Are Church Leaders Unwittingly Promoting a Secularist Agenda?

Recent developments make me wonder if Church leaders and Catholic institutions in the U.S. are not, “on the unawares,” helping to further crucial parts of the secularist-leftist political and cultural narrative.

Several months ago, on a visit to the U.S.-Mexico border one high-ranking prelate criticized “the xenophobic ranting of a segment of the population” on the immigration question. This summer another prelate spoke about the need to “dismantle systemic racism” in the wake of the events in Ferguson, Missouri. Reacting to the “coming out” of a prominent athlete, another high-ranking prelate spoke approvingly and insisted that the Bible instructs us not to judge people. Going back over a decade, we recall the U.S. bishops’ adoption of the Dallas Charter. It marked the beginning of the present child protection efforts of the Church in the U.S. in the wake of the priest sex abuse scandals.

What is the common thread running through these occurrences? They illustrate an implicit, if unwitting, acceptance of a secularist-leftist understanding of important public issues. The prelate who used the phrase “zenophobic ranting” effectively characterized the millions of Americans who are concerned with the massive violations of U.S. immigration laws on the southern border as mere bigots. A polemical leftist political commentator could not have put it better. His comment also signaled dismissiveness of the many legitimate problems growing out of our immigration situation, including national security concerns.

One wonders if the second prelate was speaking of racial conditions in 1934 instead of 2014. He sounded like the leftist “civil rights” spokesmen who see “racism” around every corner—with the ostensible aim of keeping themselves and their organizations relevant. While he evinces no such opportunistic agenda, one must ask what he means by “systemic racism,” how he came to this conclusion, and whether he has given the U.S. race situation a serious, careful analysis. Is he seriously suggesting that prejudice is simply the cause of a host of social problems within certain demographic groups that are massively afflicted by the likes of family breakdown, illegitimacy, absent fathers, and youth gang activity?

One wonders if the other leading prelate realizes that in encouraging people to “come out” and promoting the rest of its agenda what the homosexualist movement is seeking—by bullying, if necessary—is an imprimatur from every corner of society for the grave sin of sodomy. By his showing approval in this case, he effectively accepted secularist-leftist “identity politics” and its completely unfounded perspective that same-sex attraction is an innate—and, in fact, defining—characteristic for those afflicted by it.

The Dallas Charter of 2002 set down the “child protective” regimen followed by almost all U.S. dioceses. By insisting upon the likes of criminal background checks and even fingerprinting—which is usually associated with arrest procedures—for anyone doing even limited work with youth in Church activities, the U.S. bishops accepted the narrative of present-day “child-savers” that everyone is a potential child abuser. This notion was rabidly promoted in the 1970s and 1980s—the “epidemic” of child abuse was just a given—and served as the rationale for the Mondale Act and the child protective system (CPS) it fashioned. That created, in effect, a universal state monitoring of families, a routine trampling on the most basic parental rights, and a system that is so busy investigating false complaints and trying to stop innocent parenting practices that child welfare “experts” dislike that true abusers often slip through the cracks. Children are harmed by the very system trying to “protect” them.

Similarly, diocesan child protective programs—usually designed by the same child welfare professionals—treat as potential child molesters and possible criminals from the get-go good-hearted parish volunteers seeking only to do such things as impart the Faith as CCD teachers. The irony is that the laity, who are mostly the target of such programs, were not the ones involved in the scandals, which were caused by poor screening of seminary candidates, insufficient oversight within seminaries and dioceses, and an opening to new “theologies” in the post-Conciliar period that challenged Church teaching on sexual morality. The one prelate’s non-judgmental stance toward the homosexualist movement is curious in light of the fact the sex abuse scandal mostly involved homosexual priests molesting minor males.

Just as the CPS narrative that all parents are potential child abusers is false, so is the narrative that everyone working with children is a potential molester. Child abuse is much more prevalent in broken, “untraditional,” and single-parent families and cohabitation situations than intact families. Similarly, male homosexuals commit child molestation to a disproportionate extent, and a significant percentage of child sex abuse victims are boys and the perpetrators overwhelmingly male.

It’s not just bishops, dioceses, or the Church bureaucracy that are promoting, or are being pressured to promote, the leftist-secularist narrative, but Catholic institutions. So, we have the Catholic Campaign for Human Development that for decades funded organizations with an agenda hostile to Catholic teaching. While the organization was cleaned up a few years ago, money—contributed by Catholics in the pews—is still finding its way to groups of that ilk, but more basically that embrace a leftist view of the exclusively structural causes of poverty (usually focusing on a dislike of “capitalism”), ignoring personal responsibility or such moral problems as family breakdown.

Some months ago, the president of a respected Catholic college seemed to publicly rebuke a teaching subordinate when dissenting parents objecting to her upholding of the Church’s teaching on homosexuality at a Catholic high school. It made it appear that a Catholic institution would not allow a challenge to the leftist-secularist homosexual narrative.

Now, Catholic institutions of higher learning, including serious ones, are effectively being pressured by the Obama Education Department to embrace and expound to their students and employees a leftist-secularist narrative (coming from the feminists) about a supposed rape crisis on campuses. They have to address this “epidemic” as a condition of participating in federal student loan and grant programs. While sexual morality is hardly a strong point at most U.S. schools, the existence of a “rape culture” has been sharply criticized in numerous publications and by commentators like George F. Will and groups like the Independent Women’s Forum. They have said that the data simply doesn’t buttress the claim and, like child abuse, rape becomes rampant only when the term is given an increasingly expansive and imprecise definition. An explosion of false allegations and unjustified punishments has followed from this. This vividly illustrates the need of serious Catholic colleges and universities—the nominal ones could probably care less—to wean themselves off federal aid programs, replete as they now are with conditions fashioned by ideologues oblivious to truth.

Why is this all happening? One reason is a striking lack of political sophistication on the part of some Catholic leaders. They have not grasped how the left will use their actions and statements to further an agenda hostile to Church teaching—and then claim that the Church now agrees with them. Second, they seem to have an inadequate understanding of crucial public issues. They need to investigate and study them more and consider their many dimensions before making public statements. Third, they seem concerned that hitting the adversary too hard is uncharitable. They seem to confuse true Christian charity with false compassion. They don’t understand the crying need to go on the offensive against the secular left. I recall a small prayer book I once had that stated that Christianity to be sure involved charity, patience, and help for those in need, but also resistance to those who were evil. Fourth, in the desire to be “pastoral”—that is, able to reach people, even some Catholics, who they fear might tune them out—they don’t want to emphasize or be clear enough about Church teachings that are unpopular in the secular culture. Catholic writer Deal W. Hudson called this “blurring the boundaries.” Fifth, there may simply be a lack of courage, and of the toughness needed to mount a sustained attack on the secular culture. Further, Catholic agencies getting government grants may simply be afraid of offending government decision-makers.

