The 10 challenges for liberal Catholic politicans

By Domenico Bettinelli, Jr. (articles ) | Feb 02, 2005

From the same diocesan website that gave you a gay pride rainbow flag on its gay/lesbian outreach pages, the Diocese of Cleveland's Secretarat for Education and Catechesis lists Ten Challenges for Catholic Leaders in the Aftermath of the Presidential Election. Among these challenges are the following gems:

Divisions exist within our Church that are deep and that jeopardize our ability to build community at the parish level and to be communities of salt and light to the larger society. (There is a great deal of alienation that needs to be addressed).
And just what are those divisions? Is it heterodoxy versus orthodoxy? Is it the challenge of catechizing those who don't understand the Church's teaching on moral issues within the political sphere? Maybe not, if you consider the next "challenge".
A creeping fundamentalism within the church provides space for some to demonize others (i.e. the notion that you can’t be a good Catholic and vote for John Kerry).
"Fundamentalism": what they mean is orthodoxy, i.e. people who think that the Church's teaching on things like abortion or embryonic stem-cell research outweigh a candidate's stance on fair housing laws. When liberals refer to fundamentalism, they mean people who believe something different from them and aren't going to capitulate on a moment's notice. How about some more evidence that the people at the Cleveland diocese's education office don't have obedience to the teaching authority of the Catholic Church foremost in their minds?
The independent statements of a few bishops has had a negative impact on the unity and teaching authority of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.
How dare those "few bishops" oppose the teaching authority of the USCCB? Wait, what do you mean that the USCCB doesn't have any teaching authority over and above that of the individual bishops as part of the whole college of bishops in union with the Pope. After all, what is the USCCB other than a liberal bureaucracy pushing its agenda through the biannual meetings of the bishops of a geographic region. That is probably what they mean: How dare these few bishops dare to push authentic and orthodox Catholicism without the approval of the USCCB's liberal staff. Funny, but I don't remember any document of the Church saying that bishops had given up their individual responsibility and duty to be shepherds and guardians of the faith.

And talk about breaking unity: What about the bishops who failed to remain in union with the Pope and universal college of bishops on the relation of life and other moral issues to politics.

Teaching on the consistent ethic of life needs to be strengthened not diluted. (Too much of the Presidential campaign was reduced to jingles and slogans).
For those of you new to the game of "liberalspeak", the phrase "consistent ethic of life" means "we're not really pro-abortion, but we're embarrassed by the Church's pro-life teachings because it places at odds with our favored party, the Democrats." The late Cardinal Bernardin called it the "seamless garment" approach. What it means is that we place the slaughter of unborn children on par with the destruction of the Columbia River watershed. It follows right along into the 10th "challenge":
A great challenge of our Church is to penetrate a national media that seems solely focused on the Church’s position on sexual and family matters while ignoring Church teaching on war and peace, social justice and human rights.
What they mean is their own interpretations of the Church's teaching on those matters. Her stance on sexual and family matters (i.e. gay marriage) is immutable and indisputable, while how best to implement teachings on war, social justice and human rights are prudential judgments. Of course, they don't see it that way: The only true interpretation is their own, they say. Unfortunately, the Church doesn't agree with them.

As the reader who sent me the link to this embarrassing, but hilarious list said: "Would these "challenges" have been issue had the pro-abort won?" Would they indeed?

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  • Posted by: - Feb. 03, 2005 11:59 AM ET USA

    It's amusing to note that while Mr. Allio complains about demonization in Point 2, he's resorting to it at the same time. As far as his suggestion about dialogue w/ Catholic pols, that's incredibly naive. Blabber all you want, Mr. A, but fact is pols don't give a hoot about what you believe if they know they have your vote in their hip pocket. Kerry & Co. will stop being pro-abortion only when they're convinced that position is political poison, not a day before.

  • Posted by: - Feb. 03, 2005 10:03 AM ET USA

    Once they cried: "Carthago delenda est !" I say: "liberals," too ! Sooner, the better.

  • Posted by: John J Plick - Feb. 03, 2005 9:33 AM ET USA

    Not too surprising. You "tolerate" rebellion and it seeks to legitimize itself. Unfortunately we tend to fantasize in order to protect ourselves from the reality of the situation..., that this is a crises in LEADERSHIP and has little to do directly with the "offenders" who make all of these outrageous positon statements. A "deacon's wife" who I know bought her husband a Christmas present that I read, "The Faith of the Church Fathers." Those spoken of above..excommunicated.. a long time ago

  • Posted by: Andy K - Feb. 03, 2005 9:18 AM ET USA

    Cardinal Bernardin, if I read his words rightly, did not mean that issues of taking life were equal to issues of promoting human dignity. Groups like CTA twisted his words. At that link, Cardinal Bernardin’s speeches about the idea are provided. Geez, it even comes from the same diocese. I fully believe that if we are truly going to learn what Cardinal Bernardin meant, we ought to know what he said, yes?

  • Posted by: Vincit omnia amor - Feb. 02, 2005 11:55 PM ET USA

    U. got it Dom! Sometimes it seems not just orthodoxy versus heterodoxy; but, sanity versus INSANITY. Re: universal's comment. "Prayer, patience, testimony." one might rightly add TRUTH!

  • Posted by: - Feb. 02, 2005 10:24 PM ET USA

    I fear the nonsense will never end. The liberals won't accept "charitable, fraternal correction" as we're required to make. They live in a world of denial. I wish their loyalty to the Magisterium was as strong as their loyalty to the Democratic Party.

  • Posted by: Universal - Feb. 02, 2005 7:25 PM ET USA

    I think we need to focus on one thing first and foremost: Give testimony of the living God, who became man, died and rose again out of love. This love, that each one of us experiences personally, is the basis of Christianity. I am confident that those whom we can bring close enough so that they are struck by the beauty of this God and the faith in Him will be partisans of life and love beyond divisions and attempts to appease those who have no respect for human life. Prayer, patience, testimony.

  • Posted by: - Feb. 02, 2005 6:26 PM ET USA

    Communism is alive and well as portrayed in this 10 Challenges. One for all and all for one could be the slogan. The name of the Lord is not mentioned once - and neither is the word of Faith. All I need to do is change a few words and I'm sure this could pass as a "mission statement" for our County/City Economic Committee.