Christmas baskets, (12/2011).
For example, when our Bishops resisted the Obama Administration’s mandate to purchase contraception and abortion drugs, news stories falsely represented them as seeking to deny contraception to all Americans. No one was too concerned about correcting this flagrant misrepresentation as political cartoons lampooned them for something they never said. Catholic priests are singled out for sensationalized media stories if there is even a suspicion of wrongdoing, while journalists are silent about other, far graver scandals. In a recent letter to the Modesto Bee, a man described “Roman Catholics” as “religious fundamentalists … whose archaic view of the world must be mollified in the 2012 election.” It didn’t used to be acceptable to make bigoted statements against Catholics without any factual evidence. A growing number of public voices demonize Catholics, blaming us for things like “overpopulation” and global poverty and social discrimination. In fact, the Catholic Church operates more hospitals, schools and aid organizations on a global scale even than the U.S. government.
It is time to push back, but to do so effectively, we must do two things. First, we must know our faith and the issues that touch it. Catholics are notoriously ignorant of the Catholic faith. We have our Catechism of the Catholic Church, and now is the time to study it, if you haven't already. Second, we need to pray, because no good can come of anything unless it is guided by the Holy Spirit. Pray for charity and wisdom on how and when to respond to anti-Catholic bigotry.
It is not charitable to remain silent when ignorance attacks the Catholic Church. The Church is our best hope for a peaceful, ordered society.