I heard a homily the other day that began with the Gospel of the woman with the hemorrhage touching Christ and being healed by her Faith. The homilist continued speaking about how this woman was rejected by society, yet Christ stopped in His “important” mission to heal the synagogue leader’s daughter to seek the woman out. This appropriately highlighted the importance of Faith in Christ for our healing by spiritually and physically. This also highlighted Christ’s concern for those “thrown away” by society. The homilist continued in this vein saying that Christ scandalized the Apostles by turning His attention to this ‘nobody’ instead of focusing on the ‘somebody’ important. Yet, almost immediately after making these points, the homilist diverged into a discussion of “social justice” under the guise of socialism. While it is true that Christianity (including the Church) calls for Christians to give to the poor and less fortunate, it is meant as a choice for each individual.
“wealth redistribution”) upon all in the nation, they are not following the spirit of God’s law. The spirit of God’s law is always of love freely given, never forced. Catholics are fond of arguing that the ends do not necessarily justify the means. In the end, legislation of “wealth redistribution” and freely offered charity beget the same things. However, the means of lifting up the less fortunate is important to Catholics and, most importantly, God. Forced charity, much like forced displays of affection, lacks an undefinable something. Whereas, charity freely given, not only benefits the recipient, but also, again most importantly, glorifies God. Through this glorification of God, the giver is also lifted up in God’s eyes. So, while offering my less fortunate brethren a hand up is a truly Christian objective, socialism, or forced charity, is not a justifiable means of enacting this moral objective. In other words, to offering charity of our own volition should be our goal, not forcing this charity upon one another.
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Erika V. is a thirty-something mother of two (with four saints in heaven). With a degree in molecular biology, she works for her state’s police crime lab; although her dream is to stay home with her children and homeschool them. Her newly converted husband is a sometime auto mechanic and primarily a stay-at-home dad. Passionate about pro-life issues and science, she is a survivor of breast cancer while pregnant. At 20 weeks pregnant with her daughter (pregnancy number six), she was diagnosed with BRCA1 stage II breast cancer. When local doctors we stumped with the diagnosis, she traveled to MDAnderson where chemotherapy on pregnant women has been done for over twenty years. After delivering her baby girl and undergoing more chemotherapy, Erika has had a whirlwind of surgeries to combat the cancer as well as the complications of cancer treatments. Three years and eight surgeries later, she continues to be passionate about pro-life endeavors, even winning the local Right to Life group’s Life Award and serving on their working board of directors. She authors two blogs, one a mommy blog Biology Brain-Simon Says and one a breast cancer while pregnant blog Erika’s Miracle Journey. Blog posts are often filled with pro-life references, including medical journal articles supporting the pro-life position. While there isn’t often time, she also enjoys horses, reading, gardening, and KY bourbon.