Catholics rock! We depend on the rock of Peter upon whom Jesus built his Church to navigate the culture. Rather than shrink away when we are the only authentically Catholic person at some gathering, we can shine our lights! We must shine our lights, in fact, or be guilty of hiding them under a bushel basket.
That means, however, that we are put on the spot at times such as when Cousin Abe introduces the fellow he brought with him to Aunt Nell’s for dinner as his husband. If asked: “What do you Catholics have against two people who love each other just because they are the same sex,” then what?
Don’t sweat it, but be ready. Expect the issues of the day such as: abortion, contraception, same-sex marriage, divorce and remarriage, the latest media spin on Pope Francis, etc. Learn the Church’s teaching on those issues and the core teachings so you know your stuff.
Keep some good sound bites on hand
- It’s not my opinion; it’s the Church’s.
- The early Christians didn’t accept the stuff you’re talking about. I’m sticking with what the Church has taught over 2,000 years old.
- I wonder why no other civilization came up with that before?
- Freedom to sin isn’t freedom. If it was, then God and the angels aren’t free.
- I’m just not comfortable with new untested teachings that have no track record throughout all of human civilization.
- Everything Pope Paul VI predicted with artificial contraception has come true so we want no part of the culture of death.
Stop them in their tracks
You want to talk about sex outside of marriage? Let’s begin with STD’s and the consequences of sex such babies when the contraception fails. So you tell me what you should happen to those babies?
Pro-choice? What exactly are the choices? Have them spell it out.
If you want choice, why do supposed pro-choicers do everything possible to stop women from choosing life? No other surgery has activists demanding there be no waiting period. Why do they treat it like a drive thru without the ability to stop and reflect on the facts a moment?
Don’t be a Target
People often don’t want real answers; they just want to make you look foolish. In such cases, avoiding an issue while praying for them is not a bad option.
- Deflect. “Those are adorable shoes! They fit your feet perfectly!”
- Sit at the kid’s table. “Hey, Eddie, can you still burp the entire ABC’s in one breath?”
- Change the subject. “Oh man, a sharp pain just shot through my arm!”
- Be ready with conversation stoppers. We prefer not to have sterile sex, or Let’s not discuss sodomy right now.
- Laugh, continue eating, stop. You were kidding, right?
- Put it back on them. Ask them questions to defend their stance.
- Tell a joke to change course. Keep it clean.
There are times you can make points and proclaim the truth. So do your faith proud and be proud of your faith. And whether jumping in for a debate or avoiding a nasty attack, pray to the Holy Spirit—for guidance, for your opponent to be open to truth, and for this crazy world where outing the truth is often met with hostility.