An interesting thing happens to me once in a while as I walk my Catholic life. I find I am forced be very quiet when inside, I feel very loud. I’ve noticed in my Catholic neck of the woods, there is a solemnity which almost constantly requires quietness. The people around me are usually, well, quiet. The interplay between people at the church is most usually quiet. And except for a few teenagers in tiny little t-shirts, the dress is modest and quiet. To be honest, I often have this little day-dream during mass where I stand up and shout a loud “AMEN BROTHER!” or “HALLELUIAH!” In fact, calming down enough to meditate at a retreat or for centering prayer is almost impossible for me. I’m not saying the quiet I find in the Catholic faith is a negative, on the contrary, since God is not in the earthquake and God is not in the fire then I better learn how to hear the sound of the gentle blowing! (via 1 Kings 19 NASB – Elijah Flees from Jezebel – Now Ahab – Bible Gateway.)
However, sometimes I think the quiet is too quiet. Do you know how many Catholics there are in America? I didn’t. In fact (excluding clergy) I have no idea who is Catholic unless I’m at Mass praying with them.
(Catholicism) is the largest single religious denomination in the United States, comprising about 22 percent of the population. According to a new 2011 study by the Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate at Georgetown University, “The US Catholic population is currently 77.7 million.” The United States has the fourth largest Catholic population in the world, after Brazil, Mexico, and the Philippines. via Catholic Church in the United States – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
So when something as important as religious freedom is at stake, how can 22 percent of the population be ignored by our government (and our media) with the only attention procured being negative? (I’m picturing Elmer Fudd here sneaking up on a waskly wabbit!) We Catholics have allowed ourselves to become the wabbit- I mean rabbit. Right now, our quiet is too quiet!
Today is the start of The Fortnight For Freedom:
The fourteen days from June 21—the vigil of the Feasts of St. John Fisher and St. Thomas More—to July 4, Independence Day, are dedicated to this “fortnight for freedom”—a great hymn of prayer for our country. Our liturgical calendar celebrates a series of great martyrs who remained faithful in the face of persecution by political power—St. John Fisher and St. Thomas More, St. John the Baptist, SS. Peter and Paul, and the First Martyrs of the Church of Rome. Culminating on Independence Day, this special period of prayer, study, catechesis, and public action will emphasize both our Christian and American heritage of liberty. Dioceses and parishes around the country have scheduled special events that support a great national campaign of teaching and witness for religious liberty. via Fortnight for Freedom. Please check out this link for more information!
I’m advocating an acknowledgement of our faith by wearing the Rosary every day during the Fortnight For Freedom. This is a “quiet” way to be loud. A way to proclaim our faith with the help of the Blessed Mother and show the solidarity of 77.7 million Catholics! And don’t just wear the Rosary pray it as well during this Fortnight For Freedom. Send this to your friends or just pass along the message. Wear your Rosary and stand behind the Catholic Church!