The occasional, often ill-considered thoughts of a Roman Catholic permanent deacon who is ever grateful to God for his existence. Despite the strangeness we encounter in this life, all the suffering we witness and endure, being is good, so good I am sometimes unable to contain my joy. Deo gratias!

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Aniversary Thoughts

Newly Married - Swords Held High
Today is our anniversary! Dear Diane and I married 48 years ago on November 2, 1968. You should not read anything into the fact that it was also All Souls Day, the day we are called to remember all the faithful departed. We didn't want to be married on All Souls Day, but the decision was based on my schedule at the time. I was in the final week of flight training and would be leaving Pensacola only a few days later. It was the only available Saturday. As I recall, Fr. Ryan, the Catholic Chaplain at NAS Pensacola, got a special dispensation to celebrate a marriage on that day. 

Remember the black vestments priests wore on All Souls Day and at funerals? Very somber stuff. Indeed, among liturgists there is still an ongoing discussion about the use of black or white vestments on such occasions. But because we were married outside of Mass, Fr. Ryan just wore a cassock and fancy surplice and stole. We had decided not to have a Nuptial Mass since only my parents, a few friends, and Diane and I were Catholic. Almost everybody else who attended -- and it was a good crowd -- were Southern Baptists.
The Wedding Party and Fr, Ryan
Our schedule today has once again made celebration a bit inconvenient. We decided, therefore, to celebrate tomorrow evening, after our day at the Wildwood Soup Kitchen. We'll go out to dinner at a local restaurant and enjoy a nice meal...I hope. Yep, it's hard to celebrate when life keeps getting in the way.

Now...on to the elections.

Because I cannot imagine Hillary Clinton as our president -- indeed, it's been difficult enough suffering through the past eight years in which the culture of death was so overtly manifested -- I will vote for Donald Trump. I harbor no illusions about the man. And should he be elected I expect he will be differ little from the Republicans who preceded him in the office. They all sounded strongly pro-life, and yet none of them ever did anything substantial to save the lives of the more than 50 million American innocents who have been slaughtered by abortion. Yes, I will "put no trust in princes, in the children of Adam powerless to save..." [Ps 146:3], but will put my trust only in our loving, saving God. 

Donald Trump may have many of us guessing about his true beliefs, but we don't have to guess about Hillary Clinton; we know what she thinks about the unborn: they are simply fodder for the Planned Parenthood killing machine. And anyone who votes for her is simply an accessory to the slaughter she supports.

I can understand those who have decided not to vote for either Clinton or Trump, or who will cast their vote for a third party candidate. I don't agree with such decisions because they only increase Hillary's chances, but I understand the supposed moral dilemma. It's important, however, to realize that all people -- and politicians and politician wannabes are no exceptions -- are sinners. We are all fallible. And so every election involves a choice between the imperfect and the imperfect. All we can do is set aside such inconsequential indicators as personality and race and sex and choose the person who more closely mirrors Christ's teachings and the values we hold dear.

I was also greatly disappointed yesterday when George P. Bush -- Jeb's son and George W.'s nephew -- "speculated" that his uncle would probably join his grandfather, George H. W. Bush, in voting for Hillary Clinton. It's hard to imagine the two Bush presidents voting for this woman, but their personal dislike of Donald Trump seemingly outweighs their love of country and their sense of morality. And make no mistake, everyone's choice in this election is a moral choice. The former presidents' decisions also lead one to believe that their purported pro-life views were really not so strongly held, but were simply a sham, a means to election and re-election. It will be very hard for me ever again to take them seriously. It pains me -- not to admit I was wrong about them, for I'm wrong more often than I'm right -- no, it pains me that these men would vote for Mrs. Clinton. Let's hope that nephew and grandson George is mistaken and the former presidents will let the nation know this.

Isn't it remarkable, though, how this election has made so many of our political and societal elites completely transparent. Not only have we learned much about them via their emails, and tweets, and Facebook rants, but in their anger and their panic they have repeatedly let down their guard and shown us who they really are and what they think of the American people.

Ah, well, I will be glad when November 9th rolls around and the election is behind us. I'm tired of the political ads, the know-nothing talking heads, the polls, the irritating phone calls, and I'm especially tired of the politicians.

Thank God for God. Only He can take the evil we do and bring good out of it. Go ahead and vote, but then get on your knees and ask God to help this nation, to bring it back to Him.

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