Thousands stood there listening to the man on stage. They were all rain-drenched but they showed up anyway like a Woodstock in the mountains of Europe. The man stood up in front of thousands and told them to love each other and then he implored them to go home and make love.

Sounds like some hippie rock event, right? Well that was Pope Benedict yesterday in Austria.

How do we Catholics always get accused of being so repressed? The leader of our Church is telling us all to go home and make babies. Our Church implores us to feed the poor and forgive those who sin against us. Sometime I think even we forget how radical we really are. We see God’s creation all around us. We believe that bread turns to flesh. We seek out the good that comes from even our evil works. We pray that our pain here can transform our own lives and also do good for others. What an amazing way to view the world. Repressed? Hardly. Set free!

I love Catholicism for its encouragement of virtue before its rebuking of vice. In fact, all of the “no’s” in Catholicism come from falling short of the great big YES! of loving others as we should. We should not use people for our own enjoyment -from taxicab drivers to sexual partners. Jesus was a true radical and we are his followers.

And I think that’s truly why so many find our faith so dangerous. And that’s why we’re attacked. There’s a reason that totalitarians across the globe almost always seek to kill Christians.