Fourteen members of the Guardian of the Redeemer Catholic Men’s Fellowship attended the National Rally for Religious Freedom held on March 23, 2012 at the Lackawanna County Courthouse Square with several hundred other patriots.
Simultaneous rallies were held in about 140 other US cities. The purpose of the rally was to protest the Obamacare mandate requiring Catholic employers to pay for abortion causing drugs, birth control and sterilization for their employees in violation of their conscience and constitutional right to the free exercise of religion. The Rally was held on the same date that Patrick Henry gave his famous speech “Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death.”
We assembled for the Rally in front of large granite slabs bearing famous quotes from famous Americans. We came across a poignant quote from an American patriot that few Americans would know. Eric W. Slebodnick is quoted as follows:
For your liberty and your lives
For your homes and your friends
For the Constitution
For our Faith
I will fight for you.
—-August 18, 2004
Being curious I did some research and found that Eric was a sergeant in the Pennsylvania National Guard, 109thInfantry Regiment, 28th Infantry Division. He fought and was killed in action on September 28, 2005 in Ar Ramadi, Iraq. How disappointed he must be that the faith and Constitution he fought and died for is being violated by intolerant fanatics that have shown again the wisdom of the founding Fathers in establishing a government of limited powers.
We should be inspired by Eric to make sacrifices necessary to defeat this attempted power grab. Next Friday, March 30th, our Bishops ask us to join in a day of prayer fasting and almsgiving for religious freedom. We should contact our Representatives and send money to the religious organizations fighting the mandate in Court. Father Eric Bergman reminded us in his speech at the rally of the courage of St Thomas More and the primacy of conscience. Incredibly we may have to engage in civil disobedience to this unjust law and expect to pay the consequences of imprisonment or worse. It is now the time to choose sides. As the Bishops have said, we did not pick this fight but we are not going to run from it. Choose carefully. Choose life.