Yeah, He’ll Never Go To Jail

Tuesday, May 5, AD 2015

25 Responses to Yeah, He’ll Never Go To Jail

  • “Cupich to pro-lifers: Drop dead.”
    He’s said it before, after all. This one’s just a little more subtle.

  • So +Cupich and Senator Durbin, besides blowing raspberries to the pro-life community,
    are also declaring:
    A) They believe it’s more important to keep the Democrats in power than it is to respect
    the rule of law, especially the immigration laws currently on the books.
    B) They believe it is more important to grow the Democrat’s voter base by flooding the
    market with unskilled immigrant workers than it is to employ our native-born youth and
    minorities. Currently, one in six American youths are unemployed, and the unemployment
    rate for Black youth is 400% higher than the overall national rate.
    C) They believe it is more important to increase the number of Democrat voters at the
    expense of taxpaying citizens who will inevitably be called upon to finance the expansion
    of multitudes of government services, infrastructure, and benefits for our newly-imported
    D) They believe it is more important to pad Democrat voter rolls than it is to improve the
    lot of blue-collar Americans, whose real incomes are likely to stagnate as the labor market
    is flooded. The financial benefits of importing cheap labor will accrue to big business and
    stockholders, with middle-class America footing all of the social costs.

  • Yeah, he’ll never go to Heaven.

  • +Cupich appearing anywhere with Durbin is nauseating. If I ever met him I would tell him that to his face.

  • Cupich makes it plain and simple…he is a new member of the “Chicago Way.”

    What a surprise… 🙁

  • He has his reward.

  • 2) “my successor will die in prison”
    On this second prediction, there has to be a caveat. And that caveat is this: provided the successor in question is ready and willing to defend, with courage, the sacred dogmas of the Catholic Church.
    With so many controversial prelates, bishops and cardinals out there, will the successor to Cardinal Francis George be willing to go to prison for Church dogmas?
    With sadness we have to say the signs so far are not too good. But we shall continue to pray for the Lord to give all of us the spirit of Fidelity to Church Doctrine, and the spirit of Repentance.

  • Sad, very sad.

  • Would the word “filth” be too strong?

  • I don’t wonder what ‘heritage stories’ and ‘feelings’ the shepherd of the Faith will be led to support by the part of the flock advising him.

  • My own prediction is that Bishop Cupich won’t be in Chicago very long. Regardless of his theological bent, he just doesn’t feel like a Chicago guy.

  • This article and website seems to have no shortage of angry tinfoil hat wearers.

  • Please Patricia this site has standards. If you wish to have troll status here you will need to try better than that.

  • They say priests are judged by our good God most strenuously, and that more priests are denied heaven than we can imagine. What a perfect illustration of this adage. Now if Cupich were instructing the errant Senator …. Alas …

  • Alas no Cardinal George. Your successor will likely be a chaplain for the persecutors.

    That’s oddly positive, Donald! Considering that even if he throws in utterly, he’s still a Catholic priest– and thus won’t ever manage to go far enough to avoid being one of the first targeted, should the persecutors win. Makes sense, really– he and those like him are willing to betray the Church’s teachings on things like immigration law, and now the slaughter of children and the weak; why would they be thought trustworthy beyond when tactics demands it?

    I don’t think they’ll move fast enough to outrun the truth, but I’m a well-known optimist on such things.

  • That’s oddly positive, Donald! Considering that even if he throws in utterly, he’s still a Catholic priest– and thus won’t ever manage to go far enough to avoid being one of the first targeted, should the persecutors win.

    I have little doubt there are an ample population of those employed by Catholic institutions who would be readily suborned a la Fr. Josef Plojhar.


    The evangelicals have their counterparts. Religion News Service is now gay astroturf and gets 55% of its budget from the Arcus Foundation, run by ubercreep Kevin Jennings.

  • “This article and website seems to have no shortage of angry tinfoil hat wearers.”

    Waiter–I’m sorry, but my troll is lukewarm and uninspired. Have the chef prepare me a more interesting one, please.

  • Yet, Patricia, you are reading….and commenting.

  • “Please Patricia this site has standards. If you wish to have troll status here you will need to try better than that.”


  • I really disagree that the original article, or the event that it describes, is a black mark against the bishop. I wouldn’t say the reaction is in the tinfoil range, but it is disproportionate. It’s internet-y.

  • Durban does not care if the immigrants are Catholic he only cares if they are democrats. What about B. C.? Maybe Durban would be happy if Hispanic immigrants were democrats and had the abortion rate of Black Americans. Yes, that is what Obama administration wants from charities who minister to immigrants. Make sure that their babies are aborted, but most of all make sure they vote democrat. Feed planned parenthood and feed the democrat party.

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  • “The trouble with Socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s money” — Margaret Thatcher

    It is even truer with the falling birthrates around the world, it can be said:
    “The trouble with Socialism is that eventually you run out of other people’s children” — Tim, The church has lost its faith and fidelity towards the American people. They stand next to politicians that have given us the destruction of marriage, children and our families and publically call us racist.

  • sadly, Blaise has forgotten that Blaise, orthodox bishop & martyr, died in prison….. with those candles…. not a business suit & comfy couch & political hacks….

Francis Cardinal George: Requiescant in Pace

Friday, April 17, AD 2015

Cardinal George

Francis Cardinal George lost his long battle with cancer and died today.  This is what I wrote about him back in 2012:


Francis Cardinal George of the Archdiocese of Chicago is alleged to have predicted that for upholding the teachings of Christ he will die in his bed, his successor will die in a prison cell, and his successor will be executed in a public square in Chicago.  Therefore, I am unsurprised that he has written an open letter exploring the “Chicago Values” cited by Mayor Emanuel when he decided to attack the free speech rights of Chick-Fil-A:




Recent comments by those who administer our city seem to assume that the city government can decide for everyone what are the “values” that must be held by citizens of Chicago.  I was born and raised here, and my understanding of being a Chicagoan never included submitting my value system to the government for approval.  Must those whose personal values do not conform to those of the government of the day move from the city?  Is the City Council going to set up a “Council Committee on Un-Chicagoan Activities” and call those of us who are suspect to appear before it?  I would have argued a few days ago that I believe such a move is, if I can borrow a phrase, “un-Chicagoan.”

The value in question is espousal of “gender-free marriage.”  Approval of state-sponsored homosexual unions has very quickly become a litmus test for bigotry; and espousing the understanding of marriage that has prevailed among all peoples throughout human history is now, supposedly, outside the American consensus.  Are Americans so exceptional that we are free to define “marriage” (or other institutions we did not invent) at will?  What are we re-defining?

It might be good to put aside any religious teaching and any state laws and start from scratch, from nature itself, when talking about marriage.  Marriage existed before Christ called together his first disciples two thousand years ago and well before the United States of America was formed two hundred and thirty six years ago.  Neither Church nor state invented marriage, and neither can change its nature.

Marriage exists because human nature comes in two complementary sexes: male and female.  The sexual union of a man and woman is called the marital act because the two become physically one in a way that is impossible between two men or two women.  Whatever a homosexual union might be or represent, it is not physically marital.  Gender is inextricably bound up with physical sexual identity; and “gender-free marriage” is a contradiction in terms, like a square circle.

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14 Responses to Francis Cardinal George: Requiescant in Pace

  • Someone on Facebook posted this quote by Cardinal George in which he takes on the idiotic “wrong side of history” meme:
    “God sustains the world, in good times and in bad. Catholics, along with many others, believe that only one person has overcome and rescued history: Jesus Christ, Son of God and Son of the Virgin Mary, savior of the world and head of his body, the church. Those who gather at his cross and by his empty tomb, no matter their nationality, are on the right side of history. Those who lie about him and persecute or harass his followers in any age might imagine they are bringing something new to history, but they inevitably end up ringing the changes on the old human story of sin and oppression. There is nothing ‘progressive’ about sin, even when it is promoted as ‘enlightened.’
    “The world divorced from the God who created and redeemed it inevitably comes to a bad end. It’s on the wrong side of the only history that finally matters.”
    ~ Cardinal Francis George.

  • Here’s the link to Cardinal George’s column from 2012 containing the above quote:

  • Another good article by Cardinal George, which should have received much more coverage than it did.

  • Tom D,

    That article is fine except for a line like this: “This is, rather, the selfrighteous voice of some members of the American establishment today who regard themselves as ‘progressive’ and ‘enlightened.'”

    Now he should have been more specific and said “Democratic Party establishment and those, unfortunately many of my coreligionists, who support them.” For, so far, it is primarily they who have pushed the homosexualist agenda.

  • He was a wonderful servant of God. A courageous and bold defender of life and liturgy. He took on the Chicago Machine courageously, publicly and often in regard to morality, adhering to the words of John Paul ll: ‘Be Not Afraid’. ‘Afraid’ he was not. May he rest in the peace of Christ.

  • All of this could have been avoided had all Catholics, including the clergy, lived by what they say they believe and pray for. Catholics say they believe God is the giver of life, and they pray for God’s “will be done on earth” standing before the Holy Eucharist during Mass reciting the only prayer Jesus ever taught us, the Our Father; yet, over half of them endorse with their names and support with their actions a worldly organization that is diabolically opposed to what they say they believe and pray for – the Democratic Party. Catholics are the largest single group in that organization, giving that party the electoral power to prevent a Right-to-Life Constitutional Amendment from being passed, and enabling that party to support and promote abortion up to and including birth. Because so many Catholics are still Democrats, including clergy, the Churches’ position on marriage is now under attack for the first time in human history. Unless those Catholics remove their names from the Democratic Party and stop supporting it, they will find themselves being told to line up on the left side of Jesus when he returns to “Judge the Nations.” Those Catholics who are jackasses in this life, and will be “goats” in the next. Don’t believe me?

    “Life in Christ – Instructions in the Catholic Faith” copyright 1958 with Imprimatur by Samuel, Cardinal Stritch, Archbishop of Chicago, says “Religious and racial prejudice are sins against the fifth commandment.” It goes on to say, “To deny him/(her) his rights is a sin against justice as well as charity. This is particularly true, in the case of joining an organization which promotes segregation OR ANY OTHER DENIAL OF HUMAN RIGHTS.” (my emphasis)

    Abortion is a far more direct sin against the fifth commandment than is “religious and racial prejudice;” so if joining organizations like the Nazi Party or the KKK, which promote “prejudice,” are mortal sins, don’t you think being a free will member of the Democratic Party which promotes the murder of unborn babies is equally a mortal sin? Since there are no exonerating conditions that exempt one from mortal sin who join the Nazi Party or the KKK, which are “only” promoting discrimination; then certainly there are no exonerating conditions for one joining the Democratic Party that not only promotes but provides for abortion by funding Planned Parenthood, and now that pparty supports pro- same sex “marriage;” and is anti-God (based on voice vote in 2014 Democratic Party national convention), and is anti-Catholic Church (based on requiring abortion and birth control be provided in all healthcare insurance, dictated by Obama in his Affordable Care Act).

    If Catholic Democrats removed their names from that party and stopped supporting it until it changed its positions on abortion and homosexual marriage, that party would lose the electoral power to continue to keep the murder of unborn children legal, and put judges on the bench who overturn the vote of the people concerning marriage being only between one man and one woman.

    You don’t have to join another political party, just stop being a “jackass;” and pray the Penitent Prayer more earnestly – “through my fault, through my fault, through my most grievous fault” so that you will not become “a goat.” If you would all do that then Cardinal George’s prediction for the future can be avoided.

  • It remains to be seen if Cardinal George’s prediction comes true, but I doubt if his successor will show a modicum of the courage Cardinal George did. +Cupich is on record as praising +Kasper.

    May God’s mercy be upon the soul of Cardinal George.

  • A “Catholic” controlled US Supreme Court will very soon destroy the institution of marriage in the United States. They will make a sodomy a “civil right”. It’s hard to believe this country has sank thing far into the gutter. Thank the godless democrat party, aided and abedded by godless cafeteria Catholics. “All the evils of the world are due to lukewarm Catholics.” ~ Pope Pius V

  • Dblack. Your right…unfortunately.
    They say they know God yet they do not keep His commandments. They ARE liars. They will forfeit the kingdom of God for esteem that coddles their ego.
    They are the damned. The godless who worship men and not God.

    Prayers for them are greatly needed.
    Conversions of hearts and minds can satisfy the Sacred Heart..the heart that cried out from the Holy Cross; “I thirst.”

  • “I expect to die in bed, my successor will die in prison, and his successor will die a martyr in the public square. His successor will pick up the shards of a ruined society and slowly help rebuild civilization, as the church has done so often in human history.” (Cardinal George)
    The threat that western civilization faces – indeed the threat that the whole human race faces – is one from which there will be no full recovery has in times past.
    We are in the last days as prophesied by Sacred Scriptures and by many Catholic Seers.
    Therefore the last scenario envisaged by the late Cardinal Francis George, though full of historic insight, will just not happen.
    read more:

  • Or Requiescat i.e. with no “n” – Please delete this also after reading.

  • Requiescant is the plural and requiescat is the singular. I usually use the singular except if I viewed the person as a leader of a cause.

  • @Donald R. McClarey Thank you for the education.

A Jealous Faith

Sunday, September 7, AD 2014

a jealous faith

The excerpt below from a column by Francis Cardinal George is an indication of why, although he has often been a disappointment as an administrator, I will miss him when he is no longer at the helm of the Chicago Archdiocese:


Nonetheless, many Catholics in the American colonies thought their life might be better in the new country than under a regime whose ruling class had penalized and persecuted them since the mid-16th century. They made this new country their own and served her loyally. The social history was often contentious, but the State basically kept its promise to protect all religions and not become a rival to them, a fake church. Until recent years.

There was always a quasi-religious element in the public creed of the country. It lived off the myth of human progress, which had little place for dependence on divine providence. It tended to exploit the religiosity of the ordinary people by using religious language to co-opt them into the purposes of the ruling class. Forms of anti-Catholicism were part of its social DNA. It had encouraged its citizens to think of themselves as the creators of world history and the managers of nature, so that no source of truth outside of themselves needed to be consulted to check their collective purposes and desires. But it had never explicitly taken upon itself the mantle of a religion and officially told its citizens what they must personally think or what “values” they must personalize in order to deserve to be part of the country. Until recent years.

In recent years, society has brought social and legislative approval to all types of sexual relationships that used to be considered “sinful.” Since the biblical vision of what it means to be human tells us that not every friendship or love can be expressed in sexual relations, the church’s teaching on these issues is now evidence of intolerance for what the civil law upholds and even imposes. What was once a request to live and let live has now become a demand for approval. The “ruling class,” those who shape public opinion in politics, in education, in communications, in entertainment, is using the civil law to impose its own form of morality on everyone. We are told that, even in marriage itself, there is no difference between men and women, although nature and our very bodies clearly evidence that men and women are not interchangeable at will in forming a family. Nevertheless, those who do not conform to the official religion, we are warned, place their citizenship in danger.

When the recent case about religious objection to one provision of the Health Care Act was decided against the State religion, the Huffington Post (June 30, 2014) raised “concerns about the compatibility between being a Catholic and being a good citizen.” This is not the voice of the nativists who first fought against Catholic immigration in the 1830s. Nor is it the voice of those who burned convents and churches in Boston and Philadelphia a decade later. Neither is it the voice of the Know-Nothing Party of the 1840s and 1850s, nor of the Ku Klux Klan, which burned crosses before Catholic churches in the Midwest after the civil war. It is a voice more sophisticated than that of the American Protective Association, whose members promised never to vote for a Catholic for public office. This is, rather, the selfrighteous voice of some members of the American establishment today who regard themselves as “progressive” and “enlightened.”

The inevitable result is a crisis of belief for many Catholics. Throughout history, when Catholics and other believers in revealed religion have been forced to choose between being taught by God or instructed by politicians, professors, editors of major newspapers and entertainers, many have opted to go along with the powers that be. This reduces a great tension in their lives, although it also brings with it the worship of a false god. It takes no moral courage to conform to government and social pressure. It takes a deep faith to “swim against the tide,” as Pope Francis recently encouraged young people to do at last summer’s World Youth Day.

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6 Responses to A Jealous Faith

  • John 15:18-27
    18 “If the world hates you, know that it has hated me before it hated you. 19 If you were of the world, the world would love its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you. 20 Remember the word that I said to you, ‘A servant is not greater than his master.’ If they persecuted me, they will persecute you; if they kept my word, they will keep yours also. 21 But all this they will do to you on my account, because they do not know him who sent me. 22 If I had not come and spoken to them, they would not have sin; but now they have no excuse for their sin. 23 He who hates me hates my Father also. 24 If I had not done among them the works which no one else did, they would not have sin; but now they have seen and hated both me and my Father. 25 It is to fulfil the word that is written in their law, ‘They hated me without a cause.’ 26 But when the Counselor comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, who proceeds from the Father, he will bear witness to me; 27 and you also are witnesses, because you have been with me from the beginning.

  • Actually, the second paragraph explains my disappointment with Cardinal George. He, like many Catholics, sees America as a misguided, Enlightenment project. In his book, he can find nothing good to say about America for the first 60 pages or so. Then, we find that the only good thing he can make out is that it is multicultural. So the only good thing about America is that it is something else.

    He was also hook, line and sinker for Obamacare with the usual USCCB caveats. Now he finds that big government is not so nice. Hmmmm.

  • Love him are hate him, Limbaugh often talks about the “Marketplace of Ideas.” We have freedom of speech in this country, and what has the bishops chosen to talk about?
    Well, in the 20 years I’ve been Catholic, it hasn’t been contraception, abortion, marriage or any non-negotiable. It’s been “the rich are bad,” “sexism is bad,” “discrimination against homosexuals and undocumented workers is bad,” and “Government support for this or that is good.”
    There is so much they could have done many moons ago to promote NFP, marriage, and real health care, but they choose instead to do Al Smith dinners, “pass the trash”, and look the other way as Georgetown, Fordham, and ND lost their way.
    Even now it is not too late to jump into that Marketplace and try to make the case for Christ. The US, for all her assaults on religious freedom, is not the Middle East, with Islam on the march.
    I have no confidence our bishops will engage that Marketplace with the “Non-Negotiable ideas” with any fervor.

  • In modern American discourse, the ruling class knows it is “imposing its own form of morality,” but won’t own up to being a religion. Which is one reason why I’m skeptical that appeals to religious freedom will succeed, when only one side comes clean about its religious intent to form consciences, especially the consciences of children. And so it may be more useful to frame more of our arguments in terms of freedom of conscience, and conscience rights, appealing to all who dissent from the state religion.

  • With all of their plethora of faults & nauseating abandonment of the Gospel of Jesus Christ for the peddling of government influence as a way to better society, the USCCB is the only current source of such writings/religious thought addressing the current shredding of our society’s fabric that I can find in the realm of American “Christianity.” In my experience, the Protestants leadership does not even understand the battle.

Cardinal George on “Chicago Values”

Tuesday, July 31, AD 2012

Francis Cardinal George of the Archdiocese of Chicago is alleged to have predicted that for upholding the teachings of Christ he will die in his bed, his successor will die in a prison cell, and his successor will be executed in a public square in Chicago.  Therefore, I am unsurprised that he has written an open letter exploring the “Chicago Values” cited by Mayor Emanuel when he decided to attack the free speech rights of Chick-Fil-A:




Recent comments by those who administer our city seem to assume that the city government can decide for everyone what are the “values” that must be held by citizens of Chicago.  I was born and raised here, and my understanding of being a Chicagoan never included submitting my value system to the government for approval.  Must those whose personal values do not conform to those of the government of the day move from the city?  Is the City Council going to set up a “Council Committee on Un-Chicagoan Activities” and call those of us who are suspect to appear before it?  I would have argued a few days ago that I believe such a move is, if I can borrow a phrase, “un-Chicagoan.”

The value in question is espousal of “gender-free marriage.”  Approval of state-sponsored homosexual unions has very quickly become a litmus test for bigotry; and espousing the understanding of marriage that has prevailed among all peoples throughout human history is now, supposedly, outside the American consensus.  Are Americans so exceptional that we are free to define “marriage” (or other institutions we did not invent) at will?  What are we re-defining?

