As the political season really heats up and the merger between faith and politics gains greater scrutiny, there are some benchmarks that need to be kept front and center. The main one is this — in any attempt to preserve or restore a Christian culture, politics is at the service of the Faith, not the other way around.
Especially among self-identifying Catholics, no one gets to claim the mantle of Catholicism or claim that things are being done in the name of truth when lies or untruths or decidedly un-Catholic things are being promoted. The Faith cannot be distorted, maligned, associated with evil, whacky ideas or any other ideology with the excuse that "we need to win."
No ideology needs to win so badly that the truths of the Faith can be abused in the process. And it doesn't matter who you are, how old you are, what your motivation is — nothing excuses using the Faith, established by the Incarnate Eternal Logos, for your own ends, even if you are well intentioned. Nothing and no one uses the truth, regardless of intentions.
Sadly, though, the using of Catholicism seems to be somewhat common, especially in the world of politics. We are all familiar with the assault on the Faith from the so-called religious Left, the James Martin camp, for example, distorting and perverting theological truths so that men can be granted religious permission to have anal sex with other men — ridiculous.
But equally ridiculous is the indifference to sexual sins exhibited by Catholics on the so-called "conservative" side, where the embrace of homosexuality by fiscal conservatives has been deemed somehow acceptable — again, even by self-identifying Catholics.
Likewise, the marrying of prejudice and/or ethnic hate or mockery has absolutely zero place among anyone purporting to be Catholic and trying to restore Western civilization. Any understanding of Western civilization (built by the Catholic Church) that incorporates or excuses or laughs off hatred of ethnic groups, demeans a person's sex or envisions the Faith as a "white" religion is, frankly, disturbed, and deeply so.
The early Church was almost exclusively comprised of Jews. St. Augustine was black. The Rwandan martyrs were African. Saint Paul Miki and his community of martyrs were Japanese. As St. Paul utters under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit to the stupid Galatians:
For, through faith, you are all children of God in Christ Jesus. For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free person, there is not male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham's descendants, heirs according to the promise.
Hatred, mockery or despising of someone based on the color of their skin or the DNA in their body couldn't be further removed from Catholicism. Likewise, appealing to weird race theories, attacking inter-racial marriage and a host of other activities and veiling it all in uncertain, undefined, vague terms and vocabulary is not Catholic by any stretch of anyone's imagination.
The Faith has been hijacked by competing political interests and placed in the service of sin. This is an abomination, a profaning of the holy, placed at the service of Satan. There is never any reason, no reason exists, that excuses this kind of activity.
None of this is to deny the reality of evil ideologies and various individuals and movements that have mobilized against the truth of Christ. These must be fought against with every fiber of our beings. But that fight must be waged with nothing but truth, not facsimiles of the truth, not provocation for its own sake, not cult followings, not half truths.
No one who is not properly formed in the Faith should ever be speaking in the name of this Faith, and it doesn't matter if you are a bishop, priest, religious layman, political leader — no one. The ability to be misled or, God forbid, mislead others, is simply too great.
The things of the holy should not be handled by those who are not striving for holiness themselves and in a usual state of sanctifying grace. If you are not a usual Mass attendee nor a frequenter of confession, you should never open your mouth in the name of the Catholic Faith and advance your cause, no matter how noble you believe your cause to be.
And even then, danger lurks, and you need trusted people around you to consult with and advise and discuss. When you enter into the Temple and preach in the name of the Most High, you had better be pure of heart. A political end is insufficient to this great calling, no matter the end. There is a far greater war at play than just a culture war.
There is a great spiritual war at play. It is, in fact, the war, and this battlefield may never be stepped onto without great preparation, training, education, forming. It is the height of pride to assume the mantle of holiness and truth and then place that truth under politics. It is the Faith that controls, nothing else.
If you are aware of your own formational and catechetical deficiencies, then you need to fall silent and retreat from that battle — lest you be consumed in it. If you are unaware of your own deficiencies, then you need to listen to those who tell you you have no place in the battle you are claiming a leadership role in.
If you persist in pushing sinfulness as an acceptable strategy to achieve a political end, then you need to have the integrity to stop wrapping it up in Catholicism, as though the Son of God blesses your agenda. He most assuredly does not. You are wholly unprepared to fight the diabolical, no matter how much Satan has fooled you into thinking you are brave and noble.
You are being duped by the demonic. You need the humility to retire and learn the Faith in its fullness — nothing less. The world does not need lies, even lies disguised as half truths. What it needs is the Faith in its fullness.