Guest Editorial: Our Future, Our Challenge: God or Tyranny?

Mary Sue Ribardo received a standing ovation upon conclusion of this speech. We hope you, too are moved to action in defense of our Creator-endowed rights as our community and nation move further into the fatally flawed worldview of democracy. Democracy’s tyranny of the 51% produces the irrational belief – might makes right – which in increasing irrationality believes the successful elimination of God, and the end of objective truth and morality. Which again points out the historical fact that ALL democracies end in totalitarianism.

Mrs. Ribardo’s list of current examples of the irrational aspects of enforced democracy show a horrifying swiftness in which the results of President Obama’s declaration that the United States of America is not  a Christian nation has made our Constitution and Declaration of Independence meaningless. This everyday occurrence, reveals the most horrifying aspect of irrational personal democracy determining “truth” and “morality, which is the overwhelming poll-driven popular democracy’s support for the tyrants.  Couple that “might makes right” verdict with the the outraged emotional cries for the elimination of those individuals daring to think according to the Creator-endowed foundation of liberty – which explains that the key to avoiding lawless behavior is to balance lawless behavior with the application of the rule of law – The Constitution – and the inescapable conclusion is that a post-Christian America is a totalitarian state ruled by corrupt lawlessness.

Mary Sue also shares simple strategies and tactics she applies to her daily activities to address and point out the completely irrational, but yet popular and dominant democratic assumptions of a people who either forgot, or never understood in the first place, that our personal democratic opinion has no bearing on God’s existence or the reality of objective truth and morality.

As republicans, by the definition of adherence to objective truth and morality – i.e. The Rule of Law – the tactics used by Mrs. Ribardo could be helpful to you as you engage your neighbors and friends with the paradox that we only possess Creator-endowed rights when we acknowledge the existence of that Creator and source of all objective truth and morality.

A rational concept that is furthered in not only the title of Mrs. Ribardo’s speech but produces another republican principle: “Rebellion to Tyrants is Obedience to God.”

Thank you, Mary Sue for your courage and leadership.

Our Future, Our Challenge: God or Tyranny?

Mary Sue Ribardo

Thank you, Heavenly Father, for letting us be right here, right now. Often I say this when my husband and I are in church and when I am thankful for where I am and those I am with – like today!

I express gratitude for many things, such as being born in this country and especially in Texas! I am thankful for growing up during a time when life was pretty much the same for most people. Families ate Sunday lunch at grandmother’s house. Neighbors watched out for each other and kids were safe playing outside with simple toys until dark. People expressed patriotism and our culture was strong and essentially moral. America was the undisputed leader of the world – not just militarily and economically, but in terms of freedom and goodness. Life was not perfect, but most people tried to follow the teachings of God.

As other people in the community descended into intellectual sophomorism that God’s existence was entirely to their personal choice, YOUR religious liberty declined.

I was fortunate to be the first girl elected Student Body/Student Council president of Killen High School. I really enjoyed that experience. I still wear my high school ring. One of my favorite duties was to give the morning devotional on the PA system. That was 1961-1962 – the last year that public schools could have Bible readings and prayers. Madeline Murray O’Hare won her case before the Supreme Court and God was removed from the school day.

It was a victory for the secular progressives, those who want to remove God from the public square – from the Pledge of Allegiance and our money – from our national monuments and war memorials – from our cemeteries, our courthouses, buildings housing our Congress and Supreme Court and from our military. They dislike the picture of “normal” for our country, like the old “Ozzie & Harriet” tv show and the paintings of Norman Rockwell. In point, Blake Gopnik, art critic for “The Washington Post” for a decade, said he hates Rockwell’s art because he feels it insults a huge number of non-mainstream Americans. Instead, he praised the taxpayer-funded film featuring a crucifix with ants crawling on the body of Jesus.

In the 1950s, around three percent of Americans checked the “none” box when asked about their religious affiliation. That number has grown, especially in the last decade, to 20 percent of the population. These “Nones” (spell it) n-o-n-e-s; NOT n-u-n-s are heavily represented in elite culture. “Nones” dominate higher education, important cultural institutions, the media and Hollywood. More and more politicians are joining this group.

