PEORIA, Illinois, April 17, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) – In a stunning homily on the weekend, an Illinois bishop slammed President Obama for his “radical pro-abortion and extreme secularist agenda” and said Catholics must line up against that agenda at the ballot box in November or else lose all her dearly-held institutions.
“This fall, every practicing Catholic must vote, and must vote their Catholic consciences, or by the following fall our Catholic schools, our Catholic hospitals, our Catholic Newman Centers, all our public ministries—only excepting our church buildings – could easily be shut down,” said Bishop Daniel Jenky of Peoria at a gathering of Catholic men on Saturday.
“Because no Catholic institution, under any circumstance, can ever cooperate with the intrinsic evil of killing innocent human life in the womb,” he continued.
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The bishop warned that with the Obama administration’s mandate for forcing religious employers to fund contraceptives, sterilizations, and abortion-inducing drugs, America is on a path leading to the state of past dictatorships when Christians were forced to “huddle and hide,” such as Bismarck’s Kulturkampf, Hitler’s Nazis, and Stalin’s Communists.
“Hitler and Stalin, at their better moments, would just barely tolerate some churches remaining open, but would not tolerate any competition with the state in education, social services, and health care,” he said.
“In clear violation of our First Amendment rights, Barack Obama – with his radical, pro abortion and extreme secularist agenda, now seems intent on following a similar path,” he added.
The bishop acknowledged that Christians could lose the battle against Obama’s mandate, but insisted that “before the awesome judgement seat of Almighty God this is not a war where any believing Catholic may remain neutral.”
“No Catholic ministry – and yes, Mr. President, for Catholics our schools and hospitals are ministries – can remain faithful to the Lordship of the Risen Christ and to his glorious Gospel of Life if they are forced to pay for abortions,” he said.
The faithful, he said, “can no longer be Catholics by accident, but instead be Catholics by conviction.”
“The days in which we live now require heroic Catholicism, not casual Catholicism,” he continued. “In our own families, in our parishes, where we live and where we work – like that very first apostolic generation – we must be bold witnesses to the Lordship of Jesus Christ. We must be a fearless army of Catholic men, ready to give everything we have for the Lord, who gave everything for our salvation.”
“As Christians we must love our enemies and pray for those who persecute us, but as Christians we must also stand up for what we believe and always be ready to fight for the Faith,” he added.
Bishop Jenky emphasized that for 2,000 years the Church has withstood the “terrible persecution” from the Roman Empire, to the age of revolution, to Nazism and Communism.
“And in the power of the resurrection, the Church will survive the hatred of Hollywood, the malice of the media, and the mendacious wickedness of the abortion industry,” he said.
“The Church will survive the entrenched corruption and sheer incompetence of our Illinois state government, and even the calculated disdain of the President of the United States, his appointed bureaucrats in HHS, and of the current majority of the federal Senate,” he added.
“May God have mercy on the souls of those politicians who pretend to be Catholic in church, but in their public lives, rather like Judas Iscariot, betray Jesus Christ by how they vote and how they willingly cooperate with intrinsic evil.”
Find the full text of the talk at The Catholic Post.