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Diocese will no longer fund agency whose new director backs abortion

March 08, 2012

The Diocese of Sacramento will no longer donate funds to Francis House Center, an agency that assists the homeless, because its new director, a Methodist minister, supports legalized abortion and same-sex marriage.

“I have never represented any of those positions on behalf of Francis House," said Rev. Faith Whitmore. "I was speaking as an individual. So for me, this came out of the blue.”

“Why would we ask someone to contribute money to an organization and ask them to overlook all of those things that undermine the Church's teachings?" responded diocesan spokesman Kevin Eckery.

Father Thomas Reese, SJ, commented: “If the bishops are going to defund every organization headed by someone who disagrees with their views on gay marriage, birth control and abortion, they are going to find very few agencies to fund.”

In explaining the decision to drop funding for Francis House, the Sacramento diocese explicitly acknowledged that donations could be made to organizations whose leaders do not accept Church teachings. The explanation continued: "We can expect, however, that they or their leaders not publicly oppose Catholic teaching, and that, unfortunately, is the situation in which we find ourselves."


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  • Posted by: ElizabethD - Mar. 08, 2012 10:32 PM ET USA

    By all means let the Bishops fund well the few agencies that are being consistent about matters of moral importance. This was a good call by the Diocese of Sacto, and a good explanation. It's one thing if an organization or their leader isn't entirely with the Catholic Church on everything, it's another thing if they're quite publicly against!

  • Posted by: - Mar. 08, 2012 7:38 PM ET USA

    Father Reese, it IS a sad state of affairs, and we can lay some of the blame for that at the feet of a whole bunch of Jesuit individuals and institutions.

  • Posted by: AgnesDay - Mar. 08, 2012 2:28 PM ET USA

    Perhaps Fr. Reese is right. Maybe we need to go back to the age when charity required personal involvement, not just writing a check.

  • Posted by: - Mar. 08, 2012 7:42 AM ET USA

    See? Even Fr. Reese appreciates the value of allocating funds only to orthodox organizations with orthodox leadership.

  • Posted by: Randal Mandock - Mar. 08, 2012 5:48 AM ET USA

    On the contrary Fr. Reese, maybe the bishops will stop funding subversive community organizations and start funding Catholic ones. I can think of many Catholic initiatives that should be funded: orthodox schools, orthodox charities, real Catholic hospitals, et al. Of course, we only have one year left. But a year is a year.