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Wednesday, September 17, 2003

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St. Robert Bellarmine

1 Timothy 3:14-16
Psalm 111
Luke 7:31-35

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truth or the consequences of unbridled selfishness

"God's wisdom is vindicated by all who accept it." —Luke 7:35

In our secular humanistic society, some people promote tolerance to the point of permissiveness. To do this, they must contradict themselves and be intolerant of those believing in objective, absolute truth, who in charity must oppose permissiveness. So secular humanists have problems with our statement that Jesus is the only Savior (see Acts 4:12) and the only Way to the Father (see Jn 14:6). Secular humanists get nervous when we say that not all religions are the same and that the Church is "the pillar and bulwark of truth" (1 Tm 3:15).

However, absolute truth is not a threat to freedom. Rather, selfishness and pride unrestrained by objective truth are contrary to freedom. Truth is bigger than we are and it protects us from ourselves. We are like the people of Jesus' times whom Jesus described as "children squatting in the city squares" selfishly trying to manipulate their playmates (Lk 7:32). Without submission to the truth, power, popularity, or deception will inevitably trample on human rights. Submission to the truth is the necessary basis for exercising and protecting freedom. "The truth will set you free" (Jn 8:32) from the oppression of unbridled selfishness.

Prayer:  Father, inspire me to lay down my life for truth so as to safeguard freedom.

Promise:  "Know what kind of conduct befits a member of God's household, the church of the living God." —1 Tm 3:15

Praise:  St. Robert's devotion to the Eucharist strengthened him for all the Lord had for him to do.

Reference:  (For a related teaching, order our tape The Secular Culture on audio AV 5B-1 or video V-5B.)

Nihil Obstat:  Reverend Richard L. Klug, February 27, 2003

Imprimatur:  †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, March 3, 2003