Prayer and fasting disarms the devil. Why would a priest tell people not to do it?
By Patti Armstrong
I was irritated when Pope Francis called for every member of the Church to “pray and fast in penance for the evil of clerical sex abuse, and to be involved in needed change within the Church” on Aug. 20.
I wanted a much bigger emphasis on the guilty. I still do. That is the part that irritated me. I was already praying and fasting for the Church as the travesty of abuse and cover-ups has unfolded. It should have been our default position all along and now we see just how dire that need is.
Despite some cynicism among the betrayed, I’ve never come across anyone who commanded us not to pray and fast. Until now.
Father James Martin, unapologetic apologist for the pro-LGBT and avid supporter of the condemned New Ways Ministry, has told people not to pray and fast. He tweeted:
“I understand the desire among some church leaders to call for the church to fast and pray in response to the sex abuse crisis. It’s a recognition that we are all the Body of Christ, the People of God, united as one, in Christ’s name. And we are all called to prayer. However… in this case, to imply that the laity, in any way, should perform any kinds of penances, including fasting, is simply wrong. The laity should not have to do one minute of penance for the crimes, sins and failings of the hierarchy and the clergy.”