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Lesson 16 ~ Religious Philosophy ~ Religious Functionality ~ Political ~ Essay
Rev. Trent Murman, OSM, OSF
If your faith taught you that you were to "keep separate" from the secular world (assuming that it doesn't), what would you do if the government ordered you to participate at threat of jail time? What if the consequences included potential death (as it did for Jehovah's Witnesses in World War II Germany)?  This would totally be determined by your convictions.  If the threat of "jail time" was eminent then I would let your conscience be the guide.  Many great clergy men and women have done jail time in congruent with their personal beliefs.  In so far as the consequences leading to potential death…..I would sincerely hope this could be avoided especially during this day and age.  However, if this would materialize I think it would be a sad day in our history that something so barbaric could be the outcome.  If your faith taught you that it was your religious duty to "get involved" in the secular world (assuming that it doesn't) to ensure that the secular world conforms to the teachings of God (as they understand them), what would you do when a different religious group complained that their religious freedom was being denied as a result? Would you exempt them? Would you punish them for not acquiescing? Would you decide that any negative consequences for them were brought about by their refusal to comply with the Will of God?  Getting involved would have to be done like "walking on egg shells". Keeping true to your convictions and walking tall might be a tad too much for the average clergy man.  Being humble and sticking to the preachers creed remembering to keep separate church and state as much as possible.  I believe no religious sect should be silenced or held back from expressing their own values or beliefs.  It is such a wonderful thing that we all can express ourselves fully and be true to your own religious beliefs.  I believe there were no and should be no negative consequences to them for their refusal to comply with the "Will of God".  Peoples of this World need to be more tolerant of all.  Peace needs to be attained everywhere on our planet. 

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