Opening the Word: A politics of love

By:  OSV Newsweekly

Across the country, election signs are forgotten. The newest governors, senators, congressmen and women, mayors, and county commissioners will soon take up their offices.

As residents of the United States, our elections are endless occasions of hope. If only the right party is in power, then peace will reign. Justice shall be established.

But American politics at present seem more dominated by a will to power. The goal of politics isn’t oriented toward the acquisition of virtue or justice within the polis. The goal is to win, whatever the cost.

The terrifying voices that dominated our television during October, proclaiming the reign of terror that this or that politician would enact, manifested this will to power. The aim of politics in the United States right now isn’t the common good. It isn’t hope. It isn’t love. It’s terror. Vote this way, or cause the world to go to hell.

We, Christians, can’t traffic in such apocalyptic nonsense. We have but one Savior, one king, who reigns not from some cushy office in Washington D.C. Our king is Jesus Christ, the Son of Man, who comes to judge the nations, not through the will to power, but love unto the end.

Jesus Christ comes to manifest to us divine politics. The kingdom of God is not brought about through the exertion of some human power. Instead, the kingdom is revealed most fully on the cross.

Thus, we Christians cannot bow our knees before the politicians of this age. Donald Trump is not our savior. Nancy Pelosi is not our savior.

But as we hear in the Revelation, our city is to be governed by Jesus Christ alone. Our citizenship is the priesthood of self-sacrificial love: “To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood, who has made us into a kingdom, priests for his God and Father, to him be glory and power forever and ever. Amen” (Rev 1:5).

We await the coming of this king alone, who will judge all the nations. This is the king who will reveal through the glory of absolute love that power and prestige, fame and fortune, are not acceptable currencies in the kingdom of God.

This doesn’t mean that we Christians can become sluggish citizens of the present age, letting injustice and disharmony rage until the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ’s judgment. No. We must speak up. We must act.

We must defend the innocent life of the unborn, whose existence is erased by a society that has forgotten the gift of all life.

We must stand up for the separation of migrant children from their parents, instead of allowing these young people to be treated as political footballs by fear-mongering politicians.

We must step in for those suffering from radical poverty, those ignored by politicians obsessed with power.

We must care for the elderly, those easily forgotten by a polis that celebrates functionality above all else.

That is, we must practice a politics not of hate, of terror, of fear-mongering. We must practice a politics of love.

We should expect this politics to be a difficult one to engage in. The state, likely, will not reward this. It will not reward those who adore Christ as King.

But happily, as our most just king declared, our kingdom is not of this age.

This article comes to you from OSV Newsweekly (Our Sunday Visitor) courtesy of your parish or diocese.

 

Catholic News & Perspective

Provides information on the Church, the nation and the world from OSV, America's most popular and trusted national Catholic news source


Recent

Opening the Word: The Bridegroom

Friday, January 18, 2019
By:  Timothy P. O'Malley OSV Newsweekly The feast of the Epiphany has traditionally been a celebration of three significant moments in the... Read More

Larger issues await beyond wall, shutdown

Wednesday, January 16, 2019
By: Brian Fraga OSV Newsweekly Immigration, in normal political circumstances, polarizes the electorate and generates more heat than light in the... Read More

Hope in the ordinary

Monday, January 14, 2019
By: Robert P. Lockwood OSV Newsweekly I always think of the opening line to Snoopy’s first novel in the old “Peanuts” cartoon:... Read More

Opening the Word: Unsentimental feast

Friday, January 11, 2019
By: Timothy P. O'Malley OSV Newsweekly For the Christian, sentimentality is a temptation. The sentimental person is so driven by the desire for... Read More

The Church and basic income proposals

Wednesday, January 9, 2019
By: Don Clemmer OSV Newsweekly Anxiety over getting replaced in a job can be a powerful impetus for people and lead to radical outcomes. Donald... Read More

St. Cecilia Dominicans

Monday, January 7, 2019
By: Msgr. Owen F. Campion OSV Newsweekly Talk about good news. I recently received the quarterly magazine published by the Dominican Sisters of the... Read More

Opening the Word: Honoring the family

Friday, January 4, 2019
By:  Timothy P. O'Malley OSV Newsweekly Advertising tends to romanticize family life. Christmas meals are celebrated on pristine tables, while... Read More

Diocesan WYD celebrations blend local, universal Church

Wednesday, January 2, 2019
By: Paul Senz OSV Newsweekly From Jan. 22-27, millions of young Catholics will convene in Panama City, Panama, for World Youth Day. They will come... Read More

Honoring the family

Friday, December 28, 2018
By: Timothy P. O'Malley OSV Newsweekly Advertising tends to romanticize family life. Christmas meals are celebrated on pristine tables, while... Read More

Missionary’s death elicits varied responses

Wednesday, December 26, 2018
By: Brian Fraga OSV Newsweekly In his last command before the Ascension, Christ commanded the apostles to make disciples of all nations. Through... Read More