All this means that if Church leaders can’t or won’t take the helm in the struggle against the leftist-secularist juggernaut, the laity who understand the problem have to step up to the plate. One small example will be the conference that the Veritas Center for Ethics in Public Life will present next April 10-11 on “Challenging the Secular Culture: A Call to Christians.” Catholics should realize that the secular left is aiming at nothing less than total cultural transformation. Not only must they avoid unwittingly promoting its narrative, they must insistently counter it.

Stephen M. Krason

By

Stephen M. Krason's "Neither Left nor Right, but Catholic" column appears monthly (sometimes bi-monthly) in Crisis Magazine. He is Professor of Political Science and Legal Studies and associate director of the Veritas Center for Ethics in Public Life at Franciscan University of Steubenville. He is also co-founder and president of the Society of Catholic Social Scientists. He is the author, most recently, of The Transformation of the American Democratic Republic (Transaction Publishers, 2012), and editor of three volumes: Child Abuse, Family Rights, and the Child Protective System (Scarecrow Press, 2013) and The Crisis of Religious Liberty (Rowman and Littlefield, 2014); and most recently, Challenging the Secular Culture: A Call to Christians (Franciscan University Press). His next book is Catholicism and American Political Ideologies (forthcoming this fall from Hamilton Books). He is also the author of a new novel, American Cincinnatus.

  • James

    Your political battles are not the Church’s.

    • Augustus

      No. The political battles of the bishops in question are not the Church’s. But they are too politically naive to notice.

    • lifeknight

      Saving souls IS the battle of the Church. When sinful actions are blurred, souls are lost. Relativism is rampant in the Church now. It must be recognized and fought. We MUST judge!

      • M

        Italian tenor and devout Catholic, Andrea Bocelli, said in a recent interview, “You ask me before of my point of view about religion, and I told you I am very religious. It means that before I fight against something, I try to fight in favor of something.

        “It is not Christian to go against someone. I am in favor of life. And, of course, personally I do not share the idea of

        being able to interrupt life arbitrarily. But I cannot be the judge of those who decide in a different way. As much as I can, I show them an example and act as a role model, because I believe this is the only way.”

        Perhaps we’d have more impact as Catholics if were to “fight in favor” of good things rather than against people we disagree with.

        • ForChristAlone

          why either/or; why not both/and?

          • M

            As Andrea Bocelli says, “It is not Christian to go against someone.” And then there’s “Judge not, that ye be not judged” (Matthew 7:1).

            • Dave

              Apparently, Jesus is not Christian then. I recall Him having some pretty direct words for Pharisees and others at times. Also, there’s John 7:24, “Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment.” There’s also Matthew 18:15, “If your brother sins against you, go and tell him…” Hard to do that without “judging”.

              • GG

                Do not get to technical. Stick with liberal talking points and superficial bible proof texting.

              • M

                Do you believe Jesus is God? If so, leave it to God to decide about these things. We don’t have to assume we are God.

                • Dave

                  So why is Jesus telling us not to judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment? Why is telling us to go and tell your brother if he sins against you? I suppose the answer must be that there is a way for us to do these things without being God.

                • GG

                  Huh?

                • DE-173

                  God makes the final judgment of souls. He entrusts temporal matters to us.
                  Moral pusillanimity is no virtue.

                • ForChristAlone

                  We are sharers in the Divine Life and God expects us to act accordingly

            • Carl

              “Andrea Bocelli” and “go against someone”

              Andrea is some kind of moral figure? Really? Is it offensive to Andrea to be against divorce, creating children with live-ins, and then remarrying?
              And it’s a work of mercy to admonish sinners charitably. What happened to John the Baptist? Why was his head put on a platter? The Matthew verse you quote is about damning someone—complete misunderstanding (or willful misrepresentation)

            • GG

              Why is it that liberals only quote about 3 sentences from all of the bible? Always the same. Some misunderstanding about “judgement” and some tangential knowledge about pharisees.

              The rest of the bible, Sacred Tradition, and the magisterium are not known or cared for. Hmmm I wonder why?

            • ForChristAlone

              Tell that to Jesus Christ who went against not a few people.

              I guess God was being a meanie when he cast the disobedient angels into hell. But our modern day revisionists will tell us that that is just a myth – Satan doesn’t exist and neither does hell.

        • GG

          That left wingism has been going on for decades. What is there to show for it? Empty churches, uncatechized people by the millions, moral relativism, and entrenched liberal dissenters that invert the Gospel.

        • GaudeteMan

          Andrea! How logically sound! Thanks for not judging those who wish to own slaves.

        • DE-173

          There was a book a few years ago addressed to celebrities that imagine they have greater insight because of their microphone. It was entitled “shut up and sing”.

    • GG

      Which battles?

    • DE-173

      Moderator- do you really think the blasphemous depiction that is “james”‘s avatar should be allowed?

      • Kilo4/11

        Just noticed it. It is a foul insult.

        • Crisiseditor

          Not sure what is insulting about saying “Buddy Christ Approves.” It’s meant to be humorous for sure, but I am unaware that a smiling Jesus is heretical (though it may lack good taste) especially since we teach that Christ was fully human as well as fully divine. Just because James is confused on some things does not mean that his avatar is theologically erroneous, strictly speaking.

  • Scott W.

    What is so pernicious about the neo-pagan religion that engulfs almost all sectors of society is that it disguises itself as secular and neutral when it isn’t. Some of the unwritten articles in the creed of this religion are 1. Moral truths are relative 2. The ends justify the means 3. Pleasure and convenience are the greatest goods and suffering and inconvenience the greatest evils. By masquerading as a neutral position, it has a free hand to assault all rival faiths. It’s a veritable factory of damnation and decades of bad catechesis have allowed this to fester among Catholics.

    • Mad as heck

      Exactly. It’s time for dissident &/or heretical parish/diocesan staff members & leaders (who are making a cushy living of our pew money) to be fired! If you’re an unrepentant dissident/heretic while being a paid Catholic lay teacher, parish “pastoral associate”, Religious Education director, etc., such person should be immediately FIRED by bishops. Most Bishops have NO spine left, no cajones! I know that my parish R.E. director insists on publicly calling the Body of Christ in the Eucharist as just bread & just symbolic. She insists on it even after attempts at correction, but my priest still keeps her on the payroll & protects her. She should be making her cushy living somewhere else if she insists on heterodoxy. (Sorry for ranting, but the issue boils my blood. We work hard in real jobs & give our money- only to have it go to to support the cushy parish/diocesan jobs of several prideful heterodox/dissidents.)

      • Zephaniah

        Stop giving your money and get like minded people to do the same. I do not mean this in any flippant way; I agree 100% with what you say (and Scott too); it is time we started talking where it hurts… contributions.

      • Mickey’O

        Stop trying to fix the Titanic. It’s going down no matter what you do. Come, join the Society of St. Pius V (SSPV). We hold and conserve the true Catholic teachings.

        • slainte

          But MickeyO…

          SSPX does not have Peter and where Peter is, the Church is.

          The Catholic Church will never go down because Christ will not desert his bride. He is faithful to her forever.

