Bishops Announce 5 Resolutions for Catholics Who Are Serious About Reclaiming the Culture in 2013!

The U.S. bishops announced today a new initiative which they stress is “not another program” but instead “part of a movement for life, marriage and religious liberty” which will begin the Sunday after Christmas.

They call it a five-part strategy but I prefer to think of these five actions as “5 Catholic Resolutions for 2013″.

The bishops explain what prompted their decision to call for this nationwide initiative – namely, the unparalleled threat to these sacred institutions and rights:

“The call to prayer is prompted by the rapid social movements and policy changes currently underway, such as the mandate by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that coerces employers, including heads of religious agencies, to pay for sterilizations, abortion-inducing drugs and contraceptives, as well as increased efforts to redefine marriage.”

Here are the 5 Resolutions:

1. Starting with the Sunday after Christmas (Feast of the Holy Family) and continuing on or near the last Sunday of every month through Christ the King Sunday, November 2013, cathedrals and parishes are encouraged to hold a Eucharistic Holy Hour for Life, Marriage, and Religious Liberty.

2.Families and individuals are encouraged to pray a daily Rosary, especially for the preservation of Life, Marriage, and Religious Liberty in the nation.

3. At Sunday and daily Masses, it is encouraged that the Prayers of the Faithful include specific intentions for respect for all human life from conception to natural death, the strengthening of marriage and family life, and the preservation of religious libertyat all levels of government, both at home and abroad.

4. Abstinence from meat and fasting on Fridays are encouraged for the intention of the protection of Life, Marriage, and Religious Liberty, recognizing the importance of spiritual and bodily sacrifice in the life of the Church.

5. The celebration of a second Fortnight for Freedom at the end of June and the beginning of July 2013 is being planned. This Fortnight would emphasize faith and marriage in a particular way in the face of the potential Supreme Court rulings during this time. The Fortnight would also emphasize the need for conscience protection in light of the August 1, 2013 deadline for religious organizations to comply with the HHS mandate, as well as religious freedom concerns in other areas, such as immigration, adoption, and humanitarian services.

You can find out more about this USCCB initiative here.

As Catholics we know that our most effective weapons are always prayer and fasting, and that any effective actions we take in defense of life, marriage and religious liberty must be rooted in these spiritual practices.

Please prayerfully consider if you can heed the bishops’ call to join them in making these five resolutions in 2013, and help me spread the word!

Building up our spiritual and ascetic life by keeping these five resolutions, after all, will help mold us into more effective and compassionate warriors focused on transforming the culture!

What do you think — will you make the effort to add these 5 resolutions to your 2013 resolutions? Something good to think and pray about over the Christmas holidays!

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53 thoughts on “Bishops Announce 5 Resolutions for Catholics Who Are Serious About Reclaiming the Culture in 2013!

  1. Roch Wolfe says:

    What might we do to get the mainstream media coverage that our fight for the Freedom of Religion deserves? The first of the freedoms guaranteed by The Bill of Rights of The Constitution of the U.S.A. is being taken from the American people, and the Fourth Estate turns a blind eye and a deaf ear! Perhaps we need to march on Washington — not just Catholics, but all people of conscience, and invite the Pope, the Dalai Lama, and leaders from all religions believing in the sanctity of human life or at least willing to defend Freedom of Religion! We must take some action that can not be ignored! We must focus spotlights on this onetime lecturer on The Constitution whose knowledge thereof he is using to dismantle it! “If God is with us, who can be against?!!”
    AMDG

  2. Fr Jim Chern says:

    Tom – I’m hopeful this grassroots movement will grow and not just last all year but even beyound.

  3. Didn’t all this praying and not eating meat take place before the election? What good did that do?

    1. Roch Wolfe says:

      God can bring good even from things we perceive as being bad! How much more will He do with our pious works! Don’t lose Faith! We do not know nor understand God’s plan, but we must “take courage” and “Do not be afraid!” Believe!

  4. Dyfydd says:

    What is the
    Catholic Church’s Plan B?

    Levonorgestrel is
    a synthetic progestogen used as an
    emergency contraceptive pill. It is sold under the brand name Plan-B or
    Next-Choice, apparently when Plan-A or your First-Choice was to have
    unprotected intercourse with a person with whom you wouldn’t consider raising a
    child. It is also at the center of the recent controversy regarding the Health
    and Human Services’ edict mandating contraceptive coverage in Catholic
    employees’ health insurance plans.

    Like the young
    woman who awakens to a grey dawn regretting the choices of the night before,
    the Catholic Church is staring into the mirror this morning wondering why and
    how it got into this predicament, although the answer would be obvious to her
    real friends. She was seduced, befuddled and careless. Last night was simply
    the inevitable consequence of a series of poor decisions.

