Thursday, September 22, 2011
A REAL TESTIMONY OF FAITH
I recently spoke to a man, who simply amazed me in his willingness to stand for the faith on a matter that I wouldn’t even of thought about. It was very humbling to hear his story, and it took me some time to ‘digest’ what he was talking about and process his thought pattern and actions. I told him before we parted company that I find him to be an amazing witness to Christianity and it took guts to do what he did. What did this man do? He quit a full time job he recently started after being unemployed for months. What was the issue? He was asked to ‘sell’ products that promoted birth control in one of the largest retail corporations in this country.
Granted, this was a small part of his job, and this man also pointed out how he had problems with the violent nature of the numerous video games there, the provocative clothing lines for young girls, and the numerous brands of condoms that were in a very open location that all could easily see and access. This man consulted with the bio ethics office of the Catholic church, after not receiving guidance from two local parish priests, and this office informed him that in certain circumstances that he could be considered an accomplice to sinful acts, but not in all. This man did not want to take a chance at all, and decided to tender his resignation.
This man did this with no fanfare, and seemed rather embarrassed when I told him I was in awe of what he did. I have heard of actions done by believers at this level, but up to this time, had never personally met a believer practicing at this level. He did this without calculating money lost, or considering the ramifications of any worldly stature, but stayed totally focused on God and what He thinks of these matters. I have no doubt God is very pleased with this action, and this man has earned himself a whole pile of reward points that will be given when it really counts.
Another incident that came to my attention was a story about Rev. Michael Rodriguez from the diocese of El Paso. Fr. Rodriguez has been an outspoken advocate for marriage between a man and woman, and has come out publicly against passage of homosexual marriage. Fr. Rodriguez has quoted scripture and has gone over this matter as defending Orthodox Catholic teachings. He has now been subjected to transfer, and is ‘obediently’ following this order from his Bishop. This priest has picked up the mantle of what all the Bishops should be doing, and is finding out personally, how being truthful has significant consequences. See story through this link:
We have had too many instances lately in which those standing up for orthodoxy have effectively been punished, while those who soft pedal the faith and in effect, betray the laity get free passes. It seems the church has little difficulty in following strict Church teachings in telling a man working for a corporation that he could be an accomplice to sin by selling birth control. The Church, however, seems to have great difficulty in allowing their own clergy to stand up for the very clear Church teachings spelling out the sinfulness of legalized child killing and the accompanying birth control, and of homosexual marriage. I wonder if it is because they (Church hierarchy) is uncomfortable with those willing to make ‘noise’ and draw attention to these immoral behaviors that need to be addressed by confronting society head on.
There are too few willing to live by faith and give testament to what is right. The man I refer to will never be known for what he did, at least while here. But what he did is most incredible in a society that worships comfort and conveneince, as well as self love. Fr. Rodriguez embodies the best of what priesthood is really about, and he is now paying the price for this loyalty to his faith. It is these testimonies of faith that give hope to others, and it is this living out of the faith that will ultimately spur others on to imitate what they do.