Insight on the News
Conscience at Work
● God created mankind with an inherent sense of conscience. That is why, even in atheistic societies, “the nations that do not have law do by nature the things of the law. . . . Their conscience is bearing witness with them and, between their own thoughts, they are being accused or even excused.”—Rom. 2:14, 15.
For example, although adultery is more common than ever in these “last days,” as Bible prophecy foretold, most people involved have a troubled conscience. In France, a poll found that only 8 percent of the people who were asked about marital infidelity found that it was “agreeable.” Many others found that it troubled their conscience in varying degrees, and a large number found it “unthinkable” altogether. So while a conscience can be seared by wrong thinking and conduct, people generally are “accused” by it where marital infidelity is concerned. A basic reason why is that adultery is against God’s law.—1 Cor. 6:9.
Love Most Important
● What makes people happy? Many would answer: money, material things, a good job, fame or power. But Dr. Robert Gordon, a psychologist in Pennsylvania, concludes that “love is by far the most important resource in people’s lives.” He says that it plays the biggest role in determining whether a person will be happy. When love is lacking, people commonly substitute money or material goods. But Gordon points out that ‘if this materialism is an attempt to compensate for a lack of love, it isn’t likely to work.’
Long ago, God’s inspired Word pointed to love as the key ingredient in man’s relationship to others. (1 Cor. chap. 13) Indeed, it will be the basis for the peaceful and righteous new order of God’s making. That is why even now, among those who worship Jehovah, love is being cultivated; this helps to build a peaceful international society of people. That love has helped them to conquer war and nationalism; it has given them a society remarkably free from crime, corruption, dishonesty, immorality and broken homes. Since “God is love,” it is only logical that love would be a most powerful force for happiness. “Love . . . is a perfect bond of union.”—1 John 4:8; Col. 3:14.
● Baltimore’s Catholic Archbishop William Borders recently admitted that the city’s Pallottine priests had “become involved in [fund-raising] practices which are immoral.” After years of prodding by the press, an audit revealed that of $20 million raised in 18 months, only 2.5 percent went to foreign missions. The rest went into real estate ventures and questionable “loans to Maryland business and political friends,” reported the New York “Times.”
Catholic news columnist Garry Wills also deplored a claim made in Pallottine mail pleas for money that “we employ no professional fund-raisers.” It is hard to imagine, wrote Wills, how the order “could have lied more elaborately, ingeniously, endlessly about that simple statement.” What does the Church do about such admittedly “immoral” ones? Embarrassed Pallottine authorities said that the order’s head fund-raiser faced no discipline other than removal from his post. However, Maryland officials said that the priest could face “criminal prosecution.”
Priests Commend Witnesses
● Two Catholic priests who publish a news letter for their parish in Westport, New Zealand, stated: “Catholics have much to learn from people like Jehovah’s Witnesses; an unwavering belief in the teachings of their organisation and the determination to spread their beliefs. How do Catholics, and that means you and I, compare in these respects?—very unfavourably, I fear.”
The priests concluded: “Next time you are tempted to sneer at Jehovah’s Witnesses, stop and think and perhaps pray that we may have just a little of the courage they have; their unwavering loyalty to their Church and the will to spread their faith.”
However, the priests overlook a most crucial point. What power impels such courage and conviction? It is the power of the truth, which Christ’s apostles pointed out stems from God’s holy spirit.—Acts 5:32.