It might be good to put aside any religious teaching and any state laws and start from scratch, from nature itself, when talking about marriage.  Marriage existed before Christ called together his first disciples two thousand years ago and well before the United States of America was formed two hundred and thirty six years ago.  Neither Church nor state invented marriage, and neither can change its nature.

Marriage exists because human nature comes in two complementary sexes: male and female.  The sexual union of a man and woman is called the marital act because the two become physically one in a way that is impossible between two men or two women.  Whatever a homosexual union might be or represent, it is not physically marital.  Gender is inextricably bound up with physical sexual identity; and “gender-free marriage” is a contradiction in terms, like a square circle.

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21 Responses to Cardinal George on “Chicago Values”

  • Thank you for this post, Donald.

  • A square circle has been proven to be imposible and the best analogy for gay-marriage. I appreciate the way you described the situation in Chicago about the government approving a man’s value system. Will it come to the government forcing individuals to have sex change operations to realize its value-system?

  • I didn’t know the Cardinal had it in him. I just wish this had been his demeanor for the last 20 years. Apparently he has concluded his flock is under attack and he will not cede moral high ground to a bunch of corrupt, secular, depraved politicians who lack any moral standing whatsoever.

  • Darn, that was well-said. I pray the Cardinal’s prophesy about his successors my be wrong, but I fear he is all too prescient. Thanks for posting.

  • That quote from Cardinal George is very ominous. What was the context and are there any links?

  • He said it after civil unions passed in Illinois in 2010. I have been unable to find a direct link to the statement, but I will keep looking.

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  • Marriage is primordial and, in the happy phrase of Lord Stowell in Dalrymple v Dalrymple, it is the parent, not the child of civil society.

    The state has a legitimate interest in marriage and it is important to note what precisely that is. Mandatory civil marriage originated in France on 9th November 1791 and was a product of the same Revolution that had just turned 10 million tenant farmers into heritable proprietors. This was no coincidence.

    The Code of 1804 contained no formal definition of marriage, but jurists have always found a functional definition in the provision that “The child conceived or born in marriage has the husband for father,” which mirrors the doctrine of the Roman jurist, Paulus, “.pater vero is est, quem nuptiae demonstrant.” (Marriage points out the father) [Dig. 2, 4, 5; 1].

    This was the opinion of the four most authoritative commentators on the Civil Code, Demolombe (1804–1887), Guillouard (1845-1925). Gaudemet (1908-2001) and Carbonnier (1908–2003), covering the period from the introduction of mandatory civil marriage down to our own day and long before the question of same-sex marriage was agitated. In 1998, a colloquium of 154 Professors of Civil Law, including such luminaries as Philippe Malaurie, Alain Sériaux, and Catherine Labrusse-Riou unanimously endorsed this interpretation of the Civil Code. This led to the introduction of civil unions (PACS) for same-sex and opposite-sex couples in the following year.

    No one will deny that the state has a clear interest in the filiation of children being clear, certain and incontestable. It is central to its concern for the upbringing and welfare of the child, for protecting rights and enforcing obligations between family members and to the orderly succession to property. To date, no better, simpler, less intrusive means than marriage have been found for ensuring, as far as possible, that the legal, biological and social realities of paternity coincide. And that is no small thing.

    It is significant that, in a country so committed to the principle of laïcité as France, no one has suggested that the opinion of the jurists, or of the courts which have endorsed it, is either the result of religious convictions or an attempt to import them into their interpretation of the Code.

  • The “martyrdom” quote has also been attributed to Abp. Charles Chaput. I also have attempted to pin down an exact time and place where Cardinal George said this and haven’t yet been able to find one. My guess — and it’s only a guess — is that whatever its origin, it’s been attributed to Cardinal George so many times that he’s embraced it and doesn’t bother denying that he said it, since it does express his beliefs about the direction religious freedom issues seem to be going in the U.S.

    Famous people or public figures often have quotes attributed to them that they never said, whether it’s Abraham Lincoln’s alleged “Ten Cannots” (“You cannot bring about prosperity by discouraging thrift….”) or Chuck Colson’s “I would run over my grandmother to elect Nixon” or George Carlin’s “Hurricane Rules.”

  • …but for our increasingly fragile “civil union” as citizens

    These are fighting words. I doubt that the Rahms will take heed. Either by accident or design, the US has come to a position where the Right has to put aside all the pointless courtesies, and fight the Left tooth and nail or stand in danger of becoming strangers in their own land.

  • Archbishop Chaput has denied saying it Elaine. The quote has aroused my suspicion now since I can find nothing on the internet citing the statement directly from anything written or said by Cardinal George. I hope someone asks Cardinal George about the statement so we can clear this up. I have modified the post to say that he is alleged to have made this prediction.

  • So much talk on Gay marriage and the push to make it culturally acceptable and respectable but many seem to accept unmarried heterosexual unions. So many couples shacked up, living together and bearing children with little concern about the long time welfare of the child. Which type of union is more sinful in the eyes of God? Which lifestyle will have the greatest negative impact on our culture. What will life be like in America 50 years from now? I’m afraid to guess.

  • Indeed, Ivan, for the Left has dropped all pretense; where before was metaphor, dissemblance and clever rhetoric, now stand naked hostility and unadulterated arrogance.

    They started this, and one or the other side will soon perceive itself painted into a corner. Then it’s a-gonna get ugly.

  • RPM, those are valid concerns, and I certainly don’t see anyone here condoning either situation. As for which is more sinful in God’s eyes, only He knows for sure – for us, it is clear both are gravely sinful (both are in the mortal sin category, but whether it earns the 4th or 5th circle of hell, I’d just rather avoid either).

    As for impact on society, one strikes at the fundamental structure of marriage, the complementarity of the sexes, and the unified purposes of the marital act; the other likely involves a larger absolute number of individuals, and if not altering the fundamental structure, at a minumum undermines the important pillar of stability that marriage (ideally) provides. Neither is good.

  • Please give Cardinal George a call and thank him for his leadership as Christ’s chosen shepherd: 312-751-8200.

  • RPM

    From the public’s perspective, the two cases are very different.

    As the British philosopher, Bertrand Russell observed, “But for children, there would be no need of any institution concerned with sex. It is through children alone that sexual relations become of importance to society, and worthy to be taken cognizance of by a legal institution.” That is why the state uses the institution of marriage to make the paternity of children clear, certain and incontestable. Were this not its primary legal function, it is difficult to see why the law should facilitate marriage in extremis. What other purpose does a death-bed marriage serve?

    By the same token, same-sex couples whom nature had not made potentially fertile, are irrelevant to the institution of marriage. This is different legal treatment, because their situation is not analogous.

    As the legislator has no authority in the other world, whatever may be the lot of its subjects in the life to come, that is not its business, provided they are good citizens in this one.

    The question is not one of morals, but of civil status: (1) mandatory civil marriage, makes the institution a pillar of the secular Republic, standing clear of the religious sacrament (2) The institution of republican marriage is inconceivable, absent the idea of filiation, enshrined, not in Church dogma, but in the Civil Code and (3) the sex difference is central to filiation.

  • The nearest Chick-filet-a is 25 miles away from me, in Racine. And since the price of gas has skyrocketed to over $4.00 a gallon in Wisconsin (a pipeline to Chicago has broken and is leaking in central Wisconsin), I don’t think it would be prudent to make a 50 mile round trip to buy a chicken sandwich:-) But I certainly will, when gas prices go down a bit.

    I remember saying, at Gerard N.’s old blog *sigh*, that gay marriage was not a terribly important issue to me. Well, congrats to the gay bigots who have finally succeeded in making me an active oppoment to their agenda. Does anyone think it will stop with Chick-filet-a? No, I can easily see gays holding “kiss-ins” outside of our parishes on Sunday mornings, because Todd and Brad really, really want to have a Catholic marriage service, but those mean old “homophobes” are standing in their way. The harassment will never, ever end unless we make a stand now.

  • The fascinating aspect of this Donna is the rapidity of all this. Two decades ago only the lunatic fringe of the gay rights movement was even talking about gay marriage. Now the Democrats are enshrining gay marriage in their platform and denouncing as dangerous bigots anyone who believes that marriage is between a man and a woman. I await with anticipation what next “right” will become a cause celebre on the Left, and an excuse for what too many Leftists seem to live for: an opportunity to engage in campaigns of organized hate against those who do not follow them in ideological lock step.

  • Rockport Pilot, Rockport Texas
    Friday, August 3, 2012Dear Editor;

    Since there are many businesses whose primary reason for existence is to spread hate, in addition to Chick-Fil-A, and since there are many executives who espouse bigoted traditional values and hate-driven biblical values, would not the actions of all good pure people – which includes, by definition, all Democrats – in avoiding these businesses be greatly facilitated if: 1. Christian businesses be required to display a Star Of Bethlehem sign in their businesses – and this could be a federal regulation whose implementation involves multiple government agencies, e.g. EPA, Health And Human Services, Department of Education, Homeland Security, and of course the Center for Disease Control; and 2. Christian executives be required to wear a Star Of Bethlehem over their hearts or have one tattooed on their forearms? And, to further the purity of Democrats and all others who are free of hate, why not have all Christians who go out in public be required to wear a Star Of Bethlehem over their hearts or have it tattooed on their foreheads? Of course a crucifix would do instead of the star.

    Am I remembering correctly something like this once happened? Was it in Europe? Wasn’t there some kind of conflict about this? How did the pure people do that time?

    Guy McClung

  • Truth Mr. McClung:

    When will our self-proclaimed moral superiors stage a kiss-in in Saudi Arabia or in a Nation of Islam meeting?

    Western oil purchases made Saudi Arabia super-wealthy.

    They cannot pull such publicity stunts because they don’t allow (Nicht Keystone pipeline; “not in my back yard”; save the snail darter; save Mother Erda!) energy independence.

    So it goes. Most of USA oil to make gasoline is imported from foreign cartels, e.g., OPEC, composed of countries that are tyrannies that execute gays.

  • Everyone must be tired of reading this but I must post it again, simply because it says what it says: one fake husband or one fake wife equals one fake marriage. The truth of the matter is that homosexual behavior does not pass the reality test necessary for admission into the culture. The fact that the homosexual agenda will not allow the issue to be put on the ballot is a very good indication of the level of indoctrination, physical coersion and the dirty politics involved. Whe I say dirty politics, I mean the denial of the human being’s immortal soul, unalienable civil rights, unauthorized use of the language and the strangling of FREEDOM by the perjury that is a fake marriage.

An American Issue

Friday, March 16, AD 2012

Note how the Bishops in the above video indicate what a unique threat to the Catholic Church in America the Obama administration poses.  They recognize that the goal of the current administration is to strip the Bishops, through fostering a de facto schism in the Church, of their ability to stand in the way of this administration.  This is all very unprecedented in American history and all very dangerous to our concept of religious liberty enshrined in the Constitution.  The Administrative Committee of the USCCB set out what is at stake well on March 14th:

The Administrative Committee of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, gathered for its March 2012 meeting, is strongly unified and intensely focused in its opposition to the various threats to religious freedom in our day. In our role as Bishops, we approach this question prayerfully and as pastors—concerned not only with the protection of the Church’s own institutions, but with the care of the souls of the individual faithful, and with the common good.

To address the broader range of religious liberty issues, we look forward to the upcoming publication of “A Statement on Religious Liberty,” a document of the Ad Hoc Committee for Religious Liberty. This document reflects on the history of religious liberty in our great Nation; surveys the current range of threats to this foundational principle; and states clearly the resolve of the Bishops to act strongly, in concert with our fellow citizens, in its defense.

One particular religious freedom issue demands our immediate attention: the now-finalized rule of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services that would force virtually all private health plans nationwide to provide coverage of sterilization and contraception—including abortifacient drugs—subject to an exemption for “religious employers” that is arbitrarily narrow, and to an unspecified and dubious future “accommodation” for other religious organizations that are denied the exemption.

We begin,  first, with thanks to all who have stood firmly with us in our vigorous opposition to this unjust and illegal mandate: to our brother bishops; to our clergy and religious; to our Catholic faithful; to the wonderful array of Catholic groups and institutions that enliven our civil society; to our ecumenical and interfaith allies; to women and men of all religions (or none at all); to legal scholars; and to civic leaders. It is your enthusiastic unity in defense of religious freedom that has made such a dramatic and positive impact in this historic public debate. With your continued help, we will not be divided, and we will continue forward as one.

Second, we wish to clarify what this debate is—and is not—about. This is not about access to contraception, which is ubiquitous and inexpensive, even when it is not provided by the Church’s hand and with the Church’s funds. This is not about the religious freedom of Catholics only, but also of those who recognize that their cherished beliefs may be next on the block. This is not about the Bishops’ somehow “banning contraception,” when the U.S. Supreme Court took that issue off the table two generations ago. Indeed, this is not about the Church wanting to force anybody to do anything; it is instead about the federal government forcing the Church—consisting of its faithful and all but a few of its institutions—to act against Church teachings. This is not a matter of opposition to universal health care, which has been a concern of the Bishops’ Conference since 1919, virtually at its founding. This is not a fight we want or asked for, but one forced upon us by government on its own timing. Finally, this is not a Republican or Democratic, a conservative or liberal issue; it is an American issue.

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28 Responses to An American Issue

  • This is all-out political warfare, no holds barred.

    If an outright yahoo such as myself knew this four years past, [fill in the blank].

    Social justice was used as the alibi for all sins.

    Hate and Chains!

    I know. I know.

    I’m a RACIST!

  • Where are the voices from the Democratic Party, once a bastion of faithful Catholics, who legislated for the common man? Are they in chains tallying collected dues, being used to further debase their once loyal catholic identity, selling their souls and their ultimate caretakers to a joyless, blasphemous destiny? Judas comes to mind.

    I cannot believe that the Democratic Party has finished homogenizing its collective mind. With a world of problems from which to choose to find a solution, the focus is to fester another problem – and in the only area on earth that ultimately supports them.

    The catholic voices that have lost the sound of faith to the sound of cacophony.

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  • When the Supreme Court for the United States of America hears the Obamacare case as a violation of conscience, as Obamacare is a violation of conscience, the Court will be giving countenance to and legitimacy to the greatest perjury in the history of humankind. TRUTH, the whole truth and nothing but the truth will have been silenced and imprisoned in the chains of perjury, subliminal suggestion, lies, false advertisement, uninformed consent, swindle, cheating, stealing, and more lies and more perjury by the handmaid of the Satan. If Obamacare is not prevented from scamming unsuspecting citizens into surrendering their sovereignty for a cup of hemlock, the Supreme Court for the United States of America will become a useful idiot in the grand scheme of the Great Liar. The atheist, too, is become a useful idiot in the removal of all of every citizen’s unalienable rights, our founding principles, and especially Our CREATOR’S Divine Providence. The bottomless pit of hell is staring us and our Supreme Court in the face in Obamacare. HOPE and CHANGE without informed consent, without the TRUTH, without sovereignty, without freedom is not HOPE and CHANGE, no more so than Obamacare is healthcare.
    An eighty four year old man insisted that everybody ought to have healthcare and I agree. Obamacare is poised to balance the budget on his grave and he cannot see through it, because of the subliminal suggestions planted in his heart and mind. Subliminal suggestion is illegal and unconstitutional. Insincere promises (or lies) in Obamcare are the bait in a trap for America’s sovereignty and the sovereignty of each and every person as a citizen in the US. A one world government under the world bank, instead of under God, is the ultimate goal of the devil. Obamacare is only the weapon to be used against the sovereignty of America. Obamcare is only the bait into the black hole of servitude to another man, (created equal), whose god is mammon.
    Let us show Obama what freedom looks like in November. Let us show the devil the gates to Hell, the black hole, the true Obamacare: WHO IS LIKE UNTO GOD?
    And to atheists who are sincerely searching for the truth. God is permitting this violation of sovereignty and truth for you to come to your sovereignty and the truth. Follow the truth. The truth will set you free and make you sovereign.
    The schism in the nation has occurred. The schism occurred when the Supreme Court relegated the Person of God to the status of Persona non grata, abortion to “a political point of view” along with gay-marriage, infanticide, and rape of infant children, who, without informed consent have had their body parts desecrated; the Supreme Court, who, violating “the laws of nature and nature’s God” abrogated the definition the human being as having an immortal, rational soul.

  • “the Supreme Court, who, violating “the laws of nature and nature’s God” abrogated the definition of the human being as having an immortal, rational soul; the human being, as a being composed of a body and a rational, immortal soul.”
    the word for correction I do not know.

  • I suppose, if we are to be prepared for any outcome, we should look at the Augustinian view of “Moral War” in light of such Scriptural admonishments as found in Romans 13. With the exegesis of the rest of the book, as well as the Gospels and all of the New Testament, it should be discussed now, I’d think, when heads are still cool and backs are not against any walls.

    If, God forbid, there is a second Caiaphas term and an insufficient Republican (real, not RINO) presence in Congress to snuff out his two-bit Mussolini imitations, there will possibly be a call to arms. The history of the world demands this consideration, as well as demanding that our nation’s immediate past be considered an aberration, albeit a pleasant one. Short is the list of nations that have gone a scant century without either internecine violence or direct foreign attack.

    That we have escaped largely unharmed is a testament to our traditional character, but it is obvious to any with a lick of sense that the character so employed is now a scarce commodity.

    I am reminded of the brilliance of Hillaire Belloc:

    “We sit by and watch the Barbarian, we tolerate him; in the long stretches of peace we are not afraid. We are tickled by his irreverence, his comic inversion of our old certitudes and our fixed creeds refreshes us; we laugh. But as we laugh we are watched by large and awful faces from beyond: and on these faces there is no smile. ”

    The “large and awful faces” now sit in the highest seats of power in America. It would behoove us to thoroughly argue various methods of repelling their assaults upon us, so that we are sufficiently prepared, and united.

  • You can look at it as Obama encouraging de facto schism, but sadly, the de facto schism has existed for a while. In a sense, all he is doing is recognizing its existence and banking on it. He is simply pulling back the curtain and exposing it.

  • “You can look at it as Obama encouraging de facto schism, but sadly, the de facto schism has existed for a while. In a sense, all he is doing is recognizing its existence and banking on it. He is simply pulling back the curtain and exposing it.”

    Amen that.

  • Perhaps, but the next step has to be taken, and that is to ask “why?” The answer is obvious to us, of course.

    To what end does any government actively call attention to such an all-too-human rift in any religion or ideology, but to attack it? What other purpose could there be to risk the backlash and fallout that most certainly will (and even now starts to) occur? Why does this administration care, other than to exploit a strategic weakness, indicating it actually has a strategy that neeeds this exploitation?

    To downplay Caiaphas’ impact on the schism itself is to dissemble the truth; regardless of why it’s there, this president’s exploitation of it makes him anti-Catholic and fascist, and as such he should be given neither excuse nor benefit of doubt. Unless, of course, you’re on his side.

  • I agree with c matt. Obama is exploiting and counting on an already existing de facto schism. I doubt he has a sinister purpose in doing so, at least from his perspective. He has no grande aim to bring down the Church; he just wants to advance his policy agenda.

  • The exploitation by any American president of any religious division in this country Mike I regard as per se sinister. That he might be doing so for mere momentary political advantage actually increases the contempt I feel for him.

  • Does anyone know how the Bishops are distinguishing the Obamacare mandate for employers to purchase health insurance (which covers contraceptives) from individuals being required to pay federal taxes (of which a fraction goes to grants to Planned Parenthood)? Why would complying with one (the Obamacare mandate) be sinful and not complying with the other (paying federal taxes) be sinful? Is it because only a tiny fraction of federal income taxes go to grants for Planned Parenthood while a larger fraction of health care premiums would go to contraceptives? Or is because one is called a tax and one is called a mandate? What if the feds said the employers will not be paying any premiums, instead they pay a tax and then the employees get free health care? Would that make a difference?