          • Mickey’O

            Peter left the Vatican in 1965 and hasn’t been seen since. The search continues….. In the mean time, the true Church carries on with the SSPV….. Someday Peter will be found.

  • Dick Prudlo

    To suggest naivety suggests to me that we give them “prelates” to little credit. That is what the human institution of the Church has been all about for over a half century. We in the pews have given these louts all the room they needed to pollute the Church with their petty grievances against doctrine at every turn. The Church is now peopled by heretics of the highest order and we argue whether they are naive? Get real.

    • Margaret

      The whole article is dead on. The copied portion below reminds me of a
      church in Utah we went to Mass at some years back where the pastor went on and
      on and on about parents having to accompany a child to the washroom — as though
      there were pederasts lurking in the vestibule when the real threat was the
      priests themselves, as crime stats showed. This is also true of Youth Ministers
      in all denominations. I refuse to participate in the whole fingerprinting,
      “counseling” crap they now insist on to volunteer — it’s just an attempt to
      rope innocent people into their blame and diffuse blame in the excuse of child
      protection. Shame on the whole bunch of phonies.

      The author doesn’t mention or maybe is reluctant to state that a large part
      of the problem with the hierarchy is that they are socialists at heart and
      many lean homosexual, thus sympathetic to the “cause” or are active and subject
      to blackmail by the Left if they step out of line.

      Meanwhile, the propaganda goes on to confuse or delude the young that
      everything illegal or immoral is a civil right.

  • jacobhalo

    The church has become politically correct like most of the rest of society. The pope talks about mercy, but never about repentence. Again, and I’ve must have written this 1000 times. The goal of Vatican II was to bring the church into the modern world. It did an excellence job at it. We should have another council which would bring the modern world into the church.

    • Daniel P

      You say, “the pope talks about mercy, but never about repentance.”

      That’s very, very false. Consider the following, among many other examples, from http://w2.vatican.va/content/francesco/en/cotidie/2014/documents/papa-francesco-cotidie_20140317_mercy-judgment.html:

      ‘The Pope noted that in today’s first reading, Daniel recounts the humble prayer of the people before God and their acknowledgement that they are sinners: “We have sinned and done wrong, but to thee belongs righteousness, and to us shame”. Reflecting on the passage, the Pope said: “In the presence of a repentant people, God’s justice is transformed into mercy and forgiveness”.

      ‘This challenges us, he continued, by inviting us “to make room for this same inner attitude”. Therefore, “to become merciful, we must first acknowledge that we have done many things wrong: we are sinners! We need to know how to say: Lord, I am ashamed of what I have done in life”.

      ‘The Pope continued: “even though none of us has ever killed anyone,” nonetheless “we still have committed many daily sins”. Therefore, “acknowledging that we have sinned against the Lord, and being ashamed in his presence is a grace: the grace of knowing that one is a sinner!”. It is easy, he said, and yet “so very difficult” to say: “I am a sinner and I am ashamed of it before you and I ask for your forgiveness”.’

  • hopecrolius

    Our Newman Center is hosting this weekend, to great fanfare and more vigorously promoted than any other activity or program I’ve seen yet here, a climate change discussion and what our community can do about it. The rationale is that climate change disproportionately affects the poor, which is our concern as Catholics. It’s a “Francis and Francis” theme, tying the feast of the saint with the holy father, both of whom are “environmentalists.”

    Last night, at our women’s book and prayer group, where we were asked to pray for the success if this event by one of its organizers, I couldn’t keep still any longer. With as much love and respect as I could, but firmly, I told the group I wouldn’t be attending as I don’t buy the whole climate change narrative as a premise for the discussion. I’m no scientist, and I won’t go as dar as to call it a hoax per se. But something’s rotten in Denmark about the whole climate change panic, with its carbon taxes and Marxist authoritarianism”sustainability” agenda.

    This article helps me greatly understand why I feel this topic, while perhaps worth a confab somewhere, does not belong as a church issue for our parish. (Apparently this format/Same discussion is taking place in parishes all over the country this Saturday.) it’s part of what the author so correctly names “the leftist secularist narrative.” To be a faithful Catholic – is it to jump into every issue of social justice even when the issues are defined and delineated by a political and social agenda that is often not from the heart of our Church’s greatest concerns? And will our “think globally/act locally” response to “the global warming crisis” as a Newman Center be to

    • hopecrolius

      (Continued) recycle more and replace light bulbs? Seems that’s the direction and the solution already being proposed even before the event.

      Recycling etc isn’t a bad idea and we probably would do better to use washable plates and coffee mugs for our coffee hours. That’s all fine. It’s the lack of questioning of the “who” behind the green agenda, the quick agreement that this secular issue is the most urgent item we should be taking on, and the way our Catholic-ness is the tail all a flutter, not the dog doing the wagging.

      • DE-173

        “It’s the lack of questioning of the “who” behind the green agenda”.

        Follow the money.

        One example: Several years ago, the EPA released emissions standards for “off-road” diesel engines, applied gradually, in “Tiers”. Tier IV goes into effect January 1, 2015. Off-road includes locomotives.

        The current U.S. “line-haul” (large large locomotives meant for long distance mainline freight trains-not switching or branchline service) is a duopoly, between GE Transportation Services and Caterpillar’s
        Electromotive Diesel (formerly, the Electromotive Division of GM).

        GE has been pushing it’s “ecomagination” branding for years, and since it’s “GEVO” locomotive diesel engimes are four cycle, it has a natural advantage over EMD’s “710” two-cycle engines in expelling the clean as a spring rain exhaust the EPA demands. EMD has announced that it’s going to be unable to meet Tier IV until 2017.

        Assuming that all goes as planned, the U.S. railroad linehaul locomotive will be a GE monopoly for two years.

        There’s nothing quite like having the government go Tanya Harding on your competition, while being able to release self-congratulatory press releases on your devotion to protecting the environment.

        http://cs.trains.com/trn/f/111/t/231051.aspx

    • JP

      Climate Change. Is there anything it can’t do?

      • hopecrolius

        Apparently it’s the gong that wakes everyone up, Catholic and non. I’d love to see the same vigorous organization and and participation here at Newman on Life at Conception or to educate the faithful on the “death with dignity” referendum coming up in the elections.

        • John O’Neill

          congrats to you for having the inner courage and fortitude to stand up to this pernicious Secularism and Evil that has taken over the American State.

        • Vinnie

          You’re one of those reactionary Catholics who want to offend others. Being lukewarm is the way to go.
          Revelation Chapter 3 – “The Amen, the faithful and true witness, the source of God’s creation, says this: I know your works; I know that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either cold or hot. So, because you are lukewarm, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth.”

      • DE-173

        Yeah. Have it’s unholy acolytes shut up.

      • slainte

        Climate Change will make some early investors in this false premise very wealthy.

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=py6yay2c0Oo

    • ArthurMcGowan

      It is a hoax. It is a deliberate hoax with a dual purpose: to impose totalitarian government wherever possible, and to make the hoaxers fabulously (more) wealthy.

