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  • The Catholic Bishops and Immigration Reform

    by Christopher Manion

    immigration-sign

    In the nineteenth century, German Catholics came to America by the millions, with surges following the revolutionary unrest of 1848 and the unification of Germany in 1871 that brought on Bismarck’s persecution of Catholics during the Kulturkampf. With them came heroic religious orders and devout laymen like those who founded Der Wanderer, a Catholic weekly in Saint Paul, Minnesota that was published in German into the 1950s (and was banned by Hitler, who stopped its distribution to thousands of Germans in the 1930s).

    For decades, those German-American Catholics refused to give up their language. In his massive study of American identity, Who Are We, the late Harvard historian Samuel P. Huntington writes that for years, “[a]mong the original British settlers antagonism existed towards [the newly-arrived] German-Americans, focused largely on the efforts of the latter to continue to use their language in churches and schools and other public institutions and events.” By the end of the nineteenth century, James Cardinal Gibbons, Archbishop of Baltimore and Primate of the Catholic Church in America, confronted the issue and insisted that the German-Americans use no German in homilies.

    The German-Americans appealed to Rome, claiming discrimination. They also demanded their own German-speaking bishops. Gibbons countered that their position would invite the charge that “the Catholic Church … exists in America as a foreign institution, and that she is, consequently, a menace to the existence of the nation…. The Germans are shining examples of industry, energy, love of home, conservatism, and attachment to their religion,” Gibbons conceded, but he insisted that they assimilate nonetheless. When the Vatican supported him, the patriotic Gibbons proudly informed President Benjamin Harrison of his triumph. Harrison responded warmly, writing that “Of all men, the Bishops of the Church should be in full harmony with the political institutions and sentiments of the country.”

    Well, times have changed—changed utterly. Several prominent Catholic prelates at a conference in Napa, California, in 2011, limned their vision of “The Next America,” taking for granted that the old America was… over. Their comments focused on immigration: Cardinal Roger Mahony, the recently retired Archbishop of Los Angeles, reviewed various passages from Scripture and Catholic teaching to advocate amnesty for illegal aliens. Cardinal Mahony has made amnesty his principal political goal for years, to the point that, when he was asked about abortion and health care in 2009, he replied, “This is way beyond my field. My field is immigration.” When Obamacare finally passed in March 2010 (still including abortion) the Cardinal was ecstatic. “Now that a health care bill will help millions of uninsured people receive affordable medical care,” he rejoiced, “it’s time for the government to address the millions of people who are living in the shadows because they lack legal immigration status.”

    Cardinal Mahony’s successor at the Napa conference joined him in supporting amnesty, but, curiously, he did so by attacking Huntington’s book. “[Huntington] made a lot of sophisticated-sounding arguments, but his basic argument was that American identity and culture are threatened by Mexican immigration,” the prelate charged. He continued, “[a]uthentic American identity ‘was the product of the distinct Anglo-Protestant culture of the founding settlers of America in the 17th and 18th centuries,’ according to Huntington. By contrast, Mexicans’ values are rooted in a fundamentally incompatible ‘culture of Catholicism’ which, Huntington argued, does not value self-initiative or the work ethic, and instead encourages passivity and an acceptance of poverty. These are old and familiar nativist claims, and they are easy to discredit,” he claimed.

    Not easy to discredit, perhaps, but easy to ignore. Unfortunately, the prelate’s caricature of Huntington falls so far from the mark that one hopes his remarks were based, perhaps, on an unfavorable review somewhere. In fact, Huntington’s focus—masterfully presented and exhaustively researched—is not the “Culture of Catholicism” but rather of a single country, Mexico. It is this culture that the overwhelming majority of Hispanic immigrants, legal and illegal, bring with them across the border into the United States. The character of that culture is so important because of the profound reality that Mahony’s successor—an American citizen born in Monterrey, Mexico—delicately avoids: Mexicans in America will not assimilate, and, this time around, America’s Catholic bishops don’t care.

    Not only does the attack on Huntington bash a straw man which is “easy to discredit”; it then conjures up an idealized image of Mexican immigrants. Mexican immigrants “will bring a new, youthful, entrepreneurial spirit of hard work to our economy,” the archbishop says. They “are not afraid of hard work or sacrifice [and] the vast majority of them believe in Jesus Christ and love our Catholic Church. They share traditional American values of faith, family and community.”

    A brief particular of interest to the faithful: recent in-depth studies by the Pew Charitable Trust indicate that, contrary to the situation decades ago, many Hispanic immigrants today are in fact Protestant or evangelical; moreover, the longer a Catholic Hispanic is in the U.S., the more likely it is that he will leave the Church. More than 80% of Latino evangelicals in the U.S. are former Catholics.

    The issue has nothing to do with the personal character of the immigrants: Cardinal Gibbons thought the Germans were fine people, too. They “are shining examples of industry, energy, love of home, conservatism, and attachment to their religion,” he warmly observed, but for the common good of the new country they chose to enter, they must assimilate to it.

    And the Germans did. How about the Mexicans? Has any American bishop followed Cardinal Gibbons’ lead, and insisted that Mexicans in America speak English at Mass? That Hispanic Masses be celebrated only in English (or better, Latin), and that all homilies and formation be conducted in English? Quite the contrary. Most bishops are probably looking for more Spanish-speaking priests, just as our own parish has. Today, it is America that is expected to assimilate to its immigrants.

    Gibbons cherished America; but some current bishops have their doubts, and with good reason: “Our culture is changing,” the Napa speech says. “We have a legal structure that allows, and even pays for, the killing of babies in the womb. Our courts and legislatures are redefining the natural institutions of marriage and the family. We have an elite culture … that is openly hostile to religious faith.”

    All too true. So what is to blame for this travesty? Pope Benedict XVI identified the “Dictatorship of Relativism” that infects the secular societies of the West. Undoubtedly, the American Church’s abandonment of Humanae Vitae has played a central role. The new archbishop, however, aims his arrows at other targets. For him, the culprit is Old America, specifically “the idea that Americans are descended from only white Europeans and that our culture is based only on the individualism, work ethic and rule of law that we inherited from our Anglo-Protestant forebears.” Our national heritage somehow encourages “a wrong-headed notion that ‘real Americans’ are of some particular race, class, religion or ethnic background,” he insists. It smacks of “nativism” and “bigotry.”

    Perhaps the prelate’s argument is not with Huntington, but with Tocqueville. He does not hesitate to tell audiences of wealthy Catholics that critics of illegal immigration are “angry and frustrated,” and their views are “not worthy of the Gospel.” However, his animus pales when compared to that of his brother bishops back home. For example, an editorial in Desde La Fe, the newspaper of the Catholic Archdiocese of Mexico City, lambasted what it called “the arrogant, xenophobic, and racist attitude of the United States.” Of course, this is the same propaganda line that the Mexican corruptos in government, business, and culture have expounded for years—blaming the gringos, and not the criminal cronyism and corruption of Mexico’s elites, for Mexico’s dysfunctional poverty. Alas, when the victims of that propaganda cross the border into the U.S., no bishop greets them to disabuse them of that deep-seated anti-American resentment (or typically, even to catechize them). In Mexico, they had to game the system to survive. In the U.S., they discover that our comparatively extravagant welfare system is a sitting duck, virtually inviting manipulation. Yet they rarely hear the voice of the Church telling them, “Thou shalt not steal.”

    Instead, the Archbishop of Los Angeles and 32 other Hispanic Bishops in the United States published a letter addressed to “unauthorized” immigrants. In their letter, our beloved shepherds apologize for those Americans who “disdain” illegals, lamenting that many of those who disagree with them are “sowing hatred” instead of supporting amnesty. And what callous souls could possibly disagree with the personal political views of their bishops? “Many of our Catholic brothers and sisters,” that’s who. It’s breathtaking, really: America’s Hispanic bishops have apparently joined their Mexican brothers and declared war on the hating, xenophobic, hard-hearted “Old America,” many Catholics included.

    It is worth noting that the Hispanic bishops’ letter condemns anti-amnesty Catholics in language more scathing than our bishops have ever used to condemn pro-abortion “Catholic” politicians who flagrantly perpetuate a grave public scandal by continuing to receive the Eucharist while brazenly championing “abortion rights.” Of course, abortion is an objective evil, a heinous moral crime that all Catholics must condemn, while immigration is an issue on which good Catholics can and do disagree. I wonder, have America’s Hispanic bishops ever published a joint pastoral letter using similarly strong language condemning abortionists and the “Catholic” politicians who enable them? I hope so. After all, Hispanic and black children are in the bull’s eye of those who exterminate the unborn: proportionally they are killed in much larger numbers than are children of other races.

    Nonetheless,  the charge leveled at Americans by the Mexico City Archdiocese is refreshing for its candor: Mexican bishops say outright what American bishops and their USCCB staff have darkly intimated for years. In July 2008, Cardinal Mahony blatantly charged that opponents of amnesty are immoral. He told an immigration rally that enforcement of current law was “fanning the flames of intolerance, xenophobia and, at times, bigotry.” His brother bishops usually tend to use a slightly lighter touch.

    But Cardinal Mahony is certainly not alone. In their 1979 “Pastoral Letter On Racism,” his brother bishops blamed the evil of racism not on the human heart but on “racial injustices in society and its own structures.” So it is structures, not hearts, that must be changed. In the meantime, we all must be racists if we’re not revolutionaries. Such intoxicating Marxism has pervaded the “social justice” movement in Catholic circles for decades. It might help to explain why our bishops today appear to be so helpless in confronting the blatantly anti-Catholic culture war being waged by the Obama Administration.

    Speaking of racism, I can find no record of Cardinal Mahony, his successor, or any other bishop condemning the blatant racism of their pro-amnesty allies like La Raza—“The Race”—a virulent agitation machine that is very powerful right there in the Los Angeles Archdiocese. One wonders, does self-serving moral posturing with such allies serve the Church’s mission to “go and teach all nations”—or does it pervert it?

    Robert Royal, who has written on immigration for years and whose wife is an immigrant, notes that

    in simple terms, since the beginning of the new millennium alone, about 3.6 percent of 312,596,746 Americans are new arrivals. Almost one in every twenty-five people. And that’s not counting another million plus in 2011 and tens of millions before 2000…. This picture hardly squares with the usual complaints including those from people in the Church, that Americans are xenophobic and do not welcome the ‘stranger and the alien’ among us (cf., Leviticus 19:33-34). Indeed, such Biblical moralizing has been, I believe, a hindrance, more than a help, in the debate about illegal immigration, because most Americans resent such patent untruth.