    Don’t get me wrong, I am all for the Bishops cracking some heads, I am just a little confused about how one is sin and one is not.

  • J: You are correct. Obamacare is a tax and a mandate. Obamacare tax deletes the middle man, IRS. O makes you spend his (the government owns and controls everything) money the way Obama tells you.

    You must pay your income tax and when Obama gets the money you have no say in how it is wasted.

    If you don’t pay your income tax, you will learn two things: the reason why they had to amend the Constitution to institute the income tax and that you have no rights in tax court. No Fifth amendment. If you own anything the IRS will take it. Then you go to jail.

    Heretics had more rights with the Spanish Inquisition. Only difference being the IRS can’t torture you.

  • “I doubt he has a sinister purpose in doing so, at least from his perspective. He has no grande aim to bring down the Church; he just wants to advance his policy agenda.”

    That may be true. But in then end, this battle is not with men such as Obama. Rather this battle is with diabolical forces intent on attacking the Church. Obama and his Saruman-like Minions in the Church are merely pawns in an ancient battle. Pawns who have fallen for one lie or another by the Evil One even if they remain ignorant of the Dark One’s ultimate plan. So there will be further attacks even if this one is stopped. Either by Obama or other Minions. However, if this one succeeds, the next will be truly vile.

    We ultimately do not lose hope as the Easter Victory is eternal. The Gates of Hell shall not prevail, though there may be great suffering prior to the final victory. Pray. Fast. Then act to prevent further evil.

  • There would probably be less schism in the Church if Pelosi, Reid, Sebelius, et al were treated in the same way as the SSPX were treated–with excommunication.

  • There has been a division in the Roman Catholic Church for a long time. I think much of the blame goes to the Bishops and Priests. In my life time, it started with the Bishops refusal to accept Pope Paul VI’s Humanae Vitae. You had Bishops outright rejection or their refusal to teach the dangers of contraception and the consequences. You had Vatican II which changed a lot of things in the Church (the left/ liberals used this time to their advantage). Then you also had sisters and nuns rejecting Church teachings and following the radical feminists. Then there was Cardinal Bernardin’s “seamless garment” (confusing real intrinsic evil issues with subjects that are not necessarily intrinsically evil to this very day), using Alinsky ideas, followed by “social justice” which has been more like socialism and earth worship. Also, you can’t ignore the homosexual infiltration into the seminaries which led to the terrible sexual scandals. Today, you have “catholic” politicians who support contraception, abortion, same sex marriage, embryonic stem-cell research like Sebelius, Pelosi, Cuomo, Kerry, Biden, the Kennedys, Durbin, etc with hardly any of the Bishops doing anything about them. Obama surrounds himself with these left, unorthodox “catholics” and yes, I think he does want to split the Catholic Church. The Bishops need to face some facts about Obama and the Democratic Party. These are not the Democrats your grandparents supported.

    It really all starts with us though. WE have to seek and find the REAL teachings, dogmas, doctrines of the Catholic Church. WE need to stop picking and choosing what we want to believe and we need to speak up. I’m praying for our Pope, the Bishops, Priests, Deacons and Religious that the Holy Spirit will enlighten them with truth and courage!

  • There would probably be less schism in the Church if Pelosi, Reid, Sebelius, et al were treated in the same way as the SSPX were treated–with excommunication.

    If I understand correctly, the clergy associated with SSPX are excommunicate, not anyone else. It is permissible for laymen to attend SSPX services if done out of appreciation for the old rite and not in a spirit of disobedience.

    There has been a division in the Roman Catholic Church for a long time. I think much of the blame goes to the Bishops and Priests. In my life time, it started with the Bishops refusal to accept Pope Paul VI’s Humanae Vitae.

    Which bishops? The prominent dissenters on this question have been Charles Curran, Andrew Greeley, Luke Timothy Johnson, and Garry Wills. None of them are bishops. It was local parish priests who refused to enforce the teaching in the confessional.

    Then there was Cardinal Bernardin’s “seamless garment” (confusing real intrinsic evil issues

    The Church in America had been an institutional wreck for a dozen years or more ‘ere Cdl. Bernardin’s wheel-spinning in the NCCB committee structure got underway.

  • AS WK Aiken wrote, “If, God forbid, there is a second Caiaphas term and an insufficient Republican (real, not RINO) presence in Congress to snuff out his two-bit Mussolini imitations, there will possibly be a call to arms. The history of the world demands this consideration, as well as demanding that our nation’s immediate past be considered an aberration, albeit a pleasant one. Short is the list of nations that have gone a scant century without either internecine violence or direct foreign attack.”

    Heaven forbid! But a second Obama term may make that a reality. 🙁

  • Obama supports the destruction of all Christian churches.

  • What I am about to say may be viewed as imprudent by some here. But the bishops have done much to bring this about. Hillsdale College professor Paul Rahe wrote an interesting article on this subject:

    Also, when you consider the fact that Obama being an Alinskyite and the influence Alinsky had on Church bureaucracies in the U.S., he is well aware of the divsions that exist. Remember, it was the same Cdl George who couldn’t stick to his guns with Fr. Pfleger and then presided over a function of the Archdiocesan Office for Racial Equality where Pfleger was given a lifetime achievement award. Never mind the fact that Fr. Pfleger is as thick as theives with bigots like Jeremiah Wright and Louis Farrakan.

    Then you have Cdl Dolan equating Arizona’s SB 1070 with the Know Nothing Party. When you have prominent American Prelates projecting weakness and engaging in left wing demagoguory, you invite the kind of actions Obama is taking and it isn’t like he needs an invitation.

  • Living in a country that has had a tax-funded national health service for over sixty years, and in which the taxpayer has no say on which ‘health’ provision his money is spent on, I find the present debate in the US rather bemusing. However, Catholics in the US should be aware that the British government is planning to legislate for same-sex marriage (despite the fact that the present civil partnership laws give homosexual couples the same rights as married couples anyway). PM David Cameron is cosying up to Barak Obama, who is no friend to England but has his eyes fixed on the upcoming election, and is pointedly ignoring anyone from the Republican party. As a life-long Tory voter, I hoped that the new ministry would roll back some of the stifling political correctness which characterized New Labour but Cameron seems to want to out-Blair Blair.

    The Catholic Church in England and Wales lacks any credible leadership (Scotland is better) and the Established Church is facing having its bishops ejected from the House of Lords since they are ‘incompatible with a multicultural society’. I was brought up in a country which prided itself on its tolerance and innate sense of liberty and fair play. I have seen it turned into a paradise for petty tyrants. Be warned, America, and for God’s sake don’t go the same way.

  • “I have seen it turned into a paradise for petty tyrants.”

    That is happening in both countries John, albeit at a slower pace in America, but Obama is attempting to quicken the process.

    For those of us who cherish liberty it is time for us to take a stand, all of us recalling this Churchill quote:
    “This is only the first sip, the first foretaste of a bitter cup which will be proffered to us year by year unless by a supreme recovery of moral health and martial vigour, we arise again and take our stand for freedom as in the olden time.”

    I have no intention of having the liberty that many of my ancestors purchased with their blood taken away piece by piece for Leftist political schemes and to serve the ends of politicians drunk with power.

  • If it is truly phrophetic is will come to pass, and nothing can stop it.

  • Then let us pray that it is not prophetic Janice and let us work to help bring our prayers to fruition. We are God’s instruments in this world and it is up to each of us to make our actions match our faith.

  • When the HHS Mandate goes to the Supreme Court, Elena Kagan, architect of Obamacare must recuse herself, or be removed physically dragging her feet and screaming. Obamacare is Elena Kagan’s brainchild. Surely, Kagan will want to see this monstrosity endure. Kagan has a vested interest and the conflict of interest thereof. There may be a 4 to 4 split in the Court, who then, casts the deciding vote? Is that person of integrity and trustworthy?

  • The constitutionality of Obamacare is only a small issue. The constitutionality of Obama and his cronies is the greater issue. The Constitution for the United States of America prohibits a religious test for candidates for public office. Our constitution does not prohibit a religious test for removing public officials, presidents and his appointees from office for egregiously violating our founding principles, ignoring their sworn oaths to uphold our founding principles while in office and for violating our constitutional principles.
    IF Peter Singer, Barack Obama, or Cecile Richards cannot explain their existence without reference to our Constitutional CREATOR, our unalienable rights, and our founding principles, they are unfit for office. Obama has violated his oath of office. Let us dig up Margaret Sanger and ask her for her opinion. Saul Alinsky asked God to send him to hell. Maybe HOPE and CHANGE will make Alinsky feel bad. Obama, Pelosi, Sebelius, Geitner need to be shown the broom closet door, the same broom closet door, Obama, as senator from Chicago showed to our newest constitutional posterity, our newest citizens, the persons he refused to aid when they survived abortion. Obama has since ordered all frozen embryos to be destroyed. No snowflake babies for him. Nope.
    Peter Singer was deported from Australia. Germany refused to give Singer admittance. Princeton University welcomed Singer with the DeCamp Chair of Bioethics where he teaches the most elite sons of our people that killing a citizen if you do not like the child for up to six years after they come into their citizenship as “after birth abortion” is valid. Singer teaches that taking the life of another person is not a crime of homicide or infanticide or human sacrifice to the demon god of political correctness, environmental or really stupid (oh, seriousness) imbecilic eugenics. Cecile Richards, go get Margaret Sanger. Maybe Sanger can tell us how to live forever.

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Peter Shrugged

Monday, February 27, AD 2012


Year in and year out, the Catholic Church in this country, as well as around the globe, is the largest single private provider of charitable services to the poor.  However, what if a government makes it impossible for the Church to carry out her mission? The Church in America with the HHS Mandate is facing just such a dilemma, and Francis Cardinal George of the Chicago Archdiocese tells us what to expect:

The Lenten rules about fasting from food and abstaining from meat have been considerably reduced in the last forty years, but reminders of them remain in the fast days on Ash Wednesday and Good Friday and in the abstinence from meat on all the Fridays of Lent. Beyond these common sacrifices that unite us spiritually to the passion of Christ, Catholics were and are encouraged to “give up” something voluntarily for the sake of others. Often this is money that could have been used for personal purposes and instead is given to help others, especially the poor.   This year, the Catholic Church in the United States is being told she must “give up” her health care institutions, her universities and many of her social service organizations. This is not a voluntary sacrifice. It is the consequence of the already much discussed Department of Health and Human Services regulations now filed and promulgated for implementation beginning Aug. 1 of this year.

 Why does a governmental administrative decision now mean the end of institutions that have been built up over several generations from small donations, often from immigrants, and through the services of religious women and men and others who wanted to be part of the church’s mission in healing and education? Catholic hospitals, universities and social services have an institutional conscience, a conscience shaped by Catholic moral and social teaching. The HHS regulations now before our society will make it impossible for Catholic institutions to follow their conscience.

 So far in American history, our government has respected the freedom of individual conscience and of institutional integrity for all the many religious groups that shape our society. The government has not compelled them to perform or pay for what their faith tells them is immoral. That’s what we’ve meant by freedom of religion. That’s what we had believed was protected by the U.S. Constitution. Maybe we were foolish to believe so.

 What will happen if the HHS regulations are not rescinded? A Catholic institution, so far as I can see right now, will have one of four choices: 1) secularize itself, breaking its connection to the church, her moral and social teachings and the oversight of its ministry by the local bishop. This is a form of theft. It means the church will not be permitted to have an institutional voice in public life. 2) Pay exorbitant annual fines to avoid paying for insurance policies that cover abortifacient drugs, artificial contraception and sterilization. This is not economically sustainable. 3) Sell the institution to a non-Catholic group or to a local government. 4) Close down.

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24 Responses to Peter Shrugged

  • I am so depressed in having read this. But at the recent Ignited by Truth conference in Raleigh, NC over this weekend, speaker Michael Barber of the Sacred Page reminded us that Jesus Himself lost the only election He was ever in when in the courtyard before Pontius Pilate the “peepul” cried for Barabbas to be freed. It’s interesting what Barabbas means, as Mr. Barber explained it: the son of the father. Well, we have gotten the son of the father who is the devil. The question is: will we vote for him again, crying aloud regarding Yeshua, “Crucifige Eum, Crucifige Eum.”

  • The first step should be the admission by the USCCB that they were deceived into a pact with Satan when they thought that Obamacare would ensure that “basic health care should be accessible to all in a just society.” They should recant their support for this and assert their opposition to all State-enforced systems of this sort.

    Any political study at all outside of post-modern Progressive orthodoxy will show how programs run by The State eventually destroy all competition – even honestly charitable proragms whose only mission is relief to the poor – as it demands more and more power unto itself.

    It’s a real basic decision the Bishops have to face, but their solution is among the easiest to discern:

    Mk 12:17 – “Then Jesus said to them, ‘Give to Caesar what is Caesar’s and to God what is God’s.’ And they were amazed at him.”

  • Has the Church, via the Bishops, fully and consciously participated in the Culture of Death. I read the following this morning and gasped. Please tell me it isn’t true.

  • @WKAiken: The first step should be the admission by the USCCB that they were deceived into a pact with Satan when they thought that Obamacare would ensure that “basic health care should be accessible to all in a just society.”

    How about having to publicly admit which of them voted for this monster? I’m very sure my bishop did and he still is taking the high road with not using very strong language to teach his flock about this issue. He uses words like, “more study needs to be done” and “full implications are not clear”. How much worse does it have to get for our Bishops to stand up to the President and say “We will go to jail in order to prevent you from taking away our rights.” Cardinal George did not mention that step.

  • The only option is to disobey the order from the HHS Secretary. It is unconstitutional on its face. Make the Obumbler Misadministration enforce it. Don’t pay the “fines”.

  • Is this the proper Catholic decision? When faced with a mandate to provide a drug to employees that may (but not necessary be used to commit a sin) the Church would rather not provide charity to the poor? I am proud of the Catholic Church’s role in providing charity and the mere suggestion that we would consider placing a higher priority on the issues surrounding contraception is horrible.

  • “I am proud of the Catholic Church’s role in providing charity and the mere suggestion that we would consider placing a higher priority on the issues surrounding contraception is horrible.”

    Contraception is sin. Romans 6:23 – “The wages of sin are death.” Therefore, the wages of contraception are death. A contraceptive culture deserves neither social justice nor the common good.

    Repentance and conversion, personal holiness and righteousness come before health and prosperity, never afterwards. Matthew 6:33 – “Seek ye FIRST the Kingdom of God….” 1st Chronicles 7:14 – “If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.”

    John 6:24-27 tells about what happened when the 5000 got free handouts.

    24 So when the people saw that Jesus was not there, nor his disciples, they themselves got into the boats and went to Capernaum, seeking Jesus. 25 When they found him on the other side of the sea, they said to him, “Rabbi, when did you come here?” 26 Jesus answered them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you seek me, not because you saw signs, but because you ate your fill of the loaves. 27* Do not labor for the food which perishes, but for the food which endures to eternal life, which the Son of man will give to you; for on him has God the Father set his seal.”


    Note that they didn’t get a 2nd free handout.

    The purpose of the Church is to save souls from hell. Your job and my job as part of our repentance is to feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, comfort the sick, etc. But the Church’s job is saving souls. We are not here to create a man-made kingdom of social justice and the common good. To think that is hubris of the worst sort. We are called to do our part to save souls from the fires of hell.

    Personally, I think that maybe God is arranging things to get the Church out of the health care business and back into the business of saving souls.

  • When I saw the title I thought, “They finally ‘got it’, robbing Peter to pay Paul.”

  • The HHS mandate renders the Church incapable of accomplishing its Mission: the salvation of souls. jesus came to save souls from sin, not to end temporal suffering.

    Justice and peace fanatics insist on doing Charitable Works with other people’s money, through the coersion of government. NB: If you do it with someone else’s money, it is not Charity. Refer to the Gospel story of the “Widow’s Mite.”

  • I’m with Penguins Fan on this – isn’t that the 5th option? Civil disobedience? Don’t offer the coverage, don’t pay the fines, and take it to the mat. Imagine the news coverage – hauling religious off to prison, students blocking entrances to universities, faculties holed up on limited rations. It would make Janet Reno look like a seasoned diplomat.

  • I agree, T. Shaw with one exception: Jesus told Peter that the gates of hell will not prevail. So HHS mandate or no HHS mandate, God’s will is going to be done, and He will establish His Kingdom, not some self-appointed, self-described “do-gooder” who thinks that with just a bit more or your tax money and mine, we can provide social justice to all. Let’s have that story of the widow’s mite (Mark 12:41-44 and Luke 21:1-4).


    1* He looked up and saw the rich putting their gifts into the treasury; 2 and he saw a poor widow put in two copper coins. 3 And he said, “Truly I tell you, this poor widow has put in more than all of them; 4 for they all contributed out of their abundance, but she out of her poverty put in all the living that she had.”


    It’s interesting that in the Gospels of both Mark and Luke , right after this parable, Jesus began talking about the destruction of the Temple. I do NOT think that is coincidental. Maybe the man-made temple of social justice is about to come down.

  • Jaha,

    Reno! Anyone remember Waco, TX 1993?

    I can see the MSM painting the Church radical as they did the Branch Davidians and I can imagine Obama’s Reno clone killing . . .

    And I can envision Kmiec and all the rest nodding OKAY.

  • Elm – excellent point. I am pretty sure my parish priest did as well, in that he dances all around the issue but doesn’t come out against it directly. I would wager that we could comprise a list of “first steps” that would all make very good sense. The discernment would be to find the one (or more) that starts the effort in the right direction while keeping to Church teachings about repentance, forgiveness and propitiation.

    I have family members – obviously intelligent, composed, stable and successful – who got hooked. My own wife got hooked. We still don’t talk about that. It’s no mystery to anybody with an open pair of eyes that there is only one power behind this serpent’s tongue, and we know who that is.

    The aim is to repeal this montsrosity and remove its supporters from public life, not to abase or demean thse who may have been duped.

  • If it comes to the linking of arms to peaceably resist the arrest of those doctors, administrators and other medical people in the demosntartion that We Have Chosen Who Our Authority Is, then color me there. Martin Niemöller’s plaint will not be repeated. If they come for us first, then they will come for no more after, for they will be defeated.

    Like the song says, “We were meant to be Courageous.” The rest of the verse fits, too.

  • Here is the evil genius of obamacare. The IRS is the punitive enforcing agency for obamacare. It should be disgusting to a free people that the health care reform act grants breathtaking powers to the IRS, not as a taxing agency, but as an enforcer of this and many other mandates now emanating from this hideous legislation. Civil disobedience in what form? If the penalties are not paid, assets are seized….plain and simple—and no arrests are even necessary save but some protesters in the streets. The goal here is for a centralized government takeover of all civil and religious institutions through tax and regulatory fiat (aka soft tyranny), and this is just the beginning.

    Authentic charity is the instrument of our salvation. Church institutions provide a modus operandi for the pastoral work of saving souls. I once was privileged to hear a wise missionary say that he invites us to work with the poor, not so much for the sake of the poor, but to save our souls, the givers, through charity—that is our giving of time, treasure and talent. Therein is the true evil of statist mandates—it takes away the instruments of authentic and salvific charity and replaces it with the tyranny, disorder and a false god of of ‘public good’.