      Here are three questions that are NEVER asked or answered at any of these hoax events:

      1) What is the temperature of the globe today?
      2) What was the temperature of the globe 20 years ago?
      3) What is the CORRECT temperature of the globe?

      BTW: The temperature of the globe today is LOWER than it was 20 years ago.

      The Catholic Left is just that. The Left. It is pro-abortion, pro-socialist, pro-tyranny, and pro-whatever hoax the Left proposes. The Catholic Left is led by cardinals, archbishops, and bishops. They are tools of godless anti-Catholics. AND THEY KNOW IT.

      It is not “charity” to talk about them as “unknowing” or “politically unsophisticated.” It is self-delusion to talk about them that way.

      • DE-173

        I still remember being a kid whose parents subscribed to Reader’s Digest and reading about the coming ice age, a couple decades ago. Now it might be happening, given Antarctic ice accretion.
        We should remember what one prominent leftist politician said: “never let a good crisis go to waste”. We should not forget the unspoken suffix to that -in the absence of a real crisis, make one up.

        • slainte

          DE writes: “….We should not forget the unspoken suffix to that -in the absence of a real crisis, make one up….”
          .
          The recipe for historical progress.

          • DE-173

            Surely, you jest.

            • slainte

              Surely not….and don’t call me Shirley. : )

              • DE-173

                I addressed Slainte.

                • slainte

                  I’m joking…and I am Slainte…: )

                  I just haven’t had much to say recently.

                  • DE-173

                    I think Disqus pooped earlier. It attributed your remark to “M”.

      • Shannon
        • slainte

          Emeritus Pope Benedict merely restates the long held position of the Catholic Church that man should be respectful stewards of nature and avoid abuses over that which God has granted us dominion.

          • ForChristAlone

            like the womb?

            • slainte

              Definitely like the wound. The preservation of human life takes precedence over all of nature…the highest good in God’s creation.

              • slainte

                “wound” should read “womb”

      • M

        “The temperature of the globe today is LOWER than it was 20 years ago.”

        This is just flat out false. The past decade was warmer than the previous decade which was warmer than the previous one. No true scientist disputes that. May through August of this year was the warmest May-August period on record. August of this year was the warmest August on record for the planet as a whole (http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/capital-weather-gang/wp/2014/09/18/june-july-august-set-record-for-warmest-summer-on-earth-says-noaa/). The last three popes have been sincere environmentalists. Please don’t spew ignorance and hatred against people with sincere beliefs that conform to Catholic thought.

        • DE-173

          “The last three popes have been sincere environmentalists. ”

          Correction. Sincere CONSERVATIONALISTS.

          The environmentalists are the loons that dance to “Mother Earth” and the “Goddess Gaia”, when not attending to the latest ad hoc cause of the neo-Marxists that inhabit things like Organizing Against America and Defecate on Main Street.

          Please don’t spew ignorance and calumny (hatred is an emotional disposition, it’s not “spewed”) against people with sincere questions that conform to Catholic thought and properly skeptical mind.

          • M

            I suggest you read what the popes themselves have said on the issue.

            • DE-173

              It’s presumptuous of you to make such an implicit assumption, but we already know that, Gaia.

              • M

                I don’t think you know much about this. Ignorance blows up a smoke screen of ad hominems. There are better minds than yours working on the science and the ethics of climate change. Until you show some humility by studying both, it’s a waste of time trying to talk to you.

                • DE-173

                  “There are better minds than yours working on the science and the ethics of climate change.”

                  I’m sure there are, but I’m also sure yours isn’t one of them.

                  “Until you show some humility by studying both, it’s a waste of time trying to talk to you.”

                  You aren’t in a position to lecture anybody on humility.

                  • M

                    Childish tit for tat. Benedict XVI is one of those with a better mind than yours who has spoken out on climate change. Then there are all the PhDs with dozens of articles on the specifics of climate change published in peer-reviewed journals. Oh, and every national scientific academy. You’re a scientific ignoramus and a boor with nothing to offer on the subject.

                    • asmondius

                      Polly want a cracker?

            • Carl

              You mean like CCC 2415-18, 2456 or the Compendium of the CCC 53, 54.

          • Carl

            Haven’t been on Crisis in a while, enjoyed your posts today. Well, the subject matter is serious but your responses are edifying so they are “enjoyable,” if that makes sense. It certainly helps me keep my sanity in a world gone mad.
            If I remember right you are in the Poconos, hope your not in the seven township area of State Police Control. I’m south of the Blue Mountain so I’m avoiding all that nonsense!

            • DE-173

              I hail from NEPA, but not that area. Blue Mountain? As in Reading Blue Mountain and Northern?

              • Carl

                Carl from Nazareth to be exact. LOL But I’m one of the Hunters restricted from the seven township area.

                • DE-173

                  I’ll be passing through your neck of the woods in a week or so.

        • slainte

          Science does not have sufficient empirical evidence regarding long term climate cycles to draw reliable and verifiable conclusions about climate change.

          Findings by East Anglia University academics which were offered to support the claim of global warming were shown in 2009 to be based on falsified data offered by dishonest and compromised academics.
          http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/christopherbooker/6679082/Climate-change-this-is-the-worst-scientific-scandal-of-our-generation.html

          The Catholic Church continues to teach that man should be a faithful steward of nature while protecting the poor wherever they may be from unnecessary dangers arising from weather irregularities. A good steward does not needlessly pollute or damage any part of God’s earth.

          Smart skeptics follow the money on the issue of climate change.

          • M

            Slainte, The Telegraph is a tabloid and not a reliable source of any sort of information. The East Anglia scientists were cleared of all wrongdoing by several independent investigations. In any case, East Anglia University is only one of thousands of universities world-wide which are investigating climate change and coming up with the same results. The “money on the issue of climate change” comes mostly from Big Oil. Just because climate change is considered a “leftist” issue doesn’t mean that it should not be a concern for Catholic leaders and for Catholics in general. This is an issue that affects the common good. We should not let politics get in the way of that.

            • slainte

              M, I suggest that your conclusions in support of climate change are mistaken.

              The “Washington Times” reported on November 29, 2011 in an article entitled “EDITORIAL: A climate of fraud, New emails shed light on the global warming racket” that the data offered to scientifically prove climate change was falsified by compromised academics.

              The article provides as follows:

              “The latest release of 5,000 emails from the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit (CRU) reconfirms what the 2009’s “Climategate” files established: Global warming is more fiction than science.

              ” The basic problem with climate research is that it is at best soft science, and this leaked correspondence demonstrate just how unsettled it is. “Observations do not show rising temperatures throughout the tropical troposphere unless you accept one single study and approach and discount a wealth of others,” one scientist wrote. “This is just downright dangerous. We need to communicate the uncertainty and be honest.” Nonsense, another concluded: “The trick may be to decide on the main message and use that to guide what’s included and what is left out.” But what if the whole warming phenomenon is “mainly a multidecadal natural fluctuation?” one scientists muses. “They’ll kill us probably.”