Secular progressives, including the “Nones,” do not embrace biblical morality as Christians do. We are witnessing a clash between these groups. The autonomy of religious institutions and for-profit companies is under attack by the federal government in the HHS mandate of the Affordable Care Act, passed in 2010. Employers are to provide free contraceptives, sterilization and abortion-inducing drugs to employees, regardless of the employers’ religious or moral objections to these practices.

 Because democratic personal opinion now trumps reality…YOUR belief in God, Objective Truth and Morality are NOT…

Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York responded that the Catholic Church and her affiliates wanted a broad accommodation for religious institutions and that the religious beliefs of those who own and run businesses be accorded protection. He revealed in a March 2012 letter that the administration had sought to lecture him and other bishops on what Catholicism “should” mean. At a meeting between the staff of the bishops’ conference and the White House staff, the White House staff advised the bishops’ conference to listen to “enlightened” voices, such as the political liberals at the Jesuit magazine, “America,” who had written an editorial that Cardinal Dolan called terribly unfortunate.

After the initial public outcry, the administration made an “accommodation.” It grants a very narrow religious exemption to non-profit organizations deemed by the Tax Code to be “churches” and their integrated auxiliaries, but it does not apply to institutional religious employers, such as Catholic hospitals, colleges, universities and social services or to individual employers who own for-profit businesses.

Over 90 lawsuits with 300 plaintiffs have gone to court to challenge the mandate. The most famous cases are The Little Sisters of the Poor, Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties.

Only hours before the law was to take effect on the first day of this year, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor was in New York to lead the final 60-second countdown and push the ceremonial button to signal the descent of the Times Square New Year’s Eve ball. But before doing that, she issued an emergency stay that had been denied earlier in the day to the Little Sisters of the Poor, owners of nursing homes for the elderly. It delayed the contraception mandate of the law for Catholic affiliated groups until a decision is made by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, currently reviewing the case. The Sisters face signing a form authorizing their insurance company to provide contraceptive coverage, which violates their beliefs, or pay a fine of $100 a day per person affected by their policy. The fines could amount to millions of dollars annually. The Sisters cannot comply with the administration’s form due to Catholic moral teaching about material cooperation with evil. If business owners believe compliance will contribute to the wrongdoer’s wrongdoing – in other words – compliance will lead others to choose evil, then business owners shouldn’t comply. Cooperation with evil also involves the concept that some human embryos will be killed as a result of the taking of the abortion-inducing drugs. Certainly, the Little Sisters of the Poor stand against taking the lives of unborn babies.

Illicit material cooperation also applies to the owners of Hobby Lobby and Conestoga Wood Specialties. Last month, their cases were argued before the Supreme Court. The court’s decision is to be given in June. The bottom line in these cases is the right to live according to one’s conscience, a guarantee of the U.S. Constitution and the Religious Freedom Restoration Act. However, Secretary Sebilus, using the so called “war on women” has turned a religious freedom issue into one about sexual freedom. According to her, this new “right” to free contraception and abortifacients trumps the right of conscience covered by the First Amendment’s guarantee of the free exercise of religion.

Shifting definitions keep God out of rational discussion.

There’s a new issue here too. Secular progressives have changed the words “religious freedom” to “freedom of worship” – two very different concepts. They believe Americans should have freedom to conduct religious rites behind closed doors, but have no religious interaction with the rest of society. This tyranny of secularism seeks to quash religious references in the public square.

Cardinal Francis George of Chicago brought attention to this shift. He wrote that freedom of worship was guaranteed in the Constitution of the former Soviet Union. People could worship in church buildings, but churches were not allowed to have schools, religious publications, health care institutions, organized charity, ministry for justice and the works of mercy that flow naturally from a living faith. All these were co-opted by the government. He also drew attention that in public discussion, bishops were being criticized for not respecting the separation of church and state. He stated, “ Bishops would love to have the separation between church and state we thought we enjoyed just a few months ago, when we were free to run Catholic institutions in conformity with the demands of the Catholic faith, when the government couldn’t tell us which of our ministries are Catholic and which not, when the law protected rather than crushed conscience.”

