Being a Faithful Citizen and Disciple

Jesus said to his disciples:
“Do not think that I have come to abolish the law or the prophets.
I have come not to abolish but to fulfill.
Amen, I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away,
not the smallest letter or the smallest part of a letter
will pass from the law,
until all things have taken place.
Therefore, whoever breaks one of the least of these commandments
and teaches others to do so
will be called least in the Kingdom of heaven.
But whoever obeys and teaches these commandments
will be called greatest in the Kingdom of heaven.”

Mt 5:17-19

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There has been much talk in the news media recently about who belongs in the US and who doesn’t, who is legal and who is not, and who has rights and who does not. You can be a faithful Christian and believe that people need to follow rules about immigration and citizenship. However, we are talking about real people made in the image of God. By virtue of that reality, all human beings deserve respect, demand dignity, and have certain rights.

In today’s Gospel reading, Jesus is very clear about those to go against God’s law. More importantly, Jesus calls to accountability those who seek to teach and lead others to break God’s law. Sometimes we can fool ourselves into believing that because another has chosen to break the rules set by man or state, he or she has given up their rights as a human. But they can no easier give away their rights as you and I can. They come from God and are non-negotiable. And those who would lead others down a path toward a frenzy that seeks to limit those rights truly becomes the least in the Kingdom.

This is not a political post. It is a post of warning that the main thing is being overlooked in much of the rhetoric. And the warning is directed at no single candidate or party. When we  seek to limit or destroy the rights of life, liberty, and happiness, there are those on both sides of the aisle that are found to be guilty.

We must protect the unborn. We must speak up for life in all instances. We must protect the dignity of people. One can break all the laws of the state and man, but God’s law always takes precedent.

No matter your political party, if you are a disciple of Jesus Christ, it is time to make His presence known in the process. You and I are His hands, feet, and voice. Don’t let masquerading shepherds lead His sheep down a path that seems right but is wrought with danger. One day, it may be you and I that are being asked to give up our God-given rights.

Read what the US Bishops have to say about Faithful Citizenship.

This entry was posted in Accountability, Catholic, Catholic Living, Christianity, Discipleship, Faith, Mercy, the main thing, Tracy Earl Welliver and tagged , , , , by Tracy Earl Welliver. Bookmark the permalink.

About Tracy Earl Welliver

Tracy Earl Welliver is the Director of Parish Community and Engagement for LPi and an active member of Saint Pius X Catholic Church in Greensboro, North Carolina, where he previously served as Pastoral Associate for 22 years. Saint Pius X received the Archbishop Murphy Award in 2009 from the ICSC. Tracy is a writer, speaker, and teacher in the areas of stewardship, engagement, catechesis, and strengths theory, and has worked with Catholic communities throughout the US, Australia, and New Zealand. You can read Tracy’s Everyday Stewardship column in LPi’s CONNECT!, a bimonthly lectionary-based liturgy preparation publication. His writing can also be read on his Nutshell Blog, The Main Thing Blog, and in contributions to Catholic TechTalk. He also serves on the faculty for the ICSC Stewardship Institutes. Tracy has theology degrees from DeSales University and Duke Divinity School. He has been married 23 years and he and his wife, Mariann, have 3 children.

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