Divine Justice Defends Life and Marriage

A Culture of Death
“Can Only Produce Violence and Death
and in the End Destroy Itself!”

Archbishop Raymond Burke stands firm and attacks the evils of abortion, homosexual unions, embryonic stem cell, euthanasia…

Read this edited homily proclaimed by our beloved Archbishop Burke given at the annual Red Mass, Diocese of Phoenix in St. Mary’s Basilica.  Full homily here.

Archbishop Raymond Burke

Archbishop Burke Portrait

More and more, we witness the violation of the most fundamental norms of divine natural law in the policies and laws of our nation, and in the judgments given by her courts.  Justice founded on obedience to the prompting of the Holy Spirit, first of all, must safeguard and defend the inviolability of innocent human life from the moment of conception to the moment of natural death, and the integrity of the faithful and indissoluble union of man and woman in marriage through which spouses, in cooperation with God, create and nurture new human life. At the same time, the law more and more dares to force those with the sacred trust of caring for the health of their brothers and sisters to violate the most sacred tenets of their consciences, and to force individuals and institutions to cooperate in egregious violations of the natural moral law. The reality of the situation is cloaked in a false garment of justice, for example, the direct taking of human life at its very earliest stages of development and the direct abortion of infants in their mother’s wombs is justified as the research necessary to find cures for dread diseases or as necessary for “reproductive health,” and the violation of the integrity of the marital union is justified as the practice of tolerance.

The Evils We Face

The present situation of our nation is the source of our deepest concern as we pray for the ministers of justice. In our nation, the lives of millions of our unborn brothers and sisters have been and continue to be legally destroyed through embryonic stem-cell research and procured abortion; the lives of those who have the first title to our respect and care – the seriously ill, those with special needs and the advanced in years – are increasingly viewed as a burden to be eliminated from society; our laws presume to redefine marriage and the family, the first cell of the life of our society, in defiance of the law of nature; and the freedom of conscience is denied to individuals, even taxpayers in general, and to institutions by policies and laws which force cooperation in acts which are always and everywhere evil.

Evil Fruits Are Evidence

We see before our eyes the evil fruits of life in a society which pretends to take the place of God in making its laws and in giving its judgments, in a society in which those in power decide what is right and just, according to their desires and convenience, even at the cost of perpetrating the gravest harm upon their neighbor. We see before our eyes the evil fruits of life in a society in which a right conscience no longer guides those who make laws and give judgments, in which those in power no longer have “God alone before their eyes.”  In such a society, the administration of justice is no longer a participation in the justice of God, an obedient response to the prompting of the Holy Spirit, but a façade cloaking our own selfishness and refusal to give our lives for the sake of the good of all our brothers and sisters. It is the kind of society which we, as Americans, have rightly deplored and against which we have so often fought at the greatest human and material cost to our nation. It is a society which is abandoning its Judaeo-Christian foundations, the fundamental obedience to God’s law which safeguards the common good, and is embracing a totalitarianism which masks itself as the “hope,” the “future,” of our nation. Reason and faith teaches us that such a society can only produce violence and death and in the end destroy itself.

Don’t Lose Hope

The situation of our nation, profoundly disturbing as it is, cannot be for us a cause of discouragement, let alone abandonment of the ministry of the justice which comes from God and, therefore, serves the good of all without boundary or condition. Uniting ourselves to Christ in His Eucharistic Sacrifice, we accept not only our portion of His suffering for the sake of justice but are also filled with confidence in His victory over sin and the forces of evil. Praying for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon the ministers of justice in our society from the glorious pierced Heart of Jesus, His Eucharistic Heart, we must be completely realistic about what the prompting of the Holy Spirit will demand of them in our time. At the same time, we must be confident that the Holy Spirit will give them the wisdom and courage to declare what is just and right on behalf of their brothers and sisters. If we are tempted by doubts of faith, we should contemplate again the work of the Holy Spirit in the life of our brother in the Communion of Saints, Saint Thomas More. Even as the Holy Spirit inspired and strengthened Saint Thomas More to be true to his conscience, not only for the sake of the salvation of his own soul but for the good of the people he had been called to serve, even so the Holy Spirit will produce the same holiness of life in our ministers of justice, so that they will be able to declare at all times: “I am the king’s good servant, and God’s first.”

My brothers and sisters who are the ministers of justice, all of us depend upon you to speak what is just and right on our behalf and on behalf of all our brothers and sisters, especially those whose lives are in any way threatened. Conscious of the heavy burden which you carry, especially in the present situation of our nation, we beg God, today, to pour forth upon you in abundance the gift of the Holy Spirit, so that you, in Christ, will judge “[n]ot by appearance … nor by hearsay” but with the justice which has its foundation in obedience to the law of God. We thank God for your presence with us today, as we offer the Sacrifice of the Mass, giving thanks to God for your service on behalf of us all and petitioning an abundance of God’s grace for the fulfillment of your most fundamental and noble service of us all. In a special way, we pray that you may never give way to discouragement or to the abandonment of the demands of your conscience, but may enjoy always the comfort and strength of the Holy Spirit dwelling within your souls.

O Sacred Heart of Jesus, abode of justice and love, have mercy on us.

O Blessed Virgin Mary, Mirror of Justice, pray for us.

Saint Thomas More, pray for us.

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