Timothy Cardinal Dolan

Give Them That Old Time Religion: Socialism

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“In recent years the range of such intervention has vastly expanded, to the point of creating a new type of state, the so-called ‘Welfare State.’ This has happened in some countries in order to respond better to many needs and demands by remedying forms of poverty and deprivation unworthy of the human person. However, excesses and abuses, especially in recent years, have provoke very harsh criticisms of the Welfare State, dubbed the ‘Social Assistance State.’ Malfunctions and defects in the Social Assistance State are the result of an inadequate understanding of the tasks proper to the State. Here again the principle of subsidiarity must be respected: a community of a higher order should not interfere in the internal life of a community of a lower order, depriving the latter of its functions, but rather should support it in case of need and help to coordinate its activity with the activities of the rest of society, always with a view to the common good. “By intervening directly and depriving society of its responsibility, the Social Assistance State leads to a loss of human energies and an inordinate increase of public agencies, which are dominated more by bureaucratic thinking than by concern for serving their clients, and which are accompanied by an enormous increase in spending, In fact, it would appear that needs are best understood and satisfied by people who are closest to them who act as neighbors to those in need. It should be added that certain kinds of demands often call for a response which is not simply material but which is capable of perceiving the deeper human need.”

Saint John Paul II, Centissimus Annus

 

 

 

 

Timothy Cardinal Dolan wrote a mainstream defense of the free market which appeared in the Wall Street Journal on May 22.  Go here to read it.  His word set off some “Catholic theologians” who believe that the current Pope will allow the Church to go full frontal socialist.  Matt Archbold at Creative Minority Report gives us the details:

A number of theologians took aim at Timothy Cardinal Dolan’s defense of free markets and his warning about the dangers of collectivism’s inherent violation of human rights.

Cdl. Dolan wrote, “the answer to problems with the free market is not to reject economic liberty in favor of government control. The church has consistently rejected coercive systems of socialism and collectivism, because they violate inherent human rights to economic freedom and private property. When properly regulated, a free market can certainly foster greater productivity and prosperity.”

Charles J. Reid, Jr., Professor of Law at the University of St. Thomas responded in the Huffington Post that Cardinal Timothy Dolan “misunderstands Church teaching on both economics and the role of the state.”

Reid labeled the free market a “sociopathic economy” and said that only “a reinvigorated state would bring to bear in the regulation of the marketplace a set of humane values” and “rebalance the marketplace so as to fairly serve the interests not of capital alone, but of all employees and all interested human beings. “

Joseph A. McCartin, director of the Kalmanovitz Initiative for Labor and the Working Poor at Georgetown University reportedly criticized Cdl. Dolan, saying “It is a shame that the Cardinal seems more interested in making Pope Francis’ statements seem less threatening to free-market-celebrating Americans than he is in applying the Pope’s critique to the American scene as it really exists.”

In the same piece in the National Catholic Reporter, Fr. Drew Christiansen S.J., professor of ethics and global human development at Georgetown University, also had some pointed remarks aimed at Cdl. Dolan. “Cardinal Dolan misses what Pope Francis sees so clearly,” he reportedly said. “The growth of inequality everywhere including the U.S. is a result of American-style capitalism and the financialization of the economy.”

He added pointedly that he believed, “too many well-to-do Catholics prefer getting their economic ethics from the Acton Institute rather than the Vatican.”

John Gehring, Catholic program director at Faith in Public Life, reportedly said Dolan’s arguments “provide moral cover to free-market fundamentalists and anti-government zealots who preach a gospel of radical individualism that Catholic teaching rejects. Furthermore, he said “the cardinal veers close to echoing GOP talking points.”

Professor Mark Allman, chair of Religious & Theological Studies Department at Merrimack College, reportedly said Dolan’s piece “reflects a heavily individualistic understanding of morality.” He bemoaned that “there’s no mention of the need for structural change.”

And you wonder why so many kids come out of Catholic colleges as progressives. Continue reading

Timothy Cardinal Dolan: Company Man

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Timothy Cardinal Dolan, of the Archdiocese of New York, is the epitome of the company man.  When the powers that be in his company, the Church, were orthodox and perceived to be conservative, that is what he was.  Now, well Rorate Caeli gives us a sample of what he is now:

 

“Who am I to judge?” makes a triumphant entry in the American subset of the College of Cardinals, in an interview granted to the highest-rated political debate program on US television, to be broadcast tomorrow:

 
Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York praised University of Missouri football star Michael Sam for coming out as gay, saying he would not judge the athlete for his sexual orientation. “Good for him,” Dolan said in an interview with NBC’s “Meet the Press” airing Sunday.
 