  • There are spiritual and religious reasons for how Catholics vote. 54% of Catholics who voted in the last Presidential election, voted for the pro-abortion, pro-infanticide Democrat candidate. Not only is the economy and foreign affairs in the tank, our country, spiritually, is in the tank as well. I was not one of the 54%. I can’t understand how any Catholic could have voted for Obama…except other than he was a Democrat. The problem with our country and the threat to our Constitution is coming from the Democrat Party…abortion, gay marriage, removal of prayer and seasonal displays in public structures and institutions, etc. The key to turning our country around is in the hands of the same people who put people into office who did this to our country. The question is: Is being a Democrat more important than to being a Catholic? Obama and his administration have shown us what being a Democrat means. Is that really who Catholics are? The bishops should find out and find out quickly. They should authorize a Voter Registration drive in every parish from now to the end of Registrations for this November election to give Catholics an opportunity to state who they are in a public way, and a legal way – by who they will give their name identification to. The result of that Voter Registration drive will pre warn the Bishops what the outcome of the election will be so they can better plan what actions they will take. Implementing the HHS regulations in August will, I’m sure, be suspended by court action until after the U.S. Supreme Court rules on Obamacare. How Catholics choose to register to vote would also be influential in that decision. I wouldn’t look for a lot of new Republican registrations because such Catholics deciding to remain Democrats all these years couldn’t emotionally make that choice. I know; I’ve been there and know how difficult that is. But I would hope that there would be a LARGE number of those Catholics who would remove their names from the Democrat Party Rolls and register as Independent, as I did years ago. If that happened, that would indicate the outcome of this Presidential Election because Catholics are the determining voting block on who becomes the President. It would tell judges what the public sentiment is of an important segment of the population which is directly impacted by Obamacare and the HHS regulations. And it would be a gut check for so many Catholics, including the clergy, as to how honest they are to what they profess to belief and pray for in the Profession of Faith and the Lord’s Prayer in Sunday Masses. Do they put God’s will before man’s?

  • “So, if you want respect for your religion, start beheading people. That’s the real message.” Instapundit

  • Is there a mandate in the Scripture that says everyone is entitled to health care or that everyone must be cured? I recall visit the sick, help the unfortunate and the poor. We are to treat them as Jesus would. He did not heal all that came to him. The real healing is the forgiveness of sin and the promise of eternal life.

  • @Stillbelieve:The question is: Is being a Democrat more important than to being a Catholic

    What is the first adjective that we put in front of our names? This can be very telling about our moral standing.

  • often from immigrants

    Savvy point from his Eminence. Obama is anti-immigrant! Hit him with his base!

    On another point, it is all well and good to be up in arms about violating the conscience of religious institutions, but last I checked the First Amendment applied to the rights of individuals at least as much, if not more so. Why should individuals be required to violate their consciences with this Obamanation?

  • Liberty of religion is more than freedom of worship. Freedom of worship was guaranteed in the Constitution of the former Soviet Union. You could go to church, if you could find one. … We fought a long cold war to defeat that vision of society.

    Oooh – the bishop obliquely named Obama a commie.

    Onward Christian soldiers!

  • Off topic: Today’s Sadie Hawkins Day: look out bachelors!

    What do you call a leader who flaunts the law? “Hitler” or “commie” will do!

    The regime orders (you must buy health insurance with these benefits/terms, and the Church must provide with these features) people around. Big brother knows better. He owns you.

    It’s worse. Anyone know the why Argentina (educated people, rich natural resources) is an economic basket case while Chile prospers?

    America is becoming Argentina: a corrupt, banana republic where the rules for commerce and property change at the whim of the regime, e.g., HHS mandate and the recent foreclosure/”robo-signing”) confiscation.

  • “America is becoming Argentina: a corrupt, banana republic where the rules for commerce and property change at the whim of the regime, e.g., HHS mandate and the recent foreclosure/’robo-signing’) confiscation.”

    It’s called Democracy, T. Shaw – two wolves and one sheep voting on what’s for dinner:

    Crucifige Eum, Crucifige Eum – that’s what liberty, equality and fraternity have always been about, from the time of Pontius Pilate through Robespierre’s revolution to Obama’s hope and change.

Fiat voluntas tua sicut in caelo et in terra, Secunda pars

Thursday, June 30, AD 2011

The following is the second part to this post. It is recommended that you read the first part before reading the second part.  There has been some request for the original address given by Cardinal George.  I have been unable to locate it on the web and have not gotten around to scanning it in.  As soon as I get a chance, I will try to get to up and available, barring any unforeseen copyright issues.  For now, my humble comments and summary will have to suffice.


While the time from Augustine to Aquinas embodied a realization of Cardinal George’s incarnation metaphysics, things began to take a turn for the worse with Duns Scotus, a contemporary of Thomas. Scotus radically separated God from the world, and in so doing separated grace from nature. Instead of a metaphysics of participation, Scotus promulgated that, “God is no longer that generous power in which all things exist but rather that supreme being next to whom or apart from whom all other beings exist” (George, 15). Scotus begins what Descartes (through philosophy) and Luther (through theology) would complete. “In both its Lutheran and Cartesian manifestations, modernity assumes a fundamental split between the divine and the non-divine and hence implicitly denies the participation/communio metaphysics that had shaped the Christian world thought the ancient and medieval periods” (George, 16).

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6 Responses to Fiat voluntas tua sicut in caelo et in terra, Secunda pars

  • “It is here that Cardinal George begins his critique of John Courtney Murray. “It is no secret that John Courtney Murray’s thought was shaped by a neo-scholastic two-tiered conception of nature and grace,” a conception that is “a departure from the communio and participation metaphysics of the patristic and medieval periods” (George, 32).”

    It is not just neo-scholastic, but sholastic and in fact Thomistic. Communio theology of the 20th Century seems to flow from de Lubac’s thought which George seems to endorse. George’s critique of Murray then flows from this Communio theology.

    I think there are very good critiques of de Lubac at this point which render his view of nature and grace, and those who depend on this interpretation of nature and grace, doubtful at best. Following from that, critiques of Murray and the American experient are rendered less coherent also.

  • What garbage. More pointless blackening of bl. Duns Scotus reputation by ignorant Thomists or at least their lackeys..

    1. What, Scotus didn’t believe in the Incarnation? What on earth is “incarnation metaphysics”? Scotus did in fact believe in the incarnation, and he has an extensive metaphysical discussion of it. Ergo etc.

    2. How did Scotus radically separate God from the world?

    3. The bit about participation is just plain false. I have read many hundreds of pages of Scotus in latin and he never explicitly rejects participation. (NB: “particpation metaphysics” as a “worldview” that everyone enjoyed before Scotus is itself a chimera of post modern theology). What does do is express puzzlement regarding how participation fits into the scheme of the Aristotelian four causes.

    4. The quote is misleading:

    “God is no longer that generous power in which all things exist but rather that supreme being next to whom or apart from whom all other beings exist” (George, 15).

    this article makes it sound like Scotus said this, but this is George’s own paraphrase. The scholastics have no conception of a “generous power”. It was a matter of dispute whether creatures existed in the divine power or divine intellect prior to their creation. Aquinas’ view, that they are contained in the divine power, was never the common opinion.

    The second part of this quote betrays the origin of this nonsense. The claim that Scotus made God just a being among beings is derivative of “Radical Orthodoxy”, who say that Scotus’ view of univocal concepts results in this. But this conflicts with George’s other claim that Scotus introduced a radical divide between God and the world. You can’t have both, buddy: either there is a radical divide between God and creation, or God is just like us.

    Of course, the usual reply will be that George isn’t trying to exegete Scotus, he’s just drawing a narrative that explains how things are in the present. Truth and falsity of the narrative doesn’t matter, because it’s a narrative, and what’s important is that we are relevant and engaging the contemporary culture.

    Fine, whatever. And people wonder why there are so many crises in the church?

  • I didn’t realize this was cardinal George; I thought it was Robert George. I might have been more temperate. But he should know better.

  • lee,

    Interesting your points on Scotus. Don’t know much about him but I thought George’s comments about him sounded simplistic. I also wouldn’t say that George is completely a Thomist. As I pointed out, most Thomists think that De Lubac was wrong in his interpretation about Nature and Grace. Thus De Lubac is a poor Thomist at best. George however runs with De Lubac’s thought as a given. Thus making George a poor Thomist?

    I think George is a faithful priest and bishop. But like you, I think his understanding of philosophy sometimes misses the mark. Thanks for your insights. And I don’t mind the force of your comments. Even bishops occasionally need a good argument back.

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Of Saint Sabina’s, Guns and Palin Derangement Syndrome

Sunday, June 26, AD 2011

For those of you fortunate enough not to live in the Land of Lincoln, or, as it is commonly known today, The State Everyone Laughs At, you may have not been familiar enough with the State and therefore thought that Cardinal George’s most recent attempt to remove Father Pfleger, or as many of us refer to him as Father “Flakey”, would have caused him to mend his ways.  Those of us who have followed Father Pfleger for decades, realized that this was merely the latest useless huffing and puffing of Cardinal George, and that Saint Sabina’s would soon return to normal, which is as a bastion of Left Wing political orthodoxy, with an exteme emphasis on race,  where Catholicism is very much an afterthought.

This was graphically demonstrated by Father Pfleger having Gary McCarthy, Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s new top cop, preach a “sermon” during Mass earlier this month.  Chicago has an atrocious murder rate.  It also has the strictest gun control laws in the nation.  Here are Gary McCarthy’s deep thoughts on this contradiction:

“Let’s see if we can make a connection here. Slavery. Segregation. Black codes. Jim Crow. What, what did they all have in common? Anybody getting scared? Government sponsored racism.”

“Now I want you to connect one more dot on that chain of the African American history in this country, and tell me if I’m crazy: Federal gun laws that facilitate the flow of illegal firearms, into our urban centers across this country, that are killing our black and brown children,” he said.

McCarthy blasted the NRA, telling parishioners that their communities have paid the price while the gun manufacturers are getting “rich and living in gated communities.”

And he told an anecdote of just one night with the New York Police Department. After returning home from investigating a pair of shootings, he said he flipped on the television to relax, only to find “Sarah Palin’s Alaska” being broadcast.

“She was caribou hunting, and talking about the right to bear arms,” he said. “Why wasn’t she at the crime scene with me?”

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37 Responses to Of Saint Sabina’s, Guns and Palin Derangement Syndrome

  • Don, as the last holdout to concealed carry, Wisconsin becoming the 49th state to have just passed it, Illinois is not laughable in my opinion. I do not see how allowing citizens to carry a handgun hidden in their pants or whatever improves public safety.

    As ratified by the States, the Second reads: “A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” Gun advocates seem to ignore the first four words.

    In fact, the original raison d’être for gun rights included the following:

    * deterring undemocratic government;
    * repelling invasion;
    * suppressing insurrection;
    * facilitating a natural right of self-defense;
    * participating in law enforcement;
    * enabling the people to organize a militia system.

    Only one had to do with the right of individual self-defense while the rest focused on collective security.

    When I lived in AZ, I kept a loaded revolver under my car seat but never in the house because my wife feared the kids would get to it. I used to plink in the desert mostly, but it was more lethal and efficient than a baseball bat should i get into an altercation of some kind. Still, there were moments of road rage that caused me to come close to menacing others who I deemed to be a threat to my safety. Once I got cut off by a bunch of Mexicans on the freeway or began waving their weapons at me. For an instant I thought I’d respond in the same way and who knows what would have happened next? But being outnumbered and outgunned I refrained from reaching for my gun and instead got off at the next exit rather than try to be a macho man.

    There came a time when I got tired of target shooting and sold the gun and never got another one.
    Perhaps in time Illinois will succumb to pressures of the NRA and join the rest of the nation in allowing concealed carry. Then maybe you won’t be laughed at so much.

  • “The Second Amendment is a doomsday provision, one designed for those exceptionally rare circumstances where all other rights have failed – where the government refuses to stand for reelection and silences those who protest; where courts have lost the courage to oppose, or can find no one to enforce their decrees. However improbable these contingencies may seem today, facing them unprepared is a mistake a free people get to make only once”.

    Judge Alex Kozinski

  • The militia when the Bill of Rights was drafted Joe consisted of all adult white males in most states, and all adult males in some states. The idea that government could take away a right to bear arms from an individual law abiding citizen would have struck the Founding Fathers as bizarre.

    I haven’t shot a weapon since my Army days. I have no interest in them. However, I do like living in rural Illinois where most of my neighbors are armed, some of them quite heavily. I think it does have a negative impact on the crime rate when it is assumed that almost everyone in an area has a firearm.

  • The pictures we see today if we are looking are clear to a lot of us.

    I have never owned a gun and never had one in the house or car or in my pants. Why, because for about seventy of my years I never saw the need for one. I lived in what one would call safe neighborhoods all of my life. Yes, there were areas in every city I’ve lived in which were not as safe as mine and the local police spent most of their time and our tax dollars in those areas.
    However, having observed the gradual decline of our society over the last thirty to forty years like any other normal citizen who is the least bit concerned with his or community safety we realize two things for sure.
    One. The local police anywhere today are by numbers and fiscal constraints unable to cover adequately the responsibilities we as citizens are really expecting of them. They will tell you that today more than ever they only are able to handle the steam off the boiling crock-pot of crime in our major cities. There is no room in the jails and the courts are overloaded with cases to the extent police feel compelled to “allow” petty crime to go unnoticed. We might add that honest cops who would be watching out for us are responding to 911 calls from fast food outlets by customers upset that the restaurant is out of French fries. Get the picture?
    Two. Our federal government, now in the hands of career politicians able to assert themselves as a separate “ruling class” charged with providing our every need cradle to grave, has gradually assumed the role of our “protectors” by actually using things like the plight noted above as cover for their own protection from a public now aware of their intentions to remove (relieve us of) our freedoms and liberty and be “transformed” within a modern fundamentally changed America. They are convinced as a group of elite intelligentsia with unlimited power and benevolent compassion that we are incapable of caring for ourselves and they are duty bound to take our weapons before we are so unappreciative of their obvious plan that we should, God forbid, take action to prevent it from happening. But some still don’t get the picture.

    What is clearly disheartening to many Catholics at this very moment is we have to witness the amazing contrast in ecclesiastical maneuvers of making Pfleger even more famous by extending his reign and at the same time shutting down Fr.Corapi. A very sad picture for the church in America.

  • Well stated, Bill Sr., except it was Corapi who shut himself down not his superiors. He could have fought it out but didn’t. Now on his website there are ads to join something called “The Life Universal Church.” Jim Jones redux.

  • Joe
    I have heard many of Fr. Corapi’s sermons and lectures but I haven’t visited his website as yet. I wonder if there is such a new thing as “The Life Universal Church” will it be condemned by the Vatican or will Corapi be invited to Sunday mass along with the Muslim and their Quran as being proposed now to expound on the equality of their faith.
    I hate having to say things like this

  • “Only one had to do with the right of individual self-defense while the rest focused on collective security. ”

    1 is plenty

  • There are no collective rights, the Constitution is all about individual rights and strictly limits government power.
    Not only does the Constitution limit government it limits democracy, individual rights are protected againt the whims of popular opinion.

  • While I think there are serious problems with John Corapi’s behavior as of late, watching Fr Flagrant (a little Ann Coulter lingo there) get reinstated makes Corpai’s suspension look like an injustice on steroids. Hey, maybe you Chitown Catholics can petition the Holy See to have Bp. Mulvey installed as Abp. of Chicago. It seems at least when he suspends a priest, it actually sticks. And Fr. Pfleger can start his own ministry, Barack Lap Dog.

  • Re Bill Sr.’s remarks.

    The homicide rate in this country has declined by about 55% in the last 30 years. Currently, the Chicago municipality is suffering a rate of 16 homicides per 100,000 residents per annum. The metropolitan mean for the country as a whole in 1980 would have been around 13 per 100,000 and that for the central cities where the slums are higher still. The inner city homicide rate where I grew up peaked at 27 per 100,000 in 1993. This same report assesses it at half that, even though the inner city comprehends a smaller and poorer slice of the whole metropolis than was the case 18 years ago. Homicide rates in the five boroughs of New York City are now lower than they were in 1963. Some things have improved in this country in recent decades.

  • Art,
    Those are great stats and we should be proud of ourselves.
    Now over the same period can you give us a rundown on the abortion rates both overall and in urban areas in particular. While we’re still smiling.

  • Our household has four firearms. Three handguns and one 12 GA coach gun. For those who wish to know a coach gun is a side-by-side shotgun with a short barrel used on stage coaches for close in defense. Though it has nice IC and M chokes so can be used in the field. Don’t need accuracy when using it. Approximating the target at 40 yards is enough. Add to that a concealed weapons permit and all I can say is come and take ’em,

  • I’ll also add that our neighborhood has more than enough guns of varied types to deter any criminals.

  • Phillip that reminds me of one of my friends, a deputy sheriff, who could easily arm a squad from his personal arsenal. He is also one of the easiest going, live and let live persons I have ever met. However, he is amply prepared if he encounters people who do not share his peace loving view of life.

  • I tried to laugh, but it came out kind of choked, as I live in NY. I’ve long found it disturbing that in this state self-defense seems to be earnestly frowned upon…. non-lethal pepper sprays and stun guns are out, and knives are suspect, and handguns a trial to obtain. Even slingshots with wrist braces (which help weaker individuals to shoot with more force and accuracy) are mystifyingly forbidden by law.
    The joke is, “when seconds count, the police are only minutes away!” About twenty minutes away—in good weather—assuming the phone is available, and you’re not out in the woods somewhere facing down two-legged or four-legged predators. So, “facilitating a natural right of self-defense” is a very immediate, important gun right to me, and NY doesn’t “facilitate” too well.

  • Yeah, Don, trust in God but keep your powder dry.

  • That has always been my sentiment Joe, but normally we do not quote Oliver Cromwell on this blog! 🙂

  • OK, Don, I’ll bite. What do you have against Ollie?

  • OK, Don, I’ll bite. What do you have against Ollie?


  • “I’ll bite. What do you have against Ollie?”

    Uhhh, this IS a Catholic blog, right? And beyond that, do you really need to ask an Irishman why Cromwell is persona non grata?

  • I thought Protestants were your “separated brethren.” At least that’s what the Pope says. And in Cromwell’s case, he was separated all right — literally from his head and body. Isn’t that enough revenge for you Catholics? 😕

  • Don, “…and forgive us our trespasses and those who trespass against us…”

    Ah, the blood spilled in the name of God. I suppose Charlemagne gets a pass and Pope Alexander IV who established the Office of the Inquisition within Italy in 1254. That Torquemada was a charming fellow after working hours. :mrgreen:

  • I have ancestors who were persecuted by Protestants and others who were persecuted by Catholics.
    As Christian Americans, in today’s world, we will either hang together, or we will hang separately, to paraphrase Ben Franklin.

  • Federal gun laws that facilitate the flow of illegal firearms, into our urban centers across this country, that are killing our black and brown children,” he said.

    Did he ever get around to mentioning who was on the trigger side of those firearms? I have never heard of a federal gun law discharging a firearm.

    A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

    You seem to draw the exact opposite meaning from that sentence than I do. You interpret the first clause to define the purpose of the latter, that is – because we need people to be in our well regulated militias, they need to have arms to serve in them. That is, the right to bear arms serves the need of the militia. Personally, I see that as bass ackwards.

    I see the first clause as explaining the that, because a militia is a necessary evil, the people need to be free to carry arms to protect themselves from the militia, should it turn on them. The right to bear arms is a protection for the people against a well regulated militia gone bad. Seems that, the founding fathers having just experienced standing armies under British rule, it would make more sense for them to intend this as a protection for the people, not a recruiting call for the army.

  • Tu Qouque is always a poor argument Joe. As for the blood spilled over religion, a popular topic for agnostics and atheists, it is a terrible thing although it no more discredits religion than blood shed to preserve a nation discredits the nation. The admonition of Christ to forgive our enemies has never been taken as a call for amnesia or a “get out of jail free card” as to justice either in this world or the next.

  • All credible research, I have seen, indicates there is a correlation (not causation) between conceal carry laws and a reduction in the crime rate: 30% lower homicide rate and 46% lower robbery rate.

    The author of Freakonomics argues that backyard pools are more dangerous to children than guns. He states children under 10 years old are 100 times more likely to die in a backyard pool than from a gun related incident.

    Joe’s argument that when he carried a gun he almost used it is a reason that it is best that Joe doesn’t carry a gun. It does not speak to others carrying a gun. His argument is anecdotal evidence and policy decisions should not be made on anecdotal evidence alone. Other people have used the same argument or one very similar to it and it makes me wonder if there is some type of “talking point” memorandum propagated by the anti-gun advocates.