              “The fact that different climate studies reach widely different conclusions is not surprising. Much of the global warming debate centers on the output of highly questionable computer models that conjure figures from scarcely understood variables, dubious raw data and gaping holes filled with assumptions that usually confirm the researchers’ biases. No wonder that even as reliable temperature measurements show global temperatures have flatlined or been falling for the past decade, claims of imminent catastrophe have grown more shrill. Garbage in, warming out.”
              “None of this would matter outside the halls of academia except that this field’s activists have spent years lobbying governments to reorganize whole economies based on the sketchy results of their highly debatable models. “It seems that a few people have a very strong say, and no matter how much talking goes on beforehand, the big decisions are made at the eleventh hour by a select core group,” one scientist wrote, noting in another email that “the science is being manipulated to put a political spin on it which for all our sakes might not be too clever in the long run.” Those who disagreed with the warmist agenda were systematically excluded from high-level documents like the now-discredited 2007 report by the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). This and other “evidence” have been seized by popularizers like former Vice President Al Gore to foist distorted doomsday scenarios on innocent schoolchildren, panicky liberals and other credulous people.”
              “Warmists dismiss the leaked emails or complain they have been taken out of context. Not so. Collectively, the emails provide evidence of various crimes against the scientific method, such as concealed or destroyed source data, selective measurement, predetermined conclusions, hidden funding sources and bowing to government influence. They knew they were doing wrong and sought to hide the evidence. “One way to cover yourself,” wrote professor Phil Jones, head of the CRU, “would be to delete all emails at the end of the process. Hard to do, as not everybody will remember to do it.” Fortunately for science, Mr. Jones was, for once, correct.”Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/nov/29/a-climate-of-fraud/#ixzz3Ex8BxG7i
              Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter

              • M

                I would suggest that you stick to scientific information rather than op-ed pieces. The Washington Times is not a research journal and all newspapers get things wrong. I’ve heard journalists make blundering errors about climate change (and science in general) time and again. Newspapers often have a bias, depending on who owns and funds them. Science has a bias only toward facts and objectivity. Here is a more objective analysis: http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2010/04/second-cru-inquiry-reports/ This was another manufactured controversy by people who broke the law hacking into private emails.
                You’re very willing to believe random, non-scientific pieces in newspapers but not the result of years of pain-staking research. You could throw out any contribution to climate science from East Anglia U and it wouldn’t make any difference. The results of countless independent studies show the same thing. The earth is getting warmer.

                • slainte

                  M…
                  At least 35 scientists joined as signatories of a letter dated February 9, 2011 drafted by Craig Idso of the “Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change” which notified the U.S Congress of deficiencies in scientific research offered to support a claim of climate change. In addition to the 35 scientists who signed, yet another 38 scientists endorsed the letter.
                  .
                  The letter reads as follows:
                  .
                  February 8, 2011
                  .
                  To the Members of the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate:
                  .
                  In reply to “The Importance of Science in Addressing Climate Change”
                  .
                  On 28 January 2011, eighteen scientists sent a letter to members of the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate urging them to “take a fresh look at climate change.” Their intent, apparently, was to disparage the views of scientists who disagree with their contention that continued business-as-usual increases in carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions produced from the burning of coal, gas, and oil will lead to a host of cataclysmic climate-related problems.
                  .
                  We, the undersigned, totally disagree with them and would like to take this opportunity to briefly state our side of the story.
                  .
                  The eighteen climate alarmists (as we refer to them, not derogatorily, but simply because they view themselves as “sounding the alarm” about so many things climatic) state that the people of the world “need to prepare for massive flooding from the extreme storms of the sort being experienced with increasing frequency,” as well as the “direct health impacts from heat waves” and “climate-sensitive infectious diseases,” among a number of other devastating phenomena. And they say that “no research results have produced any evidence that challenges the overall scientific understanding of what is happening to our planet’s climate,” which is understood to mean their view of what is happening to Earth’s climate.
                  .
                  To these statements, however, we take great exception. It is the eighteen climate alarmists who appear to be unaware of “what is happening to our planet’s climate,” as well as the vast amount of research that has produced that knowledge.
                  .
                  For example, a lengthy review of their claims and others that climate alarmists frequently make can be found on the Web site of the Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change (seehttp://www.co2science.org/education/reports/prudentpath/prudentpath.php). That report offers a point-by-point rebuttal of all of the claims of the “group of eighteen,” citing in every case peer-reviewed scientific research on the actual effects of climate change during the past several decades.
                  .
                  If the “group of eighteen” pleads ignorance of this information due to its very recent posting, then we call their attention to an even larger and more comprehensive report published in 2009, Climate Change Reconsidered: The 2009 Report of the Nongovernmental International Panel on Climate Change (NIPCC). That document has been posted for more than a year in its entirety at http://www.nipccreport.org.
                  .
                  These are just two recent compilations of scientific research among many we could cite. Do the 678 scientific studies referenced in the CO2 Science document, or the thousands of studies cited in the NIPCC report, provide real-world evidence (as opposed to theoretical climate model predictions) for global warming-induced increases in the worldwide number and severity of floods? No. In the global number and severity of droughts? No. In the number and severity of hurricanes and other storms? No.
                  .
                  Do they provide any real-world evidence of Earth’s seas inundating coastal lowlands around the globe? No. Increased human mortality? No. Plant and animal extinctions? No. Declining vegetative productivity? No. More frequent and deadly coral bleaching? No. Marine life dissolving away in acidified oceans? No.
                  .
                  Quite to the contrary, in fact, these reports provide extensive empirical evidence that these things are not happening. And in many of these areas, the referenced papers report finding just the opposite response to global warming, i.e., biosphere-friendly effects of rising temperatures and rising CO2 levels.
                  ,
                  In light of the profusion of actual observations of the workings of the real world showing little or no negative effects of the modest warming of the second half of the twentieth century, and indeed growing evidence of positive effects, we find it incomprehensible that the eighteen climate alarmists could suggest something so far removed from the truth as their claim that no research results have produced any evidence that challenges their view of what is happening to Earth’s climate and weather.
                  ,
                  But don’t take our word for it. Read the two reports yourselves. And then make up your own minds about the matter. Don’t be intimidated by false claims of “scientific consensus” or “overwhelming proof.” These are not scientific arguments and they are simply not true.
                  ,
                  Like the eighteen climate alarmists, we urge you to take a fresh look at climate change. We believe you will find that it is not the horrendous environmental threat they and others have made it out to be, and that they have consistently exaggerated the negative effects of global warming on the U.S. economy, national security, and public health, when such effects may well be small to negligible.
                  ,
                  Signed by:

