I've read many excellent and heartfelt op eds on the recent assault on religious liberty by President Obama. But I've got a bone to pick with all of you loyal, faithful Catholic bloggers out there. I haven't heard anything about responding to these attacks on our Mother Church with "joy"!
Our Lord said specifically "Blessed are you when people hate you, and when they exclude you, revile you and defame you on the account of the Son of Man. Rejoice on that day and leap for joy, for surely your reward is great in heaven." (Luke 6: 22).
I don't pretend to know how to do this myself. I'm the blushing girl trying to hide my huge pregnant belly behind a soccer bleacher every time someone comments on my large family of six. (I actually have a family of seven).
But I know that joy works. Because Mother Teresa said "joy is the net which catches souls." I've been caught in that net. I don't know if you've ever been blessed to run into one of the Sister of the Virgin of Matara, but there laughter is infectious! Or if you even heard a priest say the Mass with his eyes shining with joy at the Eucharist and suddenly felt "Wow, this is totally real!"
Joy is something the other side doesn't have.
They think they have sex (which they don't), and have more money to buy lots of shiny things from Target (which is worthless on your deathbed), and happiness from sharing cocktails late at night with members of the opposite sex (which isn't really love or happiness).
But the Devil can not counterfeit JOY!
Joy a direct gift from the Holy Spirit.
I absolutely think we need to pray hard about this assault on our Faith, follow all the directions of our dear Bishops, write letters to our congressmen, protest in every possible and embark on civil disobedience.
But we can't be solemn or discouraged or hateful when we do this.
And the best thing to sock it to the Devil's face over this messy HHS issue is to go about our humble daily duties with JOY in our hearts.
Thank you God for trusting us to stand fast during this time of persecution. We pray with Queen Ester and with Judith and with Susanna. We pray with St. Thomas Moore and ask all the martyrs in heaven to loan us their strength and their joy.