Monday, October 22, 2012

No Boxes

Each election cycle attempts are made to fit the Catholic Church neatly into the framework of our American political camps of liberal and conservative. Last week Timothy Cardinal Dolan showed once more that the church is above and beyond those boundaries. It doesn't fix into a box.

As he put it we are the Church of the un's "the un-employed, the un-insured, the un-wanted, the un-wed mother, and her innocent, fragile un-born baby in her womb, the un-documented, the un-housed, the un-healthy, the un-fed the under-educated.”

This list was not given as a menu from which we are free to choose the one we think worthy of our concern. As hard as it may be we must have concern for them all even when it costs us.

Today the church celebrates Blessed John Paul II who could criticize both communism and capitalism, and even democracy itself when it looses its foundation in a deeper law. "Authentic democracy is possible only in a State ruled by law, and on the basis of a correct conception of the human person."

We do a profound disservice to our Church and Jesus himself when we try reduce the depth, the breath, and the complexity of the gospel message. The uncomfortable truth is that there is something in the gospel that will challenge each one of us if we are willing to open ourselves to its entirety. Perhaps instead of our favorite quotes from the Bible and the Catechism we need to look for our least favorites and pray with those.