Yesterday my mom called me all riled up to tell me how one of the priests gave a politically charged homily--telling parishioners how important this election was for abortion because the next President will appoint Supreme Court justices, and that one candidate will allow legislatures to promote favorable abortion laws and one candidate will not. And for good measure, he also told parishioners to vote for Proposition 8, which would ban gay marriage.
Yesterday the chain on the cross that I wear daily broke. Coincidence?
While I have come to accept that not all of my beliefs align perfectly with the Catholic church's, I was still saddened by this explicit politicization and dumbfounded how this newly ordained priest could jeopardize the tax-exempt status of the church. I know I should not be completely surprised because this church is in Orange County and Catholics have pretty clear stances on abortion and gay marriage. But this is the first time I ever felt a church that I go to blurred the legal lines of what it is allowed to say and do politically. I have always lived in conservative hometowns and they have never implicitly directed people to vote for one candidate or proposition.
My mom reported that some people applauded at the end of this homily, while some people (like my dad) sat their shaking their heads. I do not know what I would have done if I had been there. I guess we only have three more weeks, three more Sundays . . .