Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Deacon Keith Fournier

6/1/2009 (5 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

All who know the objective truth about the dignity and value of every human life should decry this horrible act of violence.

'Malchus', from the Brooklyn Museum of Art.

'Malchus', from the Brooklyn Museum of Art.

Highlights

By Deacon Keith Fournier

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

6/1/2009 (5 years ago)

Published in Politics & Policy


WICHITA, KS (Catholic Online) - Reports indicate that an arrest has been made in the fatal shooting of George Tiller. The suspect was apprehended without incident. His name has now been released, Scott Roeder. He is 51 years old and was arrested 170 miles away from the scene of the murder. He has not yet been charged but will be as early as today. We have all heard the news by now. Just after 10 A.M. on Sunday morning, while he was attending church services at Reformation Lutheran Church in Wichita, Kansas, Dr. George Tiller, the controversial provider of late term abortions, was shot and killed. Tiller was 67 years old.

I heard it while returning from Pentecost Sunday Mass. I was stunned! George Tiller was killed while attending a Lutheran Church Service on the day when Catholics and all who follow the Liturgical Calendar of the West celebrated the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, the Birthday of the Church! On reflection, might I suggest that the coincidence of the timing of this wrongful act and the liturgical calendar presents an invitation to the Nation to reflect? We would be assisted by the counsel of Malchus, an obscure character found in all four Gospel accounts who, at the arrest of Jesus, had his ear severed by the Apostle Peter. The incident brought a strong reprimand from the Lord and has been the source of some very important reflections (as well as art) throughout Christian history concerning the necessity of rejecting violence. The name is a Greek form of Malluch, a common name at the time which actually means “counselor.” I suggest there is some counsel for all of us in this horrible act.

It is recounted in all four Gospel accounts (Matthew 26:51; Mark 14:47; Luke 22:50; John 18:10), a fact which makes it of particular importance to the writers and thus of great importance for serious readers. After all, the Evangelists were writing to different communities of early Christians. Their focus was often on different accounts from the earthly ministry of Jesus. John’s was the last Gospel to be written, reflecting a more mature reflection on the deeper purpose of the great events of the earthly life and ministry of Jesus Christ. The last words of his account give us some more insight into the importance of the fact that we find this story in all four Gospels: “It is this disciple who testifies to these things and has written them, and we know that his testimony is true. There are also many other things that Jesus did, but if these were to be described individually, I do not think the whole world would contain the books that would be written”. This account of Malchus is not simply an odd fact, but rather, an instruction and admonition.

John is the one who gives us the name of the servant. Luke the physician tells us that Jesus not only used the moment to teach, but healed the wound, reattaching the severed ear. Luke writes: “Jesus said to him, "Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?" His disciples realized what was about to happen, and they asked, "Lord, shall we strike with a sword?" And one of them struck the high priest's servant and cut off his right ear. But Jesus said in reply, "Stop, no more of this!" Then he touched the servant's ear and healed him."(Luke 22:48-51)

According to John’s account Judas came with a band of soldiers and servants sent by the high-priests and Pharisees to arrest the Lord. During that encounter, Peter drew his sword and cut off the right ear of this Malchus. He was strongly corrected by the Lord and told that the sword belongs in its sheath. In this Jesus taught them, and all who have followed Him since, a lesson about peace; the real Peace which he gave and which is to be practiced by all who bear His name. John records these words of Jesus given at another time to the disciples: “I have told you this while I am with you. The Advocate, the Holy Spirit that the Father will send in my name--he will teach you everything and remind you of all that (I) told you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give it to you. Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid”. (John 14: 25 – 27)

All who know the objective truth about the dignity and value of every human life, from conception to natural death and at every moment in between, should decry this horrible act of violence. It must be unqualifiedly rejected and condemned within the Pro-Life community because of our unwavering conviction that every life, at every age and stage, has dignity and must be respected, protected and honored. This bedrock conviction should inform a “whole life/pro-life” ethic in those who gather under the banner of being Pro-Life. A moral analysis tells us that the killing of a defenseless George Tiller is similar to the killing of every defenseless child in the womb who dies due to procured abortion. Of course, the actions of Dr. Tiller in engaging in and promoting late term abortions during life were despicable. However, the action of the perpetrator in killing him was wrong. Both acts of killing are evil. Both must be completely rejected. Both should be decried by every person who is Pro-life.

The sword belongs in its' sheath!

We reject intentional abortion because every procured abortion is the killing of a member of our human family. The dignity of that little human person in the first home of the whole human race cries out for changing the unjust approach to giving protected status to intentional abortion in America. However, this dignity is present in all human persons, even those with whom we disagree and those whose actions we decry. The counsel of Malchus the servant speaks to all who have ears to hear! All human life has dignity! The reason Catholics and other Christians insist on a love of preference for the poor is because they have human dignity. The reason many of us reject capital punishment is because of the human dignity of even those who have committed crimes. The reason we insist that any act of war must fit a criteria of what is called a “just war analysis” is because we recognize the dignity, even of our enemies.

