Catholic Culture Podcasts
Catholic Culture Podcasts

"... the farthest shore of madness..."

By Phil Lawler ( bio - articles - email ) | Oct 24, 2003

In 1991, when lawmakers in Massachusetts discussed "domestic partner" benefits for homosexual couples, Msgr. Wiliam Murphy-- now the Bishop of Rockville Center, New York-- referred to the proposal as "the farthest shore of madness."

Yesterday Bishop Daniel Reilly of Worcester-- speaking for all the bishops of Massachusetts-- endorsed roughly the same proposal, identifying it as a matter of "distriibutive justice."

What has happened in the past 12 years, to change "madness" to "distributive justice?"

  1. Has the Catholic Church changed her teaching regarding the morality of homosexual acts. No.
  2. Has the Vatican released a new document to clarify the issue? Actually, Yes. Just a few weeks ago, a new Vatican statement made it clear as day that Church leaders should not accept-- much less promote-- legislation that would homosexuals the same benefits as married couples.
  3. Has the Catholic hierarchy of Massachusetts caved in, abandoning the clear and consistent teaching of the Church and surrendering to secular culture? Decide for yourself.
As an afterthought: Can we expect Bishop Murphy to denounce the surrender in Boston, and scold his brother bishops for having reached "the farthest shore of madness?" I'm not holding my breath.

Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years. He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books. Founder of Catholic World News, he is the news director and lead analyst at See full bio.

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