It’s appropriate to wonder: Is this George Washington’s America or Joseph Stalin’s Russia?

An area of conflict between secular progressives and Christians that has already resulted in the loss of religious freedom is the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender movement. The initials, LGBT, are used to identify these categories of sexual orientation. Many of us know people and have family members who are homosexuals. Most of these people are not activists. The loss of religious freedom comes from the LGBT activists who have a mission to destroy Christianity’s teaching of traditional marriage and the stance that homosexuality is a sin.

They are working to make sexual preference a civil right and anyone in opposition would be found guilty of a “hate crime.”

David Kupelian, an award-winning journalist, says the movement has metastasized into a burgeoning form of totalitarianism. He believes this revolutionary sexual anarchy movement, more than any other ideology, including Marxism, Islam or atheism, has the potential of permanently corrupting our nation’s core “operating system,” which is the family. He notes that it is the one issue that almost everybody is afraid to confront. With little exceptions, not politicians, not churches, not media, not talk radio, not even the big alternative news websites dare speak of it. But he warns, intimidation is the No. 1 tool of would-be tyrants. Not only can it make us shut up from fear, it can – without our realizing it – cause us to change our own beliefs and side with the adversary, and we will never know what hit us. Until it’s too late.

That’s why I feel it is imperative that I tell you some of the evils of this movement. The first victory of the movement was forcing the homosexual policy on the military. The removal of the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy was the first step for a secularized military. Chaplains asked if they would be allowed to continue to teach that homosexuality is morally wrong. They were not only told, No,” but were also told, “If you cannot get in line, resign your commission.” Chaplains have lost promotions over acts as minor as forwarding emails containing links to articles critical of gay rights. A combat veteran was relieved of duty and threatened with court-martial because he refused to agree with a lesbian commander that gay marriage is good. Other factors have emerged, such as the recognition of same-sex marriages and extending benefits to same-sex unions.

In early December, 2011, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton gave a speech in Geneva, Switzerland, stating that LGBT “rights” now form a “priority of our foreign policy.” As a result, funded by taxpayers, the “Global Equality Fund” was created to supply toolkits for use in U.S. embassies. Our diplomats were instructed by Secretary Clinton to operate like gay rights activists abroad. Promoting gay marriage and sex-change operations overseas as a priority of U.S. foreign policy undercuts religious and traditional morality of many Americans at home.

A big victory of the Homosexual Lobby came in May last year when 14,000 members of the Boy Scouts of America’s National Council voted to officially allow homosexual youth to join their organization. Now the Lobby is working to get the Scouts to allow homosexual leaders in their membership.

Last year, New Mexico’s Supreme Court ruled the Christian photographer who refused to take a lesbian couple’s wedding photographs violated the state’s Human Rights Act and was fined $7,000. In Oregon, the “Sweet Cakes” bakery declined to make a wedding cake for two lesbians and endured vicious mob-like tactics by LGBT activists who threatened customers and vendors. They even created a fake Facebook account for the bakery that portrayed the owners as racists. The owners closed the bakery to evade potential prosecution. In the state of Washington, a florist who declined to provide flowers for the wedding of a same-sex couple, faces two lawsuits: one from the couple and one from the state attorney general for violating state law. These are the most famous casualties of LGBT activism against businesses. There are many more.

Last August, the governor of California signed a bill into law that allows students in public schools to self identify their gender so as to choose which bathrooms and locker rooms to use. The law also allows biologically born boys to play on girls’ sports teams, as long as they perceive their gender to be female.

On September 5th last year, here in Texas, the city council of San Antonio, passed a non-discrimination ordinance to add sexual orientation, gender identity and “veteran status” as protected classes. Adding “veteran status” was a tactic to imply a vote against the ordinance was a vote against veterans. The intent of the ordinance is to keep anyone who has spoken against homosexuality or attends a church that teaches against homosexuality from participating in city government. It’s possible that Christian businesses may not receive city contracts.

A department store employee, a young African-American woman has been terminated for refusing to allow a male to have access to a female dressing room. The employee cited her religious beliefs and values, but the management claimed she discriminated against the biological male customer on the basis of gender identity.

