Kudos to retired Baltimore Ravens center Matt Birk.
The six-time Pro-Bowler and member of the Ravens’ 2013 Super Bowl team chose not to attend a Ravens team meeting on Wednesday with President Barack Obama at the White House.
#77 is an ardent pro-life Catholic and his public criticism of the pro-abortion lobby now extends to President Obama for his very public support of Planned Parenthood.
On Thursday, Birk said in an interview on KFAN radio in Minneapolis:
I would say this, I would say that I have great respect for the office of the presidency but about five or six weeks ago, our President made a comment in a speech and he said, “God bless Planned Parenthood”….Planned Parenthood performs about 330,000 abortions a year.
I am Catholic, I am active in the pro-life movement, and I just felt like I couldn’t deal with that. I couldn’t endorse that in any way…I’m very confused by [the President's] statement. For God to bless a place where they’re ending 330,000 lives a year? I just chose not to attend.
Without fanfare, Matt Birk #77 represents well the “vocation of the laity” envisioned by the Second Vatican Council:
They exercise the apostolate in fact by their activity directed to the evangelization and sanctification of men and to the penetrating and perfecting of the temporal order through the spirit of the Gospel. In this way, their temporal activity openly bears witness to Christ and promotes the salvation of men. Since the laity, in accordance with their state of life, live in the midst of the world and its concerns, they are called by God to exercise their apostolate in the world like leaven, with the ardor of the spirit of Christ. (I.2.d)
Now that he’s retired from the NFL, perhaps #77 should evangelize those Catholics members of the U.S. Congress who don’t “get it.”