Ismael Hernandez has a piece for Crisis Magazine where he argues that the Catholic Church should have never taken federal dollars to support its charitable works. Addressing his own bishops he writes:
With candor and humble submission, I suggest that it is also time for the Church to stop accepting Federal funds to sustain its charitable activities. If it is true that we are in the midst of a momentous historical crossroads for the fate of religious freedom, it is as well the case that for too long the Church in America not only ignored government intrusion but cooperated with it by allowing the role of the state to expand without protest. The assumption seemed to have been that Catholic social teaching places a great burden of responsibility for the common good on government, which justifies an abundance of Federal programs to attend social needs. But was it not obvious that governmental meddling would also be accompanied by the imposition of moral injunctions contrary to faith at some point?
You can read the rest here.
As the Orthodox Church here in America continues to grow and as we become more more involved philanthropic ministries, the Catholic Church’s experience can serve as a lesson here for us.
As Orthodox Christians need to support our own charitable ministries and to do this without relying on federal money. Christ commanded us it is to clothe the naked, feed the hungry, and visit this sick and those in prison. Morally and prudentially we must do this from our own resources and not as independent contractors on behalf of the Federal government.
Remember, he who drinks the king’s wine, sings the king’s song.
h/t: Fr Peter-Michael Preble