    When Cardinal
    James Gibbons convinced Pope Leo XIII to support the Knights of Labor in 1891,
    his intent, and that of the Pope, was to aid the immigrants who were arriving
    in America. These immigrants were working under poor conditions and the young
    American Labor movement was in need of the sort of support that the Church, an
    old and respected institution, could provide.

    But the Workers’
    Movement has changed drastically since then and the Church has been blind to
    these changes. Pope Leo supported reasonable hours, rest periods, and health
    safeguards, while the current representatives of unions in America demand open
    ballot elections which are rife with intimidation, protests of state
    legislatures where violence and vandalism are common, and
    “negotiations” with public officials who rely on the unions for their
    positions.

    The clarion of
    “Workers’ Rights” has been used across the globe to establish the
    most brutal and oppressive regimes mankind has seen on the planet, in the
    Soviet Union, in China, in the “Workers’ Paradises” of Asia where as
    many as 25% of the people had to be murdered to build Utopia. When John Paul
    II, in Laborem Exercens (1981), wrote “There is a need for ever new movements
    of solidarity of the workers and with the workers…The Church is firmly
    committed to this cause, for it considers it to be its mission, its service, a
    proof of its fidelity to Christ…” it must be remembered that while he was
    supporting the Polish Solidarity movement against the Soviets, he also affirmed
    his commitment to the principle of “labor over capital”. The world
    was divided into these two groups and in an attempt to espouse the
    “individual dignity” of all mankind the Church embraced the
    collective.

    In the 1960s, the
    Catholic Church underwent a renewal. The encyclicals issued by Pope John XXIII
    (1958-63) and Pope Paul VI (1963-78) modernized the Church’s social role but
    more importantly argued for a government’s obligation to reduce socioeconomic
    inequalities. It sounded good, as it always does, this appeal to charity, but
    by asserting this obligation the Church sanctioned the empowerment of
    governments to redistribute wealth and make decisions “for the good of the
    people”. That man is always more generous when free and that there is no
    charity by coercion the Church seemed to have forgotten. In Latin America,
    communism was equated with Catholic doctrine, the greater social good conflated
    with individual reconciliation with God.
    Among practicing Roman Catholics in America, confusion set in. They
    wondered if the “radical priest” excited by the social upheavals of
    the time and immortalized by Paul Simon really represented their values. Worse
    yet, they wondered if those values were anachronisms unsuited to the modern
    view. Increasingly, they came to the conclusion that the time-tested social
    doctrine of the Catholic Church was archaic, outdated and, in the end,
    situational.

    In October of
    2008, the Catholic Campaign for Human Development announced that it would no
    longer fund the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now (ACORN)
    or some 40 of its affiliates, after the disclosure that one million dollars had
    been embezzled by Dale Rathke, the brother of ACORN founder Wade Rathke.
    Apparently the misappropriation of the funds cast a poor light on the U.S.
    Bishops’ domestic “anti-poverty and social justice program”. But the
    good intentions of the Bishops and the need to be seen as mainstream allowed
    them to ignore some basic truths: that ACORN was under investigation for voter
    fraud; that it is a political organization first and foremost and has never
    given a penny to a candidate that did not support abortion; that it relies on
    intimidation and the threat of violence to further its clearly stated goals;
    that it is, as an institution, so deeply corrupt that it is irredeemable.

    So we wipe the
    sleep from our eyes. A young woman awakens in her dormitory, chagrined. She was
    excited by his passion and he seemed so caring, so smart. He had such an
    expansive world view. But what he meant when he said “love” and what
    “love” meant to her were different things. It was only blind hope
    that made her think that they were the same. She realizes this now, knows she
    was enchanted, charmed, and, in the end, irresponsible.

    But here is the
    difference: she need only go to the pharmacy or University Health Services and
    take a pill. She only has to forget one night. The Catholic Church has, for one
    hundred-forty years, bedded down with statists and socialists, deluded into
    believing that a government empowered to make the best choices for the people
    can still be a government of free people, and that where economic liberty is
    sacrificed religious liberty could remain sacred. When the unions, the
    politicians and the community organizers say “social justice” they
    mean an unsustainable, coercive system of wealth redistribution, the politics
    of thuggery and intimidation, and rule by an elite who do not believe in quaint
    ideas like the Right to Life or Religious Freedom.

    1. Roch Wolfe says:

      The analogy you chose will likely repel most people from reading your intelligent and seemingly — I am not fact checking — knowledgeable post. The Church’s recent stress on its principle of subsidiary is its answer to government overreaching in redistributing wealth.

      1. Dyfydd says:

        The Church is long overdue with stressing subsidiarity. Certainly such stress wasn’t present when the Catholic Bishops endorsed the HealthCare Act that is now so clearly being used against the Church. If my example repels some readers, I am sorry but I do feel that the Church has been politically naive.

  5. Doug Pearson says:

    If this came from anyone else besides the bishops who deserted us in the last couple of months leading up to the election I might be hopeful… but the fact is that when things get real these guys find a place to hide.

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