Over the last few weeks, I have felt compelled to post material on my Facebook page which speaks of the “purge” the Catholic right wing attempts to do which various varieties of religious fundies are doing all over the world. These conservative Catholics are not all conservative American Catholics but “fundie Catholics” who are on a mission to destroy other American Catholics and those in broader society who are not white, straight, and Republican. Their main tactics are fear, hatred, misinformation, and division. Now these right-winged Catholics will tell you this is only directed at LGBTQ+ people since they think and speak that they are condemned anyway, but I can guarantee you that this includes anyone who is not also white and Republican. This is not only true in the United States but in other nations as well like in Poland.
So, the right wing calls me “Woke” on a regular basis. Let’s look up the definition of Woke in the Mariam-Webster dictionary. Woke is now defined in this dictionary as “aware of and actively attentive to important facts and issues (especially issues of racial and social justice). Since this is the type of definition I see in all dictionaries I have read for this particular definition, than I am proud to be Woke. What Does ‘Woke’ Mean? | Merriam-Webster. I want to be woke like Jesus.
If religious leaders aren’t “woke” and truly serving the vulnerable, then it isn’t about Jesus, the broken people who need help, and Catholic Social Teaching. It’s about serving the elite and controlling the vulnerable. Find religious leaders who would allow a transgender person to sing from the pulpit, people with lots of tattoos to greet people at the doors of the Church, and a racially-integrated congregation, and you will find Jesus. Find an all-white pro-Trump American Church pushing these people out, and you will not find Him.
Pushing people out of the Church in a variety of ways is religious abuse. The Christian/Catholic faith is supposed to be about love, setting the captive free, and justice. Pope Francis speaks against religious fundamentalism for a reason, that it’s dangerous. If a religion doesn’t build bridges, heal broken hearts, and liberate people, it’s not only not of God, it’s of abuse and control. If the religious leaders aren’t “woke,” then the religious establishment isn’t about Jesus and broken people who need help. It’s about serving the elite and controlling the vulnerable.
On a societal scale, in 2019, our US government issued a warning that White Supremacist groups were the largest domestic terrorist threat to our country. If someone would have said this to me 7+ years ago, I wouldn’t have believed it. After what I have seen and experienced first-hand over the last 3-5 years particularly, I now understand that anyone who is not white, straight, Republican, and “Christian” is in potential danger. I cannot believe how bad the religious, racist, anti-LGBTQ, and other forms of bigotry are in the United States and in fundamentalist Catholic and other fundie Christian groups. If you don’t understand how close we are to a fascist state in the USA, please review this link and the traits of fascism below. S. 894 (Introduced-in-Senate) (congress.gov)
Lord, forgive me for not seeing this much sooner through my years of coerced Republican voting.
Once a political power turns to genocide, which is exactly what they are doing right now to trans children and with gun violence in certain states, we have stepped into the early stages of fascism. I believe that the current legislative actions of some far-right Republican politicians (not all) are now falling in fuller alignment with fascism, especially in Texas, Ohio, and Florida. According to Encyclopedia Britannica and The Washington Monthly, I close with these primary traits of fascism once again. I believe we are now inside the outskirts of a fascist state and moving closer to a variation of the Holocaust, at least in Texas.
1. sources and capitalizes on economic woes and anxieties
2. shifts political blame on to scapegoat groups like minority groups, the Democrats,
immigrants, and other groups while taking away blame from where it belongs, on the leadership
3. propagates extreme nationalism going hand-in-hand with racism and militarism
4. a melding of church and state when there should be a separation
5. subjugation of women and sexism
6. a disdain for human rights except those of the elite, especially a disdain for those who identify as LGBTQIA+
7. obsession with crime and punishment
8. identification of enemies as a unifying cause for political action
9. disdain for intellectualism, science, history, and the arts
10. control of different types of media, including books
11. rampant cronyism and government corruption
12. attempt to control elections, like through voter suppression