                  Syun-Ichi Akasofu, University of Alaska1
                  Scott Armstrong, University of Pennsylvania
                  James Barrante, Southern Connecticut State University1
                  John Boring, University of Virginia
                  Roger Cohen, American Physical Society Fellow
                  David Douglass, University of Rochester
                  Don Easterbrook, Western Washington University1
                  Robert Essenhigh, The Ohio State University1
                  Martin Fricke, Senior Fellow, American Physical Society
                  Lee Gerhard, University of Kansas1
                  Ulrich Gerlach, The Ohio State University
                  Laurence Gould, University of Hartford
                  Bill Gray, Colorado State University1
                  Will Happer, Princeton University2
                  Howard Hayden, University of Connecticut1
                  Craig Idso, Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change
                  Sherwood Idso, USDA, U.S. Water Conservation Laboratory1
                  Richard Keen, University of Colorado1
                  Doral Kemper, USDA, Agricultural Research Service1
                  Hugh Kendrick, Office of Nuclear Reactor Programs, DOE1
                  Richard Lindzen, Massachusetts Institute of Technology2
                  Anthony Lupo, University of Missouri
                  Patrick Michaels, Cato Institute
                  Donald Nielsen, University of California, Davis1
                  Al Pekarek, St. Cloud State University
                  John Rhoads, Midwestern State University1
                  Nicola Scafetta, Duke University
                  Gary Sharp, Center for Climate/Ocean Resources Study
                  S. Fred Singer, University of Virginia1
                  Roy Spencer, University of Alabama
                  George Taylor, Past President, American Association of State Climatologists
                  Frank Tipler, Tulane University
                  Leonard Weinstein, National Institute of Aerospace Senior Research Fellow
                  Samuel Werner, University of Missouri1
                  Thomas Wolfram, University of Missouri1

                  1 – Emeritus or Retired
                  2 – Member of the National Academy of Sciences

                  Endorsed by:

                  Rodney Armstrong, Geophysicist
                  Richard Becherer, University of Connecticut1
                  Edwin Berry, Certified Consulting Meteorologist
                  Joseph Bevelacqua, Bevelacqua Resources
                  Carmen Catanese, American Physical Society Member
                  Roy Clark, Ventura Photonics
                  John Coleman, Meteorologist KUSI TV
                  Darrell Connelly, Geophysicist
                  Joseph D’Aleo, Certified Consulting Meteorologist
                  Terry Donze, Geophysicist1
                  Mike Dubrasich, Western Institute for Study of the Environment
                  John Dunn, American Council on Science and Health of NYC
                  Dick Flygare, QEP Resources
                  Michael Fox, Nuclear industry/scientist
                  Gordon Fulks, Gordon Fulks and Associates
                  Steve Goreham, Climate Science Coalition of America
                  Ken Haapala, Science & Environmental Policy Project
                  Martin Hertzberg, Bureau of Mines1
                  Art Horn, Meteorologist
                  Keith Idso, Center for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Change
                  Jay Lehr, The Heartland Institute
                  Robert Lerine, Industrial and Defense Research and Engineering1
                  Peter Link, Geologist
                  James Macdonald, Chief Meteorologist for the Travelers Weather Service1
                  Roger Matson, Society of Independent Professional Earth Scientists
                  Tony Pann, Meteorologist WBAL TV
                  Ned Rasor, Consulting Physicist
                  James Rogers, Geologist1
                  Norman Rogers, National Association of Scholars
                  Rene Rogers, Litton Electron Devices1
                  Thomas Sheahen, Western Technology Incorporated
                  Andrew Spurlock, Starfire Engineering and Technologies, Inc.
                  Leighton Steward, PlantsNeedCO2.org
                  Soames Summerhays, Summerhays Films, Inc.
                  Charles Touhill, Consulting Environmental Engineer
                  David Wojick, Climatechangedebate.org

                  1 – Emeritus or Retired

                  Link: http://heartland.org/policy-documents/scientists-oppose-global-warming-legislation

                  • M

                    As you said, follow the money. Craig Idso is paid $11,600 (http://www.exxonsecrets.org/html/personfactsheet.php?id=15) a month by the Heartland Institute, which is partly funded by the Koch brothers, and which pays people who are not climate scientists to attack climate science. There are swathes of anti-science documents on the Internet that people can produce to “prove” that thousands of dedicated climate scientists got it wrong or to try to convince the gullible that it’s all a conspiracy theory (don your tinfoil hats.) At this point, the real science is past that. Rather than try to address every random post individually, I’m going to present this web site for your edification: http://grist.org/series/skeptics/
                    I am confident that any argument anyone here brings up will more than adequately be addressed there.
                    Pope Francis is said to be preparing an encyclical on the subject of climate change. The Pontifical Academy of Sciences independently produces reports that dovetail with the conclusions of the IPCC. This is not a subject that Catholics should trivialize.

                    • slainte

                      M…What is your purpose on this website and why the anonymity?

                      Catholics are aware that we should care for the earth and not abuse it; this is a teaching that originates in the Book of Genesis.

                      Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI affirmed man’s role as a steward of nature as provided in Revelation but he did not affirm or comment on the political ideology which is climate change. Neither Benedict or Francis is a scientist and neither will affirm what scientists refute and which exceeds the scope of their expertise.

                      So what then do you seek to accomplish by pushing a political ideology (Climate Change) which has not been sustained by credible scientific evidence to an unreceptive audience?

                      Who compensates you for pushing unsolicited propaganda?

                    • M

                      Slainte writes, “Emeritus Pope Benedict XVI affirmed man’s role as a steward of nature as provided in Revelation but he did not affirm or comment on the political ideology which is climate change.”

                      This is incorrect. Here is a direct quote:

                      “Preservation of the environment, promotion of sustainable development and particular attention to climate change are matters of grave concern for the entire human family. “
                      Pope Benedict SVI, Letter to the Ecumenical Patriarch of Constantinople on the Occasion of the Seventh Symposium of the Religion, Science and the Environment Movement, September 1, 2007

                      Is BXVI guilty of “unsolicited propaganda”? Would you make the outrageous and uncharitable claim that he is being compensated for sincere expression of his views? Who do you think is “compensating” Pope Francis for his upcoming encyclical on climate change? Climate change is an issue the Catholic Church and the Pontifical Academy of Sciences is taking very seriously. We should avoid “invincible ignorance”, in this case a deliberate and passive-aggressive ignorance, in well-established scientific theories about trends that affect the common good.

                    • Slainte

                      M, the letter you reference from Emeritus Pope Benedict is dated 2007…seven years ago.

                      Did the political and special interests who are advancing the climate change fiction provide to the pope the same falsified data from East Anglia University which was discredited post 2007 upon discovery of emails by and among the academics who perpetrated the fraud?

                      Was it this falsified data which the pope relied upon to his detriment?

                    • M

                      I have already responded to your false claims about East Anglia. The fact that you persist in believing this nonsense shows that you are incapable of objectivity on the subject. You are an ideologue before you are a scientist or even a Catholic.

                      Since 2007, climate science has developed further and the theory of climate change has strengthened considerably — not diminished. Are you suggesting that B16, guided by the world’s top climatologists and the Pontifical Academy of Science, is less capable of understanding the issue than you are? Your arrogance is as breathtaking as your ignorance!

                    • slainte

                      Your bald assertions, without any corroborating evidence, does not sustain your claim that climate change exists nor does it vindicate the compromised academics who acknowledged in e-mails that they falsified scientific data to prove that climate change exists.