The Employment Non-Discrimination Act of 2013, known as ENDA is opposed by the Catholic Church. A letter from the U.S. Conference of Catholic bishops, written in October last year was sent to Senators before they voted on the bill. The concerns addressed included

– elevating sexual orientation to the same level as race discrimination,

– legally affirming and protecting sexual conduct outside marriage,

– it likely would redefine marriage to include two persons of the same sex,

– could punish religions, including the Catholic religion, for their moral teaching about same sex sexual conduct

– and fails to account for the privacy interests of others. An example is that now a prison housing female inmates can lawfully insist on hiring only female correctional officers to accommodate the privacy of the inmates. ENDA would change that policy.

ENDA has also been called the Gay Bill of Special Rights. It was recently passed by the Senate and has been sent to the House. If the House approves it and it is signed into law, it would become virtually impossible for any employer to ever fire an employee who is homosexual or transsexual. Employers will face employment quotas and mandatory hiring preferences. Any time employers turn down a homosexual applicant, they will be risking a federal lawsuit and potentially jail time. No exemptions will be made for churches, Christian schools or other businesses operating under Christian principles.

The Homosexual Lobby has long argued that the best way to advance its agenda is through the minds of American school children. Another bill that has been introduced into Congress is the Homosexual Classrooms Act that would force public schools to implement a pro-homosexual curriculum to make children “gay-friendly.” Among its most controversial requirements to be included is the normalization of homosexual sex practices to be included in lessons in every subject. The bill requires the creation of “homosexual pride months” in which homosexuality is celebrated and promoted heavily within schools. Children will be required to identify “homosexual role-models” they wish to look up to or emulate. A similar bill, passed in California, is already being used to “re-educate” children of all ages, including those in kindergarten.

Legislation passed earlier in California and recently in New Jersey, bars licensed therapists from helping children overcome unwanted same-sex attractions, behavior or identity. It’s called reparative therapy. Joseph Farah, popular columnist, author and founder of the news website WND, says “What’s happening in our society today is nothing short of the active recruitment of children into aberrant sexual lifestyles. We once called this child abuse. But today it’s official state policy. The next step is to ensure there’s no way out for these recruits. The police power of the state is making sure there’s no return from a choice made even as a child. Once “gay,” always “gay” is their credo.

Currently 17 states and the District of Columbia allow same sex marriages. Redefining marriage is having an impact on a Catholic Church service. Catholic Charities have gone out of the business of providing adoption or foster care services in places where city and state governments recognize same sex marriages. Catholic Charities do not place children with same sex couples.

The Homosexual Lobby has successfully impacted the medical field. The American Psychiatric Association gave in to activists’ pressure by declassifying homosexuality as a mental disorder.

Psychiatric and psychological professions used to classify homosexuality as profoundly disordered behavior. That was before it became controversial, politically incorrect, career-ruining and illegal to speak the truth that homosexual attractions are evidence of a significant developmental problem, not an inborn identity.

Without question, the crowning glory of America’s gender revolution has been the virtual normalization of homosexuality – no small feat for a lifestyle once regarded morally as a sin, medically as a psychiatric disorder and legally as a crime. The problem is that the official normalization of homosexuality has progressed to such an intolerant extreme that just criticizing it on moral or religious grounds is increasingly portrayed as equivalent to racism or anti-Semitism. Surely America can discover an enlightened way to treat everyone justly, including homosexuals, without criminalizing the religion on which the nation’s laws, traditions, core institutions and fundamental freedoms are based.

Atheist Mikey Weinstein was hired by the administration to “develop new policies on religious tolerance” for the military. He has taken it as a mandate to purge Christianity completely from the military. The Pentagon’s new policy is that sharing one’s faith could now be considered a crime, possibly punishable by court martial. A war is being fought against Christians in the military. Recently a cadet leader at the U.S. Air Force Academy, posted the words of Galatians 2:20 on his personal dorm whiteboard. The Military Religion Freedom Foundation’s Director, Mikey Weinstein, promptly pounced, demanding the Scripture be erased and the cadet severely disciplined. Weinstein said the Bible verse on the cadet’s personal whiteboard created a hostile environment at the academy. It was erased and an American soldier’s religious liberty was blatantly denied!