“I would have no sense of judgment on him,” Dolan continued. “God bless ya. I don’t think, look, the same Bible that tells us, that teaches us well about the virtues of chastity and the virtue of fidelity and marriage also tells us not to judge people. So I would say, ‘Bravo.’” [Source]
 
OK, then. Naturally, the Cardinal did not have to say anything at all regarding a specific individual, even if asked. But silence and discretion are one thing, explicitly refusing moral discernment is another, and raising such refusal to the status of “good” and “bravo” is quite noteworthy for a Prince of the Church, because it is in itself a moral judgment, a positive moral judgment.
 
It is quite easy to see that no moral debate in which the Catholic Church takes part, of any kind and on any level, can ever anymore advance even one inch if the parameters become simply an isolated reading of “not judging” – and much less if “not judging” is elevated to the positive judgment of “good” and “bravo.” Politicians quote a pontiff when casting immoral votes, and what can the Church say, from now on, on any legal matter (that presupposes a moral order)? It can always be used to stop any social debate. Continue reading

HHS Mandate Fight Not Going Away

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One of the many dreadful results of the American people deciding to give the Southside Messiah another four years to see how much of the country he can gut, is that the struggle over the HHS mandate will not be resolved by Congress simply reversing the initiative of the Obama administration.

Lawsuits against the HHS Mandate have been meeting with some success, go here to read about injunctive relief being given to a private employer, and doubtless all of this will eventually end up before the Supreme Court.  It has been heartening to see how many non-Catholics have been standing with Catholics in this area.  For example, Tyndale House Publishers have gone to court and gotten injunctive relief.  Go here to read about it. Continue reading

Barbed Laughs

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Barack Obama and Mitt Romney appeared tonight at the Al Smith Dinner and gave the usual humorous speeches.  A few observations:

1.  Romney the Standup Comic-I was surprised at how well Romney did.  Comedy and Mitt Romney would seem to be mutually exclusive concepts, but he had good timing and delivered an effective series of jokes.  Funniest joke:  A reference to the Cardinal, because of Obama’s troubles with the Church, turning Obama’s wine into water.

2.  Flat Obama-Four years ago I praised Obama’s speech at the Al Smith dinner as being hilarious.  Not this year.  Most of his jokes fell flat and he seemed to be going through the motions.  Funniest joke:  He said at one point that for the third debate he was going to train as he did for the first debate.  Pause.  He then said that he was just kidding, that he only wanted to make Axelrod sweat.

3.  These Guys Really Hate Each Other-Both Romney and Obama at the end of their speeches gave unfelt praise to the other.  Their other comments dripped venom for their opponent, especially Romney’s comments.  No love lost here at all.

4.  Romney on the Attack-The usual humor at an Al Smith dinner is self-depracatory.  Romney had a bit of this but most of his humorous comments were fairly hard hitting attacks against Obama.

5.  The War on the Church-Romney was not shy in mentioning Obama’s attacks on the Church.  He joked that Obama has found a way to soften the attitude of the Church to the HHS Mandate:  the rules will be in Latin. Continue reading

Liberal Reaction to Cardinal Dolan’s Benediction at the Democrat Convention

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In his benediction at the close of the Democrat Convention last week, Timothy Cardinal Dolan mentioned the unborn.  Here is the text of his prayer:

With a “firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence,” let us close this convention by praying for this land that we so cherish and love:

 

Let us Pray.

Almighty God, father of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, revealed to us so powerfully in your Son, Jesus Christ, we thank you for showering your blessings upon this our beloved nation.  Bless all here present, and all across this great land, who work hard for the day when a greater portion of your justice, and a more ample measure of your care for the poor and suffering, may prevail in these United States.  Help us to see that a society’s greatness is found above all in the respect it shows for the weakest and neediest among us.
We beseech you, almighty God to shed your grace on this noble experiment in ordered liberty, which began with the confident assertion of inalienable rights bestowed upon us by you:  life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

Thus do we praise you for the gift of life. Grant us the courage to defend it, life, without which no other rights are secure.  We ask your benediction on those waiting to be born, that they may be welcomed and protected.  Strengthen our sick and our elders waiting to see your holy face at life’s end, that they may be accompanied by true compassion and cherished with the dignity due those who are infirm and fragile.

We praise and thank you for the gift of liberty.  May this land of the free never lack those brave enough to defend our basic freedoms.  Renew in all our people a profound respect for religious liberty:  the first, most cherished freedom bequeathed upon us at our Founding. May our liberty be in harmony with truth; freedom ordered in goodness and justice.  Help us live our freedom in faith, hope, and love.  Make us ever-grateful for those who, for over two centuries, have given their lives in freedom’s defense; we commend their noble souls to your eternal care, as even now we beg the protection of your mighty arm upon our men and women in uniform.