    Finally and most importantly to me, the Catholic Church’s position on gun control is nuanced but grounded in the protection of human life:

    “[One has] the right of legitimate defense by means of arms exists. This right can become a serious duty for those who are responsible for the lives of others, for the common good of the family or of the civil community. This right alone can justify the possession or transfer of arms”. (Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, “The International Arms Trade: an Ethical Reflection” in Origins 8 (24), 7 July 1994, p. 144).

    The Catechism states:

    “The legitimate defense of persons and societies is not an exception to the prohibition against the murder of the innocent that constitutes intentional killing. “The act of self-defense can have a double effect: the preservation of one’s own life; and the killing of the aggressor…. The one is intended, the other is not.”

    Love toward oneself remains a fundamental principle of morality. Therefore it is legitimate to insist on respect for one’s own right to life. Someone who defends his life is not guilty of murder even if he is forced to deal his aggressor a lethal blow:

    If a man in self-defense uses more than necessary violence, it will be unlawful: whereas if he repels force with moderation, his defense will be lawful…. Nor is it necessary for salvation that a man omit the act of moderate self-defense to avoid killing the other man, since one is bound to take more care of one’s own life than of another’s.

    Legitimate defense can be not only a right but a grave duty for one who is responsible for the lives of others. The defense of the common good requires that an unjust aggressor be rendered unable to cause harm. For this reason, those who legitimately hold authority also have the right to use arms to repel aggressors against the civil community entrusted to their responsibility.”

    Part 3, Section 2, Chapter 2, Article 5, Subsection 1, Heading 2, Paragraphs 2263-2265 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church

  • Why Joe, I have nothing against Oliver Cromwell other than the following:

    1. His bloody persecution of the Church in England and Ireland.

    2. His massacres of priests and Catholic laity in Ireland.

    3. His stealing of massive amounts of Irish land from the rightful owners and giving the dispossessed Irish the choice of Hell or Connaught.

    4. The fact that in memory of all this the worst curse that any Irish man or woman can give is “The curse of Cromwell on ye!”

    Other than that, I am certain “Old Ironsides” was a fine fellow! 🙂

  • Catholic Lawyer, et al…To be clear, I am not anti-gun and my decision to give up my gun was mine alone and not meant as a template for others. Each person has to make his or her own decision. And I happily concede and indeed affirm the right of self-defense in whatever manner is necessary, whether as an individual or a nation.

    Don says, “As for the blood spilled over religion, a popular topic for agnostics and atheists, it is a terrible thing although it no more discredits religion than blood shed to preserve a nation discredits the nation.”

    The key phrase would appear to be “to preserve a nation” and must mee the following conditions, according to the U.S. Catholic Bishops, “for legitimate military defense by military force”:

    * the damage inflicted by the aggressor on the nation or community of nations must be lasting, grave, and certain;
    * all other means of putting an end to it must have been shown to be impractical or ineffective;
    * there must be serious prospects of success;
    * the use of arms must not produce evils and disorders graver than the evil to be eliminated. The power as well as the precision of modern means of destruction weighs very heavily in evaluating this condition.

    As you know, Augustine, Aquinas and many other leading theologians weighed in heavily on the definition and questions of what is a “just war” often disagreeing with each other. Such inquiries, then, are not confined to “agnostics and atheists” alone as you would suggest but are grist for the earnest quest for truth.

  • “but are grist for the earnest quest for truth.”

    And no more gets Oliver Cromwell off the hook for his misdeeds than any other red herring that may pop up. At any rate this is getting a few light years off target from the subject of the post, and I would request that all further comments be directed at the subject of the post.

  • Don, in that vein (or is it vain?), herewith a quote from Mario Puzo for your reaction:

    A lawyer with his briefcase can steal more than a hundred men with guns.

  • Mr. McCarthy needs a history lesson.

    Gun control was actually an element of Jim Crow, with Southern states passing restrictions on the right of blacks to keep and bear arms. The same was true during the antebellum period. In fact, if you read the Dredd Scott decision, it explicitly argues against treating blacks as citizens because if you did so they would have the right “to keep and carry arms wherever they went.”


  • “A lawyer with his briefcase can steal more than a hundred men with guns.”

    Depends upon the lawyer and the hundred men. 🙂

  • Good answer, Don! You’re really on your game today. One of these days I’m gonna getcha though 😕

  • To Joe Green,
    Father Corapi is fighting this. He is willing to put himself in Civil court to fight the charges by the former employee. As Bill Donahue of the Catholic League as said, the American priest has less civil liberties than any segment of the United States population.
    I have been on all of Fr.Corapi’s Facebook pages for almost a year. I have never seen anyone promoting the Life Universal Church. If you are a Facebook user you would know that there are all kinds of adds on the right hand side of the page. They chaneg form each time you log on. I have had ads for Wonen ‘s Dating Services for Women, Lesbians Untied, Rainbow coalition. Am I gay-No, but if you logged on to my page you might think I am. I can click on an x by the side of it and click on an add asking not to post that particular ad. They ask do you find this offensive, uninteresting, sexually explesive, against my views, boring. Over time, and much time and clicking on ads, I have found very very few gay oriented ads on my page. Father’s pages were set up by followers of his ministty. He does have 2 that He set up and reads occasionally. As views of those pages, we cannot click on those ads. It has to be the page moderator on a group page or Father himself. I hardly think he is watching his 2 pages 24/7. I will mention it to the moderators of the page and post this on his page, hoping he reads it. Maybe he can contact Facebook. He stated on his page that he is not leaving the priesthood, not seeking lacization. He is fighting for his civil and spiritual rights.

  • Thank you Marcia
    It’s sad but not surprising that today a Catholic priest is a preferred and easy legal target with an almost automatic assumption of quilt not just for the accuser but also the mainstream media. I will stand with Father Corapi and his word and honor rather than the gleeful press thirsty for a kill.

  • First impression is that Pfleger’s church looks more like the Jerry Springer show than any part of a Catholic mass. As a Chicago native, how far the city has fallen when they believe they have to bring in someone who by his accent sounds like he’s from New York to be Police Chief of Chicago…talk about the ultimate insult.

Father Michael Pfleger Removed and Suspended

Wednesday, April 27, AD 2011

Cardinal George is to the left and Father Pfleger is to the right.

Updates at the bottom. . .

The Chicago Tribune and WBEZ are reporting that Cardinal George of Chicago has removed from his parish of Saint Sabina and suspended Father Michael Pfleger sacramental priestly faculties ultimately due to his disobedience.

In a public radio show Father Pfleger threatened to leave the Catholic Church if he were to be reassigned to a Catholic High School by Cardinal George, his archdiocesan archbishop.

Cardinal George was disappointed in this particular response, “If that is truly your attitude, you have already left the Catholic Church and are therefore not able to pastor a Catholic parish(.)”

A Catholic priest’s inner life is governed by his promises, motivated by faith and love, to live chastely as a celibate man and to obey his bishop. . .Breaking either promise destroys his vocation and wounds the Church. . .With this letter, your ministry as pastor of Saint Sabina Parish and your sacramental faculties as a priest of the Archdiocese are suspended.

An “associate” minister of Saint Sabina’s Church, Kimberly Lymore, promised to have an “official” response from the Saint Sabina “leadership” to Cardinal George’s actions.

Well I have to say is Father Pfleger had certainly pushed the boundaries of patience on this one.  To say that this was a “shock” or unexpected would be disingenuous of Father Pfleger.

Cardinal George is well within his authority as an apostle of the Church to govern his flock as stated in his role as Archbishop.

Obedience is certainly expected of all archdiocesan priests, but to have Father Pfleger not only disobey the wishes of his archbishop, but publicly threaten to leave the Church if he were to be reassigned to another post went beyond disobedience.

Pray for Father Pfleger, Cardinal George, and the parish of Saint Sabina’s.

_._ has a roundup of the coverage on the suspension of Father Michael Pfleger from the Catholic blogosphere and the secular media here.


Hat tip to Chris Johnson of the Midwest Conservative Journal.


Update I: Here is the letter Cardinal George handed to Father Pfleger personally simultaneously telling him he doesn’t want to ‘hear it’ about his options.  For the letter click here.

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24 Responses to Father Michael Pfleger Removed and Suspended

  • It’s about damned time!!!!

  • I pray Cardinal George’s actions will be put to good use and become an occasion for sober reflection and renewal for Fr. Pfleger and the entire parish of Saint Sabina. May Fr. Pfleger return to obedience to Christ and His Church.

  • Fair enough.

    Independently from the controversy itself, to threaten to “leave the church” if one doesn’t get his own way is not acceptable in a priest. To do so publicly is even worse.


  • Father “Flakey” has been asking for this for a very long time. I predict that he will take Saint Sabina’s now out of the Catholic Church. He has been a de facto one man church for years in any case.

  • My question is: Why did it take so long to remove this flake? Its been known for 30 years that he was a flamin’ liberal, social justice radical! Lets see if Cdl George will have the guts to stand by his actions.

  • This reminds me of George Stallings a few years back. I hope that Pfleger doesn’t take anyone with him.

  • To be fair, it would be a shock to finally be held accountable after how many years of being a national clown.

  • I agree with Stephen E Dalton, there is no room in the Church for justice! I desire Mercy not Justice Christ said! There are a few more priests and bishops that seem a little too just for my tastes as well. Christ didn’t care about the poor “they will always be with you”… why should a priest be wasting his time with poor inner city African Americans when he could be in the rectory brushing up on his Latin and do some real good for the faithful.

  • No doubt Patrick it is simple racism that accounts for the action of the Cardinal, rather than the fact that Father “Flakey” has been in frequent defiance of his superiors throughout his three decades at Saint Sabinas, has often threatened to go into schism if he were removed from Saint Sabinas and, among other charming incidents that we in Illinois know well, has been involved in the following:

    “Pfleger generated controversy by inviting Al Sharpton to speak at a Mass during Black History Month celebrations. Cardinal Francis George disapproved of Sharpton’s appearance, due to Sharpton’s support of abortion. Sharpton was also a presidential candidate at the time, and archdiocese officials were concerned that having a political candidate speak in church would cause them to lose their tax-exempt status. However, George decided that trying to stop Sharpton from coming “would be a futile gesture and a waste of effort”.”

    “In May 2007, During a Rainbow/PUSH Coalition protest outside a suburban Chicago gun shop, Pfleger was accused of threatening the life of the owner, John Riggio. The Illinois State Rifle Association released a tape where Pfleger was heard telling the assembled crowd, “He’s the owner of Chuck’s. John Riggio. R-i-g-g-i-o. We’re going to find you and snuff you out… you know you’re going to hide like a rat. You’re going to hide but like a rat we’re going to catch you and pull you out.” Pfleger later claimed his use of the phrase “snuff you out” was misinterpreted.”

    “Cardinal George rebuked Pfleger, saying, “Publicly delivering a threat against anyone’s life betrays the civil order and is morally outrageous, especially if this threat came from a priest.” Pfleger claimed that he did not intend to use the word “snuff” as a slang term for “kill”, but rather as a substitute for “pull”, as he used later in his statement.”

    “On May 25, 2008, Pfleger gave a sermon at Trinity United Church of Christ, then Presidential candidate Barack Obama’s church, where he made controversial statements concerning Senator Hillary Clinton, Obama’s opponent for the Democratic Party nomination. Pfleger said, “I really believe that she just always thought, ‘This is mine. I’m Bill’s wife. I’m white, and this is mine. I just gotta get up and step into the plate.’ Then out of nowhere came, ‘Hey, I’m Barack Obama,’ and she said, ‘Oh, damn! Where did you come from? I’m white! I’m entitled! There’s a black man stealing my show!'” He then pretended to wipe tears from his face, a reference to Clinton’s emotional speech before the New Hampshire primary, and added, “She wasn’t the only one crying. There was a whole lot of white people crying.”

    “After hearing about Pfleger’s remarks, Obama said he was “deeply disappointed in Father Pfleger’s divisive, backward-looking rhetoric”. Pfleger later released a statement through St. Sabina that read, “I regret the words I chose Sunday. These words are inconsistent with Sen. Obama’s life and message, and I am deeply sorry if they offended Sen. Clinton or anyone else who saw them.” On May 31, 2008, Obama resigned his membership in Trinity Church, saying that his campaign had caused the church to receive excessive media attention. On June 1, 2008, Pfleger released a longer apology to the St. Sabina parish regarding the incident and its aftermath.”

    “On June 3, 2008, Cardinal George asked Pfleger to take a disciplinary leave of absence from St. Sabina. George said in a statement, “I have asked Father Michael Pfleger, Pastor of St. Sabina’s Parish, to step back from his obligations there and take leave for a couple of weeks from his pastoral duties, effective today. Fr. Pfleger does not believe this to be the right step at this time. While respecting his disagreement, I have nevertheless asked him to use this opportunity to reflect on his recent statements and actions in the light of the Church’s regulations for all Catholic priests. I hope that this period will also be a time away from the public spotlight and for rest and attention to family concerns.” Pfleger resumed his parish duties on June 16, 2008.”

    “On April 11, 2010, Pfleger delivered a 70-minute sermon in which he said the Apostles “had run out on” Jesus. “They had turned their backs on Him. They had left the One they had been with for three years, 24/7, and they ran away from Him when He most needed them. Only John, at the foot of the Cross and the women. That’s why there should be woman priests. That’s why there should be married priests. That’s why there should be women bishops and women cardinals.” The Archdiocese of Chicago later issued a statement by Pfleger in which he apologized for his remarks but reaffirmed his support for women’s ordination. Pfleger said on his Facebook fan page that he was told to apologize, despite still holding those opinions. Pfleger denounced critics of his comments as “ignorant haters” who took his homily “out of context” and used them “for their own particular motives.”

  • Patrick, there’s plenty of room inthe Church for true justice. There is, IMHO, no room for a demagogue who stirs up class, racial, and religious hatred nder the guise of so-called “social justice”.
    Don, thanks for the background on Fr Flakey. This man needs a psychiatrist!

  • Once upon a time, persons with religious vocations made vows of chastity, obedience and poverty.

    St. Che, Pray for us!

  • Fr. PFleger is a great example of Jesus Christ and his teachings. He should have left a long time ago. Fr. Pfleger now has the opportunity to open his Own Church.God would be pleased with him. May God bless you Father Pfeger. Go out and Preach the GOOD NEWS !!!

  • Wow !! I am truly shocked to see so many haters on a Catholic Web Site.
    Did you forget “WWJD”, What would Jesus do ? Apparently you did.
    And to say that there is no room in the Catholic Church for social justice ?? That’s totally false. Social justice is one of the main teachings of the Catholic Church.

    While I don’t agree with everyhing Fr. Pflager has said and done, and feel that he has been out of line several times, I think there is no doubt that he has good intentions, and has made many positive changes in his community. That being said though, he is still a Catholic Priest, and is bound by the same set of rules as any other proest. He can’t make up his own rules.

    So if you are true Catholics, how about praying for Fr. Pflager and his congrgation, and for Cardinal George, instead of being haters. Please !!!
    Calling him Fr. Flakey ?? Really ?? Do you think Our Lord would be proud of you for that ??

  • Fr. Pfleger now has the opportunity to open his Own Church.

    Yes, a great example of Christ’s life and mission – taking his marbles and going home.

    That being said though, he is still a Catholic Priest, and is bound by the same set of rules as any other proest. He can’t make up his own rules.

    Yes, and therefore most of what you have just written is therefore kind of silly, don’t you think? Fr. Pfleger is the disobedient one, not those calling him out for his behavior. That you are more concerned about the tone of those who disapprove of this man than in his actions is quite revealing.

    Oh, and adding additional exclamation points and question marks doesn’t make you sound much more insightful.

  • Did you forget “WWJD”, What would Jesus do ?

    What would Jesus do to someone who misused his authority as a representative of JESUS to 1) promote a literal baby-murder supporting member of Caesar’s crowd, 2) kept bringing scandal onto the Church, 3) was publicly spreading false teachings, 4) metaphorically flipped off the just authority over him, metaphorically doing the same to Jesus?

    Um… My imagination doesn’t go that far, but I’m thinking that the money changers might be willing to commiserate.

  • “Calling him Fr. Flakey ?? Really ?? Do you think Our Lord would be proud of you for that ??”

    Perhaps not. Christ might have preferred that I used some of the terms that He used: whited sepulcher, serpent, viper, etc. “Father Flakey” seems rather mild in comparison, perhaps too mild. Thanks for the correction T. Doyle!

  • What would Jesus do?

    Matthew 7:22-23 gives the answer:

    “Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”

  • WWJD? He might have taken a knotted cord to Father Fleger and ejected him from His Father’s House.

  • Whatever it is they’re teaching over there at St. Sabina’s, it sure the heck isn’t how to spell.

  • Stephen,
    You accuse Fr Pfleger of being a flaming liberal, social justice radical as if thats a bad thing. I guess if you are white, male and catholic in chicago social justice is a threat to your racist way of life. Father Pfleger is hated for one thing and one thing only in chicago, his commitment to the African American Community. It is a well known fact that the Chicago Catholic Community is one of the Most viral racist nests in the country. White catholics in chicago have such a bad reputation that I am embarassed to say I am catholic in other parts of the country because I am always asked how I could be black and catholic in chicago. I always respond by saying it is different for me I belong to St Sabina!

  • RadCat, I do not live in Chicago. I’m male, but I’m not “white”. I’m a Catholic of multi-racial ancestory, (Jew, Arab, sub-saharan African, Turkish, Scot-Irish, English, Spanish, Portuguse, Italian etc.) who’s ancestors practised Judaism.
    You are correct that your kind of “social justice” is a threat to my way of life. I am afraid of a fanatic like Fr. Pfleger who stirs up the very racial hatred that he’s supposed to be preaching against. He supports abortion. He’s for Obamacare which will destroy my health care. In general, he’s just a radical, socialist, Alinskyist who wants to throw his weight around thinking he’s a big shot.
    Finally, you don’t even know me, but you presume to call me racist? If so, why did I contribute to a reward for the capture and arrest of unknown suspects who spray-painted racial slurs on a house and two cars against two little Chinese girls with Down syndrone? This revolting incident happened in Elmwood, Il, the town my ancestors settled and helped found in 1830. I’m proud to be an Elmwood decendant, it’s a pity you’re so ashamed of being from Chicago.

  • Hey Radical Catholic, do I get to point out that Pleger has long been a disgrace since I am part Cherokee, or does my white blood prevent me from pointing out the obvious?

  • Radical Catholic,

    Don’t you find it a contradiction to be a Catholic if the Catholic Church is so offensive to you?

    God bless.

Is The USCCB Responsible for ObamaCare?

Friday, July 16, AD 2010

The American Life League (ALL) is making a strong case of placing most of the blame for passage of ObamaCare squarely on the shoulders of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB).

What the ALL is alleging is that the USCCB was very desperate to push for universal health coverage that they compromised on some key principles.  One of which was that of abortion where instead of fighting against abortion they decided to stick their heads in the ground and use “abortion neutral” language.

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10 Responses to Is The USCCB Responsible for ObamaCare?

  • It was imprudent for the USCCB to advocate for universal health care. While it is important and appropriate for the USCCB to explain the moral rules of engagement regarding access to health care, how a society can best satisfy those moral imperatives is outside its competency. Its opinions are no more or less instructive or insightful than mine, yours, etc. One of the most important moral rules of engagement regarding health care is that abortion is unacceptable.

  • I agree with Mike, but this is BS. The bishops (who certainly favor HC reform of some sort and in many or most cases prefer a government based system) were one of the loudest and most influential voices against abortion and the lack of conscience provisions. If it weren’t for them and other pro-life orgs like NRTL Obamacare would have steamrolled through with generous abortion provisions. In large part it was their influence with “pro-life” Dems that resulted in making the matter an obstacle to be overcome by Dem leadership and gaining what little protections there are.

  • There = their. Illiterate or something.

  • RL,

    Got it fixed for you buddy.

    Cardinal George personally telephoned pro-life GOPers to push for the pro-life amendment when it was in the House.

    He didn’t do any such thing when Bart Stupak and his Benedict Arnold’s reversed course and put the death sentence on innocent unborn children.

