A Time to Confront

09-13-2020From the Pastor's DeskMsgr. Ellsworth R. Walden

The first reading at Mass last Sunday made a veryclear, challenging point. Before I comment further I offerthe reading here. It is from the book of the prophetEzekiel 33:7-9:

Thus says the LORD: You, son of man, I have appointedwatchman for the house of Israel; when you hear me sayanything, you shall warn them for me. If I tell the wicked,“O wicked one, you shall surely die,” and you do notspeak out to dissuade the wicked from his way, thewicked shall die for his guilt, but I will hold youresponsible for his death. But if you warn the wicked,trying to turn him from his way, and he refuses to turnfrom his way, he shall die for his guilt, but you shall saveyourself.

It is challenging enough to keep our selveson the path of goodness and truth. Yet through the wordsof Ezekiel, which God inspired him to speak, we see thatwe have a responsibility not only to avoid personal evilbut to confront those who do evil. Our goal is not to beself-righteous and condemnatory, but to open the mindsand hearts of those doing evil to the harm that is beingdone to others and themselves.

One of the issues that will not go away and causesdivision (the devil is delighted when we are divided) isabortion. Since 1973 it has been legal in our nation andmore than 60 million children have been aborted. Tospeak out against it is to be told we are infringing on thefree choice of women. You who are women are ablessing for all of us who are alive. Thank you for the giftof life. To abort a child is to kill human life in the womb.Who will answer for that? As we listen to Ezekiel we seethose who are involved in this evil are responsible andwill have their day of reckoning before God. We who areagainst it speak out by our attitude and prayers. As weprepare to vote the question to ponder is, “Am I anenabler?” To vote for a candidate who has somegood qualities but who is pro-abortion is toenable them to defend this evil. What is ourresponsibility? Ezekiel makes that clear.

This message is not as consoling and comfortingas I usually try to be. But we have a responsibility toconfront it. I am not a Republican or a Democrat. Toput party loyalty before moral values are tocompromise who we are and what is truly good forourselves, our children, and our nation. I encourageyou to read the passage from Ezekiel above and thenpray one of the prayers below.

Deliver us, Lord, from every evil, and grant us peacein our day. In your mercy keep us free from sin andprotect us from all anxiety as we wait in joyful hopefor the coming of our Savior, Jesus Christ.For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours,now and forever.

Come, Holy Spirit, fill the hearts of your faithfuland enkindle in them the fire of your love.

V. Send forth your Spirit and they shall be created.

R. And you shall renew the face of the earth.

Let us pray.O God, who by the light of the Holy Spirit,did instruct the hearts of the faithful,grant us in the same Spirit to be truly wiseand ever to rejoice in His consolation.

Through Christ our Lord.