Wednesday, August 29, 2012

St. John the Baptist: a man for all times

The Beheading of St John the Baptist
by Benozzo Gozzoli
Today we celebrate the martyrdom of St. John the Baptist. It was Tertullian way back in the second century who was very perceptive in saying: "The blood of the martyrs is the seed of Christinaity." Of course as Christians we know that one of the seeds comes from the life of St. John the Baptist. We find his story in Matthew 14: 3-12. His martyrdom stands as a beacon of light for the uncompromising truth.

The beheading of St. John the Baptist is told in stark details. King Herod has John arrested because he had spoken against his union with his brother's wife, Herodias. This was in violation of Levitical law. And as the story goes Herod held a party where a young girl named Salome danced for the king and his guests. The king in a moment of hilarity promises the girl whatever she wishes. The girl's mother Herodias immediately see this as a chance for revenge. Coached by her mother, the girl asks the king for this deadly request: "Give me hear on a platter the head of John the baptist." (Mt: 14: 8).

A feast of celebration and joy turns into a feast of death and blood. Herod's pride blinds him into making an unjust decision. John the Baptist makes the ultimate sacrifice in witnessing for the faith. This was the same man who as a child in his mother's womb leaps for joy when in the presence of the Lord who was a baby in the womb of the Virgin Mary. John the Baptist's whole life, culminating in his martyrdom, was centred on Christ. John the Baptist simply told the truth that Herod's adulterous and incestuous relationship was morally wrong. For speaking the truth, he was killed and thus exposed man's sinful wish to hide it.

In our modern Canadian society Christians we are facing similar dangers. Who will speak out in defence of the truth? We do have legislation in place to hide the truth. Ontario laws like Bill 13 and Bill 33 have been recently passed to politicize the truth, to legally create myths about human sexuality, marriage, family and the very meaning of life itself. These laws pretend to be inclusive and equitable when in fact they have essentially made the practice of christianity unlawful. Let's now go on to see how a number of truthful statements have over the years become politically incorrect, if not outright unlawful, in Ontario and the rest of Canada:

1. From this past Sunday's reading St. Paul's Letter to the Ephesians instructs: "For this reason a man shall leave his father and his mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh" but in Canada since 2005 we know better: same-sex marriages make St. Paul's teaching no longer acceptable;

2. Human life starts at conception, the latest science tells us so; nevertheless, Canadian legal lies refuse to state this truth and as a consequence women have a legal right to kill their children up until the point of delivery, with the full approval of the Canadian Medical Association. In Canada, a human being is not a person with any rights until the child is born. "O Canada" can this really be "our home and native land"?

3. There are only two sexes: male and female. All the other sexual orientations are merely social constructs that have been approved by the politics of fiction; To teach children that there a dozen or so sexual orientations is to abuse them socially, sexually and psychologically. In present day Canada, this is a lie.

4. Children come from heterosexual marriages and so the state should protect marriage above all other unions because they ensure the very survival of human life; however, in Canada today we are told that this is not true.

5. Abortion is morally wrong. It's a crime against humanity and the Creator. Canada should stop funding the killing of innocent lives with money from taxes. If we were not believing these lies, then most politicians, would not be opposing MP Stephen Woodworth's common sense Motion 312; in fact, they would welcome talk about the central life issue in Canada and would at least consider changes to our laws to make for a better nation;

6. To teach the Catechism of the Catholic Church today about the meaning of the human person, about human sexuality, the family and marriage, is go against present laws. We now have Bill 13 and Bill 33 that contradict the Church's teaching on these issues;

7. Legally Ontarians cannot speak out against GSAs, Gay/Straight Alliances in Catholic schools, Christian schools, private schools and the public schools. Bill 13 legally imposes these students groups on all schools in Ontario whether parents want them or not. The government knows better.

Let's stop here, surely you get the picture. So today as we celebrate the feast day of St. John the Baptist, it's so right to ask ourselves where are the Canadians and Christians who have the courage to speak the truth like this martyr? To refuse and say nothing about any of the life issues is to compartmentalize our faith and like Herod to allow the head of John the Baptist - the truth itself - to be placed on a platter.

1 comment:

  1. If Saint John the Baptist was a man for all times. Then Saint Thomas More was a man for all seasons. Hence a film about Saint Thomas More titled A Man For All Seasons.

    Saint John the Baptist was beheaded for publicly rebuking King Herod for having an affair with his brother's wife. Saint Thomas More was also beheaded for defending the fidelity of husband and wife not allowing King Henry VIII to be divorced and marry again.

    One has to wonder what would Saint John the Baptiste and Saint Thomas More have to say about same-sex marriage in the twenty first centuary.

    May a God of love, hope and mercy forgive this world and bless us all.