Monday Musings – Just Eat The Pork Under Protest!

If God used Balaam’s donkey to get that prophet’s attention, I guess he can use me to get yours. May these periodic postings on the second and fourth Mondays of each month (God willing) generate fruitful discussion and faithful change.

One of my favorite characters in the Old Testament (2 Maccabees 6:18-31) is Eleazar, a ninety year old Jewish scribe, a “teacher of the Law.” He was ordered to eat pork in violation of the Mosaic Law or be killed. He preferred death rather than offend God.

He was well respected not only among the Jews but even by some of those charged with killing him. They pulled him aside, spoke to him outside the hearing of his fellow Jews and urged him to eat some other type of meat not prohibited by Jewish dietary law and pretend it was pork. They advised him to act this way not only because they wanted to save his life, but because they assumed most of his fellow Jews, believing their well-respected leader ate pork to save his life, would follow his example.

This too Eleazar refused to do since he would thereby “offend God, bring dishonor to himself and lead other Jews astray.” He knew full well that while participating in this ruse would spare him from the punishment of men, he would never escape eternal punishment.  Instead, he chose to “leave to the young a noble example of how to die willingly and generously for the revered and holy laws”.

What brings this man to mind now? - the shocking revelation that the Archdiocese of New York has been paying “into a union benefit fund that is then used by the union to pay for various benefits, including an insurance plan that covers contraception and abortion.”

According to an article in the June 16-29, 2013 issue of the National Catholic Register, a spokesman for the Archdiocese, you see, claimed it had no choice. It was under a contractual obligation to do so. The Archdiocese “had no other option but to pay into the fund which administers the union member benefits ‘under protest’ to continue to offer insurance to its union workers and remain in the health care field in New York...” 

Why didn’t Eleazar think of that? If he had only known of this loophole, he could have saved his life and his soul by simply eating the pork “under protest”.

Silly me for thinking that breaking a contract that is contrary to God’s law, refusing to make any additional payments to a program that funds intrinsic evils, closing down Catholic heath care programs in New York, or all the above were and are obvious options.

Eleazar would not risk his eternal soul or the soul of anyone else by pretending he was eating a piece of pork. He certainly would not have provided a penny to facilitate contraception or abortion.

A Church that treasures the salvation of souls more than anything else would not either. Not now! Never! 

Lord, fill Your Church with more men and women like Eleazar!


  1. We ought to get out of the whole business of employers providing healthcare. My boss pays me money. With that money I buy what I need/want. I decide if I want a big house in a so-so neighborhood or a small house in a rich neighborhood. I decide if I want to spend the most I can towards housing or if I want to spend less. It's my money; its my choice. Between my employer and me we spend more money per month on my family's health insurance than I do on my house payment. I get NO choice. Would I rather pay less premium and risk higher bills? Tough. Would I rather pay more premiums and know that I won't have unexpected health expenses? Sorry. Do I want a plan that includes Dr. X? He isn't on ours, sorry. Do I think it is dumb for "insurance" to cover routine expenses like birth control, check ups, or periodic doctor visits? No one asked me. However, since my employer's contribution (which I earn, they don't give it to me as a gift) makes using any other insurance plan financially stupid, I have to let my employer (and the government) tell me how to spend the money I earn.

  2. RAnn

    No doubt there will be great financial burdens that will be placed on those who stand up for the Truth.

    Had our Church been much more militant years ago, this looming crisis might have been averted. The future is filled with fearful possibilities and hopelessness for anyone who does not have faith....


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