So there we have it!!
Paragraph 2488 says, “The right to the communication of the truth is not unconditional. Everyone must conform his life to the Gospel precept of fraternal love. This requires us in concrete situations to judge whether or not it is appropriate to reveal the truth to someone who asks for it.”
You don’t always have to say what you think
You don’t always have to say the truth
Paragraph 2489 says, “Charity and respect for the truth should dictate the response to every request for information or communication. The good and safety of others, respect for privacy, and the common good are sufficient reasons for being silent about what ought not be known or for making use of a discrete language. The duty to avoid scandal often commands strict discretion. No one is bound to reveal the truth to someone who does not have the right to know it.”
I don’t have to say everything that I even know to be true
What do you do if you are hiding Jews in your basement and the Gestapo stops by?
No one is bound to reveal the truth to someone who does not have a right to know it
Paragraph 2490 says, “The secret of the sacrament of reconciliation is sacred, and cannot be violated under any pretext. ‘The sacramental seal is inviolable; therefore, it is a crime for a confessor in any way to betray a penitent by word or in any other manner or for any reason.”
This is a big deal
It is essential for the sake of the confidence that people have to have when they come before the Lord with their worst
It is laid at the foot of the Cross and it stays there
Jesus deals with it
Paragraph 2491 says, “Professional secrets-for example, those of political office holders, soldiers, physicians, and lawyers-or confidential information given under the seal of secrecy must be kept, save in exceptional cases where keeping the secret is bound to cause very grave harm to the one who confided it, to the one who received it or to a third party, and where the very grave harm can be avoided only by divulging the truth. Even if not confided under the seal of secrecy, private information prejudicial to another is not to be divulged without a grave and proportionate reason.”
There is such a thing as secrets that need to be kept
Out of respect for the dignity of others
Out of respect for the common good
Out of respect for the individuals
Paragraph 2492 says, “Everyone should observe an appropriate reserve concerning persons’ private lives. Those in charge of communications should maintain a fair balance between the requirements of the common good and respect for the individual rights. Interference by the media in the private lives of persons engaged in political or public activity is to be condemned to the extent that it infringes upon their privacy and freedom.”
This is within the requirements of the common good and respect for individual rights
Just because someone is in the public eye does no mean that everything about their life ought to be made public
We have to ask ourselves if we need to know this
So what is your thing?
Is it tabloid or gossip magazines?
Is it gossip podcasts?
Even gossip news stations that think if you are in the public eye, then we get to know everything about you
If you are a singer, we want to know about all of your relationships, who you are dating, who you broke up with
Is this something that is good for us as human beings?
The fact that we can call it gossip journalism highlights the fact that this is something we don’t need to know
This requires discernment especially if these are people in authority like political figures
Are they a person of character?
Are they a person of honor?
Are they a person who can keep their promises in secret and in public?
Even with regard to news
The news can dominate a person’s life
We all have family members who always have some news channel going on in the background
Paragraph 2496 says, “The means of social communication (especially the mass media) can give rise to a certain passivity among users, making them less than vigilant consumers of what is said or shown. Users should practice moderation and discipline in their approach to the mass media. They will want to form enlightened and correct consciences the more easily to resist unwholesome influences.”
Paragraph 2499 says, “Moral judgment must condemn the plague of totalitarian states which systematically falsify the truth, exercise political control of opinion through the media, manipulate defendants and witnesses at public trials, and imagine that they secure their tyranny by strangling and repressing everything they consider ‘thought crimes.’”
This is the history of humanity
As long there has been journalism and social communications media, this has been a temptation for many people
Not everyone does this and not everyone is accused of doing this
But it can and has happened
We have to try to be wise as we walk through this world
We have to realize that just because someone says something does not make it true
The temptation for people who have power or people who want power is how can they get people to stay on their side?
How can they manipulate people through dissemination of information or disinformation?
That is a real thing
We need to recognize that there are thoughts that we do not like and there are thoughts we think are not true
There are statements we do not like
There are philosophies we do not like
The way forward is not to hide them away or make them illegal to say out like
The BEST way to arrive at the truth is to bring the true statement to the light
The best way is to examine the philosophy rather than try to hide it away
It is a dangerous road to call certain things “thought crimes”
That is the road of the totalitarian
That is the road of the tyrant
We are made to be a free people
A free people have to risk being wrong
A free people has to risk offending people
A free people have to risk disturbing people when telling the truth or in the pursuit of the truth
That is what is going to happen in a world where we are all searching for the truth
Some people want power more than truth
So we have to be on guard against that
Not only in public life
Not only in our society
Also in our relationships and in ourselves
When I find myself clinging to power more than to truth, then I need to do some self-evaluation and some repentance
All these things bring us back to this place where the Lord can convict us
“Lord, help me to not only grasp the truth, to apprehend the truth, to know the truth, but also to live the truth that I know and to walk in freedom. And help my brothers and sisters to walk in truth and in freedom, as well.”
That is an act of grace
Fr. Mike is praying FOR YOU!!
Please pray for Fr. Mike and for each other!!
I cannot WAIT…