                      I don’t agree with you; nothing personal.

                      If disagreement constitutes arrogance in your book, then so be it.

                    • M

                      This is SO disingenuous. You claimed that BXVI had never commented on climate change. When I showed you exactly where he did so, you tried to move the goalposts rather than admitting that you were wrong. You accused me of hiding behind an initial and then admitted that you use a pseudonym!! You accused me of being paid to write “propaganda” but then you spout nonsense from easily-debunked newspaper articles that are clearly propaganda. After what you’ve said to me, you then have the gall to whine that I’m uncharitably characterizing your person! I am so disappointed in you as I thought from some of your posts that you were a reasonable person.

                    • slainte

                      Those who cannot sustain their burden of proof regarding the science of climate change attack the person to deflect the attention of the reader.

                      Quoting popes and theologians who aren’t scientists with expertise in the subject matter at issue does not advance your case.

                      Sorry M…the science doesn’t prove climate change. Move on.

                    • Kilo4/11

                      There was nothing “false” about Slainte’s “claims” about East Anglia. They said what they said, and they undeniably show intent to deceive.

                    • asmondius

                      How does one ‘strengthen’ a theory?

                    • M

                      Slainte writes, “Neither Benedict or Francis is a scientist and neither will affirm what scientists refute and which exceeds the scope of their expertise.”

                      Do you realize how arrogant this sounds? Climate change is outside the scope of Benedict’s and Francis’s expertise, but you credit yourself with being able to refute a well-established scientific theory based on something you read in a tabloid???

                    • Slainte

                      M, you did not respond to my earlier queries regarding who you are, why the anonymity, and who’s paying you to push the political ideology of climate control?

                      With so many prestigious scientists from notable universities refuting the unproven and unverifiable claim of climate change, you now seek to garner support from popes and theologians who are not scientists and whose pastoral concerns are dedicated toward preserving the human dignity of all men, in particular the poor.

                      What you are doing by advancing the false ideology of climate change is dishonorable.

                      Please stop misleading people. There is a better, more worthy way to earn a paycheck. Pax Christi Tecum.

                    • M

                      What absolute nonsense! Is anyone paying you to “dishonorably push the false ideology” of climate change denial? Because I can assure you that the Koch brothers and Big Oil have a heck of a lot more money than college professors and research scientists. You should apologize for your nasty insinuations.

                      Pope Benedict XVI and Pope Francis are “pushing the climate change agenda.” It is increasingly an issue of social justice and hence a very Catholic issue.

                      As for anonymity, what exactly does “Slainte” stand for?

                    • slainte

                      Climate Change is a non-issue and Slainte stands for Cheers!

                      I decline to apologize for telling the truth.

                    • M

                      You are lying and you have lied repeatedly. The theory of climate change is well established scientifically. No reputable climatologist disputes that. The leadership of the Catholic Church has emphasized and continues to emphasize its concern about this issue from a social justice perspective. You are a disingenuous political hack who puts your politics before your science and Catholicism. And shame on you for protesting about my anonymity (frankly I don’t trust the sanity of some here) when you use a pseudonym. What a hypocrite!

                    • slainte

                      Thank you for your charitable characterization of my person.

                      As we part company, here are some additional sources from Princeton University regarding the unsettled state of science at this late hour on the false premise of climate change.

                      Source: Dr. William Happer, PhD. Professor of Physcis at Princeton Univerisity; and former Director of the Office of Energy Research at the U.S. Department of Energy.

                      http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052970204301404577171531838421366

                      http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424127887323528404578452483656067190

                      http://www.wsj.com/video/opinion-climate-change-crack-up/B951E1BE-01A3-4F92-B871-A4AB9B171419.html

                      Good Luck to you M and Good Bye

                    • M

                      William Happer is 75 years old, years out of date, and has never once in his life published a single paper on climatology. William Kininmonth, another of the 16 “scientists” who signed the WSJ piece, does not even hold a PhD! He has never published a research paper in a peer-reviewed journal. The WSJ is not a peer-reviewed journal. Get your information from scientific journals — even popular journals like Scientific American. Are you aware that most of the academics that work on the IPCC have published dozens of articles specifically on climatology in peer-reviewed journals? And that every single national academy of science has issued a statement saying that humans are causing global warming and that we ought to do something about it? The WSJ piece is well deconstructed by real scientists at http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2012/02/bickmore-on-the-wsj-response/#more-11066

                      Please don’t waste my time with newspaper articles. Go and study http://grist.org/series/skeptics/. I can assure you it will answer every objection you can find in a newspaper article and more. If you still have questions, come back.

                    • slainte

                      William Happer PhD is a well respected professor of physics at Princeton University with expertise in climate change. Princeton is one of the most prestigious universities in the world.

                      Prof. Happer has thoroughly researched the subject matter of climate change and has published his findings that climate change has not been proven to a scientific certainty.

                      In the 2012 Wall Street Journal article I referenced in a previous post, Prof. Happer joined with 16 other eminent scientists who concurred with his findings all of which debunk climate change.

                      You have not sustained your burden and I remain unconvinced.

                      It is finished.

                    • M

                      Your argument appears to be that if Happer says something is so, then it must be so? Remember there are far more feted scientists, including Nobel laureates and professors of equally prestigious institutions, who agree with the IPCC conclusions. Prof. Michael Oppenheimer, for example, is also a Princeton professor, but one whose expertise is actually in … climate science (he has published over 100 papers on the topic.) He is a participant in the IPCC process.

                      Sadly at 75 Happer is not the mind he once was. Also he is not a climatologist. He has never published a single peer-reviewed paper on climatology. Not one. His expertise is in optics, spectroscopy, and atomic physics, not climatology. A climatologist would be on shaky ground pronouncing on optics, and Happer didn’t have the full picture when he commented on climatology. That’s why the WSJ piece was so easily refuted in the link I posted earlier (the refutation is written by a climate scientist with a PhD.) Please peruse that link and let me know specifically what part of the refutation you disagree with. I can point to further information as necessary. Yes, there are a few scientists, and even a few climatologists, who still disagree with the overwhelming consensus on global warming. Of these, most of them are older people who are not necessarily keeping up to date with the most recent trends.

