Connecting people is a dangerous thing. It is even more perilous if you connect people from different centuries, places, ethnicities, religions and politics. I read this quote from Dr Martin Luther King, Jr (1929-1968) that made me think of those like Saint Francis Xavier had some difficulty convincing the “powers that be” that their behaviors, policies and attitudes are incoherent with the Gospel and Christ’s Church. I am thinking of Bartholomew de las Casas, OP, Blessed John Paul II, Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta, Blessed Franz Jägerstätter, OFS, Saint Katharine Drexel, Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini, Saint Thomas More, Venerable Servant of God Father Michael J. McGivney, Servant of God Dorothy Day, Obl SB, Father Alexander Men and countless others.
The Church must be reminded that it is not the master or the servant of the state, but rather the conscience of the state. It must be the guide and the critic of the state and never its tool. If the Church does not recapture it prophetic zeal it will become an irrelevant social club without morals or spiritual authority.
… the Church is more than just a witnessing body, as she is more than a worshiping body: the Church herself is an integral part and subject of her own total witness, because she is not only a body of believers, but the Body of Christ. One may dare to say even more; the Church is Christ himself, as he lives and rules in his own body and members —totus Christus, caput et corpus, in the glorious phrase of Saint Augustine. The Church is the historical form or “modus” of Christ’s abiding and acting presence in the world, in history, in the cosmos, redeemed, being redeemed, and to be redeemed.