A couple of weeks ago James Kalb wrote a piece for Catholic World Report on how we can be “good Catholics and good Americans” pointing out that: “Until recently that did not seem to be an issue to most of us. Separation of Church and State appeared to reconcile the Faith with a secular pluralist public order.”
This order and the separation of Church and State that we are all used to is fading quickly.
One of Mr. Kalb’s recommendations for Catholics in today’s America is to “follow Dorothy Day’s example. Her Catholic Worker houses refused to apply for tax-exempt status.”
This is most interesting given the arguments at the Supreme Court over legalizing gay “marriage.” Ryan T. Anderson of the Heritage Foundation reports that “One of the more startling portions of oral arguments today at the Supreme Court was the willingness of the Obama administration’s Solicitor General Donald Verrilli, to admit that religious schools that affirm marriage as the union of a man and a woman may lose their non-profit tax-exempt status if marriage is redefined.”
Anderson reported that when Justice Samuel Alito asked whether a school which affirmed the traditional view of marriage would lose its tax-exempt status, the Solicitor General replied, “It’s certainly going to be an issue. I don’t deny that.”
It is also interesting to note that at a recent speech at the Women in the World Summit presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said that with regard to “access to reproductive health and safe childbirth” that “deep-seated cultural codes, religious beliefs, and structural biases have to be changed.” “Reproductive health” is, of course, the code word for abortion, contraception, sterilization and the like.
It is hard to imagine a serious presidential candidate making such a statement even ten years ago. The political and cultural climate has changed enormously in the blink of an eye.
Those of us in the pew as well as in the hierarchy including the Vatican need to change our thinking on how the Church can exist in this new world; but I am not sure that many of either realize it. It is liberalism which has let this happen and there are all too many lay Catholics, priests, bishops, cardinals, and even the current Pope who think like liberals. Do they realize that what is happening is the logical conclusion of such thinking?