CALIFORNIA, December 23, 2020 (LifeSiteNews) – In September, 2020, one man – one good priest – stood like David before Goliath and challenged a government which has, without exception, grossly discriminated against people of faith. Governor Gavin Newsom, as well as several other governors in this country, has made sweeping lockdown measures which are both arbitrary and fatuous. He and his cohorts have made almost no effort to hide their utter disdain for religious groups while favoring big business and secular entities. While the First Amendment protects religious freedom, the past 10 months of COVID-19 have shown just how fragile and at-risk our rights and freedoms are in our current political climate.
In this secularist world, tending to matters of the soul are considered non-essential. But we know that simply isn’t true. We are made up of body, mind, and soul. Without properly ordering our interior life, how can we possibly face the insanity of our outer world?
When COVID-19 began in March, the spiritual remedy of the Sacraments was stripped away almost indefinitely.
Confessions times are few and far between and difficult to attend, in some parishes baptisms and marriages were postponed, and the Last Rites have been denied on thousands of occasions. Masses are restricted to a small number of attendees, meaning most people haven’t been able to attend Mass since March. If there is space for someone to attend, services are held outside –either in blistering heat (temperatures reached 115 degrees in Los Angeles over the summer), or in freezing conditions up in Northern California. Withstanding such weather is almost impossible for many of the faithful.
Consequently, Catholics are starved of the graces necessary to battle the onslaught of anger, rage, frustration, political unrest, financial ruin, and general insanity of our current world.
Father Trevor Burfitt, a priest of the Society of St. Pius X who serves at four mission churches in Southern California, saw just how much his flock was suffering. “So many people are sad. I see a lot of despair, despondency, anger, bitterness, a lack of peace,” he said. Catholics not even part of his parish were approaching him, asking, “Father, is your church open, do you have Mass, are you hearing confessions?”
“I could see the mental strain on our parishioners,” said Father Burfitt, “the difficulty they had of not going to Mass, especially the holiest time of year. And so that was really hard for me to see.”
Burfitt looked around at his bishops, his fellow priests, the dioceses around California and he saw nothing: so many of our Catholic bishops were silent.
Yet Catholic bishops did nothing as Newsom trampled religious liberty, blatantly playing favorites with big corporations and business, while the eternal souls of their flocks were neglected and forsaken. Burfitt realized he needed to step up “for the good of souls,” he said.
“I knew that this was necessary in order for souls to be able to worship God, go to Mass, to receive the Sacraments. This prompted me to take this action a little more [seriously], to a new level.”
So Father Burfitt contacted Special Counsel Christopher Ferrara and the Thomas More Society and asked them to represent him. He decided to take a stand, one lone voice crying out in the wilderness.
In Trevor Burfitt vs. Gavin Newsom, et. al., a simple parish priest went toe-to-toe with one of the most powerful and influential governors in the country. Gavin Newsom is a multi-millionaire who owns wineries in Napa (wineries he favored in his lockdowns) and he has gone largely unchecked in his tyranny, until now. In an incredible preliminary injunction handed down by a California Superior Court, Father Burfitt scored a great victory not only for religious freedom, but for the Church at large. Because of him, California’s religious communities are now allowed to hold services inside their churches – just as grocery stores, retails stores, and liquor stores, among other businesses have all been allowed to have people inside all along during the coronavirus lockdown.
This, said Father Burfitt, was no surprise to him. With the help of the Thomas More Society, “these good lawyers, and the solid, solid, doctrine that we are standing on, and the solid principles of the Constitution, I had no fear. Knowing we were doing a good work for Our Lord and for souls, there’s a great peace of soul that came by knowing this.”
Knowing he is backed by the forces of Heaven, Father Burfitt remains optimistic, but realistic. He offered his take on what we are going through, linking it to the spread of communism.
It is “the diabolical disorientation that Our Lady spoke of at Fatima” he said. “She told us how these errors of communism would spread throughout the world. And this is what we see today, communism [is] very outward now – they hardly think to hide it. And that’s what’s really happening.”
Father also didn't mince any words as to why he thinks we are seeing this rapid decline. “Secularism of the world entered into the Church through Vatican II, and that away the strong arm, that pillar of strength for so many souls, and for so many nations. It really did undermine so much of the good that could have been done. So secularism went from the world in to the Church and now we are coming to those fruits. And that means the bishops and the priests are not strong like they should be, the faithful don’t understand what they should be doing!”
“Secularism, materialism pulls us away from God. We need to really fight! This is when we need the Church to be strong, we need the hierarchy to be strong, and the priests to be willing to lay down their lives for the good of their flock.”
Father’s prayer is “for the conversion of hierarchy of the Church, to come back to their roots.” Of course, there’s always hope: “Satan himself [thinks] he’s gaining ground by pushing aside the Church, pushing aside the Christianity, the structure of Christianity, he thinks he’s gaining ground, but Our Lady will crush him!”
With these powerful words, Father Burfitt smiled. The confidence and faith he has in Our Lord and Our Lady is great indeed. “First you look after the justice of God, then you find peace, and the joy follows,” he said.
On March 29, 2021, a full hearing will be heard on this case. Pray for its success!
“We shall steer safely through every storm, so long as our heart is right, our intention fervent, our courage steadfast, and our trust fixed on God.” St. Francis de Sales