April 17, 2012

Bishop Takes On Faux Catholic Politicians

It took the mandatory contraception regulation promulgated by the tyrant-in-chief to get the nation’s Catholic bishops to speak out against those who claim to be good Catholics but then participate in the attacks on the Church.

"May God have mercy on the souls of those politicians who pretend to be Catholic in church, but in their public lives, rather like Judas Iscariot, betray Jesus Christ by how they vote and how they willingly cooperate with intrinsic evil," he said.

Bishop Jenky has got some choice words for Barack Obama, too. Here’s the full text of his homily.

Now if only the nation’s bishops will take the suggestions I laid out several weeks ago.

UPDATE: In the short time since I posted this piece, a reader has sent me a link to the following piece.

The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) is criticizing the House-passed Republican budget authored by Rep. Paul Ryan for cutting food stamps and other assistance programs for the poor.

In a letter sent to the House Agriculture Committee on Monday, the bishops say the budget fails to meet certain “moral criteria” by disproportionately cutting programs that “serve poor and vulnerable people.”

A second letter sent Tuesday to the Ways and Means Committee criticizes a provision that makes it more difficult for illegal immigrants to claim child tax credits. The bishops called the credit “one of the most effective antipoverty programs in our nation.”

Let me take a moment to note how this response by the USCCB (USCCB Press release with links to various letters is here) is different than what was put forth by Bishop Jenky in the homily above, and by other statements such as those of Cardinal Dolan regarding the birth control/sterilization mandate and religious freedom.

If one looks at the letters in question, they do refer to certain magisterial teachings and scriptural passages. But in the end, these are lobbying documents that ought to be viewed as such. While the Bishop's Conference expresses the view that certain proposals fall short of the ideal, that view is more a matter of opinion and politics than it is a matter of doctrine. After all, the Catholic Church has not magisterial teaching on the funding level for federal programs, and as such it is clearly possible to disagree with the analysis offered in the letters as to the sufficiency of the appropriations for those programs. Indeed, Rep. Ryan offered a pretty strong argument, backed by long-standing theological teachings of the Catholic Church, that supports a different analysis. So while these letters deserve serious respect, they are not binding in conscience in the sense that actual magisterial teachings would be.

Which takes us back to Bishop Jenky. Note that his words refer to those who are complicit in intrinsic evil -- such as the promotion of abortion. They refer to those who would destroy Catholic ministries and institutions by forcing them to go against fundamental Catholic teachings. Indeed, Bishop Jenky compares today's situation to various efforts over the last several centuries to force the Catholic Church to stop being Catholic, and explicitly compares the current resident of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue to certain individuals who were noted for their efforts to suppress the Church -- Bismarck, Clemenceau, Hitler and Stalin. This is not a statement on how the bishops think Church teachings should be applied regarding a particular budget proposal at a particular time -- it is a call to action, a call to resistance, a call to be prepared for martyrdom at the hands of those who would assault Christ's church with their temporal power. As such, it is in the same vein as Cardinal Dolan's comments in recent weeks.

Look at the words and the tone of the bishops in each of these cases. Any honest assessment will tell you that the urgency and seriousness of the letters on the budget pale in comparison to the words of Bishop Jenky (and so many other bishops). The USCCB letters invite dialogue and reflection, while the others are a call to arms. It should be clear which is more binding on the conscience of the faithful.

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Comments on Bishop Takes On Faux Catholic Politicians

I am not a Catholic (though my family, for most part, is) but I would be proud to stand with the Bishop in resisting the politicians who would be our rulers

|| Posted by Goshawk639, May 3, 2012 12:04 PM ||
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