  • I’m with RL. The USCCB was one of the loudest opponents of ObamaCare. To say that they are somehow responsible for it passing is bizarre.

  • Thanks Tito.

    The bishops spoke to anyone and everyone who would listen. They made it clear to Stupak too. The bishops were rightfully disappointed in the “pro-life” Dems that changed their vote, and outraged at the shenanigans and betrayal of the CHA. I use the owrd outraged because that is pretty much what it would take for them to speak so disapprovingly publicly.

  • Why is it that anyone continues to think that our bishops are men of honor? Which of them would accept martyrdom in support of Church? Why was it necessary for the Vatican to issue rules about the protection of children?

    Blind mouths, as Milton called them.

    Blind mouths! that scarce themselves know how to hold
    A sheep-hook, or have learn’d aught else the least That to the faithful herdman’s art belongs!
    What recks it them? What need they? They are sped;
    And when they list, their lean and flashy songs
    Grate on their scrannel pipes of wretched straw:
    The hungry sheep look up, and are not fed,
    But swoln with wind and the rank mist they draw
    Rot inwardly, and foul contagion spread:
    Besides what the grim wolf with privy paw
    Daily devours apace, and nothing said:

  • Gabriel,
    I think you paint with an exceedingly broad and uncharitable brush. And to answer your insulting rhetorical question, I bet quite a few would accept martyrdom if it came to that — but like STM have no interest in initiating or accelerating the process.

  • Politics are a problem for the USCCB. There are many so called “Catholics” who continue their support of todays culture and relativisms in Congress. The only fault of these Bishops , for most of them , is their inability in their teaching of the Church’s tenets to really enforced these teachings on those politicians after meetings and consultations with these so called “catholics” who continue to support the culture of death. A good example is the record of Nancy Pelosi and yet the extreme measure of excomunication is not used. These leaves many of the laity to wonder why they also can not pick and choose what tenets they may or may not follow, or disagree with, or why if these politicians are are able to cotinue their ” standing ” in the Church why then can’t they.

  • Mike Petrik said Friday, July 16, 2010 A.D.
    I think you paint with an exceedingly broad and uncharitable brush. And to answer your insulting rhetorical question, I bet quite a few would accept martyrdom if it came to that — but like STM have no interest in initiating or accelerating the process”.

    My point is quite simple: our bishops are failing in their duty. Compare ours with the bishops in China, Vietnam, Africa.
    A.N.Whitehead described religion in our time as “decoration for comfortable lives”. Our bishops are afraid; they congregate behind the chancery walls and the bureaucratic pomposities of the USCCB.

    Consider but the inanities of Fr. McBrien, published in so many diocesan papers. Uncharitable is permitting his misleading notions to be published under episcopal authority. {One among many examples: Fr. McBrien believes that ensoulment of the fetus happens three months after conception – which is to say that an abortion before the 3rd month is not murder].

    Bishops like hanging around politicians. They are not unlike the Arian bishops who delighted in being received at the court in Constantinople. Plus ca change…

Cardinal McCarrick and Sister Carol Keehan

Friday, June 25, AD 2010

The ever exceptional Catholic blogger Diogenes couldn’t help himself as he commented on “Sister” Carol Keehan’s reading at a Mass for retired Archbishop Theodore Cardinal McCarrick.

“Sister” Carol Keehan, who is the president of the Catholic Health Association, endorsed ObamaCare.  Thus declaring themselves in contradiction with Francis Cardinal George and the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops who opposed ObamaCare.

Here is Diogenes’s brilliant column:

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, who has devoted so much of his episcopal career to the effort to make everyone comfortable, is approaching his 80th birthday, and already the celebrations have begun.

(No, I don’t mean the celebrations of the fact that as of July 7, “Uncle Teddy” will be ineligible to vote in a papal conclave—although that’s definitely reason enough to chill the champagne.)

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11 Responses to Cardinal McCarrick and Sister Carol Keehan

  • More likely—and we’re talking dollars-to-donuts here—she was chosen as a signal that in the benign view of Cardinal Ted, we’re all still friends, despite our little disagreements on subjects such as whether or not babies should be dismembered in the womb.

    So, basically, Diogenes lied, and Tito reinforces the slander. Got it. Tito will probably next say “you slander me.” I am used to it. It’s his response when people call him out.

    CHA and Sister Keehan do not think babies should be dismembered in the womb. As long as you continue with this misrepresentation, all you get is proof of your own ill will.

  • Henry K.,

    You wonder why you are placed on moderation?

    It’s because of your unsubstantiated ad hominem attacks on many of the columnists here at TAC.

    “Sister” Keehan is clearly going against Church teaching as she gleefully accepts a pen from President Obama in celebrating the murders of millions more innocent children.

  • Tito,

    Not only is she a sister, she didn’t celebrate the murders of millions… nor did Obama. And you talk about “unsubstantiated ad hominem attacks…”

  • Henry K.,

    She pushed hard, using the Catholic Health Association, to help pass ObamaCare.

    ObamaCare will fund millions of abortions.

    Your comments are bizarre and without basis.

  • She pushed hard to get health care reform. She believed that the reform bill will not fund more abortions. Therefore, she is not celebrating the death of more children.

    Now show us where it funds abortions which were not already being funded by the government.

  • Henry K.,

    She has reached the age of reason.

    She has received a fine education in Church teachings prior to accepting final vows.

    She has purposely and consciously decided to oppose Church teaching by supporting and pushing for the death of millions of innocent unborn children.

    She was gleeful in her acceptance of one of the pens that President Obama gave her that he used to sign ObamaCare with.

    Now show us where it funds abortions which were not already being funded by the government.

    Are you trying to be funny?

  • Guys,

    Anyone who supports Obama supports a man who believes in the “right to chose”.

    Anyone who supports Obamacare supports the “right to chose”.

    Now people can use all the obfuscation and sophistry they want, but one cannot in good conscience support either Obama or Obamacare.

    I wish people would pay attention to the daily Old Testament readings this week from 2nd Kings. The people of Judah were deported to Babylon because they sacrificed their own children to Baal, Asherah, Molech and the other Canaanite gods. How different is that from Obamacare which provides health insurance coverage to murder babies in the womb?

    Yes, God IS merciful and loving, and He is about to show Obama, Sister Keehan and every other liberal democrat how merciful and loving He is towards the unborn.

  • “So, basically, Diogenes lied, and Tito reinforces the slander. Got it. Tito will probably next say “you slander me.” I am used to it. It’s his response when people call him out.”

    Mr. Karlson,

    Back it up. You made the accusation. Provide proof. Otherwise you have nothing to offer except ad hominem.

  • Excellent, Mr. Primavera; and, of course, Mr. Edwards.

    Ancient fertility cults sacrificed first born sons (sometimes daughters, less valued) to appease the (river, rain, sun, etc.) gods and reap good harvests.

    Esau gave up his birthright for a bowl of lentils. Sister Carol, Henry Karlson, et al have aided and abetted the sacrifices of 47,000,000 (and counting) unborn babies for a chimera: social justice.

    And, THEIR trump card was commented on by F. A. Hayek: “ . . . ‘social justice’ is not, as most people probably feel, an innocent expression of good will towards the less fortunate, but that it has become a dishonest insinuation that one ought to agree to a demand of some special interest which can give no real reason for it. …I have come to feel strongly that the greatest service I can still render to my fellow men would be that I could make the speakers and writers among them thoroughly ashamed ever again to employ the term ‘social justice.’”

    Repent, confess, do penance, amend lives and (through personal good works) glorify God.

  • Our Secretary of Health and Human Services, who is a “Catholic”, is virulently pro-abortion,( she supported and was friends with Tiller the baby killer so IMO that says it all)and that gives one great concern when considering that she is the person who has the authority over the decision-making for the funding of the Community Health Centers.

    Here are the Bishops’ concerns:

    In the Senate bill, there is the provision that only one of the proposed multi-state plans will not cover elective abortions – all other plans (including other multi-state plans) can do so, and receive federal tax credits. This means that individuals or families in complex medical circumstances will likely be forced to choose and contribute to an insurance plan that funds abortions in order to meet their particular health needs.

    Further, the Senate bill authorizes and appropriates billions of dollars in new funding outside the scope of the appropriations bills covered by the Hyde amendment and similar provisions. As the bill is written, the new funds it appropriates over the next five years, for Community Health Centers for example (Sec. 10503), will be available by statute for elective abortions, even though the present regulations do conform to the Hyde amendment. Regulations, however, can be changed at will, unless they are governed by statute.

    Additionally, no provision in the Senate bill incorporates the longstanding and widely supported protection for conscience regarding abortion as found in the Hyde/Weldon amendment. Moreover, neither the House nor Senate bill contains meaningful conscience protection outside the abortion context. Any final bill, to be fair to all, must retain the accommodation of the full range of religious and moral objections in the provision of health insurance and services that are contained in current law, for both individuals and institutions.

  • Those Catholics who support Obama and Obamacare have their reasons. I think they are much weaker then finding justification for the Iraq War or even the folloy of equating such support with support for changing the rules of engagement in Afghanistan.

    But they will hold onto whatever straw they need.

The U.S. Bishops Dereliction of Duty

Monday, June 21, AD 2010

Michael Voris lays down the law on those bishops that refuse to be our shepherds.

To view RealCatholicTV click here.

For RealCatholicTV’s The Vortex click here.

For the RealCatholicTV YouTube Channel click here.

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18 Responses to The U.S. Bishops Dereliction of Duty

  • This is shameful. I really expected better from American Catholic than this.

  • I agree with ctd. Many of the accusations are unfounded; disagreeing with the bishops approach or saying they could do more does not mean they should burn in hell. But the accusation that the bishops have mostly lost their faith is scandalous and outrageous, especially as he has not one iota of proof to back that claim other than his anger, fueled by his “stb” that the bishops aren’t doing what HE wants them to.

  • Michael Voris is 100% correct. The USCCB is infiltrated with liberalism and progressivism. Righteousness and holiness come FIRST before immigration reform, studies of Islamic holy writings (yup, that’s on the USCCB web site) and all the other social justice stuff.

    We cna expect MORE icelandic volcanoes, MORE Haitian earthquakes, MORE undersea oil geysers as long as we continue on this path of destruction.

    Repent for the King of God is at hand. That’s the message that the USCCB does NOT teach. Does NOT.

  • I’m so sick of our Bishops being attacked by those using such shameful language as Mr. Voris uses against succcessors of the Apostles. No matter what they do, they’re attacked from both the left and the right. Depending on who you’re listening to, they’re either doing too much or not doing enough.

    Our Bishops are not perfect, but they’re the shepherds that Christ and His Church have given us. We don’t have to agree with everything they say or do, but we do owe them basic respect and deference. Who the hell is Mr. Voris to preach to the Bishops about their being endangered of hell? And what world does Mr. Voris live in where the Bishops are avoiding controversy and are afraid to take a stand on issues? Has he been paying attention for the last year-and-a-half?

    Maybe someone should tell Mr. S.T.B. to S.T.F.U.

  • When the laity are demanding that bishops abandon the faith and embrace sodomy and heresy they are being “prophetic”

    when the laity point out that the bishops have abandoned the faith and embraced sodomy and heresy it’s time for the stupid laity to shut up already!

    Besides, how dare he use pre-Vatican II words like “hell”! My liberal pro-everything-democrat bishop said it doesn’t exist!

  • The scandal lies in either the bishops lack of fidelity or in your choosing to attack the messenger.

  • Tito:

    He doesn’t offer a shred of evidence, and he attacks ALL of the bishops. Even assuming he’s just talking about the USCCB, he doesn’t explain why he’s angry (other than not denying communion). Indeed, the Church has been improving lately-becoming more orthodox and more dedicated to traditional liturgy. The bishops also bravely stood against Obamacare. I really don’t why he’s so angry.

    So it’s not the messenger, it’s the fact the the message lacks substance and truth. Though I have to admit, the brilliant use of the random posting of words next to him really drove home his message for him /sarcasm. 😉

  • Michael,

    When the Bishops publicly excommunicate Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi and all the other self-described Catholic politicians who make a mockery of the faith while supporting abortion and gay marriage, then we will know that change has come to the USCCB. The Bishops weren’t brave to oppose Obama care. They were forced into by circumstance. But if they risk losing tax-exempt status by putting apostate and heretical politicians on notice, then that will be cause for celebration.

  • Michael,

    you concede the point you are trying to make when you admit that bishops are becoming more orthodox, which requires that they were previously less than fully orthodox.

    I guess speaking truth to power and exercising the prophetic role of the laity is only allowed if one is seeking to make converts to sodomy, heresy, and modernism.

    It is increasingly clear that a great many of our bishops do not believe what the church believes.

  • a) There is no such thing as “the bishops”, there are bishops. Some of these bishops are simply amazing in their orthodoxy, courage, and pastoral understanding. Some are average. Some are poor. A few are bordering on heterodox.

    b) I’m not clear how one would say “It is increasingly clear that a great many of our bishops do not believe what the church believes.” First off, I’m aware of not generally issued teaching by the US bishops which is contrary to orthodoxy. Nor am I aware of some rising tide of heterodox statements coming out from bishops. If anything what’s noteable is that many of those who caused most embarrassment in the past are gone or going: Weakland was disgraced and resigned. Mahony is retiring shortly, etc.

    c) This frustration is most frequently voiced around political concerns, yet if anything the bishops have become noteably more politically independant in the last decade. The number of bishops who spoke out against Obama’s honorary degree from Notre Dame was noteable, as was the strength of the statements surrounding the health care bill. We’ve come along way from the Bernadine era of the USCCB, much less the Catholic ghetto, when many of the bishops were active agents within the Democratic Party framework.

  • He should have made some qualifying remarks, but I think he does describe the modal type in the American episcopacy.

  • Michael Voris continues his discussion here:

    But on the USCCB web site what do we see?

    New Website Highlights Catholic Church’s Significant Role in Immigration Debate for Almost a Century

    Regional Bishops Issue Joint Statement on Migration

    West Coast Catholic-Muslim Dialogue Compares Sacred, Pious Writings

    What about righteousness, holiness, repentance and conversion? What about Jesus as King of kings and Lord of lords, the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world, the Lion of the Tribe of Judah?

    Instead, we have a USCCB article entitled, “Pro-life Chair Voices ‘Grave Concern’ Over FDA Plan to Approve Abortion Drug for ‘Emergency Contraception’”

    Grave concern? That’s what the USCCB has? Grave concern? Whoopie-Doo! The bishops have grave concern!

    Let them do to the pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage Catholic politicians – Dem or Repub – what St. Paul did to Hymenaeus and Alexander in 1st Timothy 1:19-20. Let them put their grave concern into action. Hand the apostates and heretics over to satan exactly as St. Paul did so that they can be taught a lesson. There is clear Scriptural precedence.

    PS, the overwhelming majority of such politicians are DEM, NOT Repub no matter how much some people here may dislike the Repubs. And that’s a fact.

    Another PS, vote Constitution Party. It’s platform is closest to Church teaching.

    This whole thing is so frustrating.

  • Michael D.,


    Everyone else,

    We all know what Michael Voris is saying and to whom.

    Maybe he could have chosen less harsh words, but the point was made.

  • Ezekiel:

    No. Holiness does not necessarily mean effective administration/leadership.

    For example, John Paul II was a very holy man and did many things well. But in regards to the Legion of Christ and the sex abuse scandal, he made many mistakes.

    Maybe the bishops have made many mistakes in the past in leading their flocks, but that doesn’t mean they’re morally corrupt. I’m not saying none of the bishops are heterodox, but if you’re going to make the claim you need to rely on more than broad generalizations and start showing some evidence and some numbers.

  • A bishop’s primary duty, his obligation to Christ and the Church, is to preach the Gospel. Additionally, he is the principle teacher within his diocese and has a duty to teach. “woe to me if I do nit preach the gospel”

    If by holiness you mean utter failure to fulfill their
    obligation to Christ and the Church then we are surely being led by the holiest bishops since Henry VIII required oaths.

    If you would like to start discussing the utter moral corruption of the USCCB or individual
    bishops we can do that. But, we need only
    look at the CCHD, Garvey’s appointment to CU, and Ted Kennedy’s canonization to know exactly where the wolves stand.

    Pope Benedict is indeed slowly improving the quality and orthodoxy of our bishops, thanks be to God, but we are talking about improving from having bishops who have been openly
    practicing homosexuals and conducting of pagan rites and worship of false gods in cathedrals.

  • Paul Primavera:

    New Website Highlights Catholic Church’s Significant Role in Immigration Debate for Almost a Century

    Regional Bishops Issue Joint Statement on Migration

    Are you contending that the condition of migrants is not a moral issue of concern to the Church? The Holy See would certainly disagree. Such a position would be inconsistent with the official teachings of the Church and Sacred Scripture. Moreover, one of the documents point out that the American bishops have been involved in the issue for “almost a century.” Their alleged heterodoxy, therefore, began long before any “modernist” episcopacies.

    West Coast Catholic-Muslim Dialogue Compares Sacred, Pious Writings

    John Paul II, again in official teachings, made it clear that ecumenical dialogue is a Catholic obligation, not just an academic endeavor. Your “proof” of bishop dereliction is actually proof of obedience to the Church.

    Instead, we have a USCCB article entitled, “Pro-life Chair Voices ‘Grave Concern’ Over FDA Plan to Approve Abortion Drug for ‘Emergency Contraception’”
    Grave concern? That’s what the USCCB has? Grave concern? Whoopie-Doo! The bishops have grave concern!

    So essentially your complaint comes down to a disagreement over a choice of words? The words seem appropriate considering the audience – public leaders, not Catholics, but why should that matter?

    These type of flimsy charges are not worthy of serious consideration, but are nevertheless disrespectful of our shepherds and harmful to the body of Christ.

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  • CTD & Jay,

    When the bishops begin behaving like Catholics and bishops then they probably will garner the respect they have lost due to their cowardliness.

    Of course if you want to continue to defend the indefensible so be it.

    But while crap like this:

    continues, then I won’t hesitate to point out facts that show the incompetence of some of our shepherds.

Edward Feser on Stupak, the USCCB and Subsidiarity

Wednesday, March 31, AD 2010

Pertinent to recent discussions of Stupak and the role of the USCCB in advancing the health care bill, Edward Feser offers his reflections on Bart Stupak, the USCCB and the Catholic principle of subsidiarity:

… before the health care bill vote, the USCCB urged Congress either to alter the bill to prevent federal funding of abortion or to vote the bill down. (The USCCB also objected to the bill’s failure to extend coverage to illegal immigrants.) But the letter in which this request was made also emphasized that “for decades, the United States Catholic bishops have supported universal health care,” that “the Catholic Church teaches that health care is a basic human right, essential for human life and dignity,” and that it is only “with deep regret” that the bishops must oppose passage of the bill “unless these fundamental flaws are remedied” (emphasis added).

Needless to say, the impression these words leave the reader with – whether the bishops intended this or not – is that, were abortion (and coverage of illegal immigrants) not at issue, the moral teaching of the Catholic Church would require the passage of the health care bill in question, or something like it. In fact the teaching of the Church requires no such thing. Indeed, I would argue (see below) that while the Church’s teaching does not rule out in principle a significant federal role in providing health care, a bill like the one that has just passed would be very hard to justify in light of Catholic doctrine, even aside from the abortion question. Nevertheless, as I say, the bishops’ language would surely leave the average reader with the opposite impression. And as the bishops themselves remind us, they have “supported universal health care” for “decades,” in statements that also would leave the unwary average reader with the impression that Catholic moral teaching strictly requires as a matter of justice the passage some sort of federal health care legislation. On the day Obama signed the bill into law, Cardinal Francis George, a bishop with a reputation for orthodoxy, urged vigilance on the matter of abortion while declaring that “we applaud the effort to expand health care to all.”

Read the rest!

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9 Responses to Edward Feser on Stupak, the USCCB and Subsidiarity

  • I thought I was a voice in the wilderness. Very well written. Much better than I–a simpleton could have written.