    Let’s get beyond the slander and back to the issue at hand: assimilation. The attack on Huntington said, a tad defensively, “One could point to the glorious legacy of Hispanic literature and art, or to Mexican-Americans’ and Hispanic-Americans’ accomplishments in business, government, medicine and other areas.” It said not a word about the culture of civic corruption that Mexicans have endured for over a century. Nor does it mention, even as serious problems for possible consideration, the murders of a Catholic Cardinal, a major presidential candidate, numerous mayors, prosecutors, and thousands of innocents, reflecting what can only be called a culture of violence. As Thomas Sowell observed not long ago, “When you import people, you import cultures.” Given that Cardinal Mahony, his successor, and their brother bishops will not encourage Mexicans to assimilate, it’s only fair to ask, what culture are they importing?

    Aristotle recognized and underscored the importance of good habits to social survival and prosperity. He gave these habits names: virtues. He delineated certain virtues required of a polis, virtues known to us all, because they have remained virtually unchanged for the past two millennia. The prelate at Napa insisted that Mexicans “share traditional American values of faith, family and community,” and Newt Gingrich agrees. During a GOP presidential debate, Gingrich said he thought it unwise to deport many illegals if “they’ve been law-abiding citizens for 25 years.”

    But whose laws have they been obeying? As a volunteer translator for law enforcement here in the Shenandoah Valley, I constantly encounter “law-abiding” immigrants, many of whom have been here for years, who routinely use false identification, multiple aliases, false or borrowed Social Security numbers (a federal felony), and who pay “coyotes” regularly when they come back into the U.S. illegally after returning to Mexico for a visit. “Tell ’em to get their hands out of their pockets,” the sheriff wants me to tell such people, fearful that they are reaching for a weapon. No, I tell him, they are reaching for their wallet, because back in their home country every man in uniform they have ever encountered expected a bribe. Yet our police rarely arrest these immigrant felons: “They’ll just let’em go at ICE,” they complain.

    I have never heard a bishop admonish Hispanics to leave behind the corrupt and violent habits that they were forced to adopt in order to survive in their home country. Why is every decent house in Mexico surrounded by a wall topped off with broken glass and barbed wire? Why has Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa decided, for the first time in Los Angeles history, to build a wall around the mayor’s mansion? Why do illegals in the U.S. complain that they have to send back money not only to their relatives, but to the mayor, the police chief, and the local gang leader so their families will not be assaulted or plundered in their absence?

    And why does Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, the proto-Communist candidate in Mexico’s 2012 presidential election, come to Chicago to deliver a campaign speech before an auditorium packed with Newt Gingrich’s “law-abiding citizens”? Why? Because they still consider themselves to be citizens of Mexico, not the United States. The laws and social mores they are abiding by are Mexican ones, not ours. And the Mexican government encourages them to participate in Mexican elections by contacting their nearby Mexican consulates that are conveniently located throughout the United States. Why? Because these folks send back some $80-$100 billion a year to their extended families in Mexico.

    Univision, a Spanish-language television network headquartered in New York City, owns dozens of broadcast stations alongside its cable and satellite operations. Their programming perpetuates the cultural connection of Mexicans with Mexico. Intermingled with its numerous entertainment shows saturated with sex are newscasts that depict the U.S. as a foreign country in which its millions of Mexican viewers just happen to live. When it covers non-Hispanics at all, it depicts them as “the arrogant, xenophobic, and racist” Americans that the Mexican elites and the Mexican Church have warned them about all their lives. Assimilate? Are you kidding? After such a drenching indoctrination, why on earth would they wish to?

    The Catholic Church in the United States undoubtedly has a Hispanic future. Surveys indicate that a majority of today’s Catholic population in America under the age of thirty are Hispanic. Perhaps the bishops are simply acquiescing to what they perceive as inevitable. Moreover, the Dictatorship of Relativism and the collapse of the family have played a role, bringing our culture to the brink of collapse—or perhaps beyond the brink. Ask your pastor how many marriages your parish has performed, compared to ten or twenty years ago. The Napa bishops can certainly find plenty about today’s America that doesn’t measure up to Tocqueville. Imagine a president—or any politician, for that matter—who would echo John Adams, in a letter to his friend Benjamin Rush:

    The Bible contains the most profound philosophy, the most perfect morality, and the most refined policy, that was ever conceived upon the earth. It is the most Republican book in the world, and therefore I will still revere it. The curses against fornication and adultery, and the prohibition of fornication or libidinous ogle at a woman, I believe to be the only system that did or ever will preserve a Republic in the world.

    Clearly our beloved country has fallen on hard times, and no race or ethnic group has been spared. But even in the midst of such difficulties, there is merit in honestly discussing the question that Huntington asks at the beginning of Who Are We:

    The massive Hispanic immigration after 1965 make America increasingly bifurcated in terms of language (English and Spanish) and culture (Anglo and Hispanic), which could supplement or supplant the black—white racial bifurcation as the important division in American society. Substantial parts of America, primarily in southern Florida and the Southwest, would be primarily Hispanic and culture and language, while both cultures and languages would coexist in the rest of America. America, in short, would lose its cultural and linguistic unity and become a bilingual, bi-cultural society like Canada, Switzerland, or Belgium.

    Is this “Next America” inevitable? Are there alternatives? Can Catholics disagree with the views of the Napa bishops without getting called ugly, destructive names? Can anybody?

    Only time will tell. But until recently, under the leadership of USCCB President Archbishop Timothy Dolan, our bishops have seldom reminded  us that their political views are their own—that good Catholics can and do differ on the application of Catholic precepts on specific legislative issues; in fact, that the Church calls on the laity to lead on practical legislative issues like immigration and federal spending. The Hispanic bishops’ letter to illegal aliens starkly reflects the sad politicization of some segments of the hierarchy, where favorite private political agendas like the welfare state and amnesty have in some cases virtually crowded out the Magisterium altogether. Perhaps we should pray that our bishops will bring eternal and objective truths like those in Humanae Vitae “out of the shadows,” and let the laity, not the hierarchy, deal with practical legislative particulars that Holy Mother Church calls us to address, in charity and in truth, to pursue the common good for all.

    Editor’s note: This essay first appeared December 16, 2011 in Crisis Magazine. It is being reposed due to its timeliness and continued relevance to the current debate over immigration reform and as a service to the growing number of new Crisis readers who would not have noticed the essay when it was first published.

    The views expressed by the authors and editorial staff are not necessarily the views of
    Sophia Institute, Holy Spirit College, or the Thomas More College of Liberal Arts.

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    • Deacon Ed Peitler

      #1 Most Catholics do not listen to the bishops when they make pronouncements on matters political or socio-cultural. Catholics don’t listen on matters of morality which is the proper purview of the episcopacy so why will they listen to the USCCB lobby on other matters? Much of what comes out of the USCCB is not even read, let alone taken seriously.

      #2 Do the bishops expect that the Hispanic community will be financially supporting their chancery coffers for projects they hold dear? What will they do as increasing numbers of practicing Catholics catch on and decide to place their financial support, not with their parishes and diocesan offices (let alone CRS and CCHD), but rather will support those Catholic organizations that are mission-driven i.e. evangelization of the peoples and which produce results. Just ask yourself the question: “How good is my parish (diocese) doing at evangelizing the culture and bringing new converts into the Church. What percentage of the registered Catholics in my parish came into the Church this past Easter? 1 or 2%?”

      #3 It is clear that the Catholic Church in America will recover from the doldrums of the past 60 years, not through the efforts of priests or bishops, but through the efforts of the laity.

      • Obama_Dogeater

        Spot on. The bishops are doing more harm than good with their anti-American amnesty socialism nonsense, alienating conservative Catholics like me. I just ignore them. They are fools.

        • ColdStanding

          Blessed be the Holy, Undivided Trinity, now and forever more. Please do not call the living icons of Chirst among us “fools”. They are the duly appointed successors of the apostles, who themselves were anointed in and by Jesus Christ for the salvation of our souls. You have blasphemed Jesus Christ, for in all things of Christ we owe them obedience.

          In other words, do not contribute to the effort to wreck the bishops for all time, lead by Satan, just because it is not going so well for them with you right now.

          I beg that you, please, to repent of what you’ve said.

          • Alecto

            Living icons of Christ? There are none so blind as those who will not see, and that includes people who attribute goodness or charity to individuals based on titles, offices and status, not on individual actions and intent. It’s one thing to ask for prayers on their behalf so that they will reform themselves. It’s quite another to excuse all the bad they do because they occupy an office. These bishops are the pharisees Jesus himself criticized. Can you not understand this?

            • ColdStanding

              Ah, so you’d have me cut off my nose to spite my face. No thanks.

              Nor will I be shoe-horning every instance of behavior that I find disagreeable on the part of officials into the grossly over-used pejorative “pharisee”. I guess when all you’ve got is a hammer, Alecto, everything becomes a nail.

              • Obama_Dogeater

                Alecto nailed it…the truth, that is. And by the way, I stand by my statement about the bishops. Apparently they don’t care about the numerous negative consequences illegal aliens have brought with them, i.e., draining public benefits intended for legal citizens, increases in crime (29 percent of federal inmates are illegals), deadly DUI incidents involving illegals and the return of communicable diseases such as tuberculosis. There’s nothing Christlike about providing aid to people who selfishly break our laws.

                • ColdStanding

                  You have rebuffed my fraternal correction, sir, you are a sinner and a publican to me now.

                  • Obama_Dogeater

                    I’m a sinner because I share uncomfortable facts with you? You don’t know me, but Jesus does, and it’s His opinion that means the most to me.

                    • ColdStanding

                      Then why do you denigrate those whom He set over you by calling them “fools”? To call the bishops fools is to call Him a fool. How is that respecting Jesus Christ? It was His plan to provide shepherds for His flock. Do you doubt His wisdom?

                      • Obama_Dogeater

                        Because they are acting foolishly by supporting that which destroys our nation. Some shepherds they are, allowing the wolves in.

