I was interviewed by Nasz Dziennik, a large Catholic production in Poland. A writer named Beata asked me political and religious questions regarding my recent article called Good Catholics Need to Tackle the Hard Topics More. Here were her questions and my answers:
Beata: Were Catholics too easily persuaded that they meddle too much in politics? Who and how is working on it so that we would think so?
Me: The Catholic Church in the United States was exploding with baptisms and vocations before Vatican II. Since the Council, we lose four Catholics for every Protestant convert that comes to us. Our clergy are afraid to lose more people, so usually they go for the lowest-common denominator in spirituality. It usually becomes something like, “Jesus is your friend and doesn’t care what your political beliefs are.” Ironically, many evangelical Protestant pastors in this country (and Canada) are more willing to tackle the difficult issues than most Catholic priests. Even some conservative Protestants began to realize under Covid-lockdowns that you can’t accept Jesus as your Savior if you’re promoting the authority of the State over the authority of God.
Beata: Of course, the mainstream looks very kindly at Catholics involved in politics, who, however, have leftist beliefs. Isn’t it?
Me: Yes, here in the United States, the ultra-liberal Jesuit, Fr. James Martin SJ, did a prayer at the Democratic National Convention. He added a small for the unborn, but ultimately he ended up being a pro-gay chaplain for the communist party of the United States. Nobody has a problem with a liberal priest being involved in politics. But when a conservative priest makes a stand, the war cry from the left is predictable: “Respect the separation of Church and State!” Of course, that line is not in our Constitution or even our Bill of Rights. And it’s certainly not the precedent of Catholic priests to stay out of the affiars of royalty or international politics.
Beata: You also notice that today one who declares be Catholic, cannot be left-wing. Why?
Me: I think 50 years ago you could have Catholic Democrats who were faith-filled but mis-informed. All of my extended family came from Ireland to Chicago, and they were all Democrats. But “Democrat” back then did not have the full backing of the Communist Party of China, as it does now. The problem with Communism is not just economic. Our Lady of Fatima warned against the errors or Russia because such errors replace the authority of God with the authority of the State. In this, they promote the biggest genocide ever, which is abortion. Abortion in this country has killed tens of millions of children. Nobody can be a practicing Catholic while supporting the slaughter of innocent children. It’s absolutely impossible. Read Matthew 25.
Beata: From the Polish perspective, it seems that American Catholics understand quite strongly the need to engage in political life, which is related to American civic and republican traditions. However, this understanding is still too little? What is the effect of the lack of Catholics in US politics?
Me: I am a lot more traditional in liturgy and doctrine than Pope John Paul II was when he was alive. But he did a good job at helping to end the communist regime by his return in June of 1979 to Poland as Pope. That event (nine days long, I think?) rallied the Polish people to remind them that Christ was King and Mary was Queen over that country. That meant that the destructive regime of communism no longer had a place in that country. What does this have to do with the United States? Well, it’s true we have a lot of Catholics involved in the pro-life movement here. But most of them are lay people. If a bishop tried to publicly oppose the Democratic national party for promoting LGBT or abortion, he would be attacked by the current powers inside the Vatican. This is very different from the days of Pope John Paul II standing up against communism. Now, the Vatican is promoting communism. And the few conservative US bishops are too afraid to say this publicly.
Beata: You argue that political issues are more related to evangelization than we commonly think. Can you expand on that?
Me: Just as the early Christians expected a convert to Catholicism to give up Roman paganism before attending Holy Mass, so also we need to realize that secularism in this country is not just a political force. Secular leftism has become a religion in the United States. Secular leftism has it’s own creed, rituals and punishments for dissenters. Secular leftists worship at the altar of child-slaughter under a transgender flag. So also, for them to become Apostolic Catholics (real Catholics) they must give up their religion of death and follow Jesus into the Gospel of Life. These two religions are mutually exclusive. One leads to eternal death and one leads to eternal life. That is why we can’t separate salvation of souls from politics anymore. That is just as true in Europe as it is in the United States, actually.
Beata: How do you respond to the accusation that can quickly arise that you want to create a Catholic theocracy?
Me: The Social Reign of Christ the King at the height of the Middle-Ages never enacted forced conversions of Jews or Muslims. The Inquisition was for lapsed Catholics, and even certain Jewish writers admit this in a famous book in English. However, now in the 21st century in the US and Europe, we are so far from establishing a Social Reign of Christ the King that we Catholics are simply fighting for First Amendment Rights. The First Amendment in the United States, as you know, is simply freedom of speech. Catholics and even non-Catholic Christians are being called bigots for holding to the Gospel. Conservatives are losing their jobs for thought-crimes, much like Poland saw in the mid-20th century under Russian rule. At this point, we do not want anything like a theocracy. We would be happy with the freedom to speak our mind at this point. As you know, the seal of the confessional is under attack in the United States. I think the seal of confession has been successfully attacked in the courts of Canada and Australia.
Beata: A sign that Catholics are needed in politics are the apparitions of Our Lady in Fatima for you. Why?
Me: As I mentioned earlier, the errors of Russia are not just economic errors, but they replace allegiance to God with allegiance to the State. The left has so much power in this country that we no longer have free elections. The left claims they are doing these things for democracy, but they arrested people for disobeying authoritarian lockdowns under a flu with a 99.92% surivival rate while releasing violent rioters in American cities. The American left is paid by China for the destruction of this country. LifeSite News has an article showing that the CCP also gives $2B to the Vatican every year since 2014.
Beata: You point out that when the right will fight the left in the field of free speech, it will lose. Why?
Me: I actually learned this from Michael Knowles, a traditional Catholic who wrote a book called Speechless. Knowles says you can’t just teach mathematics without doing actual math problems. So also, you can’t teach a neutral moral standard in public schools or the public forum without some set of standards. So, when the left tried to reach across the aisle over fifty years ago to ask that the right share an open-forum of free speech, they never had freedom in mind. It was to replace the standards of a semi-Christian country with the standards of a godless culture without morals. So, once we agreed to dialogue with evil (exactly what Eve did in the Garden) we lost the culture war in this country.
Beata: The main argument for political engagement is for Jesus was killed for political reasons? How do you understand it?
Me: Of course, the main reason Jesus died was out of love for us on occasion of our sins. But I made the point in my article that you can’t separate religion from politics. The Pharisees admitted they killed Jesus out of fear of Rome. The early Christians in Rome were slaughtered by Procurators for standing up against the gods of the State. Everyone knows that politics is downstream of theology. Our view of God forms everything in our morals, for better or for worse. It seems that everyone from conservative Catholics to neo-pagans admit that the two most important topics for everyone today is God and sex.
Beata: You have not always had such clear conservative worldview. How did you convert and how did you mature to your current views?
Me: I was raised a liberal Catholic, but when I found out about abortion, I knew I had to do everything I could to stop that. That turned me into a conservative Catholic. Later, when I realized Cardinal Suenens said, “Vatican II is the French Revolution in the Church,” I then realized we could not save the world until we saved the clergy from the infiltration of a liberal hierarchy.
Beata: What are you doing in pastoral work today? Are you a wandering priest?
Me: I am a diocesan hermit. I am in good standing but many bishops and priests in this country don’t like me. A few do. Oh and some people think a hermit is the same as a recluse-hermit. A recluse-hermit is someone who lives alone and spends no time with others. A hermit is somone who lives alone but spends limited time with others. As a diocesan hermit, I am somewhat of a monk-missionary.