Friday, December 23, 2011

What To Do?

Over the past couple months I've been analyzing the state of the world using Switchfoot's song "Selling the News."  Now that I've gone through all the verses of the song, I want to give all of you some suggestions for how to fight this national crisis.

  1. Pray.  Ask God to look with favor upon the faithful within our country, and to forgive our nation its sins for their sake.  Implore Him to bless those who fight our nation's worst evils, especially those in the pro-life movement.  Throw yourself upon His mercy in the name of our country, and never tire of begging for His assistance.
  2. Speak Up.  There are so many organizations fighting to end the sinful patterns of our nation.  Research these organizations and choose one that you are passionate about.  A few problems you may prayerfully consider fighting against are abortion, euthanasia, gay "marriage," taking God out of schools, or the promotion of immodesty and impurity.  After researching and praying about these issues, you may find you are drawn to one in particular.  If so, find a local group and start taking time to join them in their efforts to end one of America's many evils.
  3. Support.  Support local Catholic organizations and other groups like the ones described above with your time and money.  Often times these groups will hold fundraising events that are open to the public; go and attend them.  Consider adding a local Catholic activist group to your group of charities that you donate to regularly.  You have no idea how much a little money or time encourages and helps these small, local groups.
  4. Educate.  Spend time growing spiritually and mentally by educating yourself.  Read wholesome books with your family, or by yourself.  Listen to CDs about the faith, and be ready to defend your beliefs if someone were to confront you about them.  Educate yourself, and then be prepared to educate others.
  5. Be Proud!  Be proud of your faith and values!  Wear T-shirts with a Catholic (or pro-life) message.  Pin pro-life, pro-marriage, pro-chastity, pro-Catholic buttons to your purse, coat, scarf, etc.  Buy some bumper stickers that announce your Catholic faith and values to those driving around you.  If we spend all our time hiding, we are not going to benefit anyone.  Don't shy away from situations that you know may bring about a confrontation. 
"Preach the Gospel at all times, if necessary use words."  This quote is often attributed to St. Francis, and this is exactly what we must do.  It is by doing this, by being faithful children of Christ and seeking to extend His love to all those we come into contact with that we will change the world.  As St. Catherine of Siena said, "If you are what you should be, you will set the whole world ablaze!"  These five things are just a start, but if you start doing them either by yourself or as a family, you will begin to impact those around you.  Every little action counts, it may seem like waiting a few extra weeks to put up Christmas decorations isn't that big of a deal, but your children and your neighbors will notice and remember your faithful observance of the Liturgical calendar and how, even when the whole neighborhood had taken their lights down, your lights were still shining a week after December 25th because Christmas wasn't over yet in your Catholic home.  As my mom always says, each little thing you do that may seem little is like planting a mustard seed in someone's mind.  Throughout that person's life, other people will nourish that little seed until it grows into the beautiful plant God designed it to be.

And so, "Go forth and set the world on fire!" (St. Ignatius of Loyola), and may God bless your efforts!

This is post 7 of 9 in the series "We're Selling the News." 

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