    I often wonder, when I pray for my Bishop, Do I ask God to give me the strength to be obedient or do I pray, “Lord save me from my Bishop when he basically flaunts his own personal views as Catholic teaching.”

  • “The government must also see to the provision of insurance facilities, to obviate any likelihood of a citizen’s being unable to maintain a decent standard of living in the event of some misfortune, or greatly increased family responsibilities.” Pacem in Terris 64.

    Federal health care reform ensuring universal coverage was necessary. I too am disappointed with the implementation but I’m still not convinced it necessarily violates subsidiarity (though I personally believe it does in some relatively minor ways).

    The “overreach” may be justified as consumer protection measures which prevent anticipated problems. Few people would consider government health inspections a violation of subsidiarity. It would be possible to write a law that allows individuals to personally inspect sausage factories but that’s impractical. Likewise, some of the supposedly overreaching regulations of ObamaCare restrain individual choice but for a good reason: government is better positioned to make those choices.

    I think maybe a good test of whether something violates subsidiarity is whether it actually harms communities of a lower order. Like I said, I believe ObamaCare does though in relatively minor ways.

    A second question is whether minor infractions against subsidiarity render the entire bill immoral. For example, I think the cap on HSA contributions is too low. It actually harms those who use HSA’s. Would that alone warrant opposition to an otherwise good (for sake of argument) bill?

  • Likewise, some of the supposedly overreaching regulations of ObamaCare restrain individual choice but for a good reason: government is better positioned to make those choices.

    That *could* possibly be the case, but I would argue that a government that considers abortion to be health care, a right, and a HC cost savings measure is patently disqualified to make those choices. Ditto for considering the intentional killing of the disabled as a “family matter”.

  • I wouldn’t consider the government disqualified to make decisions on all matters just because it makes the wrong decision on one matter. Besides, except for when voters want to kill non-voters (abortion and euthanasia), government has a bias in favor of providing more, not less. I find it odd that those who claim the government loves spending too much money also believe the government would like to kill grandma to save money.

  • A wrong decision is one thing, a wrong decision(s) on fundamental matters are another. When most people talk about the government loving to spend money, I think they’re referring to spending as a means of acquiring power and building dependencies to maintain power, coupled with the typical inefficiency and bureaucracies that accompany it.

    As far as killing people or allowing people to be killed to save money. Why not? It gives them power over lives, and as you pointed out, we’re talking about non-voters. Pelosi said abortion coverage would be a cost savings to Obamacare, and I just saw this:

  • There’s nothing odd about it. Few claim that the government likes to spend money arbitrarily. It spends too much on things it shouldn’t and not enough on things it should, because of its distorted and often perverse hierarchy of values.

  • The thing is that Pelosi and Krugman and the rest of these guys are right. Like I brought up in my column, if you make healthcare the responsibility of the government, then you make a thousand other things the responsibility of the government as well.

  • Interesting that Cardinal George is applauding the expansion of health care to all but the unborn.

    But that’s what happens when you put your Democratic Party loyalties before your faith.

  • The precedent is very bad, very bad.

USCCB and John Carr In Denial

Wednesday, February 3, AD 2010

After the breaking news that showed direct links between John Carr, a top executive of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, with pro-abortion groups dating back 30 years, John Carr has denied any wrong doing.

Below watch the full eight minutes for the most current update of this USCCB scandal on‘s Daily Catholic News Roundup and The VortexVic Faust and Michael Voris will report how both the USCCB and the pro-abortion group scrubbed their websites simultaneously to hide any connection they had with each other plus much more.

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10 Responses to USCCB and John Carr In Denial

  • Msgr. George Kelly pointed out decades ago that the weakness of the Church in the U.S. is a weakness of the bishops – their refusal to be active bishops who actually bishop. They have allowed their dioceses to be run by their bureaucracies. They are afraid of the orders of nuns and priests and of college presidents [who seem envious of the bishops].

    Now the chickens have come home to roost. The inability of the bishops to face up – and immediately – to complaints of sexual abuse has cost dearly in financial terms. But the cost has been worse in spiritual terms. How can we trust our bishops who seem spineless? Consider the refusal of Bishop Morin even to countenance that he may be wrong in his support of the CCHD and the CCC. There is said to be a crisis of vocation to the priesthood. But who would want to submit to orders from the cowardly?

  • Not to mention Harry Forbes continuing to give glowing movie reviews to anti-Catholic films under the USCCB banner:

    He’s still there:


  • I think we have to be cautious to lay the blame solely on the bishops. I suspect that some of them are complicit; however, many are simply saddled with other functions and are failing only to supervise petty bureaucrats. Also, many have displayed poor judgment but they aren’t infallible and neither are we. When a mistake is made, it needs to be corrected – not hidden. I wouldn’t want to be a bishop who willfully allowed this when all our sins are made known to all. Ouch!

    I state this because I get the feeling that many people perceive any criticism of the USCCB as an attack on the bishops. The USCCB is a Behemoth that is often not run by the bishops. In my opinion this is why the USCCB is useless. Apparently it is also corrupt. Attacking the USCCB is not an attack on bishops, it is an attack on a collective body that seems to have a life of its own.

    I also notice Carr stated that he did not know about an organization that promoted abortion AND homosexuality. Why didn’t he say OR? Could it be that different organizations promoted abortion and homosexuality? That would make his statement true. Unless it is the same organization that promotes both evils – then he wasn’t lying. He was misleading and sly like a serpent. I pray that this man isn’t a Sodomite – for the sake of his soul.

    Thanks for keeping us posted Tito – this is a big deal. The light exposes evil. Keep shining it.

    I smell more smoke.

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  • AK,

    Absolutely right.

    It is the USCCB as a whole that is the issue, not individual bishops.

    But the spotlight will be placed on bishops that are directly linked to the CCHD and CCC that continue to mendaciously defend this cooperation with evil.

  • Will there be any expose on the people who keep pushing big business insurance, and the insurance promotion of abortion for the sake of money?

  • Yes, one hopes so. Such is the nature of the human species. Business, govet. and Bishops error.

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  • Thanks for keeping us posted Tito – this is a big deal. The light exposes evil. Keep shining it.

    I smell more smoke.

    So John Carr is now an “unfaithful Catholic” using the cover of social justice to subvert the Church so beloved of REAL Catholics like Michael Voris, S.T.B.???? Hey, guys, that’s not smoke you’re smelling.

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Why is Cardinal George Silent about Abortion in the Current Health Care Bill?

Monday, January 4, AD 2010

When Cardinal George requested that pro-life Republicans vote for the Stupak amendment to the health care bill, he was shaming conservative American legislators that they need to stand up for what they claim in public.  Cardinal George discounted reasonable Republican objections  that this was just a ploy by Nancy Pelosi to get pro-life Democrats on board knowing full well that all pro-life language would be stripped in the joint chambers conference committee.

Was Cardinal George this naive to fall for this parliamentary trick?  Can we assume he isn’t this naive?

No, Cardinal George is not this naive because why would the Vatican choose him to lead a diocese?  The Vatican certainly takes its time to make wise and knowledgeable decisions don’t they?  The Holy Spirit guides them in their work, granted that this is done primarily through the teachings of the Church.  Though we can be reasonable enough knowing that the Vatican wouldn’t choose someone who is incompetent to be a shepherd to his flock.

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29 Responses to Why is Cardinal George Silent about Abortion in the Current Health Care Bill?

  • Well, this is no excuse for the Cardinal — but the Republicans who thought about not voting for Stupak were acting on a consequentialist impulse. For all they knew, Pelosi could have had the votes and by their miscalculation, a bill with Capps language could have left the chamber when it could have gone differently.

    You don’t vote “present” and leave the unborn undefended on the presumption that such a provision would be stripped from the final bill. That’s consequentialism. You vote for the provision because it is the morally right thing to do regardless of the circumstances. I agree with the Cardinal because the GOP was behaving according to a moral theory (one that they tend to follow a lot in my view) that is deeply flawed.

    The fact that the Cardinal has not used his position to make statements toward members of the opposite party is open and free for criticism.

    I just don’t think the Republican objections were reasonable — it was a strategy to fight the health care legislation by any means, to the point of compromising basic ethics.

  • Moreover the writer you cite — whose views obviously differ from my own — far from just being partisan in his presenation, which I have no qualms with per se, but it is obviously clear he has not done his homework.

    Last I checked, the USCCB has not endorsed the final passage of the health care reform legislation. Actually, the opposite is true.

  • But I do believe the GOP was right to vote against it. The Dems simply didn’t have the votes to begin with. They went against their better judgment, but got out-foxed by Cardinal George.

  • Eric,

    I know the opposite is true, but why the silence on behalf of Cardinal George?

    What will the USCCB do if the bill passes with abortion being funded by the federal government? Will they oppose that one particular premise yet hail the rest of the bill as “good” for America? Splitting the difference, but compromising their moral authority and hence cause a scandal to the whole Church?

  • Well, I will maintain my civil disagreement. I think such a position incorrectly applies natural law norms. In fact, the angered response of pro-life organizations at the news of the GOP helping a pro-life measure sink was quite appropriate.

    The Democrats did not appear to have the votes, sure. But what if for some reason they did? And we did not forsee it? Who forsaw even after the legislation passed in the House that it would survive the Senate hurdle?

    I agree entirely with Represenative Pitts who after the legislation passed, together with pro-life House Democrats and Republicans, reiterated you do not play politics with human life. The unborn should not be subjected to some consequentialist political gamble to stop legislation that one opposes. You vote for the unborn and do everything within the restraints of the moral law to stop bad legislation. I think to act otherwise amounts to moral compromise.

  • Thanks for being civil!


  • I have no idea. I’m not speaking in favor of Cardinal George. I am sometimes disheartened because I believe Republicans get a “pass” from pro-life Catholics often because of their opposition to abortion. So, I sometimes see such a thing as “finally.” On the other hand, when it stops for the other side that is problematic — we cannot have a double-standard, which is the very thing I oppose. So I am not defending the Cardinal in that regard — only in his initial criticism.

    The USCCB will surely speak out against the bill. I think they would actively in the Midterm elections advocate that Catholics be conscious of candidates’ position on that issue.

    If anything, the USCCB — if happy with the other provisions in the legislation — would only want the abortion language changed. In other words, roll back the abortion funding only.

  • wow, excellent post. Very revealing..and sad at the same time. If our Catholic leaders don’t stand up for the unborn, who will?

  • Eric,

    I’m with you on that.

    Though the USCCB has criticized the current bill in the Senate, so they deserve that recognition.

    I’m waiting to see the final outcome and see how they respond.

  • Chicago political blogger Tom Roeser has long asserted that the Archdiocese of Chicago is for all practical purposes a subsidiary of the Cook County Democratic Party (which he refers to as “The Squid”). Perhaps that would explain why Cardinal George saves his criticism for Republicans?

    Roeser is a very conservative Catholic (politically and liturgically) and I don’t always agree with everything he says, but he may be onto something here. Here is a recent post by him on this topic:

    I note that the two staunchly pro-life auxiliary bishops he names as having voted in the Republican primary are the two most often mentioned as prospective candidates for just about every episcopal vacancy that has come up in the last few years….

  • Eric,

    I agree that one can never vote for the creation or increase of abortion funding. Moral prohibitions bind, as the latin says, semper et pro semper. But must one always vote against such funding, if one can absent oneself from voting at all? Moral exhortations don’t bind the way prohibitions do. You can never steal, but you can refrain from making a contribution to the poor at times. You can never contracept, but you don’t have to be trying to get pregnant at every moment.

    You raise an important point, and I think it’s worth discussing.

  • Strategically, the Republicans should have voted against the amendmendment. However, the bill passing without the amendment would have placed them in an ethical dilemma and I can see whey they voted for it.

    My outrage is at Pelosi and the top Democrats for using the abortion issue as a bargaining tool to pass healthcare legislation. The bishops should be more outspoken about this point.

  • I don’t see the problem. The bishops opposed the House’s expansion of abortion, and the pro-life congressmen voted against it (actually, voted in favor of the Stupak Amendment which blocked it). The bishops again opposed it in the Senate, and were unsuccessful. When the final bill comes to Congress, if it increases abortion, the bishops (and, I hope, a sufficient number of congressmen) will oppose it.

    It’s not the bishops’ duty to anticipate political maneuvers. Indeed, if the bishops denounced the Stupak Amendment on the suspicion that it would be dropped in conference, that would only weaken their voices. They’ve been clear: nay on abortion coverage.

  • Where is it written that the bishops’ consciences must be represented by the USCCB? If every bishop wrote to the representatives and senators from his district and spoke to the people of his diocese, that would certainly have more effect than the words of the [arch]bishop of Chicago. As Abp. Chaput put it neatly “bishops should not be speaking to politicians. They should be speaking to their flock and the flock speaking to the politicians”.

    Cardinal George is not a sort of American pope.

    The problem, I suppose, is that our bishops have lost much of their credibility with the sheep because of the cover-ups in the sex scandals.

    As far as morality goes, it is the personal effort that counts with Our Lord, not indirect government roles. [“I gave at the office”]. Such problems are best solved locally and one by one.

  • Gabriel,

    I am pointing out he hypocrisy of Cardinal George’s actions, or non-actions.

    I don’t have any respect, nor do I recognize the legitimacy of the USCCB.

    I agree though that if the bishops would act more like ‘bishops’ rather than being someone’s friend or a Democratic Party groupie, they would gain the trust and respect of the laity and this country would be in a much better shape than it is now.

  • Lest anyone forget the USCCB sent out flyers to parishes across the country urging parishioners to oppose any healthcare plan that included abortion coverage.

    As Eric and other posters have also pointed out, the Bishops have been adamant about Stupak being included in the bill; this is as far as they have gone, and, frankly, is about as far as they can (and probably should) go, politically speaking. Questions about the intricacies of actual healthcare policy (will a public option work or not, etc.) are not “do or die” moral questions like abortion and euthanasia, but fall to the expertise of individual politicians to decide. It is best for the USCCB to remain nuetral on such matters while insisting that the allowance of any moral evil in the bill (abortions, etc.) impels a legislator to vote against it – which is exactly what they’ve been doing!

    Where is their any proof that Cardinal George is either for or against the House healthcare bill as passed? This article has nothing but speculation – where are the words of C. George himself that imply he supports the Pelosi bill? Did he ask parishioners to unconditionally support a bill that included the Stupak amendment? No. He merely asked that the lives of babies and their mothers take priority over political victories – hence the strong support for Stupak. Eric, Pinky, and Rep. Pitts are right. To vote “no” on Stupak as an amendment is to vote against the unborn – it’s placing a potential political victory ahead of the lives of the unborn.

    I have personally congratulated many people in the Chicago Archdiocese who worked with the Cardinal on this and I asked them to forward my accolades and gratitude to him. I find his actions to be heroic, not cowardly – partisan shill C. George is not, and this article is at best misinformed, at worst a calumny.

  • Andy K.,

    It’s interesting that you accuse me of speculation.

    I made a concerted effort to only report the facts, withholding my opinion.

    He was vociferous in demanding pro-life Republicans vote for the health care amendment, though he is dead silent when it gets revised in the Senate.

    And yes, you are correct, Cardinal George has been conspicuously silent about the bill.

    My speculations are reserved for the commbox. And I will only say he has continued to do nothing at all.

    And having the USCCB send out flyers is not the role of a bishop, ie, hide behind a bureaucratic organization.

    Where are our shepherds?

    Where is our Saint Ambrose?

  • Tito’s final question reminds me that we need to be *praying* for courageous bishops. Frankly, I think that’s the most effective avenue available to the vast majority of us.

  • Chris B.,

    I wish I could have said that.

    You’re right, lets pray for our bishops.

  • I’m with Eric and the Stupakites on this one. It’s hard to say what the result of trying to play it strategically would have been, but gutting the bill of a clearly-worded rejection of abortion would have been a recognized defeat for life.

  • These so-called health care bills are so horrible and anti-Christian and anti-American that abortion is not the only reason to oppose and destroy them. Since abortion is an intrinsically evil act it must be opposed no matter what political ploys are being used.

    To be in favor of these monstrosities is to discount the massive evil perpetrated by every government that has ever entered into this arena. It is foolish to think the National (oh, how I wish it were actually federal and respected subsidiarity) government we are burdened with will be any less evil.

    Cardinal George needs our prayers and it is prudential for us to ask our own bishop to condemn these bills with the politicians he shepherds. Cardinal George is one bishop he is not he bishop of the USA. The USCCB is useless organization.

  • I’m sorry, but this post is ridiculous.

    I don’t have any respect, nor do I recognize the legitimacy of the USCCB.

    OK? So? Good thing for Holy Church that Tito Edwards or Ryan Haber (me), despite all we know, aren’t heads over the Catholic Church.

    The simple fact is, as Eric pointed out, that to vote “present” on the Stupak Amendment would be a reprehensible parliamentarism worthy of our esteemed president. A rep can vote YES on Stupak and then NO on the final bill. That’s no problem, and no contradiction.

    Why hasn’t Cardinal George spoken out? I don’t know? I don’t have a bat phone to his office. Why does American Catholic seem to be so much more concerned with him than with some other bishop? What’s their deal? What has Cardinal George ever done to aid or abet abortionists? Where’s benefit of the doubt? Where’s Christian charity in interpreting others’ actions?

    Where’s a sense of deference to the men that GOD, not men, has ordained to lead his flock?

    Good grief. I’m gettin’ pretty tired of everybody knowing just how the Catholic Church should be shepherded. It’s really easy to do somebody else’s job. How armchair quarterbacks actually think they are actually helping anybody is entirely beyond me.

  • Ryan,

    Thanks for your charitable comment concerning my post.

    I have no deference to Cardinal George because he is not my shepherd, Cardinal DiNardo and Pope Benedict are my shepherds, but I do have deference to him as a leader of the flock. I hope he understands what his actions look like when he speaks out. He seems more as a vibrant supporter of health care as an ardent Democrat rather than a Catholic concerned for the well being of his flock.

    Plus Cardinal George spoke up, the only one of all the bishops that said anything to cajole the GOP to vote for the Stupak amendment.

    God bless you my brother in Christ,


  • withouthaving seen,

    I guess avoiding parlimentarianism is good if the Supak language stays in the final version. The way the bill is being dealt with now I wouldn’t be so sure. And who’s to say that legislation down the road won’t put it in.

    As far as shepharding is concerned, teaching moral principles is properly the role of the bishops, applying it to the world is the proper domain of the laity. I think some criticism of the USCCB and, possibly, Cardinal George is warranted.

  • Lol, Tito, it doesn’t matter if he were the bishop of Timbuktu, he’d still be successor to an apostle and worthy of the respect of the likes me and you!

    I know that Cardinal George, much like the Church in general, gets trashed by all sides. That, in my opinion, wins him the benefit of the doubt from me.

    To clarify, when I wrote “this post is ridiculous,” I did not mean your comment in particular, Tito, but rather the initial article and the whole thread of follow-ups.

    Stupak and a number of others are threatening to kill the bill altogether if they can, rather than let it pass with abortion funding. Remember, reconciliation and closed-door meetings aren’t the final step. The suits on the hill still have to vote again and both houses have to pass it, and I see no reason why it will be a perfunctory vote in the House of Reps, where the Democrat coalition is shaky, to put it mildly.


    The USSCB might very well need criticism, as might H.E. Francis Card. George. I know far less about their affairs than they do, and if I knew as much, I still would have a hard time seeing how Christ has ordained me to criticize his ordained ministers.

    Ryan Haber
    Kensington, Maryland

  • Ryan,

    Thanks for the clarification 🙂

    I was careful to point out what Cardinal George did in the post without offering an opinion.

    I placed my opinion only in the commbox because I still don’t know where Cardinal George’s heart is. Is it with the Democratic Party or is it in the Bride of Christ?

  • withouthavingseen,

    Criticize in a constructive way as the non-ordained Catherine of Sienna did the Avignon pope. Truth is truth. The laity has a better sense of the secular order. If there is a problem that the laity discerns in the prudential judgments of the clergy as relates to the secular order, they are within their licit Catholic rights to criticize those prudential judgments of clergy.

