Often the headlines are of little consequence; sometimes the matters of greatest concern are buried in the news.
Father, please help us understand: If you read the Rappahannock News (believe me, my wife and I do), you might come to the conclusion that the religious communities in the County are confused about Catholic teaching, the teaching of the One True Church.
On one hand, Pope Francis has been all but canonized by some. Look at what the Unitarian Universalists of the Blue Ridge (UUBRidge) are doing on Sunday, October 25th:
‘CLIMATE JUSTICE’: UUBRidge’s the Rev. Russ Savage presents a sermon on “Climate Justice” at 10:30 a.m. at Hearthstone School (11576 Lee Hwy., Sperryville), based on Pope Francis’s argument that the effects of climate change fall most heavily upon the poor. For more information, email Ellen Adams at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What a comfort it is to know that the Pope has so inspired Rev. Russ Savage that he intends to extend the teachings of the encyclical “Laudato Si” to his congregation. We’re certain that other clergy in the area, including the members of the Rappahannock Clergy Association, founded by our Pastor, are all equally thrilled by the opportunity to follow the lead of Pope Francis.
On the other hand, somehow the teaching of the Church regarding homosexuality as proclaimed in the Catechism of the Catholic Church Sections 2357 – 2359 is often buried in the news. When it comes to that, the Church’s teaching does not resonate so well. For example the Rappahannock News published a letter on August 27, 2015 from the UUBRidge (UUBRidge welcomes diversity) that clearly shows the divide between the Roman Catholic Church and UUBRidge. Here are some charming quotes from that letter: (charming as in tempting: adjective, appealing to or attracting someone, even if wrong or inadvisable.)
But we know that there is work to be done and that just the fact that some things have improved does not automatically make the fear, hate and intolerance disappear. In some areas, county clerks refuse to issue marriage licenses to all couples because they object to issuing the licenses to same-sex couples. Some people still hold the antiquated belief that there is a connection between homosexuality and pedophilia. Many states do not prohibit employment discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity. Some have no hate-crime or housing-discrimination laws based on sexual identification or gender identity, and no antibullying or school laws prohibiting discrimination against students who are LGBTQ.
The Welcoming Congregation Committee of UUBRidge will work to support the LGBTQ community and join with others to bring greater justice, equity and compassion to our community.
Father, please help us understand. Isn’t there someone in the County who could proclaim the fullness of Catholic doctrine to the community, especially to the clergy in the County? Isn’t there someone who has contact with these folks who could persuade them that they are heading down a wrong path? Look at what has happened to the Boy Scouts. One or more churches proclaim and promote the LGBTQ agenda, to the point of moral jeopardy to our youth, while some from St. Peter’s are trying to maintain the concept of “morally straight” among the scouts and form a new troop where the boys will be “safe”.
Father, please help us understand. Isn’t there some official voice from St. Peter’s that could write a letter to the editor like the congregation at UUBRidge did? Isn’t there an authority on Catholic teaching at our Parish who could stand up and tell it like it is?
Father, please help us understand. Isn’t there a shepherd for the sheep, that includes all the souls of the County, who is willing to make a stand, even if it isn’t popular?
Often the headlines are of little consequence; sometimes the matters of greatest concern are buried in the news. Father, please help us understand why our Catholic teachings have to be buried as well.