Weekly Blog

How Did We Get Here? 

We’re living in a time where things are different. They’ve changed pretty dramatically, in a relatively short period of time…roughly 18-24 months. It doesn’t matter whether you’re on the left or right, whatever your political affiliation, the truth is that life in America is different. 

If like me, you’ve thought to yourself, “How did we get here? What happened and how so quickly?”  

You’ve heard me say before (or read in my posts) that all the answers to life can be found in Scripture and are taught by the Church. We can point to teachings of the Church as to insights in how things ought to be…as opposed to how they currently are or where we’re apparently heading.  


Chapter 2, Article 1 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) addresses The Person and Society, the role of government as related to the individual. Two paragraphs that make the primary points include:

  • CCC 1881 – Each community is defined by its purpose and consequently obeys specific rules; but “the human person is and ought to be the principle, the subject and the end of all social institutions.
  • CCC 1883 – Socialization presents dangers. Excessive intervention by the state can threaten personal freedom and initiative. The teaching of the Church has elaborated the principle of subsidiarity, according to which “a community of a higher order should not interfere in the internal life of a community of a lower order, i.e. family, depriving the latter of its functions, but rather should support it in case of need and help to coordinate its activity with the activities of the rest of society, always with a view to the common good.

Personal Decision Making

Our judgement, given our moral conscience, is spelled out succinctly as follows: 

  • CCC Paragraph 1776 – “Deep within his conscience man discovers a law which he has not laid upon himself but which he must obey. Its voice, ever calling him to love and to do what is good and to avoid evil, sounds in his heart at the right moment. . . . For man has in his heart a law inscribed by God. . . . His conscience is man’s most secret core and his sanctuary. There he is alone with God whose voice echoes in his depths.”
  • CCC Paragraph 1782 – Man has the right to act in conscience and in freedom so as personally to make moral decisions. “He must not be forced to act contrary to his conscience. Nor must he be prevented from acting according to his conscience, especially in religious matters.”

What is Truth? 

Truth is not relative, as expressed below:

  • CCC Paragraph 2467 – Man tends by nature toward the truth. He is obliged to honor and bear witness to it: “It is in accordance with their dignity that all men, because they are persons . . . are both impelled by their nature and bound by a moral obligation to seek the truth, especially religious truth. They are also bound to adhere to the truth once they come to know it and direct their whole lives in accordance with the demands of truth.”262
  • CCC Paragraph 2469 – “Men could not live with one another if there were not mutual confidence that they were being truthful to one another.”263 The virtue of truth gives another his just due. Truthfulness keeps to the just mean between what ought to be expressed and what ought to be kept secret: it entails honesty and discretion. In justice, “as a matter of honor, one man owes it to another to manifest the truth.”

In contrast to what the Church teaches, in our country (and our world) today, the truth is often blurred, if not dismissed. Many in power don’t want to allow us to exercise our conscience. And governance has little to do with what is good for the people, but instead is all about power, money, and control. 

I just started reading a book (I’ll share the title later should I think it’s worth recommending), where the author does a “bait and switch”. The premise of the book is the crises we’re currently experiencing. He then points to the primary crisis as lack of faith in our culture today…fewer Godly people.  

He’s right. If we had more Godly people, we wouldn’t be here. If we had more followers of Christ, who were adhering to the teachings of the Church, it wouldn’t be like this. 

Here’s the issue. Nobody cares what’s in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (or Scripture or taught otherwise by the Church) if they don’t know the love of Christ. There are things we can be doing to change things in our country, should we desire. As Christians, I’d suggest we begin with the Great Commandments and Great Commission…love God, love our neighbors, and share our faith…the unconditional love of Jesus Christ. If more people knew these “truths”, we wouldn’t be here.  

As always, please feel free to contact me at with questions, comments, concerns, challenges, or prayer requests.  

God Bless you on your Path to Peace, Joy, and Fulfillment!!!

Remember…God made you for GREATNESS!!!

Mark Joseph 

Weekly Blog

What’s Happened to Integrity in our Society?

In last Wednesday’s blog, I noted about my weekly message…“Although topics are varied, I typically write about what is on my heart and mind for that week, often related to current events, always tied back to the faith and our loving God”. In praying this morning, thinking about what’s been occurring in our country, the Lord put the word “integrity” on my heart. defines integrity as adherence to moral and ethical principles; soundness of moral character; honesty; the state of being whole, entire, or undiminished; a sound, unimpaired, or perfect condition.

Doing a search for a Catholic definition of integrity, I found the following on Integrity is honesty or trustworthiness. The quality of being virtuous. Wholeness of character without duplicity or internal conflict of interests.

I assume that everyone agrees, whether a believer or not, significantly committed to our faith or not, that integrity is a good thing. No one wants to be in relationship with a habitual liar or someone of bad character. Liars don’t even want to be with other liars (unless they are complicit in the same lie) because they can’t trust one another.

Photo by Andrew Neel from Pexels

My Past Struggle with Integrity

I don’t know about you, but there were times in my life, more than I’d like to recall, where I didn’t act with integrity. I wasn’t virtuous or of good character. I wasn’t truthful, lying to others and if I’m truthful (no pun intended) lying to myself. Some of those instances were almost accidental while others were premeditated, requiring planning and intent. It was at a time in my life when it was all about me, myself, and I. It pains me to say that focus on me and my desires, caused me to act with malice at times, hurting others along the way. Reflecting, I am deeply saddened and sorry for my actions. 

I can also recount times when dealing with others who had no integrity, at least in the moment or the circumstance. Like me, I’m sure some of it was accidental while at other times it was the norm. I recall not only being hurt, but losing trust. Without integrity, without truth, we can’t function. Life doesn’t work.

Broader Role of Integrity

Although I have very strong political views, those that (like you) I believe are consistent with my faith, I’ve never published a single word on politics. I’ve never expressed my political views or affiliation on this platform…because I’ve not wanted politics to get in the way of what I consider to be an incredibly important message…that is the love of Jesus Christ.

It’s not my intent to become political here either. That said, with all that’s going on in our country, i.e. COVID-19, continued shutdowns, issues related to kids going back to school, racial divide, numerous ongoing riots, immigration, economic issues, Russia, China, mail-in voting, an upcoming presidential election, and the resulting political division…..truth matters. Integrity matters. It really does.

Without truth, we can’t trust. Without integrity, there is no moral character. No moral compass. As I indicated two weeks ago, Satan’s primary strategies are division, deception, diversion, and discouragement. Lack of integrity (or truth) is just another way of saying “deception” and “diversion”. And as quoted from Matthew 12:25 in that August 26th blog, “a house divided against itself will not stand”. Satan loves dividing us.

It’s not my objective here to tell you how to vote. I do suggest being very discerning with what you believe. The dis-information that we have in our society today, the lack of truth and integrity that exists, is literally sinful, and I don’t say that lightly.

Knowing that I’m a beloved child of Christ (that won’t sound strange if you’re a frequent reader of this blog), I believe that all the answers to life (as you’ve heard me say before) are offered to us by the Church and in Scripture. When it comes to truth and integrity, I would suggest we look to our Savior, Jesus Christ, in addition to Church teachings and Scripture. If we are the Christians that we’re called to be, our world view and our lives will reflect all three.

Please feel free to send me a note at pertaining to your comments, questions, concerns, needs, or prayer requests.

God Bless you on your Path to Peace, Joy, and Fulfillment!!!

Mark Joseph