The Real Mandate

As the HHS mandate continues to ring alarm bells and engender ridiculous and bogus efforts like Sandra Fluke and the “war on women” by politicians, there is another mandate that might perhaps be of a more challenging nature-the mandate of the Gospel to remain in solidarity with the poor and suffering.

While concerns about our freedom of religion are a front burner issue, we, as people of faith, had better begin considering the ramifications of Catholic social service providers remaining true to our Faith.  If even a fraction of the Catholic hospitals, support services and related entities should, correctly, refuse to embrace the HHS Mandate, the burden of those who will find themselves in peril remains our concern and our responsibility.  No secular government can relieve us of our Christian duty to others.

To simply fight this political battle and “hope” things turn out alright for those who are affected is unacceptable.  It seems that with our clear and unambiguous challenge to the government we must embrace a radically more personal response-to personally care for the sick, the aging and the poor. We must, in preparation, begin planning to provide resources-both financial and social-for the purpose of assisting those most vulnerable. We must, truly, feed the hungry, clothe the naked and care for the sick.

This mandate, not from any government, is from God himself. It is perhaps, in a strange way, an opportunity for us to get back to what has historically not been just a corporate or organizational approach, but a very personal taking of responsibility to engage in the corporal works of mercy in a much larger and individual way.  If that is the result of this attack on religion, I say “amen”.

I fully support the formal political, social and religious response to this ridiculous governmental infringement but think we should begin realizing the “nature” of a radically secular nation unwilling to embrace the Catholic thought that built western civilization.  We must, as the Word of God mandates, remain vigilant and ever ready to love one another as He has loved us.


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Dan Spencer III has been married to his wife Linda for 48 years. They are the parents of 4 married children and have 16 grandchildren. Dan is Catholic revert, author with Our Sunday Visitor, and national Catholic speaker. He has appeared on numerous national catholic media outlets such as EWTN’s The Journey Home, Vatican Radio, At Home with Jim & Joy, Catholic Connection with Teresa Tomeo and The Choices We Face with Ralph Martin and Peter Herbeck, discussing topics of concern to families including the role of parents in safeguarding their children. He is the co-founder of the Catholic Business Network, and the past Executive Director of National Fellowship of Catholic Men. In 2015, he founded Project Patriarch for men over 50 years old to examine the role of Christian grandfathers in the lives of their grandchildren. That project has now been integrated with his most recent grandparenting ministry, Legacy of Faith, which helps educate and equip grandparents, in collaboration with their married children, to spiritually influence their grandchildren and future generations to remain faithful to Christ. Dan and his wife are active lay leaders in their parish and throughout the Archdiocese of Kansas City in Kansas for over 25 years.

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