”I do not write this to make you ashamed, but to admonish you as my beloved children. For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the gospel. I urge you, then, be imitators of me” 1 Corinthians 4:14-15
I heard a homily once that rings so true to me to this day. The priest stated and this was certainly no bias but it was just fact: a spiritual father is substantially more of a father than a biological father. We certainly aren’t taking anything anyway from biological fathers of course. I am eternally grateful for my father. However, if the spiritual father is substantially more of a father then that should certainly be evident in leadership. Saint Paul states to be imitators of me. However, if a spiritual father does not go to the battle lines with the laity but instead gets the attitude King David got when he was back at his castle while his men were fighting and which ultimately got him in trouble with Bathsheba, are they mirroring Saint Paul’s advice ?
Recently we’ve witnessed a lot of rioters tearing down statues including one of Junipero Serra, a great Catholic missionary responsible for a lot of the California missions. He’s credited in fact of building up California because of his work. Bishop Robert Barron has been called out on the carpet as well as Archbishop Gomez for saying little to nothing on this matter. Bishop Barron even on Twitter went as far as saying it was the laity’s job to deal with the issue. Listen, the laity does bear the responsibility of laboring for the Church as well, however, the clergy does provide the leadership, for this is a spiritual problem. Spiritual issues require spiritual leadership. I think it’s pretty straight forward. Spiritual fathers also fight when their spiritual flock is threatened. When those who are Satanic attempt to subvert a culture which of Christ by doing such things as tearing down statues of those who lived in Christ’s image, the flock is threatened. If you all say little on such a saintly man, I cringe if they ever attempt to tear down a statue of Our Lord or the Blessed Mother. Word on Fire, Bishop Barron ? I think it’s time to let that fire out. It’s time more than ever to fully open up the dioceses and let the faithful fully participate in the sacraments.
Saint Paul was a great spiritual father and mentor to Saint Timothy, a bishop of Ephesus. We know that if something was improper or someone was not behaving properly he would immediately address it. It’s apparent in his epistles. Ask yourself this question – “Would he be happy with your response on these matters in the last few weeks?”. Don’t take this as my beating you all up. I’m simply exercising Canon 212. If you don’t want to listen to me, then maybe you’ll consider what Saint Paul said:
“And what I do I will continue to do, in order to undermine the claim of those who would like to claim that in their boasted mission they work on the same terms as we do. For such men are false apostles, deceitful workmen, disguising themselves as apostles of Christ. And no wonder, for even Satan disguises himself as an angel of light. So it is not strange if his servants also disguise themselves as servants of righteousness. Their end will correspond to their deeds” 2 Corinthians 11:12-15. Which side on you on bishops ? Which side ?