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Debate continues between Cardinal Pell, Australian Green Party

Catholic World News - August 10, 2010

A clash between Cardinal George Pell of Sydney and the leaders of the country’s Green Party has continued, with other Church leaders entering into the fray.

While Cardinal Pell charged that the Green Party advances an “anti-Christian” agenda, the Australian Christian Lobby (ACL) complained that Green leaders had not been forthright in responding to questions about their political stands. ACL director Jim Wallace charged that the Green party “doesn’t act honestly before the electorate.”

On the other hand Father Frank Brennan of the Public Policy Institute at Australian Catholic University complained that Cardinal Pell had used “unfortunate language” in his blast at the Green Party. "I know some members of the Green Party, some of whom I think are thoroughly Christian,” said Father Brennan, who has frequently sided with critics of Church teachings.

Responding to sharp criticism from Green leader Bob Brown, the Sydney archdiocese released a strong statement supporting Cardinal Pell and charging that Green is a “master of spin.” After citing several errors of fact in Brown’s criticism of the cardinal, the statement then attacked “the Greens’ enthusiasm for abortion and euthanasia, which is bad news for the weak and the vulnerable, especially at the beginning and the end of life, and thoroughly anti-Christian.” The archdiocese scoffed at Brown’s claim that “mainstream” Christians would join in his support for legal recognition of same-sex marriage. “This would be news to most Australians,” the archdiocese said. The statement continued: “If this really were the case it is unlikely that both major parties would have gone to the lengths they have to rule it out as an election issue.”

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  • Posted by: annemarie - Aug. 10, 2010 7:11 PM ET USA

    Kudos to Cardinal Pell! Finally! A bishop with backbone! People can't be both Catholic and supporters of the Green Party. Catholics-in-name-only should start their own church and leave ours alone.

  • Posted by: Cornelius - Aug. 10, 2010 4:41 PM ET USA

    Good old Cardinal Pell! He knows how to fight the good fight. Go, George, go! Mess with Pell, you're risking hell.

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