Have we become comfortable with evil?
A week ago we saw in the news the sad picture of a 3 year old boy drowned on the shores of Turkey. This rightly created outrage in the media and society. [i] Yet, we have a peaceful pro-life activist, Linda Gibbons, arrested for standing quietly outside of an abortion clinic protesting the mass murder of innocent babies in their mothers’ wombs. Where is the outrage? Why is our society outraged for the drowned boy but largely silent when it comes to demanding protection for the preborn?
What is the difference between the evil of the dead child on the beach and the evil of a child being murdered in its mother’s womb?
There is a federal election in Canada this October and there is a Catholic Elections Guide which avoids using the term “abortion” or “unborn child”. In addition, the Guide is silent on same-sex “marriage” and policies that weakens the traditional family unit (i.e. tax breaks for common law couples) and makes divorce easier; meanwhile it has a whole section on protecting the environment.
As individuals and as a Church (at least in the West) we have compromised so much that we have become comfortable with evil or at the very least willing to compromise the truth. As Christians, the lack of strong leadership and adequate catechesis has left the laity unarmed and unprepared to combat the evil that is prevalent in our society that we are unable to give “a reason of that hope which is in you” (1 Peter 3).
Pope Leo XIII said, “To recoil before an enemy, or to keep silence when from all sides such clamors are raised against truth, is the part of a man either devoid of character or who entertains doubt as to the truth of what he professes to believe. In both cases such mode of behaving is base and is insulting to God, and both are incompatible with the salvation of mankind. This kind of conduct is profitable only to the enemies of the faith, for nothing emboldens the wicked so greatly as the lack of courage on the part of the good.”[ii]
We must start learning about the faith, forming our conscience and practicing the fading practice of the spiritual works of mercy.
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[ii] SAPIENTIAE CHRISTIANAE ENCYCLICAL OF POPE LEO XIII ON CHRISTIANS AS CITIZENS http://w2.vatican.va/content/leo-xiii/en/encyclicals/documents/hf_l-xiii_enc_10011890_sapientiae-christianae.html