February 24, 2017

Letters to the Editor

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As Christians, we are called to be activists for the witness of truth

In the Feb. 17 issue of The Criterion, Editor Emeritus John Fink in his editorial on page 4 aptly described how we are living in a post-Christian world. He encouraged Catholics and other Christians to “hang in there,” “don’t be argumentative” and “be charitable.”

This is good advice, but we need to be more proactive. It is our duty as Christians to be active witnesses for the truth and effect change where there is evil.

Society has become overwhelmingly secularized and morality has become relative. People seem to think that there is no objective truth and that whatever someone feels is right is OK. “Who am I to impose my beliefs on someone else?” is a common refrain whether this involves pornography, abortion, euthanasia, religious freedom or other crucial issues.

This moral relativism has caused Christians and our spiritual leaders to become more and more silent while secularism runs amok. We are afraid to speak up, in many cases, for fear of being labeled intolerant, bigoted or backward. Our silence needs to end, and we need to step up and speak the truth or others will fill the void with falsehoods.

William Wilberforce was an abolitionist in the British parliament who was the primary person responsible for ending the slave trade and slavery itself in Britain. He lived in a time when slavery was the norm, people were afraid to speak up if they were against it and those who did were marginalized. Meanwhile, the horror of slavery continued. Wilberforce stood up for what was right and persistently fought for over 20 years for the truth when few others would.

We need more William Wilberforces to profess the truth today.

- Dr. Stephen O’Neil | Indianapolis

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