We praise and thank you for granting us the life and the liberty by which we can pursue happiness.  Show us anew that happiness is found only in respecting the laws of nature and of nature’s God.  Empower us with your grace so that we might resist the temptation to replace the moral law with idols of our own making, or to remake those institutions you have given us for the nurturing of life and community.  May we welcome those who yearn to breathe free and to pursue happiness in this land of freedom, adding their gifts to those whose families have lived here for centuries.

We praise and thank you for the American genius of government of the people, by the people and for the people.  Oh God of wisdom, justice, and might, we ask your guidance for those who govern us:  President Barack Obama, Vice President Joseph Biden, Congress, the Supreme Court, and all those, including Governor Mitt Romney and Congressman Paul Ryan, who seek to serve the common good by seeking public office.  Make them all worthy to serve you by serving our country.  Help them remember that the only just government is the government that serves its citizens rather than itself. With your grace, may all Americans choose wisely as we consider the future course of public policy.

And finally Lord, we beseech your benediction on all of us who depart from here this evening, and on all those, in every land, who yearn to conduct their lives in freedom and justice.  We beg you to remember, as we pledge to remember, those who are not free; those who suffer for freedom’s cause; those who are poor, out of work, needy, sick, or alone; those who are persecuted for their religious convictions, those still ravaged by war.

And most of all, God Almighty, we thank you for the great gift of our beloved country.

For we are indeed “one nation under God,” and “in God we trust.”

So dear God, bless America.  You who live and reign forever and ever. 

Amen! Continue reading

Two Memorable Events From Last Night

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Two events from last night stand out.  First, Timothy Cardinal Dolan praying for the unborn at the Democrat Convention in his closing prayer.  Just such an eventuality is why the Democrat powers that be didn’t want the Cardinal to be there to begin with.  Good for the Cardinal.

Second, Jennifer Granholm, former Democrat governor of Michigan, doing the best Howard Dean parody I have ever seen.  ( The impact is somewhat blemished when one recalls that GM is facing bankruptcy again.  Oh well.)

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And that was that, nothing else of note.  Bye Democrats. Continue reading

The Party of Death in Convention Assembled

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Playing up the War on Women meme and the Todd Akin gaffe, the Democrats are going to be celebrating their most sacred rite right at their Convention in September:

Democrats said that they will feature Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parent Action Fund, Nancy Keenan, president of the NARAL Pro-Choice America and Sandra Fluke, the Georgetown University student whose plea for federal birth control funding drew the ire–and a subsequent apology–from Rush Limbaugh.

What’s more, the Democrats are expanding their list of women ready to assail the GOP on women’s issue, adding Maryland Sen. Barbara Mikulski and actress Eva Longoria to the list that already includes Sen. John Kerry and Massachusetts Senate candidate Elizabeth Warren.

This goes hand in hand with their rejection of Cardinal Dolan’s offer to pray at the Democrat convention.  Dolan is giving the benediction at the Republican convention this week, so in an effort at even-handedness, he offered to do so for the Democrats.  This offer was rejected out of hand.  Why?  It would have been smart politics for the Democrats to have the Cardinal pray for them, perhaps the visuals marginally helping them with Catholic voters.  Yet they turned up their nose.  I can think of three reasons for the rejection: Continue reading

The Anti-Catholic Party

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Cardinal Dolan yesterday released this statement regarding Obama’s announcement that he had “evolved” and now, as he did in 1996 when first asked about it, supports gay marriage:

 

May 9, 2012 WASHINGTON—Cardinal Timothy Dolan, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), issued the following statement:

President Obama’s comments today in support of the redefinition of marriage are deeply saddening. As I stated in my public letter to the President on September 20, 2011, the Catholic Bishops stand ready to affirm every positive measure taken by the President and the Administration to strengthen marriage and the family. However, we cannot be silent in the face of words or actions that would undermine the institution of marriage, the very cornerstone of our society. The people of this country, especially our children, deserve better. Unfortunately, President Obama’s words today are not surprising since they follow upon various actions already taken by his Administration that erode or ignore the unique meaning of marriage. I pray for the President every day, and will continue to pray that he and his Administration act justly to uphold and protect marriage as the union of one man and one woman. May we all work to promote and protect marriage and by so doing serve the true good of all persons.

