it’s a strong issue. … What I am saying is this: With caveats – life of the mother, incest, rape. That’s where I stand. So, I’m pro-life, but with the caveats. You have to have it with the caveats.”

Trump raised eyebrows when he failed to mention abortion during his acceptance speech at the Republican National Convention last month in Cleveland after the party took a strong pro-life position in its platform. During his campaign, he has left a trail of suspicion with his comments about abortion. In March, he angered abortion supporters and disappointed pro-life advocates when he said he believed that women who have abortions should face some sort of punishment.

In April, Trump didn’t sound convicted about overturning Roe v. Wade when he told CBS in an interview: “The laws are set now on abortion and that’s the way they’re going to remain until they’re changed. I would’ve preferred states’ rights. I think it would’ve been better if it were up to the states. But right now, the laws are set. … At this moment, the laws are set. And I think we have to leave it that way.”

But after Trump selected proven pro-life politician Mike Pence as his running mate, the Indiana governor eased some fears by saying a Trump presidency would be committed to resigning the 1973 law to the “ash heap of history.” In Indiana, Pence has in fact has passed some of the most restrictive laws on abortion in the nation.

Cardinal Burke, the patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta and the former archbishop of St. Louis, said that even if Catholics see problems with both candidates on various issues, they nevertheless can vote for the one who supports Catholic values the most.

“More than likely the judgment will be that neither candidates ideally answers these questions all in the way that we want. But given the nature of our government, can we in conscience support one of the candidates, at least, who, while maybe [he or she] doesn’t support everything that we believe and know is important, will at least support it to a certain extent with the hope that that candidate can be convinced to embrace evermore fully the common good,” he said.

Burke warned Catholics against not voting at all and against the practice of writing in the name of a preferred candidate on the ballot, saying it could inadvertently cause the election of a candidate who does not respect life, family, and freedom.

“And I understand these sentiments very well. But one also has to be very prudent, and know that by not voting at all you are probably favoring one candidate or another,” he said, adding that even if Catholics wrote in the name of a favored candidate, it would be unlikely for such a person to become elected.

“The moral weight to voting is indeed very heavy. In other words, every vote counts,” he said. 

Burke urged Catholics to study carefully the positions of both running candidates before voting.

Those are difficult considerations, and I don’t say any of this in a kind of easy way. But I do think that Catholics especially need to be very cautious and not simply opting out, or good pro-life people and good pro-family people, simply just throwing up their hands. I would just urge them to study the position of both candidates, to the fullest possible degree, to see whether or not one of them will not advance, at least to some degree, restoration of the civilization of life and love in our country.” END QUOTES

I strongly encourage you to share this message as widely as you are able. This friends is Evangelization…..Something we ALL are called by God to do.

God Bless you,

Patrick

Deal Hudson

Have our shepherds been blown to the ground?

https://www.lifesitenews.com/opinion/have-our-shepherds-been-blown-to-the-ground

Editor’s note: The following article is reprinted with permission from The Christian Review.

And when they went their way, Jesus began to say to the multitudes concerning John: What went you out into the desert to see? a reed shaken with the wind? (Matthew 11.7)

In earlier columns, I’ve expressed concerns about the moral leadership of the Catholic Church during this presidential campaign. I received a response from the communications director of one bishop, which I published with his permission.  The flurry of comments both here and on my Facebook page led me to think more about just what Catholics should expect from our bishops, priests, and other religious.

In the Catechism of the Catholic Church we read, “The Lord made Simon alone, whom he named Peter, the ‘rock’ of his Church. . . . This pastoral office of Peter and the other apostles belongs to the Church’s very foundation and is continued by the bishops under the primacy of the Pope” (881). Their first task, along with priests “as co-workers,” is “‘to preach the Gospel of God to all men,’ in keeping with the Lord’s command” (CCC 818, emphasis added).

If teaching is their first “task,” what is the reasonable explanation of what should be publicly taught during this, and any other, election campaign? The Ten Commandments are at the core of the Church’s moral teaching and the 5th Commandment, “You shall not kill,” is at the heart of that teaching. Why? Because as the Catechism puts it:

“Human life is sacred because from its beginning it involves the creative action of God and it remains for ever in a special relationship with the Creator, who is its sole end. God alone is the Lord of life from its beginning until its end: no one can under any circumstance claim for himself the right directly to destroy an innocent human being” (CCC 2258).

