I’m sure you’ve seen the videos. I can’t watch them. I just can’t. I’ve tried and it’s impossible. People and media sites are sharing them, so I won’t here and don’t on social media.
There are active arguments about the images of abortion and graphic nature of many of them. We can argue the merits and demerits of showing them all day long. I fall on the side of they do more harm than good for most people, but they’re out there. They can’t be taken back.
Since we’ve moved we’ve made some very conscious changes in how we live. One of these has to do with media. We now watch local news in the evening (mostly for the weather) and then EWTN News Nightly on weeknights. We decided that if we are going to watch national news we want it to be without hysterics and having a Catholic perspective is decidedly best.
This and many of our other decisions have led me to understand something. Not posting graphic abortion pictures or beheadings of Christians or the abhorrent videos (may God have mercy on the souls of those recorded) is not sticking my head in the sand. It’s just not the way I witness.
I choose to witness love. This graphic was shared on facebook on American Catholic’s page recently:
When I shared this I included this statement of my own:
Sometimes people on Facebook make it too easy to hate. And extremely difficult to sow love. August 1, 2015
But it’s not just facebook, it’s everywhere now it seems. And so, taking a page from the prayer attributed to but not actually written by St Francis of Assisi, I have decided to witness by sowing love.
Friends have noticed that my personal facebook page and twitter are now receptacles of encouraging messages of Scripture and the Good News. I rely now more than ever on reaching people through love and sometimes Bishop-Elect Barron, Archbishop Gomez, EWTN, the Venerable Fulton Sheen, KLove, and Toby Mac are on call to help me.
The fact is, we are all called to witness but not all in the same way. Yes, some of us are called to be more, shall we say, confrontational, in our witness. Some of us are simply called to live our lives.
By spreading messages of God’s love, mercy and forgiveness, I am hopefully witnessing to people turned off by those who are preaching hellfire and damnation. For those who cannot see past the gore and the graphics, I hope to quietly lead them around to the right way. And for those who see the videos and live in fear and despair, I hope I am spreading hope.
Love has to be what I preach because in the end, God is love. That reminder keeps popping up over and over again. And so I will flood the world with love. Because I know the reality of the world we live in, but because I know the fullness of truth…I also know how the story ends.