My husband and I were talking about this the other day. The mainstream media basically ignored the whole thing and if you didn't pick up your Sunday bulletin, you may have missed it, too.
After I republished Deacon Mike Bickerstaff's Six Important Things Catholics Must Do this Political Season, my husband told me he felt the church was not doing nearly enough to educate Catholics on the political climate. I agree, but these days, information is but a click away and there's still time before the November election to follow-up on the Fortnight of Freedom.
There's a lot of Catholic bloggers out there more savvy than I. I found an article by The American Papist (Thomas Peters) who outlines what we, as Catholics, can do to build on the resolutions of the Fortnight of Freedom:
1. Foster a sense of urgency. The HHS mandate goes into effect as early as this August 1st for some businesses, depending on when they renew their plans each year. We cannot afford to remain idle!
2. Read Archbishop Chaput’s homily (PDF) from the concluding Mass of the Fortnight for Freedom. It’s short, beautiful and powerful. Good marching orders for the church militant. Continue to stay informed by following CatholicVote on Facebook and Twitter (I’m going to presume you are already following me!) and signing up for CV’s email updates (you can sign up at the upper right-hand corner of this page).
3. Find out who your elected officials are in Congress and begin regularly communicating with them about how important religious liberty and the HHS mandate are to you. (One easy way to do this is to download the CatholicVote app on Android or Apple and use the one-click button in the ‘Action’ tab to locate them and add their contact information to your phone).
4. Remain vigilant by encouraging your representatie to co-sponsor the Religious Freedom Tax Repeal Act, as CatholicVote’s political director Joshua Mercer called for yesterday. [You can see if your representative has co-sponsored the bill yet here.] Making progress now on repealing the HHS mandate has to be our priority. And continue to do everything you can to educate your family and friends about your reasons for opposing the HHS mandate and for advocating on behalf of religious liberty.
5. Realize victory is possible but will take time and perseverance. As I’ve argued before, the only path to actual victory when it comes to protecting religious liberty is both to influence the culture and to engage actively in the public square and specifically the political process. That includes being engaged in the presidential election as well as federal, state and local elections. The political process matters. God has blessed us with a democracy where every vote and voice counts. So use what He has given us!
And I'd like to add my own:
1. Talk to the CINO's (Catholic in Name Only) whether they are your friends or your family about the political climate. (I know, I know! We're not supposed to talk about religion AND politics at gatherings of friends and family, but this is important!) Ask them to at least pray for guidance, say a rosary or attend Mass.
2. Do what you can personally whether it's devoting time to prayer or even volunteering locally.
We have an opportunity to really stand up for what we believe in and be examples to others.
Let's do this!