Posted by on Mar 17, 2020 in Uncategorized | 0 comments

Thursday morning, We awoke, knowing that the coronavirus existed. By evening several had asked what was going on and someone had panicked. Friday saw Us out purchasing a few things and then again on Saturday. We actually got to see a store being mobbed peacefully and quietly. The stores here have been hit and are out of a a few things. There are empty shelves. Most noticeable are the produce and meat counters, although there is probably not a roll of toilet paper on a store shelf near me. (No one has explained to me why we should stock pile toilet paper.)

This is Monday morning, and many decisions have and are being made. In this area (Topeka, Kansas and surrounding area) Government schools have been closed for two weeks as well as Community Centers in the county parks for the same time period. The City Council has not made a decision on Tuesday night’s meeting. Other facilities have closed public areas, and Mom’s place is considering doing so, although it was open with more stringent cleanliness protocols in place for over a week.

Many decisions are being made at all levels, and unfortunately there is much discussion of some of these decisions. Great grace is available, but unfortunately great sins will be committed, during this crisis. And we need to apply Christian principles to the current situation.

“By me kings reign, and lawgivers decree just things, By me princes rule, and the mighty decree justice.” (Proverbs 8:15-16) God has instituted authority in all areas of our life, and subjects are obliged to respect lawful authority. Unfortunately in this democratic world, most authorities are judged and criticized rather than being humbly obeyed by their subjects.

And here is Our point. “And Samuel said: Doth the Lord desire holocausts and victims, and not rather that the voice of the Lord should be obeyed? For obedience is better than sacrifices: and to hearken rather than to offer the fat of rams.” (I Kings 15:22) Everyone reading this has taken some position in regard to the current condition of the Catholic Church. Our actions must be consistent with our position. Novus Ordo Bishops among others have ordered their churches closed to prevent spread of the coronavirus. If you believe this man is your bishop, accept the closure humbly and silently. This includes the Society of Saint Pius X, who believes that the Novus Ordo Bishop of the diocese truly possesses the office. They include his name in the Canon, which reminds me of a story I was told in Econe. In the late 1800’s the Catholic bishop of the diocese was at a gathering where there were also Anglican priests and bishops. It just so happened that both the Catholic and Anglican diocese had the same city for their seat. An Anglican priest came up to the Catholic Bishop and told him that he celebrated the same Mass that the Bishop did. The Bishop then asked whose name he inserted for Pope, and the Anglican said Pius (IX). Then the Bishop asked him, which Bishop’s name he inserted. The Anglican said: “Why you, My Lord.” Then the Bishop said: “Then I suspend thee.” Soon after the Anglican priest converted to the Catholic Faith. By naming a man’s name in the Canon as our Pope or our Bishop we are admitted they have authority over us in spiritual matters as Pope or Bishop as the case may be.

In most of the world, the State is separate from the Church. The State will be taking action to protect the common good. And no matter what they order, many will begin complaining. What is the Christian attitude to both authorities? If we agree with their decision, obedience is simple, but what if we disagree. In the Church situation, there is a whole position, recognize and resist, which has changed, “Rome has spoken, the case is closed,” to “Rome has spoken, the debate is on.” This attitude reigns in many hearts today and we see its application to some of the decisions various authorities have made.

When we disagree with an authority we can do one thing, appeal for a change of mind, obeying until our appeal is heard. If our appeal is not heard, our other recourse is prayer. Complaining about an authority’s decision is not an option. One of the saints observed that he who complains, sins.

There will be temptations to sin, during this time, temptations that are not ordinarily there. One is the temptation to hoard, that is to purchase items, depriving others of their needs. We have a duty to help our neighbor, when he is in need. With the exception of the run on toilet paper, We have not seen any hoarding. True some items are not available in some places, but people are calmly stocking up, not hoarding.

“And that no man overreach, nor circumvent his brother in business: because the Lord is the avenger of all these things, as we have told you before, and have testified.” (I Thessalonians 4:6) As things become scarce the temptation is to raise prices of goods we possess, taking advantage of their scarcity. This also is a sin.

We admonish all to be charitable and just in these trying times. We also ask all to pray for a swift end to this crisis. Later today We will offer a Mass in time of Pestilence. Throughout this crisis, We will be praying for all of you.

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