Human life is sacred and not “under any circumstances” can a person directly “destroy any human being.” Yet, we have the presidential nominee of the Democratic Party loudly advocating precisely that. Hillary Clinton has long been a champion of not just abortion but federally funded abortion-on-demand. Her Republican opponent, Donald Trump, rejects her pro-abortion advocacy and promises to sign a bill defunding Planned Parenthood, the largest U.S. abortion provider, when it passes the Congress. Those who don’t trust Trump’s promises should note that Hillary Clinton certainly does — in fact, she has pledged to “go further” than President Obama in providing federal funding for abortion.

This should not be surprising, since Clinton has made it clear: “the unborn person does not have constitutional rights.”

No one expects the bishops and other clergy to use their teaching function to endorse one candidate over another.  No one expects them to tell Catholics who to vote for.

But Catholics can reasonably expect for them to loudly proclaim the Church’s teaching, “human life is sacred,” when the outcome of the coming election may put Hillary Clinton in the White House. Catholics should expect its “shepherds” to address the major issues facing Catholic voters as they determine how they will cast their ballots.

What are those major issues? Would anyone disagree that in addition to immigration, poverty, health care, and religious liberty that abortion is one of those major issues?  The myriad of pro-abortion speakers at the Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia certainly considered it as such. The Democratic Party platform was changed to call for the elimination of the Hyde Amendment which forbids federal funding for abortion — TIME called the platform “more extreme” than ever.

Have the bishops and clergy done what could be reasonably expected in response to the Clinton candidacy, the Democratic National Convention, and the Democrats’ platform revisions? The sad answer is “no.” Yes, there are some bishops and priests reminding Catholics to consider the abortion issue in casting their ballots, but the number is pitifully small, resulting in virtual silence from the Church.

Yet, we have a presidential and vice presidential nominee, the latter being a Catholic, promising “formal cooperation,” with the evil of abortion (CCC 2227). So serious is this act of formal cooperation the Church “attaches the canonical penalty of excommunication to this crime against human life” (CCC 2227).

Many Catholics justify their support for pro-abortion candidates by insisting abortion is a private matter, but the Church does not agree:

The inalienable rights of the person must be recognized and respected by civil society and the political authority. These human rights depend neither on single individuals nor on parents; nor do they represent a concession made by society and the state; they belong to human nature and are inherent in the person by virtue of the creative act from which the person took his origin. Among such fundamental rights one should mention in this regard every human being’s right to life and physical integrity from the moment of conception until death” (CCC 2228, emphasis added).

Hillary Clinton’s claim that the unborn have no constitutional rights is a direct rejection of what Catholics are taught to believe by the Church, a teaching which the bishops and clergy have as their “first task” to promulgate.

Yet, except for a few isolated voices, there is either complete silence or the limp claim that both candidates are flawed and that one candidate is “no better” than the other.

I could quote the Catechism of the Catholic Church at greater length, particularly on how “positive law” allowing abortion undermines the “foundations of the state” (2273). You would think that if such a teaching is taken seriously our clergy would realize that there is more involved in teaching Catholics about the evil of abortion, because at the same time they are defending the very foundation of law, society, and the state.  But no, nothing is being said, there is only silence.

When I recall what Jesus said about John the Baptist, “What went you out into the desert to see? a reed shaken with the wind?” it leads me to the conclusion that the wind has blown our shepherds to the ground. …… END QUOTES

Dear friend, if you have pondered at all why today’s Catholic Church is in the mess it IS in, and why for that past {at least 4 presidential elections}; 52-53% of “CATHOLICS”   have voted in Clinton and Obama; ABORTION is a GREAT part of that reason, as is the LACK of clear, concise Catholic Faith Formation from the pulpits. Exactly why this is unclear. 

While the RCC cannot and does not have the authority to tell ANYONE HOW to vote; She has a Grave MORAL responsibility to inform us HOW we CANNOT vote…. Abortion is murder, and the 5th Commandment is “Thou Shalt NOT kill.”

This is NOT a political issue; it’s a GRAVE moral issue!

Were you aware that there were in excess of ONE MILLION Abortions is the USA each year? {1996 to 2012} latest reported figures {I wonder why?}

SHARE this message friends, it is our DUTY as Catholics to do so.

God Bless you

Patrick

 

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