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Fr. Michael P. OrsiYouTube/Screenshot

(Fr. Michael P. Orsi) — I often hear complaints about “that priest down in Florida who gets involved in politics.”

Let me plead guilty to being that priest.

Clergy are often reluctant to take a public stand on political issues. They don’t want to risk alienating members of their congregations, or they fear challenges to their churches’ tax exempt status.

My view is that religious leaders must get involved in politics. Indeed, they have an obligation to address important public questions. Elections determine who will hold temporal power in the nation — and, therefore, who gets to determine the civic atmosphere in which people attempt to live their faith.

Living by faith can be difficult under the best of circumstances. Right now, when so many stumbling blocks have been put in the way, conducting a moral, faith-filled life is a special challenge.

Politics matter because souls are at stake.

With the election just days away, permit me to note a few areas of concern that make voting important:

Schools

Young people come under the influence of teachers, programs, and instructional materials that, to put it mildly, are not committed to promoting the Christian ideal of human sexuality. On the contrary, schools today celebrate perversion, and young people are actually groomed to take part in sexual practices that are not conducive to a healthy life and human flourishing.

The influence of school board members can effect lives over generations.

We have an obligation to safeguard our children against influences that can endanger their physical wellbeing and their  immortal souls. We can do that most immediately by being careful whom we elect to our school boards.

Take time to know who’s running and what their stands are on critical issues.

Inflation

For most of us, rising prices at the supermarket or the gas pump are a signal to moderate our purchasing behavior. But for some families, the choices prompted by these startling increases are a matter of survival.

There are people for whom buying the gas they need to get to work requires cutting back on food, or planning to live with minimum heat this winter. Inflation isn’t an abstract economic concept; it’s a moral issue that affects human life.

Government leaders who have adopted policies that are driving up the cost of living must be held accountable for those policies and the ideological vision that prompts their actions. Consider seriously what economic principles and legislative proposals various candidates are putting forth.

READ: Irish bishop restricts priest from saying Mass for calling abortion, homosexuality sinful

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UPDATE (1/24/23): 

Pro-life priest and Red Rose Rescuer Fr. Fidelis Moscinski has been found guilty of violating the Freedom to Access Clinic Entrances (FACE) Act. 

Yesterday Fr. Fidelis was convicted of the federal crime for a July 2022 “lock and block” rescue he conducted at a Planned Parenthood in Hempstead, New York. The priest is scheduled to be sentenced on April 24 and faces up to six months in federal prison. 

Sign the petition to let Fr. Fidelis know you support him and are praying for him.

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UPDATE (10/26/22): 

A Pennsylvania court issued a split ruling against a pro-life Franciscan priest and activist arrested after he entered an abortion clinic to help women choose life.

Father Christopher “Fidelis” Moscinski was found guilty of two misdemeanor charges and not guilty of a felony trespass and a misdemeanor resist, for participating in a Red Rose Rescue at a Planned Parenthood.

Fr. Moscinski entered the clinic on August 27, 2021 with red roses and pro-life literature ready to hand out to women and persuading them to choose life for their children.

Fr. Fidelis has participated in many Red Rose Rescues at abortion centers, and for this has been imprisoned multiple times.

He was also previously arrested for trying to save babies in Ohio in June 2021 and in New Jersey in January 2020.

After the court decision, Fr. Fidelis urged people to “continue keeping all pro-lifers anywhere who are facing charges, especially federal charges, in your prayers, and that God can bring some good out of this unjust persecution.”

Sign this petition today to let Fr. Fidelis know you stand with him and his heroic fight to save unborn lives from abortion.

Fellow pro-life activist and Red Rose Rescuer Will Goodman told LifeSite’s Jim Hale that the court’s ruling to drop one felony and reject another was a “big victory.”But the crackdown on pro-lifers continues!

Just recently the Biden administration targeted Fr. Fidelis and other pro-life activists for Freedom of Access to Clinic Entrances Act (FACE) violation charges.

This same law was also used by the FBI to raid the home of pro-life Catholic dad Mark Houck last month.

It’s really a disgrace that in America pro-lifers are increasingly being attacked and persecuted simply because they stand for life.

Fr. Fidelis Moscinski needs your prayers and support now more than ever as he continues to fearlessly battle for the unborn.

SIGN THIS PETITION TODAY to tell Fr. Fidelis you stand with him and his courageous fight!

MORE INFORMATION:

‘Big victory’: Felonies tossed in split verdict for priest attempting rescue of unborn

BREAKING NEWS: Father Fidelis Legal Verdict reaction LIVE by Legal team

FBI charges pro-life priest with violating abortion access law one week after Mark Houck raid

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READ: Tucker Carlson: US elites ‘hate middle America’ and have ‘failed’ them

Crime

Our major cities, and even some less populated communities, are out of control. People are being attacked in the streets, at bus stops, and on subway platforms, and even in their homes. Little children are being shot.

How can we maintain a civilized society when people are afraid to walk around their towns, to conduct business, to enjoy simple pleasures?

Current crime statistics are appalling. We’re witnessing levels of violence we haven’t seen in years.

Much of this is drug-fueled. But it’s also encouraged by dubious law-enforcement theories, such as imposing undue restrictions on the police, eliminating cash bail, and turning a blind eye toward criminality within favored ethnic and political groups.

The Border

Even though immigration policy is a source of disagreement — who should get in, under what terms, and in what numbers we should accept new residents — there’s no denying that the situation on our southern border is something close to total chaos.

Not only do we have a flood of illegal immigrants, we are being inundated with fentanyl and other dangerous drugs. This year alone, more than 80,000 young people have been lost to fentanyl, either taken directly or mixed with marijuana and other so-called “recreational” substances.

In some cities, word was out before Halloween that parents should be on guard for Skittle-like candies laced with fentanyl. That wasn’t at all an inappropriate fear. Drugs are a cash cow for international cartels. Criminals are intent on hooking more customers. And our open border is the primary route by which these evil products enter our country.

Ukraine

We are once more being drawn into war. And as with several previous conflicts (especially Vietnam) we are being asked to make a huge commitment, with very unclear goals, confused strategy, and no definite end point.

We are spending billions of dollars, and putting American lives at possible risk, even raising the specter of nuclear war — all in a part of the world where we have no vital interests.

To make the situation even more confusing, we don’t know what’s actually happening on the ground. News reports and government statements are contradictory, and propaganda is rampant.

Are the Ukrainians defending their land effectively, or are they collapsing under superior Russian military might? Are the Russians gaining ground, or is their army dissolving as men flee the country to avoid conscription? We simply don’t know.

These important topics are only some of the issues to be determined by the upcoming election. There are grave moral questions in play. Please consider them seriously.

Pray about them.

The decisions we make now touch the future. They will determine what path we follow as a nation, and what we will be as Americans.

Take it from that political priest down in Florida.

This essay is based on a homily delivered by Fr. Orsi and is published with permission.  A priest of the Diocese of Camden, New Jersey, Rev. Michael P. Orsi currently serves as parochial vicar at St. Agnes Parish in Naples, Florida. He is host of “Action for Life TV,” a weekly cable television series devoted to pro-life issues, and his writings appear in numerous publications and online journals. His TV show episodes can be viewed online here. 

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