                      • ColdStanding

                        You are lost, little lamb. That’s no fault of the bishops.

                      • Obama_Dogeater

                        The bishops support illegal immigration. They are complicit.

                      • ColdStanding

                        Tu quoque is no defense for what you have written and you are only making it worse by not retracting what you know in your heart of hearts to be a very serious sin. You have it in your power to turn from your blasphemy, seek forgiveness for what you have done.

                      • Obama_Dogeater

                        Disagreeing with the misguided bishops is a sin? So we should all just stand by silently while they support something that is illegal and immoral?

                      • ColdStanding

                        Don’t you prevaricate with me! There is a written record. It is not your disagreement I take umbrage with, but the blasphemy you have uttered and which you have refused to retract. You have said “They are fools.”

                      • Obama_Dogeater

                        That’s not blasphemy. And by the way, how many of these wise bishops fell for Obama’s LIES in 2008? Obama lied to Cardinal Dolan’s face about birth control and abortion not being a part of Obamacare and Cardinal Dolan fell for it. What am I to think and do when I see this as a parishioner? Even I knew Obama was a deceitful man but many of our bishops were duped.

                      • ColdStanding

                        So, do you know what tu quoque is or don’t you? Don’t look it up. Do you know it, yes or no? Stop blaming other people for your bad behavior.

                      • Obama_Dogeater

                        I’m very impressed with your use of a 50-point word, congratulations. Speaking of that, your “point” makes no sense. Blaming other people for my bad behavior? I’m not the “leader” supporting the illegal and immoral act of breaking the country’s laws, all for selfish gain.

                      • ColdStanding
                      • Obama_Dogeater

                        “Blasphemy is a sin against the virtue of religion by which we render to God the honour due to Him as our first beginning and last end.”
                        Um, did you notice it says “God” and not “liberal American bishops?”

                      • ColdStanding

                        Which brings me back to my original point:

                        Bishops are icons of God. To blaspheme His Holy Icon is to blaspheme Him. You have said “They are fools.” This is denigration of the bishops and breach against the first commandment. That is mortal sin. What anybody else is doing wrong now, in the world, and there are many that are doing wrong, is of NO concern of yours right now, given what you have uttered and stubbornly refused to retract.

                      • Obama_Dogeater

                        Bishops are NOT icons of God. We can’t agree on that, so it’s useless to argue with you. You are dismissed.

                      • ColdStanding

                        You mean to tell me that the Bishops of the One, Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church, successors to the apostles upon whom Jesus Christ Himself laid is Holy Hands and to whom He sent the Holy Spirit, which came upon them in a tongue fire? These same Bishops, receivers of the sacrament of holy orders, bearers of the authority of binding and loosing sins? NOT holy Icons of Christ? You don’t even know what you are talking about.

                        OK, I get it now. There is not enough material for a formal charge of blasphemy. You just don’t have enough understanding of your faith. Error, but less serious.

                      • Obama_Dogeater

                        I understand my faith (and the laws of our country) just fine. Apparently YOU don’t understand the role of bishops in the hierarchy of the Church.

                      • ColdStanding

                        Well, school me, then. Expound upon the role of our Bishops in the Church.

                      • Obama_Dogeater

                        Gee, you seemed to be so well versed on all things Catholic, you should know. They are supposed to be the spiritual shepherds of the flock, not liberal mouthpieces for the archdiocese, weighing in on political issues that have no bearing on their shepherd role.

                      • ColdStanding

                        And you are supposed to be their spiritual lamb. But you are not and so, they are not.

                      • Obama_Dogeater

                        Blame the lamb for the incompetent shepherd?

                      • tom

                        Are you wearing a napoleon hat when you pontificate, CS? You should, you know. Great stuff!

                      • ColdStanding

                        It is at the cleaners. Pontificate’s root is pontus, which means bridge. Yes, I am bridgemaking with my images. What of it?

                      • Adam__Baum

                        “The floor of hell is paved with the skulls of bishops.”
                        St. Athanasius, Council of Nicaea, AD 325 attributed.3

                      • MJK

                        Bishops are icons of God. To blaspheme His Holy Icon is to blaspheme

                        Based on what? What torture reading or misinterpretation, sir. Please stop asserting absurd and unfounded nonsense…

                      • ColdStanding

                        http://orthodoxinfo.com/praxis/bishop_place.aspx

                        same holds true for the Byzantine Catholic conception of the role of the bishop as Icon of Christ.

                        How do you like your crow served?

                      • John200

                        Dear ColdStanding,
                        In charity, you might read the definition of blasphemy with greater care, not just post it. This would help because the definition contradicts you.

                        It is not blasphemy to criticize or contradict a bishop.

                        Whether or not you make a word salad, I don’t want you declaring things just so. I merely want you to read and parse correctly the definition you yourself cited.

                      • ColdStanding

                        How on earth do you consider calling a bishop a “fool” criticism? It is one thing to disagree with prudential judgment but quite another to then start calling them names.

                      • Alecto

                        The Biden/Pelosi situation offers a curious contradiction for CS in that encouraging or assisting others in blasphemy (receiving the Eucharist in a state of mortal sin which is the case with both of them for their intractable stand on abortion and public funding of abortion)? Would he condemn a priest or bishop for blasphemy by distributing communion to either of them, or in Dolan’s case, Andrew Cuomo?

                      • ColdStanding

                        There is no contradiction. Nor are they on the table for discussion. You, Alecto, want a reduction in scandal among the faithful, but only when you see it far away from you. O_D has utter scandalous statements here and you have come perilously close to endorsing him. Sin and scandal is in our very midst, and you defend it!

                        For shame!

                        To receive the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ in a state of mortal sin is to add to darkness to darkness.

                      • tom

                        When you add darkness to darkness, how do you know when it’s dark enough?

                      • ColdStanding

                        How would you have me speak, then? With what shall I make my meaning known? Shall I just make a word salad and declare it just so?

                      • Obama_Dogeater

                        Reminds me of the line from “Spinal Tap” when David is reflecting on how black the album is: “How much more black can it be? The answer is none. None more black.”

                      • Obama_Dogeater

                        Then why are they allowed to receive Communion?

                      • Alecto

                        I didn’t respond about the communicant. I posed a question about the sin committed by a “representative” of Christ who knowingly gives communion to someone who aggressively supports abortion? Yet, Cardinal Wuerl suspended Fr. Guarnizo from his duties for not blaspheming. Who is the sinner here? Who is the fool here?

                      • MJK

                        I’m not impressed with anything this dolt ColdStanding types. He is in a Church of his own making because what he is asserting based on his own tortured misinterpretations…

                      • Alecto

                        A dish best served cold.

                      • ColdStanding

                        Took me a second to get it, but, good one.

                      • Adam__Baum

                        Cardinal Dolan should have known better. That incident may convict Obama as a duplicitous liar, but it indicts the Cardinal as naive. Interestingly, people who study fraud, especially financial fraud learn that it often requires a victim with a desire to get something for nothing. If the Bishops were more economically literate they wouldn’t believe in government healthcare, instead they’d have dismissed it as an unworkable scheme of economic serfdom. The bigger error was believing in government healthcare.

                      • Midge

                        As the Democratic Senator said recently, the bill is a “train wreck.” And its coming next year. Premiums going up for everyone.

                      • Alecto

                        What lies? Obama was as plain as day about what he wanted and who he was. It’s not lies so much as total denial on the part of the bishops/cardinals. Anybody who refuses to vote for the “Born Alive Act” in his state legislature is broadcasting his values in neon lights!

                      • tom

                        You are funny, perhaps unintentionally…which makes you even funnier. keep it up!

                      • Kevin A. McGrath

                        You support illegal immigration every time you eat a grape. There is illegal immigration in the US because of greed. But it’s easier to blame poor people for our woes than corporations.

                      • Obama_Dogeater

                        It wasn’t the corporations who broke our border laws.

                      • Kevin A. McGrath

                        Things have changed since 9/11, but from the 80s until then, it was California farmers, Texas ranchers, and Arizona builders who were paying off large-scale Mexican ‘coyote’ syndicates to smuggle large numbers of illegals into the US. The American businesses would front the money to the coyotes, who would then fulfill the contract by smuggling in the required numbers of illegals. Government turned a blind eye to the practice because it was deemed economically necessary; corporations liked it because it was a source of cheap labor which also held down wages for those legally here. That kind of smuggling still goes on, but the border is much tighter than it was pre- 9/11. The bishops are supporting the only sensible approach – find a way to allow those already here to have some formal, legal status as a way of preventing their exploitation. The ‘path to citizenship in the Senate proposal is far more laborious than what was required under Simpson-Mazzoli in 1986 – and fewer than half of the estimated illegals here at the time became citizens.

                      • Obama_Dogeater

                        And it helps that most of the 15 million illegal aliens are Catholic, right? And potential Democrat voters and welfare moochers. Forgive me if I didn’t see any “common sense” in that. They can get their illegal butts BACK to their country and apply for citizenship like everyone else.

                      • MJK

                        “To call the bishops fools is to call Him a fool.”

                        That is a ridiculous, totally unfounded assertion. What tortured logic and reading of Church teaching, Sacred Tradition, or the Church Fathers do you justify your contempt for prudence, sound judgement, and reason.

                        You sir are dangerously conflating theology and ecclesiology…fundamentals over form/structure.

                      • ColdStanding

                        John 17:18

                        James 4:11

                        Luke 6:22

                        John 20:22

                        Mathew 10:16

                        Mathew 5:11

                        Luke 6:28

                        Exodus 22:28

                        Psalm 109:28

                        You are not looking contribute to this discussion, nor do you seem to be able to pick up the gist of the thread. I suppose if you need to shoot your mouth off, there is little I can do to stop you. But I will enjoy squishing you like the bug you are.

                      • tom

                        BINGO!

                      • John200

                        Dear ColdStanding,
                        You still have not correctly read your own definition of “blasphemy.”

                        And thank you for, “But I will enjoy squishing you like the bug you are.”
                        You are squishing yourself like a bug. I see no sign that you are enjoying it. Putting yourself on display is not helping; look over the discussion which you have so thoroughly trolled.

                        I leave you to your darkness.