When the Tokugawa shogunate was stamping out Christianity in Japan, it made use of Fumi-e (stepping on pictures).  Regime officials would place pictures of Jesus or Mary before suspected Christians and order them to step on them.  Refusal to do so, if persisted in, would end in execution.  In our own country we are seeing the growth of a movement just as antithetical in theory to Catholicism and traditional Christianity as the Tokugawa shogunate, and it finds its home in the Democrat party. 

What we have seen over the past few decades is the evolution of the Democrat party into an overtly anti-Catholic party.  The Obama administration is the culmination of this trend.  This of course is deeply ironic, because the Democrat party is a major party in this country with the help of the votes of tens of millions of purported Catholics.

In the past four decades the Democrats, with honorable exceptions, have championed abortion which is anathema to the teachings of the Church.  The embrace of homosexuality followed, which has caused governments around the nation to drive the Church out of adoptions because the Church refuses to arrange adoptions by homosexual couples.  In California, a state wholly controlled by the Democrat party, homosexual indoctrination, masquerading as education, is now mandated in public schools.  For cynical political purposes the Obama administration this year has proposed that Catholic institutions, and individual Catholic employers, be required to provide “free” contraceptive coverage, and is quite willing to run roughshod over the First Amendment to accomplish this goal.  Now we have the President’s support of gay marriage, although, until he further “evolves” I guess, he “generously” stated his opinion that churches opposed to gay marriages should not be required to officiate at them.  These changes in society are the modern Fumi-e by which believing Catholics and traditional Christians are made to renounce, in effect, the teachings of Christ step by step. Continue reading

The White House Hopes For Schism

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Timothy Cardinal Dolan of the Archdiocese of New York has been a leader in the fight against the HHS Mandate.  Below is an update that he gave on the current status of that battle this week.  His remarks are fascinating on several grounds.  Here are a few observations:

1.  Schism.  The Cardinal believes that the White House is attempting to take advantage of a de facto schism in the Church in America and render the opposition of the Bishops harmless.  “Instead, they advised the bishops’ conference that we should listen to the “enlightened” voices of accommodation, such as the recent hardly-surprising but terribly unfortunate editorial in America.  The White House seems to think we bishops are hopelessly out of touch with our people, and with those whom the White House now has nominated as official Catholic teachers.”  Some of us have of course seen this coming for a very long time, symbolized by the Obama day of worship at Notre Dame’s commencement in 2009.  The Obama administration hopes to create their own de facto version of a “Patriotic Catholic Association” here in the US, completely subservient to the administration.

2. Religious Liberty.  The Cardinal understands the gravity of this attack on religious liberty.  And it is not just about sterilization, abortifacients, and chemical contraception.  Pure and simple, it’s about religious freedom, the sacred right, protected by our constitution, of any Church to define its own teaching and ministry.  This of course is all about Obama’s goal of making the Catholic Church in this country harmless to his ambitions, ambitions I am beginning to fear even his most ardent opponents do not truly comprehend yet.

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3.   Shocked, Shocked.  Obama’s word is meaningless.  When the President announced on January 20th that the choking mandates from HHS would remain — a shock to me, since he had personally assured me that he would do nothing to impede the good work of the Church in health care, education, and charity, and that he considered the protection of conscience a sacred duty — not only you, but men and women of every faith, or none at all, rallied in protest.   Frankly I am shocked that the Cardinal was shocked, but better wise late than never.

4.  Litigation-  The Cardinal believes that the HHS Mandate can be beaten in the courts.  And the courts offer the most light.  In the recent Hosanna-Tabor ruling, the Supreme Court unanimously and enthusiastically defended the right of a Church to define its own ministry and services, a dramatic rebuff to the administration, but one apparently unheeded by the White House.  Thus, our bishops’ conference and many individual religious entities are working with some top-notch law firms who have told us they feel so strongly about this that they will represent us pro-bonoThis of course underlines one of the many reasons it is essential to defeat Obama in November.  Another four years would give him probably at least two more supreme court appointments and hundreds of lower federal court appointments.

The Bishops I think, at least the vast majority of them, are now awake to the danger posed to the Catholic Church by the Obama administration.  It is therefore a great pity that too many of them, and their predecessors, over the years, allowed underlings in the Church bureaucracy to continue to have the Catholic Church in this country act as the Democrat party at prayer, and thereby helped foster an attitude of casual indifference, or active approval, as that party embraced position after position directly contrary to Catholic teaching and thus lull most Catholics into the belief that none of this was important when it came to them casting their ballot.  The canonization   funeral Mass given to Teddy Kennedy was a prime example that members of the hierarchy in this country shared fully in this attitude.  These ecclesiastics have sown the wind and now we are all reaping the whirlwind.

Here is the statement of the Cardinal: Continue reading

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