You may remember that veterans were upset when the Department of Veterans Affairs banned any mention of Jesus Christ during burials at Houston National Cemetery. On July 4th, 2011, hundreds of demonstrators turned out at the cemetery to support a lawsuit against the ban. Eventually the ban was lifted.

In September 2011, the army revised guidelines for Walter Reed Medical Center to read: No religious items are allowed to be given away or used during a visit. Congressman Steve King drew attention to the revised policy on the House floor when he spoke about visitors not being able to read Bibles to loved ones and priests could not bring in the Eucharist to offer Last Rites. The hospital rescinded the policy.

In November 2011, the Air Force ended its support for Operation Christmas Child, the Franklin Graham ministry that sends gifts in shoe boxes to underprivileged children in 100 countries. Mikey Weinstein objected to the Christian message included in the boxes.

In February 2012, the Air Force, responding to complaints from the Military Association of Atheists and Freethinkers, removed the Latin word for God, Dei, from the logo of the Rapid Capabilities Office. Also during that month, the Army warned Catholic chaplains not to read from a letter decrying the HHS mandate that the Archbishop of the military services had asked the chaplains to read. These are only some of the examples of the war on Christians in the military. We need to pray to St. Thomas More, patron of religious liberty and Our Lady of Guadalupe, patroness of the Americas, to be with the men and women in our military dealing with a hostile government on a mission to remove God from their lives.

We must not ignore the threat from Islamic radicals who want to destroy our way of life completely. I beg you to investigate what is happening within our country. You’ll find our politicians far too cozy with those who want to defeat us. In opposition to “separation of church and state,” taxpayer funds have paid for foot baths and prayer rugs for Muslims at several airports. The University of Michigan installed foot baths at the Dearborn campus. Today, Muslims are accommodated and Christians are harassed!

An excellent study guide: They Fired The First Shot

1. God First.

Terry Colafrancesco, in his book, “They Fired the First Shot 2012,” tells us to follow 2 Chronicles 7:14, which says: “If my people, which are called by my name shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.” He also stresses that we must return to the documents that established our great country. He asks the question, “Where is the David who has the anointed authority to reinstate the Constitution and the unalienable rights written in the Declaration of Independence against a Goliath?” His answer is the county sheriff!

2.  Support Your Local Sheriff.

 

According to Colafrancesco, the county sheriff has total power to stand against executive orders and unlawful rulings from the courts and Congress, even from state and local governments that violate constitutional rights. He gives many examples of county sheriffs protecting the rights of people in their counties. He tells about a book, “The County Sheriff: America’s Last Hope,” written by County Sheriff Richard Mack. Mack has recently been on tv to tell how he is encouraging sheriffs in Vermont to resist gun control laws. When he was a sheriff in Arizona, Sheriff Mack required his staff to take constitutional classes. I believe all Americans need to take classes to know our God-given rights affirmed in the Declaration of Independence and the provisions of the U.S. Constitution. We can be instrumental in arranging for such classes and motivating people to attend them. Colafrancesco says our whole nation needs to be informed about the power of the county sheriffs. Please join me in getting this information out!

3.  God again. Learn the Gospel as YOUR worldview – your understanding of the whole of Creation – of which your life, family, church, community, and government, as well as ALL wisdom are a unified whole.

We need to be passionate about spreading the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Matthew Kelly, director of an organization called Dynamic Catholic presented a workshop last July at our chapel in Bryan. He really inspired those attending to “Rediscover Catholicism,” which is the title of one of his wonderful books.

He provided a “Mass Journal” for us to write in while in Mass to help us become better versions of ourselves. One of the messages in the journal reads, “There are sixty-seven million Catholics in America – That’s at least fifteen million more people than it takes to elect an American president. And every day the Catholic Church feeds, houses and clothes more people, takes care of more sick people, visits more prisoners and educates more people than any other institution on the face of the earth could ever hope to.” Catholics can be proud of their service and need to realize the power they have if united in efforts to stand against secularism that is replacing God in this nation that began with His blessings.