                      • ColdStanding

                        Not enjoying it? I’m having a grand old time. Nor have I, previous to this “exchange”, ever got into a flame war like this one – on this site. The posters opposite to me have given as many postings as it pleased them to. That I was in no mood to truck their gratuitous abuse of the current hierarchy of the Church is a fault? So be it. I don’t see you going after them for over-posting. If my posts are not to your taste, what of it? It is not on my account that you feel compelled to rebuke me or that you just can’t keep your fingers off the keyboard. So, pick: Post, then I post. Don’t post, I don’t post. Simple.

                        Now, unlike others who, through incapacity, need to dismiss the weight of counter-charge by focusing upon trivialities or by falling back into mere insistence, I will directly address the core of your post, stated clearly:

                        John200 to ColdStanding: By the definition you have provided, O_D’s utterance “They (the RC Bishops who are pursuing this policy of immigration reform) are fools.” does not meet the standards for blasphemy.

                        Yes? No? How would you sum up, in one line, the crux of your charge against me in a way different from what I have presented?

                        I will proceed: to say someone is a fool is to “attribute” foolishness to their very nature. To say that someone did a foolish thing is to predicate foolishness on their actions, not their nature. This makes all the difference. For it is to hate the sinner, not the sin. That’s bass ackwards. To say “They are fools.” therefore demeans their very person, specifically in regards to the exercise of their office. This is to impute and demean one that H. M. C. has seen fit to ordain as priest and bishop. First of all, it is a lie. There is no evidence that they are anything other than very intelligent and dedicated individuals faced with difficult choices making out the best they can all the while (one hopes) praying for the grace of God.

                        The temptation that O_D has become ensnared in is to take the licence of disagreement, which he and all, within limits, have, with policy and extend it to denigrating their character, and thus the office they serve in the Church. I take great umbrage with that. He has crossed the line and is perilously close to meeting the etymological meaning of blasphemy, if he does not meet the strict canonical definition of blasphemy (I am not competent to judge that).

                        If it doesn’t meet the, justly, high means test for blasphemy, then it is surely calumny. That should be no cause for joy, for it is little better.

                        In brief, I ask you: would you call your bishop or any bishop of the RCC a “fool” to his face? I doubt it. Why? Because of the dignity of his office and what you know it represents, specifically from whom it comes. If you would not call a bishop a fool to his face, what kind of cowardly thing would it be to do it behind his back? Calumny! Do you think God doesn’t see? Course he does. That you don’t seem to care, is troubling.

                      • John200

                        You are troubled, I can see that.

                        Bring this thread to an orthodox priest, that is, a normal man who became a Catholic Priest. Not a social “justice” Catholic, not a “dissenting” Catholic, not a silver ponytail.

                        That will get you started.

                        Hasta la sanity, ColdStanding.

                      • ColdStanding

                        Like I expected. You’ve got nothing.

                      • John200

                        I’ve got you, babe.

                        And you know it.

                      • ColdStanding

                        If you truly think me insane, why do you attempt to taunt me? That is hardly a Christian thing to do. Making fun of the less fortunate and participating in the mockery of our bishops. Tsk Tsk.

                      • Alecto

                        In life as in law, truth is an absolute defense to slander or libel. When you misinterpret, perhaps intentionally, Church teaching to make it into something it isn’t, it is you who is defaming God, not God accusing us.

                      • ColdStanding

                        Take it up with St. Francis de Sales, Doctor of the Church I might add, for he says of priests, “I will close my eyes to their faults, and only see in them God’s representatives.”

                        Also (but not St. Francis): “We should not gossip about the priest, even if we see something we do not like in him; to calumniate a priest is sacrilege.” from the 1949 book, My Catholic Faith.

                      • Alecto

                        When it comes to the bishops, I’m with the Bard:

                        For sweetest things turn sourest by their deeds,
                        Lilies that fester smell far worse than weeds.

                      • Dave Smith

                        A fool is a fool. It’s more foolish to pretend that the Bishops are infallible every time they pitch their political views. Does this mean a devout Catholic would have been blaspheming Jesus if he or she criticized a bishop that covered up a priest who sexually abused kids?

                        The job of a Bishop is to teach the faith and save souls, not do the work of the liberal left. Oh, if only, if only, they would have spoken up before Obamacare became law or DOMA was struck down? Yeah, if only……now THAT would have been real “soul-saving” work.

                    • MJK

                      who cares…this coldstanding is a clown

                      • ColdStanding

                        Your mouth’s writing cheques you won’t be able to cash.

                      • Alecto

                        Nah, he’s (and that’s an assumption) a provocateur.

              • Alecto

                I would never, ever recommend facial disfiguration as a solution to any problem, sir, nor would I have you attribute undeserved qualities where they don’t exist.

                I have a giant, massive Craftsman toolbox which contains everything from a pedal wrench to a pneumatic nail gun. If the hammer is appropriate, I am not afraid to employ it.

                • ColdStanding

                  Really? All those tools and the only one I’ve ever seen you use is a hammer. Oh, wait you’ve pulled out your violin on occasion, too. My bad.

                  • Alecto

                    If I had a hammer, I’d hammer in the morning, I’d hammer in the evening, All over this land, I’d hammer out danger, I’d hammer out a warning, I’d hammer out love between my brothers and my sisters
                    All over this land….

                    Well I’ve got a hammer, And I’ve got a bell, And I’ve got a song to sing, All over this land, It’s the hammer of justice, It’s the bell of freedom, It’s the song about love between my brothers and my sisters, All over this land…

                    How do you like them hammers?

                    • ColdStanding

                      Nonsense is a peculiar defense for you to choose. But what ever. Makes my job easy.

                      • Alecto

                        Sir, I merely respond in kind.

                      • ColdStanding

                        You have neither responded, nor have you been kind.

                      • Alecto

                        When faced with your particular brand of insult; deflection, or what you call “nonsense” seems to be the only viable response.

                      • ColdStanding

                        Oh? I would have tried to structure a reasonable argument. I might fail, and often do, but that’s me.

                      • Alecto

                        There is a difference between constructing a reasonable argument, which I did, and one which you find persuasive. I’m sorry if I have not been able to help you see the truth. I have failed because it is so obvious to me, it seems self-evident.

                      • ColdStanding

                        What is defensible about treating a holy icon of Jesus Christ as an object of denigration? Tell me in what way, Alecto, that is possibly defensible. You have provided nothing in this regard and only stumble on because you can’t take your own medicine.

                      • Alecto

                        As I have repeatedly explained throughout this thread, they, the bishops themselves, by their own actions, denigrate their offices, and therefore in my opinion, Jesus Christ and his Church. By involving his Church in matters over which they have no jurisdiction, they have subjected the Church to “denigration” by taking an immoral and untenable position on this issue. It is absolutely, unequivocally insupportable by any measure.

                        Jesus never bestowed authority on bishops or any of his successors to act in this manner. I’m sorry that you feel the way you do. We must agree to disagree here.

                      • ColdStanding

                        Why are you sorry that I defend the sacred, the sacramentary, and the sacramentals of The Holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church?

                        As to your opinion. It is wrong. The Church is the visible aspect of the Mystical Body of Christ. Jesus Christ is our Lord and Savior. He reigns over His creation as King. There is no human affair NOT under His jurisdiction. There is no way to consider His Church without His bishops. To entertain anything else is heresy.

                        If your bishops displease you, attempt to think of what a cross YOU must be to bear.

                      • Alecto

                        I am not sorry for anything other than an attempt to try to lead a horse to water and make him drink. I reject your entire premise, and it is not what the Church teaches.

                      • ColdStanding

                        Be it on your head, then.

                      • Alecto

                        Et cum spiritu tuo.

                      • ColdStanding

                        I don’t know why you’d use a line so intimately connected with the holy sacrifice of the mass as something to throw at my face.

                      • tom

                        Egads!

                      • ColdStanding

                        Step on matey, or I’ll put it on your head, too!

                        Do you like Pirate Cold, better than pontificating Cold?

                      • Adam__Baum

                        Have you looked in a mirror lately?

          • Deacon Ed Peitler

            Would you care to speculate what your response would have been when practically all bishops in England threw their support behind Henry VIII as head of the Church in England, against the very leadership position of the Pope, Vicar of Christ on earth? Would you have continued to support those duly ordained successors of the Apostles?

            • ColdStanding

              Do you know what an icon means? Any of you? Are you at all familiar with what Jesus Christ said about those who spite whom He has sent?

              An icon is an image, a holy image, in this case of Jesus Christ Himself. The honor given do the icon is not for the wood, paint or clothes and person from which the representation is made, but to God Himself. Even when you make prayers in front of an icon of a saint, it is not to the saint you pray, but God. To call a bishop a “fool” is to call Christ a “fool.” That is blasphemy.

              You can disagree, and I do, with what they are saying in this case, but their office is not something to be denigrated or demeaned.

              • Alecto

                You misinterpret the importance and authority held by bishops. And, you conflate respect due to a position, with the respect due to an individual using his position to further a personal political agenda. They demean and denigrate their positions all by themselves and it irks me.

                • ColdStanding

                  The tongue is a small member of the body as a rudder is a small member of the ship. Failure to keep a watchful eye over either leads to disaster. If you are irked by the actions of the bishops, discipline your tongue and take it as penance to keep it in check.

                  • Alecto

                    And the tongue which speaks the truth provides direction, like the rudder. To stand by silently while evil men destroy what is good, true and right is no service to God. There is no penitential benefit in allowing injustice and untruth to prevail.

                    • ColdStanding

                      Hoy! Talk about slow on the uptake. I did not say that one could NOT voice disagreement with the bishops. I said that to call them “fools” is derogatory to their status as living icons of Christ among us and, therefore, derogatory of Jesus Christ Himself. One aught then, speak with great circumspection and care of words.

                      • Alecto

                        Uh, that would be slow on the uptake of “aught” versus “ought”?

                      • ColdStanding

                        I have taken refuge in spelling errors myself. So touche, I guess. The substance, I see, you have left untouched. I shall take that as your surrender.

                      • Alecto

                        “I did not say that one could voice disagreement with the bishops.”

                        Bishops are not infallible and when they are so clearly wrong, and foolish, as they are on this subject, I believe we all have a duty to correct them.