  • Thank you for this good commentary. I have been contemplating some of these questions, too. I have written to my Bishop and the USCCB, but there is only silence. Our Parish has sent out a FAX to all the Bishops with our concerns of the health care reform. To my knowledge, only one Bishop responded to the Fax. I have pondered why there is only a handful of bishops who have spoken on the the Church’s teachings of subsidiarity in regards to the health care bill and government take-over. The Stupak Amendment is not 100% pro-life and there is more than abortions which is very troubling in the House and the Senate health care bills. Should not the Bishops be concerned with all the life issues in the health care reform i.e. abortions, euthanasia, cloning, embryonic stem cell research, rationing, sterilization, teen clinics run by planned parenthood, contraceptions, cloning, or any injustice? Certainly, health care can be improved, but it does not require a government take over with individual mandates and loss of freedoms. Any health care reform should do no harm before doing any good. With all the haste, bribery and lack of transparency, I would certainly think this 2000 page plus health care reform is to be avoided. September 2009 I went to a town-hall meeting and my Congressman said this was not about health care but about government take-over and control. I believe he is right.

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Bishops Disappointed by Senate Vote to Kill Pro-Life Amendment

Wednesday, December 9, AD 2009

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Pro-Life Secretariat just released a statement denouncing the defeat of the Pro-Life Nelson Amendment.  In addition the USCCB will not support any health care bills that diminishes the Stupak Amendment that was passed in the U.S. House of Representatives.

Here is their released statement in its entirety:

December 9, 2009

Bishops Call Vote a Grave Mistake and Serious Blow to Genuine Reform

Say the Senate Should Not Support Bill in its Current Form

Hope That House Provisions on Abortion Funding Prevail



WASHINGTON—“The Senate vote to table the Nelson-Hatch-Casey amendment is a grave mistake and a serious blow to genuine health care reform,” said Cardinal Francis George, President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. “The Senate is ignoring the promise made by President Obama and the will of the American people in failing to incorporate longstanding prohibitions on federal funding for abortion and plans that include abortion.”

Bishop William Murphy, Chair of the bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, said: “Congress needs to retain existing abortion funding restrictions and safeguard conscience protections because the nation urgently needs health care reform that protects the life, dignity, conscience and health of all. We will continue to work with Senators, Representatives and the Administration to achieve reform which meets these criteria. We hope the Senate will address the legislation’s fundamental flaw on abortion and remedy its serious problems related to conscience rights, affordability and treatment of immigrants.”

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67 Responses to Bishops Disappointed by Senate Vote to Kill Pro-Life Amendment

  • Personally, I think it is dangerous for the Bishops to weigh in on most prudential matters. Of course, they should oppose any legislation that would advance abortion, just as they should weigh in on all matters of grave morality. But while appropriate access to health care may have a moral component, whether a particular approach would be effective or most effective is well outside the charism of bishops. I’m far more interested in what health care economists say, as well as insurance companies, doctors, hospitals, and medical organizations. Big and small pharma too. And big city hospitals that serve the poor. All are stakeholders and have knowledge. But the Bishops and their staff don’t know any more than you or me. They just have impulsive policy preferences based on political bias just like you and me.

  • I think the bishops are fully invested in the process since they seem to be wedded to “universal coverage” in health care. Though I disagree on their method of implementing God’s Kingdom here on earth, at least they found “a” voice somewhere.

    Hopefully they’ll be more unified in the next election cycle when it comes to protecting the unborn among us.

  • Amazing that this ammendment was defeated on the feast of the Immaculate Conception. Maybe the Bishops could take note of that also.

  • Phillip,

    Good catch.

    It may be an omen that the bill will be defeated in order to protect the most vulnerable among us.

    Or it could mean something else.

  • Tito – I thought you didn’t recognize the authority of the USCCB. Only when they agree with you I guess?

  • Michael I.,

    The bishops conference is not an authority of Catholic teaching.

    So I choose what I like from the USCCB.

    I only adhere to Sacred Scripture, the Magisterium, and Sacred Tradition.

    Unlike you that adheres to Noam Chomsky, Karl Marx, and Bono.

  • The bishops conference is not an authority of Catholic teaching.

    This is not true, Tito, for the millionth time.

    And I’m not a fan of Bono.

  • I dunno … some of Bono’s earlier music is ok.

  • How exactly is the USCCB an authority of Catholic teaching?

  • Notice that Michael I. didn’t deny his adherence to Karl Marx.

  • Tito, I noticed and wasn’t at all surprised. No big scandal in my mind, since I have several misguided Marxist friends. We avoid politics and economics and just drink. I don’t see how Marxism can be squared with Catholicism though. But perhaps the USCCB has an authoritative teaching on how to do that. 😉

  • Although I would not call myself a Marxist, I’ve learned from Marx. As has the Roman Catholic Church and the rest of the human race.

    Mike – Um, because the USCCB are nothing but the bishops (you know, the successors of the Apostles!) in the united states.

  • Perhaps you and Tito would like to have a conversation about Marx, and about which of his ideas I agree with and don’t agree with, and whether or not the ideas I agree with are in opposition to Church teaching or whether the Church herself acknowledges said ideas?

    Or maybe you both can throw around the name “Marx” and the term “Marxism” without actually getting specific?

    Or maybe Tito will simply delete my comments when I ask him to actually get specific and show us how much he actually knows about Karl Marx?

    What about Chomsky, Tito? Can you explain to me what elements of Chomsky’s work are in opposition to Church teaching? Perhaps u.s. foreign policy is sacred and unable to be criticized?

  • The magisterial authority of a Bishops Conference is about that of an individual bishop. I think the document Apostolos Suos addresses this question. See here:

  • Michael I.,

    With the answer you provided so vague, vacuous, and open-ended, I’m surprised you haven’t found common cause with Mein Kampf or that writer.

  • It seems Michael is trolling.

  • Phillip – If you actually read Apostolos Suos and the relevant ecclesial documents, you will find that the issue is much more complex than your claim that “[t]he magisterial authority of a Bishops Conference is about that of an individual bishop.”

    Tito – You’re not making any sense. Could you rephrase for me? What was that about Hitler?

  • Michael I.,

    Garbage in, garbage out.

  • Of course its much more complicated than that. But of course, when one reads Apostolos Suos, one sees that a single dissenting vote by a bishop on a doctrinal matter ends the authority of the Conference and the matter must be referred to Rome. An individual bishop has that degree of authority in that he can stop the entire conference.

  • It is important to read the relevant ecclesial documents as well, including theological discussion on these matters. AS makes some interesting (non-infallible) claims about the authority of bishops conferences which are indeed in tension with, say, significant portions of Vatican II (which carry more weight than AS). AS strikes me as awfully mathematical, as if one rogue wacko bishop could threaten the authority of the teaching of the rest. Does not strike me as a very Catholic approach to authority.

    So yes, AS is important, but other documents are important too. And it’s important to read AS in its entirety and in context.

  • Of course AS can be read as a development of doctrine (non-infallible perhaps) though with greater magisterial teaching than theologians. As the theologian Cardianl Dulles noted, AS is the effort of the Church (read magisterial authority) to place the authority of conferences in its proper context (a limited one) which is only a reflection of individual bishops authority. This is the proper context.

  • Of course that would presuppose that much of what the USCCB does is pronouce on doctrinal matter. Actually most, such as its support of current health care legislation with three provisions, is doctrinal. It is of course not. It is prudential. Thus laymen can licitly disagree with their position in regards to the legislation in general.
    What is doctrinal is the USCCB’s defense of traditional Catholic teaching that abortion is an intrinsic evil. Thus Tito is on good ground in his position.

  • Funny, the way folks use the word “doctrinal” to draw artificial lines around certain ethical issues.

  • Only if one does not understand the distinction between intrinsic evils and prudential application of moral principles where licit differences apply.

  • Guys. Marx was generally good about diagnosing a lot of the problems of capitalism-particularly its tendency towards self-destruction due to the need for expansive greed.

    Now, his other ideas about history and individualism and God and pretty much everything else he wrote? utter garbage. But those that disagree with us often have a kernel of truth in them.

    Oh, and bishops are important, You should generally listen to them. (Darn it, I just agreed mostly with Michael I. I may get banned from this blog if I keep this up!)

  • Michael R. Denton,

    But those that disagree with us often have a kernel of truth in them.

    Karl Marx was born human.

    Michael I. was born human.

    I guess I found the kernel of truth in both of them.

  • I agree Michael D, though I can’t say Marx’s ideas about history were totally wrong – certain classes do gravitate to certain ideas. The casual relationship might be out of tune, but the correlation is there.

    The irony is that so much revolutionary nonsense, especially when it railed the hardest against Christianity, is really born out of a sort of childlike disappointment that humanity did not live up to the true standards of Christianity.

    I see much of revolutionary socialism stemming from what Moses Hess said to Marx – that the whole point was to “bring heaven down to Earth.”

    If we lived as Christians ought to live, consistently, fully, these people would disappear. In a sense I see the revolutionary scourge as, if not a punishment, an inevitable symptom of a society that has fallen off the right track. That is how Leo XIII and especially Pius XI saw it.

  • Michael,

    Yes, the bishops are important in matters of faith and morals. In matters of application of faith and morals to the political domain, that’s the role of the laity. The bishops may chime in with their prudential judgment. And I will assess their prudential judgment and use mine as is proper to the vocation of the Catholic layman.

  • Only if one does not understand the distinction between intrinsic evils and prudential application of moral principles where licit differences apply.

    I understand the distinction well, but that distinction is not a matter of doctrine vs. not-doctrine.

  • Ah yes. But one can never commit an intrinsic evil (abortion). One can disagree quite substantially on the way to provide health care to the population in general.

  • But one can never commit an intrinsic evil (abortion).


    One can disagree quite substantially on the way to provide health care to the population in general.

    True. But Catholic teaching demands that health care actually be provided to the population in general. Most folks who “respectfully disagree” with the bishops on the health care issue have no desire to see health care extended to those who have no coverage, preferring free-market “you gotta earn yer health care” approaches. Basically what Catholic teaching allows is substantial disagreement on how universal health care is to be provided.

  • Tito – Do you not want to have a discussion about Marxism anymore?

  • Of course your present a false picture Michael. And what universal health care includes is not defined by the church. In my experience, America does in fact provide universal health care for children through S-CHIP. For the elderly with Medicare and with almost all poor with Medicare/Medicaid. Your point again is limited to a very false impression of what the government already does with health care in America.

  • Phillip – Show me where I am false, don’t simply claim what I have said is false.

    Millions of people are not covered in the united states. Millions of lives are ruined by this health care system. You cannot say with any seriousness that the u.s. provides universal health care.

    Another contradiction of the right: claiming on the one hand that the u.s. DOES provide universal health care, and then on the other hand in another argumentative context insisting that the u.s. should NOT provide universal health care.

  • Show that Obama’s plan will make it better.

  • Why? I’m not in favor of Obama’s plan. I’m in favor of the single-payer option.

  • Having said that, yes in fact S-CHIP and Medicare/Medicaid will cover almost everyone (S-CHIP will cover all children.) To claim otherwise is to not be based in the facts.

  • Nothing in Catholic Social teaching says there must be a single payer. Also nothing that says that such coverage must be equal across the board. These are licit areas of disagreement.

  • Having said that, yes in fact S-CHIP and Medicare/Medicaid will cover almost everyone (S-CHIP will cover all children.)

    All children = almost everyone? What?

    Nothing in Catholic Social teaching says there must be a single payer.

    I never said CST requires single payer. I said I am in favor of it. But CST requires that every person receive health care regardless of their ability to pay, i.e. universal health care.

    Also nothing that says that such coverage must be equal across the board. These are licit areas of disagreement.

    What exactly are you looking to get out of? Which persons do not deserve what? Please be specific since you seem to have something in mind.

  • S-Chip will cover all children. That takes care of that segment of the population. Medicaid and Medicare covers most others. That leaves a small number of people who do not have coverage. A basic plan that does not necessarily cover everything that a plan that others have would be consistent with CST. Basic health screenings, basic medications, basic procedures and emergency care – yes. Coronary bypass, more sophisticated medical care, more cutting edge medications – no.

  • Medicaid and Medicare covers most others.


    That leaves a small number of people who do not have coverage.

    A “small number” is awfully imprecise. Are you saying that statistics reported and used by the USCCB are false? Is 40 million or whatever the statistic is a “small number”?

    A basic plan that does not necessarily cover everything that a plan that others have would be consistent with CST.

    The way you have phrased this indicates a “what can we get away with” approach to ethics

    Basic health screenings, basic medications, basic procedures and emergency care – yes. Coronary bypass, more sophisticated medical care, more cutting edge medications – no.

    Why should poor people NOT be able to have coronoary bypass surgeries? Why should they be denied “cutting edge medications”? Why are you intending to set up a class structure?

  • Actually the 40 million includes a large number of 18-39 year old who choose not to buy health insurance. A calculated risk but for most it is a wise economic choice. 11 million who qualify for Medicaid/S-CHIP are not enrolled. That would cover most of that 40 million number.
    CST does not require equality of outcome. A right in CST is that that would allow basic human flourishing. Vaccines and basic medications will. More elaborate plans are not required by CST. That’s been the teaching since Rerum Novarum

  • If you need bypass surgery or else you will die, then bypass surgery is basic to human flourishing.

  • Everyone will die. Even the rich will run out of options. Even with ordinary policies there is denial of care (transplants, experimental procedures.) The question is how much health care is a right.

  • I’m sure if Michael I. needed emergency surgery he would be crossing the border from Canada to the U.S. because he knows full well that the socialized health care in Canada would put him on a waiting list.

  • Not only that, but when he is older, deny a fair bit of care that he would get with ordinary, private policies in the U.S.

  • Everyone will die.

    Ah, here is your position. Crystal clear.

    I’m sure if Michael I. needed emergency surgery he would be crossing the border from Canada to the U.S. because he knows full well that the socialized health care in Canada would put him on a waiting list.

    1) I don’t live in Canada anymore. 2) I never had provincial health insurance while living in Canada because I am not Canadian. International students, until very recently, had to purchase private insurance. It was very inexpensive compared to the u.s. 3) In three years in Canada I did not meet a single Canadian who was unhappy with Canadian health care. Not one. I sought them out. They’re few and far between. 4) I am currently without health insurance.

  • You still didn’t answer the question.

    If you needed emergency surgery would you wait 3-6 months or would you jump back to the greatest nation in the history of the world, America?

  • Its not my position, it is God’s. Even Marx couldn’t overcome that.

  • You still didn’t answer the question.

    If you needed emergency surgery would you wait 3-6 months or would you jump back to the greatest nation in the history of the world, America?

    You never ASKED me a question. You said “Iafrate would probably do such and such.”

    But since you asked me directly this time…

    Presumably you are asking me assuming I still lived in Canada. Considering I had no U.S. health care at all when I lived in Canada I would obviously wait it out because “the greatest nation in the history of the world” would be of absolutely no help.

  • Phillip – What makes you hate poor people?

  • Tito, you are under the mis-apprehension that the US healthcare system is superior to that of other advanced economies. It is not.

    I am one of the lucky ones – I have insurance, decent by American standards. But in other countries I am familiar with, I can see doctors faster, I can get similar treatment, and I don’t have to deal with byzantine insurance bureacracies.

  • Michael I.,

    Are you going to scrub your fingertips until you scrape the skin off because they typed out the greatest nation in the history of the world?


  • MM,

    Exchanging byzantine insurance bureaucracies for byzantine government bureaucracies is a step down in most people’s opinion.

    You may be able to get basic medical care at a lower price, but you will have to wait for most surgeries and other sophisticated medical procedures due to the lack of highly trained physicians being priced out of the market and to heavy regulation making it impossible to make a living in those fields.

  • Michael I.,

    i cut and pasted it.

    That was an awesome comeback!



  • But we are back to the point where we were before. The bishops have made a prudential judgment. Some laymen agree. Some disagree for different reasons. Abortion is an intrinsic evil. Obama’s health care plan is a prudential judgment. Elimination of class distinctions is not a component of CST. Rationing of some sort will happen as it does currently. Death is an inevitability. Not all health care that is available needs be present in a health plan to be moral.

  • The prudential judgment of the bishops is one thing, but their insistence that health coverage should be universal is not a prudential judgment.

    Abortion is an intrinsic evil.

    What does this have to do with it and why did you just throw it in the middle of this paragraph? Are you one of those “everything is really about abortion” types?

  • Just that the Senate plan just passed includes abortion coverage and the bishops have noted that one cannot support the current plan as a Catholic.

    Yes basic coverage for all is a Catholic principle. The problem with the bishops’ statement is that if abortion payment, as well as conscience provisions, were provided in the legislation, they would support it as being consistent with Catholic principles. This is their prudential judgment. Mine is that it does not. That’s the prudential judgment part.

  • I don’t see how universal “coverage” is anything but prudential. Universal access to basic health care may be a Catholic principle, but “coverage” suggests insurance, and the role of insurance is prudential. To the extent a society can afford it, no one should be denied access to basic health care. The extent to which that is actually happening in the US today is debatable, as is how improvements can be made. With proper protections against abortion, I have absolutely no problem with Catholics supporting a variant of the current legislation; I also have no problems with Catholics opposing it. To suggest that Catholics are required to support or oppose in such a case is just mistaken. Phillip is correct.

  • Thanks. Better said then my efforts.

  • Mike Petrik – But Catholics cannot support the standard republican line on health care. Period.

  • Michael,
    Discourse is not served by throwing our vagueries like “standard Republican line on health care.” Moreover, there is nothing in the GOP healthcare platform that is inimical to Catholic teaching. Period.

  • Moreover, there is nothing in the GOP healthcare platform that is inimical to Catholic teaching. Period.

    If you ignore all the lies in the platform, as represented in that link, maybe you statement would be true.

  • I rest my case.

  • Of course you do. Rest assured, too, in your “what can I get away with” ethic.

  • Michael,

    How can you on the one hand insist that only those who are ideologically sympathetic to you have an accurate understanding of what socialists/anarchists advocate, and yet on the other hand insist that only those who are _not_ Republican (indeed, only those who dislike them) have an accurate understanding of what Republicans advocate?

Fundamentalism Reclaimed

Sunday, November 29, AD 2009

One would be hard-pressed to find a term more frequently abused in recent years than ‘fundamentalism’. More often an insult than anything else, it’s been used to describe figures ranging from Pope Benedict XVI to Richard Dawkins to Osama bin Laden. One refreshing exception to this imprecision is Cardinal George of Chicago, who offers what I think is a fairly useful definition in his recent book:

“Fundamentalism is a self-consciously noncritical reassertion of identity and autonomy by selecting certain antimodern, antiglobal dimensions of local (especially religious) identity, and making them both the pillars upon which identity is built and the boundary against further global encroachment.”

What I like most about this definition is that it is descriptive rather than pejorative. It restores a content to the word beyond lazy journalistic slang for ‘someone I don’t like.’ For instance, Richard Dawkins is not a fundamentalist. He may base his identity on what appears to me to be an insufficiently self-critical foundation, but he is neither antimodern, nor antiglobal, nor entirely noncritical. Similarly, as any familiarity with his writings will attest, neither is Pope Benedict XVI.

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3 Responses to Fundamentalism Reclaimed

  • I am looking forward to this book. Thanks again for you balanced perspective John Henry.

  • Western and Russian interference in the Middle East has often been anything but beneficial.

    I’ll grant your premise about the Russians. However, until a lot more Middle Easterners take up a Bedoin lifestyle circa the 19th century the complaints about “Western interference” are a sham.

  • Micha,

    Of course a lot of the complaints of fundamentalists are a bit of a sham, or hypocritical, in that they are not consistent with their rejections of modernity.

    John Henry, thanks for the sneak peek into Cardinal George’s book. It’s on my Amazon wishlist, but your excerpt of it and the subsequent discussion have caused me to move it to the top.