January 15, 2017

Friends,

This week we honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr on January 16th, and we have the inauguration of our new president on January 20th. There are many people who would never include these 2 names in the same sentence because of their political views and philosophies of life. Both men, however have impacted and will continue to impact the lives of the citizens of the United States and the citizens of the world.

Elsewhere in this bulletin are the famous words of Martin Luther King’s “I Have A Dream” speech given shortly before his assassination. I lived in the 1960’s and was deeply affected by the murders of John F. Kennedy, Malcolm X, Robert F. Kenney and Martin Luther King, Jr. Like most who lived during that time, I choose not to relive those traumatic days.

Some believe that our society is much more violent today, and it does appear that the atrocities, genocide, and terrorist attacks throughout the world continually cause much concern for individual citizens and for those in authority.

I did not vote for Donald Trump and I have major reservations about the philosophy of those he has chosen as trusted advisors. I believe that words like compromise, negotiate, conversation, dialogue, apology, and sensitivity have to take precedence over demand, non-negotiable, ultimatum, deportation, and obliterate.

I am concerned about the safety of those who will be attending the inauguration and the festivities surrounding the celebration. We have not had such major security issues during a change in leadership in my lifetime. The concerns are not just centered around how the world is responding, but also include how our own citizens will react to those events. It makes me uncomfortable.

When I think about it: my religious beliefs and my political affiliations are very closely aligned. I believe that my Catholic Christian identity determines my view of God and my view of God deeply influences my political leanings. I am at peace with that. I know others who are also Catholic Christians but whose view of God is very different than mine and therefore their political leanings are the opposite.

There are those who belong to other faith traditions and/or no religion at all. I may not believe as they do but I respect their beliefs. Why is it that I have a harder time accepting their politics?

May God Bless the United States and every other country in the world.

Enjoy Life!
Fr. Ron Coyne

 

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