                      • ColdStanding

                        Maybe you should stop trusting, then, in what you believe and look towards what Holy Mother Church tells you. Offer your opinion on the matter. That’s what this forum is for, but our priest and bishops need both our prayers and our respect. There are very specific reasons for this, and the theology of the icon is one of them. I have told you that I am in disagreement with their policy, and that my specific beef here is the disgusting act of calling them “fools” and the offenders refusal to retract. You should also be aware that calling a bishop or priest, even in your heart, is a movement of the will towards the path of death.

                      • Alecto

                        Yet, in their infinite wisdom and charity towards their flock, in their capacity as those “icons”, it is acceptable to call those with whom they disagree on this issue…an issue over which it is perfectly acceptable to disagree, “racists”, “bigots”, “selfish”, etc…?

                        If they are due some respect, they merit it by acting in a manner that accords respect.

                      • ColdStanding

                        No! A thousand nos! You are to repay evil with kindness. If you neighbor is a cross for you to bear, thank God He has so blessed you! If our bishops err and stumble is it not to be expected? Thank God He has given you so light a cross to bear! Jesus Christ also stumbled and fell, three times no less!, under the weight of the sins of man while bearing His Cross to His Crucifixion? Would you mock Jesus Christ for being so weak?

                      • Alecto

                        I understand what you write, but I’m not sure that particular message applies to this situation. If St. Athanasius had remained silent, bearing the evil of heresy promoted by his fellow bishops, would that have been the right thing to do? I don’t believe so. Immigration politicking is not the purview of the Church, any more than budgets, nuclear energy, or global warming are. I expect a bishop to faithfully try to execute the mission of the Church. Maybe I expect too much. But you’re right to tell people to pray for them, and I do and will.

                      • ColdStanding

                        Alecto, I know (of) St. Athanasius. You are not St. Athanasius.

                        Nor are you a bishop.

                        And if you would be so kind, please pray for me, too.

                      • Alecto

                        Whoah there, not claiming to be anything or anyone. I offered an example of Athanasius to counter your premise that we should ignore immoral behavior that damages the Church.

                      • ColdStanding

                        You drape yourself in his blessed memory.

                      • Alecto

                        No, I invoke the memory of his fidelity to Jesus Christ. God willing, we should all be such examples.

                        Do you concede? If not, it’s pistols at dawn!

                      • MJK

                        Alecto…why bother? You clearly were simply offering an example, which this holier than thy dolt clearly chose to ignore and than go on to insult you…ah what charitableness…ColdStanding is tiresome and remedial. Let’s be clear to you point Athanasius was Athanasius before he was sainted…

                      • MJK

                        No, but I’m not the Son of God. Stop the nonsense, sir. You are calling for acts of supererogation, and are just plain stultifying

                      • Midge

                        Like this is the only way the bishops “stumble.” Billions have been paid out in settlement claims and eight dioceses have declared bankruptcy but the Church has done little to hold the bishops accountable. If I were a cynic, I’d say this amnesty stuff is very cynical indeed, a cynical distraction to evade accountability and get in the good graces of the corporate and media elite who want this cheap labor “reform.”

                      • ColdStanding

                        What is it you want? Do you want eternal salvation or do you want to play politics? You will not save this world, only be, if you choose to unite yourself to Jesus Christ and His One Holy Catholic and Apostolic Church, saved from this world.

                        Jesus Christ even says that narrow is the path and few there are that find it. Does this suggest to you sunshine and roses? It shouldn’t. When a member of the body of Christ stumbles, one should not be surprised. Saddened yes, but not surprised.

                        There is very little you, your self, can do. The self, alone, even a group of selves united, is inherently weak. It is only in uniting with Jesus Christ that the gifts of the Holy Spirit to compete our nature can be obtained. The sacraments are the means of obtaining the gifts of the Holy Spirit. The bishops have been entrusted with and authorized to say the words of consecration. We can not do without them. We do ourselves no favors giving into the temptation to gainsay, doubt, and denigrate them. If they are gone, we are lost.

                        Returning to my original question, I can not understand how anybody would expect to make sense of the Christian life in terms of a worldly frame such as modern politics. The path to God requires a whole lot of fancy and archaic sounding words and unfamiliar frames of reference.

                      • Deacon Ed Peitler

                        So how would you characterize all those duly ordained Catholic bishops who were successor of the apostles and who broke with the Pope as the head of the Church and threw their lot behind Henry VIII as head of the church of England? Were they being “foolish” or something much worse? If you were around at the time of the mid 16th century would you have stood fast with your “icons” or would you have risked your head being placed on the block in defense of the Pope’s perogatives? Just asking….

                      • ColdStanding

                        I find this a very troubling example for you to have put forward as a test for the truth of my claims. Not because, mind you, it is a difficult case to handle. It is not. No, what troubles me is that by it you are suggesting that there is a parallel in our modern situation to one of the most significant and painful acts of apostasy by members of the hierarchy. So I must demand clarification from you on this.

                        Are you publicly placing the charge of apostasy at the feet of any current member of the hierarchy of the Roman Catholic Church? That is to say, with specific reference to any bishop, archbishop or cardinal.

                        If your answer is no, then your scenario is not germane to the discussion.

                        If you answer yes, then you have no business talking about it here and with me.

              • tom

                You artful dodger. Answer the Deacon’s question or lose.

                • ColdStanding

                  If the good Deacon is suggesting that the hierarchy in California has apostatized, for what other conclusion am I to draw from the example he has provided, then he is going in the wrong direction asking my opinion on the matter. To Rome Deacon Ed! To Rome!

              • Factory_Hag

                Dear Sir (or Madam) I think what some posters are saying that the people in the offices are denigrating or demeaning the Office of Bishop by their actions.

            • Factory_Hag

              That’s an interesting thought. I would rather read something like this than a lot of name-calling back and forth. It’s horrible to have to scroll past dozens of petty scrolls to find something thoughtful.

          • tom

            Let’s just call these bishops Lotus eaters. they lack a gravitas that earlier prelates used to anchor and expand the Faith.

            • ColdStanding

              Oh, I don’t know about that. Everybody thinks they are just as good as a bishop now. It is difficult to fault the shepherd, when the sheep think he is redundant. They follow, sure, but with reservations.

          • Paul

            this is amazing guys.keep going at it… wwjd!

          • Adam__Baum

            I examine the quality of leadership by the results. we just lost our Bishop and in the short time of his episcopacy, outside necessary comments on the HHS mandate, I don’t remember much focus on politics and economics. We have new priests and and seminarians behind them. I think he was a man of God.

            On the other hand, let’s examine the past fifty years. A diminishing flock, both in numbers and vitality. Catholics are indistinguishable from others, in fact they pride themselves on it. Catholic politicians are among the leaders on “abortion rights”, contraception and same sex marriage and the specious reason that subordinates eternal truth to political whim and novel legal doctrines.

            Catechesis, where it exists, seems in adequate to prevent widespread apostasy and apathy. Catholic politicians advance abortion, contraception, homosexuality, with impunity.

            Then there’s scandal of the sex abuse crisis, made worse by mishandling.

            Not enough for you? Cardinal Bernardin, one of the leaders of the social church, paid for one Barack Obama to attend Alinsky training. You know the guy that dedicated his most famous work to the prince of darkness.

            You think speaking out requires penance? On the contrary, silence is worse.

            “It must be observed, however, that if the faith were endangered, a subject ought to rebuke his prelate even publicly.”
            St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica II, II, q. 33, a. 45

            • ColdStanding

              The point in contention is O_D saying “They are fools.”. Everything else in this thread is people forgetting that this is what I have called him out on.

          • James Crowley

            Pope Alexander VI, aka Rodrigo Borgia was also a duly appointed successor to the apostles but hardly one whose example should be followed.

            • ColdStanding

              An exception that proves the rule, no?

            • Michael Paterson-Seymour

              His example should not be followed, but his teaching should.

              It was he, as all Canonists acknowledge, who first established that the Holy See can dispense from those impediments to marriage contained in Leviticus 18. He gave a dispensation to Emanuel, King of Portugal, to marry the sister of his deceased wife ; they were daughters of Ferdinand, King of Spain. Alexander VI. also gave a dispensation, in a near case of consanguinity, to Ferdinand II., King of Sicily, to marry his aunt. It has been pleaded in behalf of this that she was half-blood. No previous pope had ever granted a dispensation from the Levitical degrees

              In this he was acting as the Successor of the Apostles and Universal Pastor and his judgement has been received by the whole church.

        • John200

          It is the saddest thing. I wish orthodox, every day, normal Roman Catholic faith was a prerequisite for becoming a bishop.

          • Factory_Hag

            Or a Pope, or a Priest!

        • Glen Herbert

          Right on. I don’t think that these Bishops should be speaking up for people who break our laws. Look at the bill S744, the crimes that could be waived for illegals. This type of tom foolery makes someone like me want to leave the Church.

          • Obama_Dogeater

            Which is what I did 4 years ago, but I returned recently. I just tune these clueless bishops out and worship the Lord. I don’t need them to do that.

      • ColdStanding

        Are you not proud to place your honorific “Deacon” before your name? That is holy orders, no? Of course. And you have your office by delegation from your bishop who has his from Jesus Christ. Are your efforts NOT in union with your bishop? If your bishop fails to affect reform, it is true he takes the blame, but do we not also have to look at whom he assigned to help him? Are you not his helper? You forget yourself, Deacon Peitler, and the sacrament the Holy Spirit has gifted to you. Bishops, priest, religious, deacons and laity are members of one body.

        • Deacon Ed Peitler

          The best I can offer you is prayer. I commend you to the Lord as only He knows what will heal you. I do wish you well and see no need to repsoind further.

          • ColdStanding

            The best anyone can offer is prayer!

            Would that you would do the same when it comes to our bishops.

            Prayers, Deacon Ed, not contempt veiled as criticism.

    • AcceptingReality

      Sadly, all too often, I find myself wondering if a majority of Bishops (priests for that matter) serve a progressive ideology or the One, Living and True God.

      • hombre111

        My attitude toward social justice was formed precisely by my belief in the One, Living and True God who has revealed Himself to be a community of persons sharing one love. It is also revitalized every Advent and Holy Week with a vision of the Kingdom of God still in the making, alive in our midst. I cannot reconcile that vision with Mr. Manion’s long screed.

