We should be patriotic citizens, offering prayers for those in authority.

Monday, 9/16/13

Even though he knew Roman officers were to put him to death, Jesus in the Gospel came to the aid of a Roman officer. Although Rome was cruel in its treatment of Jesus, and then of Christianity, Paul told us to offer prayers and supplications for “kings and for all in authority.”

That holds for us as well, we should be patriotic citizens. Back in the Nineteenth Century the Second Council of Baltimore laid down the basic rules for American bishops and priests. It directed, “They are not to mingle political and civil matters with religious doctrine in their sermons nor to attack public magistrates.”

 Cardinal James Gibbons, the much-loved leader of the Church in America back then, wrote a popular book about American Catholicism, calling it Faith of Our Fathers. He wrote, “A civil ruler dabbling in religion is as reprehensible as a clergyman dabbling in politics. Both render themselves odious as well as ridiculous.”

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