Week of 5/27/2018
This weekend we commemorate the incredible sacrifice of so many soldiers of all the
wars in our nations’ past. What makes it especially poignant is that these wars were
fought to preserve and protect freedom, the many freedoms we enjoy that so many
millions and even billions in world history never could. We live in freedom today precisely
because very young soldiers went to war and sacrificed their lives for future generations.
Especially the freedom of religion, where we are protected to not only worship as we
please, but also preserve our faith but not being coerced to act contrary to it. The
Quakers and the Amish are respected whereas they can achieve conscientious objector
status in the military; laws respect the absolute seal on confession in Catholic sacramental
confession, though there have been attempts, even here in Connecticut, to override that
seal. To that end, all Catholic priests understand that the law of God always overrules any
It is amazing to consider the amount of religious persecution in the world that we do not hear
much about. In China in many places it is illegal to attend Mass; one must join the “patriotic
Catholic Church” in order to worship. Bullets can fly when someone sneaks out to go to Mass.
Such is also the case in many Islamic countries including Saudi Arabia, where a visible cross
on oneself is illegal.
When we contemplate such stark truths in the world today, we realize that many things that
seem to upset us are nothing compared to the trials and sacrifices of so many to ensure our
fundamental freedoms. As I once walked across the massive and immaculately kept cemetery
in Normandy, containing over 10,000 graves, I could only be awestruck and prayerful at the rows
and rows of perfectly lined up graves, crowned by crosses or a Star of David. These of course
are all purchased by taxpayer money and are the least we can do for the soldier who made the
This is why it becomes so sobering as we had experienced the multiple lawsuits launched by
many Catholic dioceses and colleges against the former Obama administration for trying to
force virtually all employers (including the Catholic Church) to pay for intrinsically (meaning always)
evil acts including direct (different from indirect) sterilization, abortions and abortifacients, and
contraceptives. As proven, if one really desires such things, they are readily and cheaply available,
though they will never lead one to true peace; only that which correlates to God’s wisdom can
heal us and save us. Fortunately, the new administration is seeking to accommodate conscience
clauses; we pray this continues.
The government seems to think the only freedom is to privately worship, and that it can redefine
what is good and evil and decide that the Catholic Church must accept its modernist definition.
Thus we must pray very hard, and keep at the congressional representatives to know that
religious liberty is at the heart of America. Amazingly, the day these unprecedented lawsuits
were launched, there was nothing on the national news at ABC, NBC, and but a few seconds
on CBS. The more a culture marginalizes God and redefines good and evil, the more it encourages
citizens to lower respect for each other and God. But with God, ironically, children only become
Save the dates: Our parish picnic rockets directly after the 12noon Mass on Sunday, June 10th.
Hamburgers, hot dogs and sausages, as well as amazing desserts! Rides for children! Face
painting! Corpus Christi procession at noon on Sunday, June 3rd; with our Sons of St. Joseph
providing an great lunch in gym afterwards!! Also, please sign up for our fabulous Bible Camp; see
inside the bulletin for details.
God love you,
Fr. Brian Gannon