    • publiusnj

      The author’s suggestion that the bishops oppose masses in Spanish is 1) hardly the way to get Mexican American Catholics to stay Catholic (entrepreneurial ministers would have no problem in filling in the vacuum of Spanish language services were the Sweet Bride of Christ to abandon the field); and 2) more jingoistic than the conduct of most American politicians who have no problem putting voting instructions out in dozens of languages. Moreover, what right do one group of Americans have to tell another group what language they have to use?

      Certainly not the right of “we were here first.” The victory of the English speakers in the Texas and Mexican Wars are the bragging rights that give Washington instead of Mexico City the right to make laws for about one-third of the Continental S (including the two largest states), but it was a victory over the pre-existent European/Hispanic settlers from Mexico and they were speaking Spanish there before we began speaking English in La Ciudad de Nuestra Senora de los Angeles or San Antonio or Santa Fe.

      There is a legitimate question of what is an American. Are we just the agglomeration of all individuals who find themselves within the 3.6 Million square miles of territory called the USA on a particular Election Day? Is an American anyone who comes here at any time even if they hold on to values that are totally inconsistent with the traditional values of America? Are there any limnits we should place on the number of people who can come into this country as there were throughout the 42 years from 1923 to 1965?

      But to single out the Mexicans as the problem is myopic. Mexico has the same Christian Culture that 77% of current Americans share, despite Mr. Manion’s lurid characterization of Mexico. Mexico has a violent culture? Perhaps, but so do these United States (America’s most violent ethnic group may well be a home grown one but I don’t wnt to go there right now). Why is Mexico so violent? The Drugs are such a viral problem in Mexico because there is such an insatiable hunger for them in the US. And Mexico is hardly the only country that allows its citizens in the US to vote in home elections.

      Before we start viewing Mexicans as THE immigration problem, let us consider how much America has contributed to Mexico’s problems and think about this long standing philosphical observation about Mexico: “Poor Mexico. So far from God and so close to the United States.”

      • Ford Oxaal

        “Moreover, what right do one group of Americans have to tell another group what language they have to use?”

        It’s not a matter of rights, it’s a matter of charity to insist on the de facto standard language.

        • publiusnj

          Ah: a back handed admission. It is NOT a matter of right. Charity? Hardly. It’s more xenophobia than Charity. And as to English being the “de facto standard language,” that is a very ephemeral thing. Spanish was spoken in Florida, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado and California before English was. For awhile, English has been dominant, but that is changing.

          • Alecto

            The Declaration of Independence, Constitution, every state constitution, every public document including the Congressional Record is published in English. It is also the world language for business because the business of America is business.

      • Alecto

        Our founding documents were written in English, our business, civic and cultural institutions all conduct their activities in English. Millions and millions of other immigrants, Christian and non-Christian alike, have learned English. I’ve come to understand Mexicans are simply incapable because they have no intellectual tradition like other countries. Apparently when you come from a culture known for its gruesome history of human sacrifice, well, it’s difficult to let go of that and become civilized, hey? Maybe the drug cartels simply wish to return to their “proud” heritage? Mexico cannot claim the moral high ground while it feeds America’s immoral desires.

        The U.S. paid Mexico $15 million for the area Mexicans now assert belongs to them. Who’s the liar? The Guadalupe Hidalgo Treaty of 1848. Look it up.

        • publiusnj

          “Mexicans have no intellectual tradition like other countries?” That is truly hateful stuff and not worth further comment.

          • Alecto

            And yet you felt the need to respond? There is nothing more hateful than your multiculturalist suicidal pro-immigration at all costs rant. There was another episode of a failed multi-lingual society: Babel.

          • John200

            If you don’t have a point, you just made it. Your pose as a provocateur is truly hateful stuff and not worth further comment.

            Enjoying the discussion?

        • Midge

          Well, one does have to wonder why if Mexicans are so wonderful that Mexico isn’t a wonderful place. Our politicians (see Jeb Bush’s latest) are always telling us how terrific these immigrants are. Why are there such problems in their home countries?

          • Alecto

            Help! I just got Bushwhacked! What a novel strategy for the 2016 presidential nomination…insults.

    • NE-Catholic

      “I wonder, have America’s Hispanic bishops ever published a joint
      pastoral letter using similarly strong language condemning abortionists
      and the “Catholic” politicians who enable them?” – Mr. Manion – wonder no more, the answer is “Absolutely not!”

    • poetcomic1

      How ‘charitable’ of Bishop Balony to give away what is not his to give.

    • Ford Oxaal

      Brilliant article. In my opinion, some U.S. bishops notwithstanding, immigration policy should be based primarily on how much and which kinds of labor we need here in our country. Illegal immigration should be fully prosecuted. We are not talking about migrant, seasonal labor here. As for the illegals that are here, because we have been so lax for so long under the, in my opinion, treasonous patronage system of the Democratic Party, we are in a position where we have derogated our right, but not abrogated our duty to enforce immigration law. That means we need to accommodate illegal immigrants in some practical, just manner that does not raise the neck hairs on the immigrants who have come here legally.

      • Alecto

        With respect, Ford, I disagree. Adverse possession only applies where both parties have been endowed with rights. Illegals knowingly and intentionally broke laws, remained here with full knowledge of that, and availed themselves at every opportunity of every blessing this country had to offer. They have already been compensated and its time to leave.

        If we accommodate them now, as we accommodated them in 1986, we weaken or possibly forever derogate our rights to say “No” to anyone in the future. This will lead to more and more and more of the same.

    • Pingback: The Importance of Fatherhood - BigPulpit.com

    • WRBaker

      The latest out of the USCCB is calling people to contact their legislators to halt amendments to the Amnesty II bill that would help secure our borders; require learning English; and pay taxes they owe before obtaining benefits.
      Eleven million new citizens not sharing the responsibilities but obtaining the benefits our citizenship by not doing anything ..nice.

      • Obama_Dogeater

        That’s social justice, according to some of our archbishops.

    • Alecto

      It isn’t simply the Church’s misguided, or even subversive attitude towards open borders that troubles me. It is the unholy alliance between the USCCB and the Obama Administration through its federal contractor, Catholic Charities. This agency imports tens of thousands, maybe hundreds of thousands of muslim “refugees”. Because refugees are automatically eligible for citizenship and its accompanying privileges, the Catholic hierarchy is openly importing those who are hostile to our culture and traditional American values. If the U.S. is nuked, and I believe that day is coming, the Catholic Church will have had a hand in bringing it about through its total disregard for the safety and security of the American people. Anyone who doubts the possibility of such a scenario lacks imagination and knowledge of current events. Witness the Tsarnaev Brothers, who were assisted by Catholic Charities. Bishops suppressed that story in a hurry!

      Under the guise of providing assistance to people from war-torn areas, which sounds very altruistic, Catholic Charities receives $2000 for each “refugee” it “resettles”. Resettlement consists of dumping foreign nationals on unsuspecting and unprepared small towns and cities which are incapable of absorbing or assimilating huge numbers of foreigners who have no desire to assimilate. Once CC has helped the “refugee” obtain government benefits including food stamps, social security, housing, and any number or other stipends, (70% of refugees receive all of their income from American taxpayers), it abandons them. Communities are being destroyed across the nation. Catholic “Charities” generates an income stream while jeopardizing national security. Over the past 20 years, the number of refugees in the U.S. has exploded and now the Administration has announced its intention to take the bulk of Syrian refugees. There is good evidence these refugees will most certainly include Al Quaeda sympathizers as there is no ban on membership in a U.S. labeled “terrorist group” as long as the refugee has not engaged in any terrorist “activity”. Small comfort, that.

      The more people the Catholic Church can cram down America’s throat, via its continued open borders push, the more income it can collect on a number of fronts. Catholic Charities also diverts parishioner donations towards lobbying for increased participation shaping immigration policies, lobbying for federal contracts, and providing immigrant “assistance”, i.e., aiding and abetting criminal activity, gangs, drug dealers, violent felons and possibly even terrorists through its Justice for Immigrants campaign, sponsors of the Dream Act.

      It’s unacceptable to collude with Obama while decrying him as persecutor. The Catholic Church in the United States is so hopelessly corrupt, so corrupted and immoral, that its activities cry out to God for justice. I hope he hears my prayers for justice on behalf of every American who has been hurt by the Church.

      There is a reckoning coming for the Catholic Church in America.

      • Midge

        One would think the Tsarnaev brothers would have put FULL STOP to refugee resettlement. If there was any interest in the welfare of Americans, it would have done that, the story is so clear: phony refugees who could go back and forth to their home country at will; who were thieves; who lived off welfare; who sponged off Americans directly (the American wife who was working as a home health aide while the boxer husband wouldn’t work). Its a story that should have never let up and should have doomed “immigration reform” i.e. amnesty. The Tsarnaevs weren’t “living in the shadows” and our government was incompetent to know what they were up to despite warnings from the Russians.

    • daisy

      Ah Cardinal Gibbons. I hate to say it but the Church in America might be a little better off if it was more German and less Irish.

    • ColdStanding

      Mexico isn’t a hot bed of Catholics. It’s a hot bed of masons, communists and anarchists.

    • thebigdog

      Envy is a sin which does not become a virtue by merely placing the word “class” in front of it. Similarly, pride is a sin which does not miraculously transform into a virtue because the word “heritage” is placed before it.

      Unfortunately, the arrested adolescent social justice crowd will continue ad nauseam with their arrogant condescending lectures — clueless as they are.

    • GHU

      It is very upsetting to me that our Bishops would condone illegals breaking our laws, using fake documents or sometimes stealing US citizens identities, taking American’s jobs ( I know many who have lost jobs to illegals) lowering wages in the US, bringing in drugs, sex trafficking and other crimes. Now the Bishops want to reward them? First of all, many, many illegals do not want to become US citizens. Cardinal Mahoney is a liberal who loves “social justice” aka Socialism…..but forget abortion! Most of our Bishops are in bed with Obama and the Democrats. The Democrats want amnesty for one thing….votes! The Democrats promise to give them everything for free so they will stay in power. Why do the Bishops want amnesty?….is it because they think the Latino’s will fill up the empty pews and collection baskets? I can’t believe how insensitive the Bishops are to US citizens.

    • Kevin A. McGrath

      First, I find it ironic that a Catholic writer like Mr. Manion should rely on Samuel Huntington for much of his argument. Huntington was the kind of WASP-y, Northeastern, secular, elitist who is usually at the forefront of anti-Catholicism in this country. His fear of Latin American culture is ultimately a fear of ‘Catholic’ culture. He praises the Catholic Church for ‘protestantizing’ itself in the area of Church-State relations. That characterization is highly questionable, but it reveals that he thinks less ‘Catholicism’ is a good thing. I don’t know Huntington’s positions on these things, but I would be immensely surprised if he would have been a pro-life advocate of traditional marriage and defender of religious freedom in the face of HHS mandates.

      Second, Huntington was a political scientist (NOT an historian, which is why his history is so shoddy and selective in Who Are We?). For him, ‘American culture’ was all about processes and structures, attitudes about advancement and development, and not about the actual content of the culture. Mexican immigrants, who have not yet been shaped for long by the highly developed and refined political culture of the United States, may have some trouble adjusting to that culture. But when it comes to cultural content, those immigrants may be one of the few countervailing trends to America’s rapid descent down the tubes of secularism.

      Third, Huntington’s characterization of the assimilation of German Catholic immigrants into American society is incorrect. Leo XIII did not ‘support’ Gibbons and Ireland in their resistance to making pastoral provisions for German-speaking Catholics. The ‘memorials’ sent by German Catholic laity to Pope Leo were rejected because they contained ideas that were objectionable for canonical and prudential reasons, e.g. establishing a separate hierarchy for German Catholics. In fact, Pope Leo’s condemnation of Americanism was indirectly aimed at the ‘progressives’ like Gibbons and Ireland. It was precisely at this time that religious orders, like the Franciscans established ‘personal’ parishes for Germans, Poles, Lithuanians and other recent arrivals. Leo XIII took particular interest in the pastoral care of Italians. Sermons in German continued until World War I (they made a comeback between the wars, but ended by and large [but never completely] with World War II. When the American bishops took care of the non-English speaking Catholics, it kept those people in the Church. When they tried to force assimilation [to Irish-Americanism, truth be told], it produced division and scandal, e.g. the Polish National Church. Many German-Catholics were lost to Protestantism or to secularism because of ham-fisted efforts to turn them into ‘Americans.’
      Crises always seem like crises when you are in the middle of them. Mexican immigration (both legal and illegal) is ongoing; there will be new Latino immigrants for a long time, and Spanish will be their first language. But it is simply false that whole areas of the country are becoming ‘Spanish-only’ zones. The children of these immigrants often can’t even speak Spanish, especially if the families move to areas that have lower concentrations of immigrants. For better or worse, assimilation is happening, and far more rapidly than it did for the Germans or Italians.
      The presence of Mexican and Latino immigrants is a fact and will continue to be for some time. It is wise for the American bishops to be attentive to their pastoral care [many would say they have not done enough!]. And it is the right thing for the bishops to emphasize the rights of people to seek to live and work where they can make the best life for themselves, to pursue their own happiness, which is one of the principles that has produced American greatness.

      • Alecto

        The Pew Hispanic Center studies over the past several years as well as George Bornas and the Center for Immigration Studies contradicts everything you write about Hispanics. They accept homosexual behavior at higher rates than Americans, they strongly believe in socialism, and are comparable to Americans in their views on abortion.

        The comparison between the United States faced by immigrants at the beginning of the 20th century, with no social safety net of taxpayer funded benefits, and today’s illegals or legal immigrants, who have access to, and even come for the express intent of taking advantage of the generous American entitlement system, is a false one. These are fundamentally different groups which produce fundamentally different outcomes.

        Be careful that bishops and the Catholic Church don’t completely destroy the moral authority of the Church in America while engaging in “pastoral care” on the taxpayer dime. The pot is boiling. I fear the damage is done and the Church may even lose its tax-exempt status, given the penchant of the current Administration in punishing its “enemies”. That would not be good for anyone.

        • Kevin A. McGrath

          Those Pew studies you cite deal with all Hispanics, not just those who are immigrants. Latino-Americans are predominantly Democrats in their politics and it should be no surprise that they fall on the left side of most issues in the United States. Much of this is due to the GOP taking no interest in Latino voters (with a few exceptions). If anything, these results show how quickly Latinos have entered the political mainstream, i.e. they are indeed being assimilated into American culture.

          As for George Borjas, his arguments are against ALL immigration, not just illegal immigrants. Not sure how he thinks that can be translated into policy. Strange, coming from a man born in Cuba!

          Your assertion that today’s immigrants come for the ‘express intent’ of taking advantage of ‘generous’ American entitlements is unfounded. There are many place to check out the falsity of these claims, e.g. http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/article/2012/jun/20/ten-illegal-alien-facts-truth-o-meter/
          Immigration is a complex subject matter and reasonable people will differ over the best way to address it. But your comments elsewhere show clearly enough that you have no love or respect for the Church nor its teaching authority.

          • Alecto

            The study breaks down into ethnic groups and whether those are recent immigrants, first or second generation.

            George Borjas has a Phd in labor economics and specializes in this area. He teaches at Harvard. That you dislike his conclusions are a function of your bias, your prejudice, and do not constitute any kind of thoughtful rebuttal to his premise. But you do follow the “party” line many Catholics hold on unlimited immigration for any reason and maximum taxpayer-funded entitlement programs. IOW, you’re a socialist, just with “Jesus” holding the hammer and sickle because you believe the outcome is different somehow. It isn’t.

            And Church politics are a “complex topic” as well. I have no respect for a Church that subverts my country’s sovereignty as this “Church” is doing now.

            • Kevin A. McGrath

              As I recall, the Pew study breaks it down into born inside the US or foreign-born. Keep in mind that fewer than a third of Latinos in the US were born outside the US, and many of those born here are from families who lived here before there WAS a United States of America. And CIS is simply the research arm of FAIR and can hardly be considered an unbiased source.
              You pretend that the American bishops are somehow asking for millions of Mexican immigrants not already here to be admitted to the country, no questions asked. But that’s not what’s happening. There are already, right now, at least 11 million illegal immigrants in the United States. They came here to work. And our schizophrenic immigration policies have implicitly encouraged them to come here, i.e. lax border enforcement coupled with lax enforcement of employer penalties. The issue is not how do we keep them from coming. They are already here! The issue is what do we do with them that is both practical and just.
              No serious person proposes throwing them out. It’s been tried. It produces outrage and backlash at the local level. It costs a lot of money. And has caused the unjust separation of families. The Church is not subverting ‘your’ country’s sovereignty. It is simply helping it to be a just and humane place to live. It is my country too and I would be ashamed to think we lacked the generosity to accept in some way these ‘huddled masses.’

              • Alecto

                “There are already, right now, at least 11 million illegal immigrants in the United States. They came here to work.”

                You have no proof for that statement. You can estimate or repeat what others have estimated, but you don’t know why they came here and you do not know whether there are 11 million or 30 million or 5 million and you have absolutely no way to ascertain that. Illegals include Mexicans, El Salvadorans, Guatemalans, Costa Ricans, Chinese, Russians, Vietnamese, many people from around the globe. They don’t all have the same reason for being here, nor is that a justification for coming. If I leave my front open, does that somehow justify a robbery? You attempt to justify their behavior based on our shortcomings and our generous nature? Unbelievable!

                The immigration laws haven’t been enforced in this country for more than 30 years. We HAVE tried amnesties. Six of them, large and small. We know those don’t work, because we arrive at the same place: rewarding bad behavior gets us more bad behavior. And the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results! It’s time to deport everyone and anyone who doesn’t have a legal right to remain, and to enforce the laws we enact. It’s time to eliminate birthright citizenship, and chain migration policies.

                Immigration is not a right. It’s a privilege to be allowed into the U.S. and none of the illegal aliens demonstrating in the streets, or now invading Congressional offices are worthy of that privilege. Others are.

                It’s too bad you have zero compassion, generosity or sense of “justice” for your fellow unemployed American brothers and sisters, and neither does the Catholic Church which does nothing to help them because there isn’t any money in it for the bishops. For the USCCB, it’s about money and survival, not compassion. I want a wholesale repeal of the tax-exempt status of the USCCB, of all Catholic-sponsored institutions. If the Catholic elites want influence, they’re going to pony up just as I do.

    • MarkRutledge

      Driving around the Bay Area last night, I heard a commercial on the local Catholic radio station from the California bishops on the topic of immigrants. I listened carefully to the wording. Most of what was said reflected sound Catholic teaching, but one critical missing element was that no accounting was considered for the breaking of just laws (the just laws being those which govern entry into a sovereign nation). The Church should recognize that true reconciliation must be preceeded by and repentance and penance. There is no repentance or penance in amnesty.

    • http://forumsforjustice.com/forums/showpost.php?p=3997&postcount=13 Forums4Justice

      Border Patrol Apprehensions (Source: DHS/CBP)
      FY2013 projected –415,678 +14.0%
      FY2012–364,768 +7.2%
      FY2011–340,252

      FOX NEWS POLL 06-13-2013: Do you favor or oppose strengthening border security and figuring out ways to prevent people from entering the United States illegally?

      Favor 81% … we, the people
      Oppose 17%
      (Don’tknow) 2%

      Join, we, the people, in holding the line …

      NO AMNESTY,
      NO PROTECTED LEGAL STATUS,
      NO REGISTERED PROVISIONAL IMMIGRANT

      • Midge

        NO BILL WHATSOEVER.

        The trick they have planned for us is some border security bill passing in the House and then it goes to conference and comes out amnesty. Boehner will appoint pro-amnesty Republicans to the conference team.

        Call Boehner and call your Representative and tell them you will not bother to vote in 2014 if anything gets through the House so that they can do that shell game.

        The only thing on the side of the American people is the ability to put fear into these politicians. Let the Republicans know they will lose the House because there is no reason to keep voting for them if they do this to us.

    • Alejo

      “That Hispanic Masses be celebrated only in English (or better, Latin), and that all homilies and formation be conducted in English? Quite the contrary. Most bishops are probably looking for more Spanish-speaking priests, just as our own parish has. Today, it is America that is expected to assimilate to its immigrants.”

      Every major ethnic group benefited for decades from national churches. Cities had a German parish in one corner, an Italian one across the street and then an Irish one a few blocks down. This has never been the case for Hispanics. The ethnic parishes were very helpful in their time in helping immigrants keep the faith. If we follow the readers advice we will only see more Hispanics become Evangelicals. One of the main reasons for Hispanics leaving the Church is that Evangelicals do such a good job of making them feel part of the community and most of the pastors that serve Spanish-speaking communities are Latino themselves. Italians were also accused of coming from a violent culture and it certainly seems that they are doing just fine in America. The upper-middle class and antiquarian mentality of many so-called orthodox Catholics is off-putting. Sorry we don’t read Chesterton but we sure have a beautiful Madonna in our home altars. The Irish and Italians hung on to their Churches as long as they could. We just want to worship in our own language like they did when they first arrived. Sorry we don’t have Mass in Latin anymore. I don’t agree with the bishops on a lot of points when it comes to immigration but the rhetoric displayed in this article convinces me that there is a current of Catholicism in our country that is succumbing to the same nativism that their own ancestors had to endure.

      • Obama_Dogeater

        “Nativism,” lol. Nice liberal word, there.

        • EscapeVelocity

          You know that xenophobe was on the tip of their tongue.

          • Obama_Dogeater

            They have all kinds of unique terms for those of us who believe in the rule of law.

    • Michael 1793

      Christopher Manion’s article is both bad history and the instrumentalization of the Church for a dubious political end. To begin with Manion uncritically accepts Bishop’s Gibbons stated motive for persecuting German Catholics. Query whether suppressing German homilies did anything to dispel the widely held belief that “the Catholic Church … exists in America as a foreign institution” at a time when the entire liturgy was in Latin! The more persuasive explanation for the suppression of German homilies and other ‘un-American’ (whatever that term could possibly mean in this context) pastoral and liturgical practices is that they stood in the way of the Bishops’ political project of presenting a common ‘Catholic’ face towards the predominantly protestant public institutions in America at the time. The same motives were at work in the persecution of Ukrainian and Ruthenian Greek Catholics who were immigrating to America at the same time. Bishops, such as John Ireland (St. Paul MN), suppressed the ‘un-American’ Eastern Catholic practices of infant communion and married clergy in pursuit of a more homogenous ‘American” Catholic Church. This caused a schism in the nascent Greek Catholic Church with large numbers of parishes finding refuge in the Russian Orthodox Church, a situation that persists to this day. In order for the Bishops to gain “full inclusion” in American political life, they were willing to throw their own minority Catholics under the bus. Finally, it is far from clear when the Church was ever given this political inclusion mission that Manion attributes to it. To the best of my knowledge the only ‘assimilation’ mission that the Catholic Church was ever given is the mission of ‘assimilating’ souls into the Mystical Body of Christ.

    • windjammer

      Usual Crapola from the granny pants USCCB. What else is new? Nada. It would be nice if they would at least try to follow the CCC. For a change why don’t they address the Government of Mexico and tell them to fix their problems so their citizens don’t have to break the law by illegally entering the USA? The wimpified, wussy leadership (moral and otherwise) of the Bishops over the last 50+ years is greatly responsible for the social mess the US finds itself. For the most part they are politicians and not shepherds.

    • Mary

      The USCCB needs to be investigated by The House Committee on UnAmerican Activities. They sound like traitors to me.

    • James Stagg

      Excellent article. Riveting. Thank you, Mr. Manion, for having the courage and knowledge to write this. And, thank you, Crisis magazine, for republishing this.

      To those of us descended from LEGAL immigrant families, it is a major discouragement to see/hear supposed intelligent men (bishops) promote lawlessness and amnesty for lawless behavior. It is a true insult to my family and other immigrant families who have “played by the rules” to become American citizens, to see the bishops undermine their own authority by alibiing lawless behavior.
      They should be ashamed and ask their flocks for forgiveness.

    • Midge

      Well, we know there is a priest shortage so their own jobs aren’t threatened. From their perch of smug moral superiority, they do not care very much about unemployed Americans. Or, even worse, they think that its fine and dandy to tax and tax and tax the employed Americans to hand money over to the unemployed and even grow the unemployed. Even first generation immigrants have higher welfare (“means tested”) participation than native born.

      All the amnesty pushers like to bring up “our immigrant past” and the Emma Lazarus poem. In the past immigrants were on their own to either succeed or fail with some help from within the same culture/language enclaves they lived. Any benefits provided by society were much less numerous and costly than today’s.

      I read an article last week about an illegal immigrant in CA with seven children and no fathers for any of them in the picture (There must be more than one father as the article mentioned her only marriage breaking up when she was a teenager.) She picks asparagus. What do we really pay per pound for that asparagus? Via her American citizen seven children, she is getting SNAP, TANF, Section 8, Medicaid and who-only-knows what else in government aid.

      I am sure the bishops all have a cushy life in front of them guaranteed and yet it is still surprising that they have no compassion for ordinary Americans whose livelihoods and very lives are imperiled by massive immigration. At some point, our elites will cut benefits and where will they start the cuts? Medicare. They would love to cut Medicare.

      • Alecto

        I think about people like my brother, a highly trained STEM worker, who was laid off from NASA shortly after Obama’s inauguration. He struggled for work for a year, took anything he could get, kept up on his obligations without assistance for as long as possible and ended up losing everything. At his last position he was laid off for challenging a decision to hire an h1b, an inexperienced just-graduated “engineer” with a non-U.S. degree, no American work experience (or any work experience anywhere), non-native speaker and put him in charge of a crucial new program at his company. For speaking up, my brother was fired. He has 20+ years of work experience and 3 patents.

        He stopped attending Church, he no longer prays, and I frankly don’t blame him even though I don’t share his disbelief in God. However, I have a difficult time believing in a good God who rewards someone like Cardinal Dolan with a red robe while putting my brother through hell, literally.

        It isn’t just my brother, though. I have no less than 5 relatives, all white males, currently struggling for work. These are professionals with advanced degrees, not unskilled workers, who are, I am sorry to write facing even tougher odds. And, yet American bishops have the nerve to demand tribute from us? No wonder they don’t show up in churches, and I would make a special pilgrimage to throw some rotten tomatoes at them!

    • jcsmitty

      The last paragraph of this article sums it all up for me. I am so frustrated that the bishops are staying under the radar on issues like abortion and homosexual marriage while asking us not to protect our borders and their own political agendas. Our country is drowning in immorality and the bishops are looking the other way.

      • Strife

        And the illegal invaders that are flooding our country are bringing with them further immorality in the form of a morally-bankrupt secularist socialist culture that has already turned Latin America into a moral cesspool of class warfare and corruption fostered by the soft communism of the Liberation Theology movement from the 1950′s.

      • Kevin A. McGrath

        Under the radar? What planet are you on? The Catholic Church and its bishops are the ONLY institution in this country that is making an outcry on these issues. Fortunately, the Christian vision transcends part lines.

        • Alecto

          Like hell it does. Tell that to Nanny “Snip Those Spines” Pelosi and Joe “Doctrine is a Four Letter Word” Biden or Andrew “I Play a Catholic on TV” Cuomo. It’s clear your Irishness is getting in the way of your Catholicity. Maybe you should convert to Polish? They’re real Catholics.

    • luis

      I live on the border. Some of the people who sneak over are thrifty, hard working, and so on. But the majority will tell you — if you speak Spanish to them and are not an official — that they are here to take what they can get. They trash our land, burn our grasslands, break our water pipes, slaughter our livestock and occasionally murder our neighbors. Worse, they kill each other. The head of our local emergency room is tired of cleaning up after accidents deliberately contrived by trained coyotes to draw first responders (yes, that includes border patrol) away from where people and drugs are being smuggled. The last one down here killed nine of the fifteen illegal immigrants in the van. The coyote who was driving walked away. I can’t respect what our bishops say about immigration. Too much blood has been spilled.

    • Strife

      The Bishops in all their vainglory of clericalism have confused and conflated the definitions of “justice” and “charity”.

      “Charity is the power of defending that which we know to be
      indefensible. Hope is the power of being cheerful in circumstances which
      we know to be desperate. It is true that there is a state of hope which
      belongs to bright prospects and the morning; but that is not the virtue
      of hope. The virtue of hope exists only in earthquake and eclipse. It
      is true that there is a thing crudely called charity, which means
      charity to the deserving poor; but charity to the deserving is not
      charity at all, but justice. It is the undeserving who require it, and
      the ideal either does not exist at all, or exists wholly for them. For
      practical purposes it is at the hopeless moment that we require the
      hopeful man, and the virtue either does not exist at all, or begins to
      exist at that moment. Exactly at the instant when hope ceases to be
      reasonable it begins to be useful.” – G.K. Chesterton (Heretics)

      Justice in this case is the legal jurisdiction of “Caesar”, and Charity is the religious jurisdiction of The Church.

      Ergo: Let us render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s and render unto t God what is God’s:

      The justice that illegal invaders deserve according to Caesar’s Law – is, arrest, criminal fines, and/or deportation.

      The Charity that illegal invaders require (but do not deserve) is physical and spiritual support EXCLUSIVELY from the Church (and NOT from mandates by Caesar) in the form of food, temporary shelter, and ALSO fraternal correction of said illegal invaders by advocating them to return to Mexico and either demand political reform in their own country and/OR return to this country LEGALLY and in faithful union to the Catholic Church and the sovereign laws of this country. ALSO, fraternal correction also demands that these illegal invaders be held responsible for their assimilation into the American culture by forcing them to learn English – the legal tongue of this land, rather than forcing our legal citizenry to adapt to the Hispanic tongue of their decaying socialist land.

    • James Crowley

      The catholic church is hopeless..I finally gave up on it..I had been away for 30 years and tried to return to the faith of my parents and my early youth,,They drove me away…They fight every effort to control our borders. they tell us we must welcome and pay for the stranger,,.Dolan saying how he agrees with Cuomo on draconian gun control.and screw the Second Amendment,,.they wanted Obamacare at first..they now oppose any death penalty for even the most sadistic murderers..They can claim to be the one true church but when they have so many antiamerican stands..that claim gets thinner and thinner! Looks like the Know-nothings were right

      • Obama_Dogeater

        I recently returned to the Church after 4 years and I’m already getting cynical once again because of the bishops’ nonsense.

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    • EscapeVelocity

      Nice to know that the Catholic Church USA despises me as white European…evil incarnate. Their isnt an inch of daylight between the Catholic Church and the haters teaching Whiteness Studies.