The wrongful killing of George Tiller presents a ‘Malchus Moment’ for the Entire Nation.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


© 2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for September 2014
Mentally disabled:
That the mentally disabled may receive the love and help they need for a dignified life.
Service to the poor: That Christians, inspired by the Word of God, may serve the poor and suffering.



Comments


More Politics & Policy

Supreme Court justice Sotomayor warns about drones encroaching on American way of life Watch

Image of Justice Sonia Sotomayor said that she's particularly troubled by the potential for commercial and government drones to compromise personal privacy.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Unmanned surveillance planes called drones pose a threat to the privacy of American citizens, warns Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor said. Speaking to students at Oklahoma City University's law school, Sotomayor says that frightening changes in technology ... continue reading


Obama says Islamic State 'is not Islamic' - what are they, then? Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

President Obama vowed to "degrade and destroy" the Islamic State insurgency in Iraq and Syria, He intends to do so with airstrikes and a minimal military presence on the ground. The president also declared that the Islamic State terrorists "are not Islamic." ... continue reading


Obama vows to attack Islamic State militants 'wherever they exist' Watch

Image of There has been some progress made against the group. After more than 150 U.S. airstrikes in Iraq in the past month, Iraqi and Kurdish forces have halted the Islamic State advance.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

President Barack Obama has vowed to attack Islamic State militants "wherever they exist." Obama will be sending a limited U.S. military presence of 475 personnel. The president also declared that the United States will act in concert with a broad coalition ... continue reading


Opinion: We Need a Blue Collar Conservative like Rick Santorum in the 2016 Presidential Campaign Watch

Image of Rick Santorum is not an establishment candidate. He threatens establishment leaders in both major political parties. he has always played the role of the underdog and been counted out by the many self professed experts. That is one of the greatest assets he would bring to the 2016 Presidential campaign. He has the potential to draw voters from across party lines and help to forge a new governing coalition which can resuscitate the American dream and set us on a course to brighter future. I sincerely hope he runs.

By Keith A. Fournier

Rick Santorum is a statesman in an age of salesmen - and women. He is a man with a chest.  I will be watching his movements over the next few months. If he decides to run, and I hope he does, he will bring along with him into his presidential campaign a ... continue reading


Pelosi favors sweeping regulations to save net neutrality and ban Internet 'fast lanes' Watch

Image of

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

It's an unpopular stand for many Republicans, but House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi says she wants to give federal regulators sweeping new powers over Internet access. It's a necessity in order to save net neutrality and protect Internet users, she says. ... continue reading


READY TO STRIKE: President Obama prepared to use airstrikes in Syria Watch

Image of President Obama believes he needs formal congressional approval to take that action, according to people who have spoken with the president recently.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

From admitting that he had no policy in regards to Syria, U.S. President Barack Obama is now ready for some clear decisive action. The president says that he is prepared to use U.S. military airstrikes in Syria in order to defeat the militant jihadist group ... continue reading


Real cost of Obamacare - 350,000 jobs loss and premium hikes for small businesses Watch

Image of Individual year-round employees at businesses with 50 to 99 workers lost $935 annually, while those at firms with 20 to 49 workers are out an average of $827.50 per person in take-home pay.

By Catholic Online - (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

According to a new analysis of the effects of the health-care reform law, Obamacare has taken a toll on small businesses. According to a new study, there have been millions of dollars in reduced pay and hundreds of thousands fewer jobs. In short - many ... continue reading


More emails 'lost' connected to Lois Lerner case Watch

Image of IRS teacher Lois Lerner, who was placed on leave and has since retired, has emerged as the key figure in congressional investigations.

By Catholic Online - (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

In the most recent development, the Internal Revenue Service, or IRS says it has lost emails from five more employees' part of congressional probes into the treatment of conservative groups that applied for tax-exempt status. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - ... continue reading


Team Clinton turns on Obama! Foreign policy in new book dismissed as 'feckless' Watch

Image of A scathing new book from a member of Team Clinton takes President Obama to task for an unfocused foreign policy.

By Catholic Online - (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The honeymoon appears over between top U.S. Democratic alliances, the Clintons and the Obama administration. A member of the Clinton kitchen cabinet is out with a new book that slams U.S. policy as "muddled, irresolute, and even feckless." Doug Schoen's takes ... continue reading


Is hummus too fatty? First lady Michelle O's diet plan driving kids away from school lunches Watch

Image of As championed by Michelle Obama, the new school diet plan is fraught with loopholes.

By Catholic Online - (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

First lady Michelle Obama has rolled up her sleeves and launched a campaign against childhood obesity by devising a diet that eliminate high-fat foods from school lunches . The trouble is, kids find the approved school lunches too bland and are seeking ... continue reading


All Politics & Policy News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Corinthians 12:12-14, 27-31
12 For as with the human body which is a unity ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 100:1-2, 3, 4, 5
1 [Psalm For thanksgiving] Acclaim Yahweh, all the ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 7:11-17
11 It happened that soon afterwards he went to a town ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for September 16th, 2014 Image

St. Cornelius
September 16: Cornelius whose feast day is September 16th. A Roman priest, ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter