Buffalo’s New Bishop Confronts Politician’s Duplicity on Abortion

Malone & Kennedy

Faithful Catholics in Buffalo were discouraged to read in their local paper late last month that their allegedly pro-life Catholic senator Tim Kennedy (D-63rd District) intends to vote in favor of New York’s Democratic governor Andrew Cuomo’s expansion of abortion in the State.  Kennedy won his seat in 2010 by running as a pro-life candidate ousting then-Senator Bill Stachowski—a Democrat with a strong pro-life record.

Claiming that his position on abortion has “evolved” after much thought and prayer, Kennedy joins a long list of self-described Catholic politicians like Governor Cuomo himself who claim that they are “personally opposed to abortion,” yet would never stand in the way of those who choose abortion.

Kennedy has already won accolades from New York’s progressives who are already making him a hero much like they made New York State Democratic assemblyman George M. Michaels a hero back in 1970 when he changed his vote to break a legislative tie by voting in favor of legalizing abortion in the State. In that important vote—legalizing abortion in New York long before Roe v Wade—Assemblywoman Constance Cook had forced a bill to repeal New York’s anti-abortion laws. The New York State Senate passed the bill 31 to 26.  But, when it moved to the Assembly, the vote resulted in a tie: 74 to 74.  That would have been a defeat, but Michaels, a Democrat who represented a district that with a 65 percent Catholic majority—in the days when all Catholics were pro-life—changed his vote from “no” to “yes.”

Michaels became an instant hero for the pro-choice side, but a pariah in his own district.  He had been elected on the votes of his Catholic constituency—a group that made up 65 percent of the city of Auburn—and he never again held public office.  But, he is remembered today among the Democratic elite as one of the most courageous men of his time.  In 2002, the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award was posthumously given to Michaels for striking down abortion laws in New York.

While State Senator Kennedy is now sharing the progressive stage with the memory of Michaels for his “bold” decision to reject the wishes of his pro-life constituents by  expanding access to abortion, the stinging response from the Most Reverend Richard J. Malone,  the courageous leader of Buffalo’s Catholic diocese has been welcomed by faithful Catholics throughout the country.  In what the Buffalo News has called an “unprecedented statement by a Buffalo bishop about a local Catholic officeholder,” Bishop Malone wrote that “For anyone to say that he or she is a faithful Catholic and to be pro-abortion/pro-choice is totally inconsistent with Catholic teaching, which is clearly articulated in the catechism of the Catholic Church.”

In his defense, Kennedy claims that he “remains a practicing Catholic at St. Martin’s Church in South Buffalo and that he is nurturing his children in the faith.”  But, Bishop Malone countered such a claim by issuing yet another statement pointing out that “practicing Catholics who claim they are nurturing their children in the faith must teach their children that abortion is intrinsically evil, that human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception.”

Bishop Malone personifies the new generation of what Christopher White, my co-author and I call “transformational bishops” in our new book, Renewal: How a New Generation of Bishops and Priests is Revitalizing the Church.  For this new generation, sanctity of life issues are foundational—not just because of religious views about abortion, but because the act of dehumanizing and killing the unborn child attacks human dignity in a uniquely grave way.

These transformational bishops have been outspoken on the role that Catholic politicians have played in contributing to the culture of death through their votes to expand women’s access to abortion here and abroad.  In fact, this is where the transformational bishop distinguishes himself from the others, for it takes real courage to publicly confront the culture of death that has been promoted at the state and federal level by Catholic politicians who continue to maintain that they can be personally opposed to abortion yet still vote in favor of legislation that expands the rate of abortion.

New York’s Senator Kennedy was likely surprised by the strong response from his bishop.  Until 2012, Buffalo was led by Bishop Edward U. Kmiec, a member of a cohort of bishops who remained silent on the pro-abortion activities of Catholic politicians in their dioceses.  In fact, back in 2007, when a deacon in the Buffalo diocese was publicly critical of the pro-choice voting record of Catholic Democratic representative, Brian Higgins, Bishop Kmiec publicly apologized to Higgins and chastised the deacon.  In response, Higgins scolded the Church saying to reporter for the Buffalo News that “the Church has enough problems and should take greater care before allowing non-priests to use the church as a forum to advance what clearly was a political agenda.”

Whether Albany’s bishop will follow the lead of his Buffalo brother bishop by reminding the self-described Catholic Governor Cuomo of his obligation to respect life remains to be seen.  But, faithful Catholics are hoping that the courage of a growing number of transformational bishops like Bishop Malone, can be contagious.

Anne Hendershott

By

Anne Hendershott is Professor of Sociology and Director of the Veritas Center at Franciscan University in Steubenville, Ohio. She is the author of Status Envy: The Politics of Catholic Higher Education; The Politics of Abortion; and The Politics of Deviance (Encounter Books). She is also the co-author of Renewal: How a New Generation of Priests and Bishops are Revitalizing the Catholic Church (2013).

  • Objectivetruth

    God bless you, Bishop Malone.

    Next step: public excommunication of Kennedy and Cuomo.

    Even though it’s still very wintery in New York State, time for some early spring cleaning.

    • tom

      Looks like Senator Kennedy supported Cuomo’s Gay Marriage legislation, too.

      • Objectivetruth

        The problem and frustration is that most Northeast Catholics that are loyal to the Democratic Party, don’t look to their true bishops for their Catholic teaching such as Chaput, Malone. No, they look to their faux “bishops” such as Cuomo, Biden and Casey whose version of Catholicism is “I personally don’t agree with abortion, but feel that it should be legal and that a woman should have that right to choose.” I hear so many Catholics parrot that heresy that one wonders if they even know what a Catholic Catechism is let alone ever read it.

        • TheAbaum

          They aren’t “loyal” to the Democrat party, they are subsumed into it.

          But many of the Bishops provide plenty of specious intellectual armor to facilitate a wandering flock, remember that noxious “seamless garment” blither from from the prelate of Chicago that paid for Obama to go to an Alinsky conference?

          http://www.realclearreligion.org/articles/2012/09/12/catholic_left_created_obama.html

          • Objectivetruth

            Agreed. Leaving the Democratic Party is never a question, regardless of what anti Catholic garbage the Dems trot out. Including slaughtering babies in the womb.

        • ve6

          Is that their response to the lesser crime of. Slavery?

          • John200

            They might as well consider cannibalism. At least the meal gets a chance to live some years of life and make a place in heaven for himself.

            The abortee has no opportunities to merit anything good. No chance to develop, to do anything good, to help anyone else.

            Thank your heretics.

        • jcbathtub

          They’ve lost their faith, ….if they ever had it.

        • uncle max

          Capital C or small c – take your choice.

        • Brian C.

          I agree. These politicians tell us they are Catholic, yet their actions prove otherwise. They follow the party line and are more than happy to gobble up and spit out whatever the party pushes, more so when it contradicts the Church. They are called by the party to say “hey, I’m a practicing Catholic and I support blah blah blah even though Rome doesn’t.” It is just to confuse the masses. It is sinister. Truth be told, they can’t possibly be Catholic or believe whatsoever, because if they did, they would be walk around terrified that if they died at any moment, they would be in a state of mortal sin. These politicians most certainly serve mammon and likewise will lie and cheat to get whatever they want.

        • Elwin Ryan Ransom

          How many other bishops these days challenge Catholics with hard moral truths and expect the faithful to follow the teachings. American Catholics and their leaders are Catholic lite. And we wonder why the faith has lost so many.

    • ME

      Just a question… do all the people that pray for excommunication of these politicians say a prayer for the conversion of these politicians every time they call for their excommunication? Perhaps with enough prayers, we might not need the excommunication?

      • Objectivetruth

        Yes, I personally do.

        But the scandal over abortion of these Catholic democratic politicians is becoming an epidemic. Biden, Pelosi, Sebelius, Cuomo, Ted Kennedy, Bob Casey……and on and on and on. And NOT ONE that I’ve seen has publicly come out and announced putting their faith in front of their political aspirations and denounced the intrinsic sin of abortion. After repeated admonitions from bishops and clergy these politicians arrogantly thumb their noses at the Church.

        Are they already not in communion with the Church? Yes. But public officials who based upon their legislative abilities have very much a formal cooperation with the evil of abortion. and if they publicly announce their approval of this evil that is a direct affront to Church teaching and claim to be Catholic, they need to be publicly excommunicated. For their good, and a clear message to all Catholics on what the teaching is.

        • uncle max

          I agree that they should be excommunicated. Perhaps they have been privately, they should be publicly – let’s draw the line.

          Let’s pray that JUST ONE OF THEM would come to his/her senses and make it public.

          • Objectivetruth

            Great points, Max. Look at my posting above quoting the Catechism, public officials and abortion, and formal cooperation. Question: obviously a doctor/nurse is formally cooperating in an abortion, but would that also include a legislator who votes positively on pro abortion laws? Thoughts?

            • uncle max

              It IS a scandal to people like us, but to most catholics it’s not really a big deal.

              Recommended reading – ‘Confronting the Language Empowering the Culture of Death’

              Lent begins in a few more hours – perhaps an extra Rosary every day will help. We are nothing without prayer, and it is our most powerful weapon to move those who seem unmovable.

              Your specific question – is the legislator who votes for abortion as guilty as the doctor or nurse who actively participates? In my opinion – yes.

      • TheAbaum

        You missed it. This politician already converted:

        “Claiming that his position on abortion has “evolved” after much thought and prayer, ”

        Of course, I’m guessing the real reason is that he fancies higher office, and Cuomo gave him time to reflect.

        • Objectivetruth

          Conversion to the dark side.

      • uncle max

        I say the Rosary daily and at least 3 times a week I dedicate it to the ending of abortion and for the Grace of contrition for those catholics (small c) who have betrayed their faith for worldly gain.

        Biden, Pelosi, Sebelius, Cuomo, Kerry, McCalley (sp?) from Maryland, the Cuomo family and the (famous) Kennedy family.

        Yours is a good point, however and I myself would argue that they have excommunicated themselves and that every time they receive the Host they commit blasphemy.

        I personally do NOT pray for their excommunication.

        • Objectivetruth

          I pray for their conversion……not for their excommunication.

        • ME

          Yes, that was an error in my post, I meant to say “calling for their excommunication” not praying for it. Sorry for the confusion. God Bless you, and thank you for pointing out my error.

          • uncle max

            no problem

      • Ford Oxaal

        If abortion enablers were really Catholic, excommunication might have a charitable effect on their souls. However, the reason excommunication should be considered by bishops is because the entire Christian flock may be led astray by what may be perceived as tacit approval. All carrot no stick may leave many souls in danger.

      • ME

        I am happy to hear that so many of you are praying for these politicians as well as calling for excommunication. While I agree these individuals do cause scandal, I usually don’t get the impression of any love for neighbor in these types of posts, so I was just bringing it up to make a point that there is more to excommunication than many of us remember at times. While yes, they have excommunicated themselves, they don’t probably know it, and we have no idea what kind of relationships these people actually have with the church. Obviously they need lots of prayers, as well as correction from the bishops.

  • Chris Cloutier

    Thank you Bishop Malone. If only more clergy would step up and speak out from the pulpit against the outrageous action of these sellout politicians. I would like to hear Kennedys explanation of how he can be considered a Catholic when he is in direct contravention of Church doctrine, and is teaching his children to do the same. I’m sure he would come up with some twisted logic, the way those on the left always do. Is he not aware of Jesus admonition, “that which you do to the least of these, you do to me.” The pastor of St Martins church should deny him communion.

  • tom

    A brave bishop…in America? In New York State?

    A miracle!

    • john

      Brave? Sort of. He did SAY something true, and that apparently took some courage. What happens next, when State Senator Kennedy refuses to repent? Unless some episcopal discipline accompanies the verbal admonishment, the opportunity for bravery will have passed, and we’ll be no further toward justice than we were before the Buffalo News story.

      • John Kennedy

        It’s just talk. Let’s see some action from this Bishop. Sadly, I expect no change.

        • uncle max

          Right now it’s up to Kennedy. We don’t know what might be going on in private between the two and that is as it should be. The Bishop is acting properly.

      • uncle max

        If SS Kennedy refuses to repent – doesn’t he by doing so excommunicate himself?

        • John200

          Yes, he excommunicated himself. That is called “latae sententiae” excommunication. The commission of the act puts him out of communion. He doesn’t have to wait for a bishop to notice and publicly announce that he is outside of the communion. He did it himself.

          Now, the point of excommunication is to get the sinner back into communion. He needs prayer, lest he become obstinate in his chosen sin. But excommunication exists to get him back into communion.

          All of the above is sad, but the real tragedy is to be fixed in sin for eternity. There is no worse fate.

    • uncle max

      He used to be OUR Bishop. We Catholics in Maine are proud of him.

  • littleeif

    Better were he merely procuring an abortion. His sin might at least be understood in the light of emotional distress. Or the abortionist. “Be either hot or cold. The lukewarm I spew from my mouth.” But no. He is a Catholic politician, the scourge of American Catholics, who scandalizes, confuses, and steals many away with him in pursuit of personal power. St. Thomas More’s Richie Rich in a modern suit. Do you think he worries at night about his end when all the votes are in and he must stand behind his own words? Or perhaps by excommunicating him and his like bishops might provide them a window into their own soul and give the rest of us cause to rejoice.

  • freeper

    You expected something else from a Democrat? Deny him Holy Communion, for a starter!

  • Don

    Truly wonderful news! Bishops are a bit like field generals and inspire their soldiers with their own, personal and public acts of courage. For so long our Church soldiers have been discouraged by bishops who seemed to flee the field for a social event hosted by the enemy, leaving the soldiers to fight alone. What a ray of hope to see Bishop Malone display some real guts. The world can change if the other Church generals show the same sort of moxy.

    • John200

      I have often thought that you are onto a complete answer.

      If only the bishops would just bishop (is that a verb? Well, it is now) their way though life, they could solve many such problems, and quickly. That’s all it would take for anyone who knows and believes the basics of the faith. Respect for life has a simple meaning when it comes to abortion. Get each and every bishop moving on this. There is no wiggle room, you know.

      All of the above applies to 10-20 other issues I could name.

      The sin is greater for those with greater knowledge and responsibilities.They say the road to hell is paved with bishops’ skulls. So pray for your bishop. But before each goes to judgment, let us applaud and support those who are awake, and try to awaken the others.

      • anon

        Not Catholic, or Christian of any kind actually, but am a believer. I didn’t know you guys are allowed to criticise your Bishops… aren’t you supposed to accept their actions and decisions under the assumption that they know better and also to maintain unity within your community? I mean they’ve dedicated their entire lives to God, right? It seems disrespectful to push them to meet your expectations the way we would try to influence our political representatives?
        Don’t get me wrong, I know the Catholic hierarchy have proven they aren’t perfect by failing to protect children in their care and even though the legal system is holding them to account (thank God) I’m certain God Him/Herself will have final judgement on their actions.
        It still seems illogical to expect your Bishops to behave like politicians on your behalf… they, like you, are accountable to God, not the congregation.

        • John200

          Just to revisit: “Respect for life has a simple meaning when it comes to abortion. Get each and every bishop moving on this. There is no wiggle room, you know.”

          You have a shaky understanding of Catholicism. “God Him/Herself will have final judgement…” speaks for itself. The note on protecting children also gives you away. Go slow on your claims.

          A bishop’s formation does not include every discipline; for example, they can be naive about politics, finance, law, military affairs, sports, and more. Therefore, lay Catholics are supposed to contribute their talents in matters where laity are competent. This is one of the themes of Vatican II. Here we see an opportunity to serve.

          But any and all bishops know about respect for life, and furthermore, that killing a kid in the womb is against Catholic faith.

          There is no wiggle room, you know. Not on that one.

          • anon

            I don’t wish to cause offence, nor am I trying to claim anything about Catholicism – I’m just questioning the attitude towards Catholic clergy.
            When you say “there’s no wiggle room, you know”… it seems to me you’re giving your bishop advice on theology, not the other topics you mentioned. Plus you’re insisting they get involved in politics, which they may quite wisely be choosing not to do.
            As for abortion as an issue, nobody is forcing women to have abortions.
            Is it not reasonable if your bishops prefer to rely on the teachings of the church to influence the decisions we make as individuals rather than imposing religious views by force through the law?

  • Florian

    March 4th…a very courageous Bishop at last. So much is being said about Catholics who divorce and remarry being permitted or not to receive the Eucharist and yet Catholics in public office who not only vote to extend the right to mass slaughter humans in the womb but publicly and ferociously promote this mass slaughter like Cuomo and Pelosi are permitted to blithely walk up to the Priest and receive the Body and Blood of Christ. This despite the fact that by their aggressive battle against life and for human slaughter claims millions every year…Pelosi and Biden’s people arrogantly tweeted from the Inauguration Mass of Pope Francis that they had indeed received the Eucharist – so there!!! If we would allow those who publicly and aggressively aid and abet and promote the mass extermination of humans in the womb to receive the Eucharist who then should we refuse?

    • John200

      If the facts are as reported (I hope they are not), then they took part in sacrilegious reception of the Eucharist. Now to prayerful reflection and repentance. One hopes the repentance has already occurred.

  • TheAbaum

    And we can be quite sure, don’t you know- that come the 17th, Tim’ll be wearing the green don’t you know.

    • Art Deco

      As recently as 1990, it was common (though not universal) for state legislators in New York to have other employment. I think it is still atypical for county legislators to not have other work. He was actually an occupational therapist at one point. The mode in New York would be lawyer or real estate agent.

      • TheAbaum

        Interesting, but first my contention was that at 28, he lacked enough maturity to hold office (Come on Art, according to Obamacare you are still dependent on your parents at 26).

        According to Ballotpedia, the pay for New York State Senators is $79,500. While occupational therapists are deservedly well compensated for their services, 80 grand (plus expenses) no doubt represents a substantial portion of his income. No matter what other employment he holds or has held, he has been holding office since he was 28- that makes him a career politician.

        • Art Deco

          The nominal salary for a state legislator 25 years ago was $57,000 per annum. I would wager it is well above $79,000 today. Some legislators still have other work, though I think that is atypical nowadays. I am fairly sure those salaries and the time committments do not apply to county legislators. I will wager he was a working OT until 2010, so did that for 10 years.

          That an individual official is a given age (28) is not a problem nor are people of that age stereotyped as to their capacity. The problem arises when you have blocs of people who have little else to call their own, which is why you should have fairly high age floors for full time elected office (39) and higher floors for part time and municipal offices (32). You do not want people in government like Charles Schumer (no other career, in office since age 24), Debbie Wasserman Schultz (no other career, in office since age 26), Trent Lott (political staff jobs and elected office from age 25), and Barney Frank (political staff jobs and elected office from age 28, graduate school before that). That also applies to Brian Higgins, whose work life has been just like these characters. It does not precisely apply to this fellow.

          He wants these offices more than he should, and is not invested in other things the way he should be. He’s not a ‘parasite’ as yet, just opportunistic.

          • TheAbaum

            “That an individual official is a given age (28) is not a problem nor are people of that age stereotyped as to their capacity.

            Balderdash. Unless you are 28, you realize how dang dumb you were then.

            • Art Deco

              No, I did not think I had ‘all the answers’ at age 28, though I was disgusted with some of the corrupt conduct of people around me. I was working two jobs on off-shifts, do did not have much space in my head to think about public affairs. I had and have a number of personal shortcomings. Some of these sorts of things dissipate with time and some do not. Lots of old fools in this world in addition to the young ones. The supervisor I had at the time was three years my senior and another two years my senior. Actually, I’ve never had better.

              Legislators are not supervisors, except to their staffs. The staff of a county legislator would consist of a secretary if that.

              • TheAbaum

                You’re free to vote for untested 28 year olds in every office they seek- I’m free not to, and plan to exercise my option vigorously.

                I want a track record of accomplishment, effort, and fidelity. There are no “whiz kids”.

                • Art Deco

                  You apparently were one of a very limited few that was aware of personal limits and failings.

                  I cannot help but think you are projecting your failings on to other people. My younger co-workers were modally recently married with small children. I can only recall one who seemed to carry about him excess self-confidence (he was into strange dungeons and dragons type games, not local politics). I recall several who were head cases. I suppose excess self-confidence would be correlated with running for office at age 28, but the key word is ‘correlated’. The treasurer of one of the suburban Democratic committees was a friend of mine about two years my senior. He was not and is not a troublesome human being.

                  And you are forgetting what this guy would have been doing: listening to complaints from his small constituency, making calls to the bureaucracy, fussing over items amongst the small discretion county governments have in New York, and taking his cues from the floor leader and the committee chairs. He may have done it well or ill. Being 28 would not guarantee a bad job. (Calvin Coolidge was first elected to public office at age 27).

                  • TheAbaum

                    I cannot help but think you are projecting your failings on to other people.

                    Art, stop being an a**.

        • Cha5678

          $79,500 is only part of the compensation. You forget all the ability to become a minority investor in real estate and economic opportunities and then pursue bills and regulations to cash out that investment. Directing the highway just a half-mile can earn you millions on your real estate investment. And all you have to do is claim the intent of the move was to benefit some species or park, and you grab the environmental vote along with your million dollar profit.

          • Art Deco

            Some of that goes on. It’s New York, however. There is not much new highway construction and demographic growth is slow. In this fellow’s home county, the population has been declining for several decades. Cases of insider dealing I can recall from my time in local politics involved HUD programs.

          • TheAbaum

            You forget all the ability to become a minority investor in real estate
            and economic opportunities and then pursue bills and regulations to cash
            out that investment.

            No, I didn’t forget it. It wasn’t necessary to make the case, but it certainly strengthens it.

  • Catholic in Exile

    It’s a wake up call for all Catholic prelates, especially Cardinal Dolan in New York City. Think about it. If Cardinal Dolan had publicly rebuked Gov. Andrew Cuomo when he recently derided his own Church as Bishop Malone did with state Sen.Tim Kennedy, it would have reverberated throughout the country. Faithful Catholics from my hometown Buffalo are elated that someone is standing up for the faith.

    Dr. Hendershott, a spearhead in providing insight into the Catholic dilemma, is to be thanked for the essential work she is, and has been, doing.

  • disqus_HSjqCQGjbz

    Now if only the good bishop would encourage the St Paddy’s Day organizers NOT to succumb to pressure from the gay left to march in the parade as a gay rights advocacy group!

    • Guest

      PLEASE SAY SAINT PATRICK AS THEY ARE TRYING TO TALE REAL SAINTS NAMES OUT AS THEY ARE “MERRY VHRISTMAS! PLEASE ! THERE IS NO PADDY DAY !!!!!!!

      • disqus_HSjqCQGjbz

        I am sorry. I meant no disrespect; in fact, I meant just the opposite by using a”pet” name. But of course, I meant St Patrick.

        • TheAbaum

          Your sliight is far less than the one made my those who use the day as pretext for gluttony, drunkeness and public urination.

  • MgW

    Good Bishops and not so good ones. There may be some good new ones to counter the not so good ones. Bishop Olson of Fort Worth Tx has just told Fisher Moore College( a Taditional Catholic College) in a shocking letter, the other day, that they are forbidden to say the Latin mass there anymore! It is all the buzz! Google it.

    • lifeknight

      There is more to that “buzz” than is on the web now. One must be patient in order to see how it shakes out.

    • ME

      Check out Dr. Taylor Marshall’s response on his facebook page. He was directly involved with the college until last summer when he resigned from his position due to the errant ways the college was headed down under the leadership of the president.

  • Tyler Lorge

    PLEASE BE RESPECTFUL TO THE SAINT PATRICK DAY AS THERES NO SUCH THING AS PADDY !!!! THERE TRYING TI ERASE A SAINTS NAME AS THEY ARE “CHRIST ” IN CHRISTMAS! PLEASE LETS ALL DAY SAINT PATRIVK ! HE DESERVES THAT HONOR PLEASE! AMEN & AMEN TO ALL MY GOOD BROTHERS & SISTERS HERE :) ++++++ <3 ++++++

  • Anne Cregon Parks

    You either believe in the Church’s/Christ’s teachings or you don’t. If you don’t then you are not Catholic but Protestant. It is very simple. I can stand in the garage but it doesn’t make me a car, just because they go to church doesn’t mean they are Catholic.

    • Don Campbell

      Yes, unfortunately most American Catholics are in fact Protestants. They reject much of the Church’s teaching on sexual morality, marriage & divorce, and the life issues. It is a vexing issue. It is worse in Europe. One would think they would have the intellectual honesty to leave the Church but instead they work “change” her. Of course, the kind of change they want, if adopted, would destroy the Church by proving that it never was what it claims to be. If the Church has been “wrong” about these issues all along, then it is not the infallible Church of Jesus Christ and there is no reason to be Catholic anyway. But, they have not thought it through. They want to make the Church a mirror that reflects their own image, rather than the imgage of God. If my faith were stronger I would be confident in their failure but, alas my faith is weak, so I worry they might succeed.

      • Anne Cregon Parks

        Very insightful! I agree, they want the Church to be a new, progressive place to go and make yourself feel good. Instead it is and should be a place to glorify God and turn away from worldly things. I am disgusted with the lack of leadership in the church and I think that is why we find ourselves in this situation now. I have faith that God will never let the church be destroyed by those who are devils in sheep’s clothing (clergy) and the real Catholics will begin to speak out. I hope it is soon.

    • uncle max

      I’m sure you are familiar with the word RINO, meaning Republican In Name Only. Perhaps the word CINO – Catholic In Name Only would be appropriate here.

  • jcbathtub

    Oh my word! A shepherd!

  • Art Deco

    I am flabbergasted that Bp. Kmiec said that. We have lousy bishops in Upstate New York but I never heard of one chastising a clergyman for pro-life remarks.

    • TheAbaum

      Said what?

      • Art Deco

        From the article above:

        In fact, back in 2007,
        when a deacon in the Buffalo diocese was publicly critical of the
        pro-choice voting record of Catholic Democratic representative, Brian
        Higgins, Bishop Kmiec publicly apologized to Higgins and chastised the
        deacon

        The way bishops hob nob with politicians is disgusting.

        • TheAbaum

          The way bishops hob nob with politicians is disgusting.

          Indeed. Lie with dogs, get fleas.

  • uncle max

    I live in Maine and Bishop Malone used to be our Bishop here until they sent him to Buffalo. Good for him – I’m proud of him.

  • Objectivetruth

    Interesting article on canon law and excommunication for public officials who support abortion:

    http://www.canonlaw.info/a_justpunishment.htm

  • Objectivetruth

    From the Catechism, on abortion and excommunication. As far as public officials, it looks like the question is what constitutes “formal cooperation.”:

    “2272 Formal cooperation in an abortion constitutes a grave offense. The Church attaches the canonical penalty of excommunication to this crime against human life. “A person who procures a completed abortion incurs excommunication latae sententiae,” “by the very commission of the offense,” and subject to the conditions provided by Canon Law. The Church does not thereby intend to restrict the scope of mercy. Rather, she makes clear the gravity of the crime committed, the irreparable harm done to the innocent who is put to death, as well as to the parents and the whole of society.”

  • jcsmitty

    How is it any different to say you are personally opposed to genocide, but won’t oppose it for others?

    • TheAbaum

      I personally oppose slavery, but you know….

    • John200

      Or cannibalism? Now mind you, I am personally oppose to the practice, but Moloch says, “Cooked properly, …”.

      And you know Moloch has the experience and the educated palate. He knows whereof he speaks.

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  • Karen May

    He’s a Dem. Why don’t the dems ever figure it out? They’re always “surprised and disappointed.”

  • Ford Oxaal

    Many women who supposedly “choose” abortion do so at a moment in their lives when they are at their most vulnerable. Society then mercilessly preys on their unborn children — yanking any support in the law out from under them. Such a society is a vicious society, increasingly blind to the most basic human rights.

    • Objectivetruth

      As Sebelius calls pregnancy a “preventable disease”, the pro death crowd have used effective diabolic ventriloquy to attack what occurs naturally. They convince the young woman that the rest of their 50-80 years on the planet will be a catastrophe if she chooses to carry a baby for 9 months. The baby is no longer a blessing and gift, but a horrific tumor that needs to be surgically excised immediately or life for you, young 17 year old, is over and your future ruined.

  • Don Galamaga

    Hat to state the obvious here, but perhaps the solution is to vote Republican next time.

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  • Aldo Elmnight

    “they are “personally opposed to abortion,” yet would never stand in the way of those who choose abortion.”
    Isn’t this similar to saying I am personally oppossed to assasinating politicians, yet would never stand in the way of those who choose to assasinate politicans.

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  • Mike Feehan

    Where is the coward Dolan??? Why doesn’t he get a spine FOR ONCE and EXCOMMUNICATE CUOMO??? I mean, he is ONLY committing THREE MORTAL SINS…

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  • anon

    Firstly, if you believe in freedom of religion, then the need for separation of church and state is absolutely paramount. Politicians voting according to what is best for all, not just what Catholics believe in is essential to maintaining religious freedom for Catholics as well as everyone else. Given the growing number of people leaving the church, the last thing you want is for politicians to vote according to their own religious beliefs. A politician voting pro-choice allows you as an individual to follow your faith and your conscience by choosing life.
    Secondly, the ability for women to take control of how many children they have and when they start having them has been proven all around the world to be a powerful catalyst for change in developing countries. It improves women’s health, reduces poverty and increases the likelihood and opportunity for them to access education. This access to education and less poverty allows them to educate and provide for their children much more successfully. When women are educated and empowered, they are proven to actively improve the wellbeing of their entire community.
    By discouraging the use of contraception, including condoms, great damage is done in poorer communities, who have less access to education and rely on their religious leaders for guidance in all things. The spread of diseases like HIV and AIDS could be dramatically reduced. The opportunity for women to have some control over their own lives would be dramatically improved and, therefore, the health of their communities would improve also.
    Finally, if we are to successfully reduce abortion rates, we should focus on improving access to alternatives. Women who feel trapped and desperate will often try anything to regain a sense of control, including inflicting terrible harm to themselves. Let us provide them with loving, non-judgemental counselling and care. Allow them to regain some sense of control over their lives, help them realise that they do have options, that someone will help them get through it all. The religious community is in the perfect position to provide that kind of community support, if only we would stop being so aggressively judgemental.
    In Australia, where I’m from, adoption is extremely difficult. Part of the problem is that there is still a terrible stigma attached to giving up your child for adoption. Instead of being considered brave and wise enough to recognise their own limitations, such women are considered weak. They are made to feel ashamed by their families and their peers for their failure as parents. If you want people to choose life, allow them to more easily give their children to responsible and loving parents.
    There is no point dogmatically fighting against the tide, if you don’t have a better alternative and are willing to actively provide it.

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