Remember: This is YOUR Future, YOUR Challenge: God or Tyranny? There is no static neutral ground.

I disagree with Christians who say don’t mix religion and politics. If we Christians don’t get involved in politics, we’re going to lose religious freedom and the kind of country we want to live in. It’s a matter of God or Tyranny!

Too many Christians have no idea how their inaction has caused America’s moral decline. Christians must take their faith out of their homes and churches to bring light to a dark world. Light dispels darkness, but only for as long as the light remains. The darkness returns as the light diminishes. For evil to sweep in only requires us to abandon our post as the keepers of the faith – not by doing evil ourselves, but by simply taking our light out of the world. Edmund Burke appropriately said, “For evil to triumph, all that is necessary is for good people to do nothing.”

Millions of American Christians sit back and do nothing because they are either too content, immobilized by fear, or simply ignorant about the world in which they live.

What Can WE Do?

Our country is on a course of destruction. What can we do to stop the madness? I have some suggestions.

The two “Fortnight for Freedom” events encouraged Catholics to come together in church to pray for our religious freedom. We also need to be involved with other Christian churches in our communities to pray for our country. In September 2012, I was involved in starting a short interdenominational prayer service every Tuesday at 12:15 at a flagpole in Veterans Park in College Station. I encourage you to start a prayer service like this in your community.

I have a bag of materials to give to each parish president that includes information about the prayer service and other topics I’m discussing, notes from this speech, resources and other items I hope you find helpful.

Recently I received an email telling about a community where white crosses were placed in yards and gardens to unite Christians against an atheist’s efforts to remove God from their city. I forwarded the email with a message that I believe it would be awesome if white crosses were in yards, gardens and pastures across America. My husband has been working on a large cross to stand between our house and the country road nearby. To make sure the cross is not mistaken in a negative way, as in a “KKK” symbol, I suggest you place a “God Bless America” yard sign with your cross. I’ll share where you may purchase one of these signs. You might want to put up a cross and yard sign and share this message with others.

I wear a name badge that I bought at a shop that sells trophies. It has my name and my motto: Standing up for Christ and Country! I wear it when I leave my house. It gives me the opportunity to talk to people when they make a comment about it. I’ve gotten a lot of mileage out of the $6.22 I paid for it. I suggest you wear a name badge and use it to open up to people.

As president of the Women’s Guild at St. Joseph in Bryan, I asked Commission chairs to present the programs at our meetings this year. We call our programs: “Voices of Catholic Women – Action on Issues.” A variety of issues have been presented by the chairs and then discussed by those in attendance. It’s a great way to get members involved and connected to matters of concern. I chose a slogan for my term: Catholic Women DOING SOMETHING for God and Country! I had a banner made with these words and we’ve displayed it at several events. I’m excited to see my vision become reality as members respond to my passion of involvement.

GET INVOLVED WITH OTHERS

I recommend attending meetings of groups working to restore constitutional rights and also do something I am doing right now. After the prayer service on Tuesdays, I am meeting with two like-minded people to brainstorm ways to take action to wake up Americans and educate them to get involved in saving our country. I believe these words describe our ambition: Wake Up! Get Up! Be Fired Up!

Besides attending meetings, we need to help fund those who have filed lawsuits. We need to support and vote for candidates with biblical morality. Keep up with how politicians vote. Go to their town hall meetings. Write, email and call their offices. Your elected officials need to know your name and your views.

We Catholic women, like the many holy women of biblical days, may influence the present and future of our country and world. We must spread the message to stay close to God and no matter what comes, we will in the end be victors. Also tell people to buy extra food and keep the phone number of their county sheriff handy.

Americans could really face terrible times. World War III may come in the near future. Our power grid may fail. Our currency could collapse. Martial law could be declared. A civil war could ensue. Opponents of the federal government could be imprisoned in FEMA camps. I pray these things do not happen, but I know they could! Our lives could change in a matter of minutes.

In closing, Thank You for listening. I haven’t covered some topics I’d like to have addressed, but I pray you were presented enough information and motivation to get Christians in your parishes fired up to follow God’s teachings. God in return will save our nation! May we be with God and God be with us!

Amen! Amen!

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