                      The 16 scientists and engineers of the WSJ article are not a particularly impressive group in that none is a cutting edge climate scientist. One of them, Edward David, was 87 years old when he signed it. I’m not suggesting that he has dementia, but it’s a very long time since he was researching and publishing anything. His expertise is in engineering, not research science. Like Happer, he too has never published a single climate-related paper. Not one. It’s also surprising that a mere 16 people could be dredged up to sign the WSJ piece, given that there are thousands of climate scientists in the world today, and literally hundreds of thousands of “scientists and engineers” (but not climate scientists) who could have been prevailed upon to sign it. Here you can see a quick analysis of these 16 people’s contributions to climate science: http://www.skepticalscience.com/examining-the-latest-climate-denialist-plea-for-inaction.html

                      Also bear in mind that the WSJ is owned by Rupert Murdoch, who has a decidedly anti-GW slant. Perhaps this is why the WSJ published the piece you link to but turned down another more scientifically accurate piece on climate change signed by 255 members of the United States National Academy of Sciences. This piece was published by Science magazine (perhaps a better source of scientific information that WSJ?). You can link to it from here:
                      http://www.forbes.com/sites/petergleick/2012/01/27/remarkable-editorial-bias-on-climate-science-at-the-wall-street-journal/

                      I write all this not to convince you as I think your stance is purely ideological and that you have no intention of engaging with true science. You appear uninterested in the facts and unsophisticated in scientific understanding. Instead I write for anyone reading this who may be interested in learning more. It is necessary for us Catholics to educate ourselves as much as possible about this topic so that we can use scientific knowledge to inform our moral choices. At least we now know BXVI agrees with me!:-)

                    • asmondius

                      A history of magical words:

                      21st Century ‘peer reviewed!’ = 15th Century ‘Abracadabra! ‘

                    • Micha Elyi

                      “the Koch brothers”–M

                      You gave yourself away as a Leftist somewhere along the spectrum between True Believer and Useful Idiot, honey, with that one.

                      P.S. “Social justice” is just modern-speak for the old Social Gospel heresies.

                    • M

                      Tell that to Pope Francis.

                    • DE-173

                      Oooh, the Koch Brothers..
                      Now let’s talk about Tom Steyer, Warren Buffett….

                    • asmondius

                      Catholics are not single-issue sycophants.

                • ForChristAlone

                  It’s highjacking an issue (in this case, global warming) in order for the leftists out there to advance their power grab agenda. We don’t buy it.

                  • Tamsin

                    I started to read your reply and I though you were going to say “It’s highjacking an issue (in this case, global warming) in order for the leftists out there to advance their shaming agenda to try to silence Catholics who are well-educated and who have noticed that the data does not fit the climate model predictions.

                    e.g. Matt Ridley’s recent point that 15 years ago, a 15-year warming pause “would invalidate the climate-change models upon which policy was being built.”

                    So, I’m not buying the shame that M is selling.

                    • slainte

                      Go Tamsin.

                      The truth will prevail and the Catholic laity must be educated not just in the Faith but also temporal affairs. A catechized and educated laity is not easily duped or manipulated.

                      Climate Change is a farce.

                    • ForChristAlone

                      So-called climate change is a very poor substitute for religion. I find it amazing how, when you do not worship at the altar of the True God, man will go to great lengths to find false gods to worship. I think of the Baals.

                    • M

                      Who are you to decide whether anyone here is worshipping at “the altar of the True God”? Are you really so arrogant? Are you more Catholic than the Pope?

                    • ForChristAlone

                      Tamsin, you said it better than I.

                • Kilo4/11

                  “Science has a bias only toward facts and objectivity.” Hoo boy! If you believe that, I’ve got a little device to sell you … going to put Big Oil out of business… Hot tip: scientists are human!

                • Kilo4/11

                  It may be a “manufactured controversy”, in the sense that these scientists’ lying ways never would have come to light if someone hadn’t caught them, but what’s that got to do with their patently dishonest intentions? What should worry any one who wants to do the right thing about the climate (and that might include doing nothing) is the question of how widespread this kind of shenanigans could be. Your haste to defend these schemers suggests you are more interested in having your side prevail than in the truth.

                • asmondius

                  ‘Science has a bias only toward facts and objectivity.’

                  Incorrect and naïve. All human endeavours are subject to bias.

                  Modern science has a bias toward external funding.

            • DE-173

              And the Washington Post is completely reliable. Got it.

            • ForChristAlone

              The University falsified their data.

              • DE-173

                MIchael Mann. Penn State Parasite.

          • ForChristAlone

            Protection of the environment always begins with protection of the environment of a mother’s womb. That’s why all environmental laws are null and void unless and until mothers’ wombs are given equal protection under the law.

            • slainte

              Abortion must end.

            • Alan Lille

              This is fallacious logic and not one the Church shares: “and until mothers’ wombs are given…” You Catholic neo-liberals need to realize you and the Church parted ways years ago.

              • DE-173

                When you accuse somebody of something, it helps to be credible, not ridiculous.

        • ForChristAlone

          “The temperature of the globe today is LOWER than it was 20 years ago.”

          This is absolutely true.

          • M

            Wrong! You’ve probably been told that “it’s cooler today than it was in 1998”? 1998 was a very hot year and the third warmest on record. That fact is used and abused to mislead a lot of people. I suggest you check out http://grist.org/climate-energy/global-warming-stopped-in-1998/

          • droolbritannia

            The ‘globe’ can refer to the core of the earth, the centre of the planet, not the ambient temperature of the air. I think you may be talking past each other on this point.

        • Micha Elyi

          Honey, the temperatures of “May through August of this year” are not “climate”. Pretending they are so is not empirical science which, by the way, Catholics invented.

          Try again. Next time show your work. Cite original sources.

          • M

            “Honey, the temperatures of “May through August of this year” are not ‘climate’.”

            Indeed we ARE talking about climate, “honey,” when that period is compared to the prevailing conditions over the past 134 years.

      • The Truth

        I simply cannot understand, no matter how hard I try, to understand what a Left-wing Catholic is and a Right-wing Catholic is. You either believe in the teaching’s of the Holy Catholic and apostolic Church or you don’t. If you don’t you are a protester, or a Protestant. Can someone please explain to me waht a Leftist Catholic is? Thank you.

        • asmondius

          A Protestant with statues in the home.

      • M

        Er, no, 20 years ago was 1994, which isn’t even in the top 10 of the warmest years on record. Only one year in the 1990s is in the top 10 and that is 1998, which is the third hottest year on record, due to a very strong El Nino event, after 2010 (first place) and 2005 (second place.) 2013 and 2003 are tied for fourth place. After that we have 2002, 2006, 2009 and 2007 (tied for 8th place) and 2004 and 2012 (tied for 10th place.) Nine of the 10 warmest years on record have occurred in the 21st century. The chart at this site might help you: http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/global/2013/13

    • Shannon

      “I’m no scientist.” Well, you demonstrated that pretty clearly…You’d also do well to consider you might not be a faithful Catholic. Consider the words of Benedict, if you think it’s just the current Holy Father: http://catholicclimatecovenant.org/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/holysee_to_Summit_on_Climate_Change-09.09.pdf

      • DE-173

        “I’m no scientist.” Well, you demonstrated that pretty clearly..
        Right back at ya’…

    • Jdonnell

      Your head is in the sand. Your tone is anything but Christian.

  • JP

    One of the words that need to be expunged from Catholic thought is “pastoral”. This over-used catch-all word has been reduced to mean, “anything that goes against Church Doctrine”. Hence, when you see a Bishop use the phrase “pastoral practice”, you can be assured he intends to do something that is heterodox to Church teaching.

    • Daniel P

      You might want to reform our understanding of the word, but it obviously can’t be expunged. Jesus is the Good *Shepherd*, not the Good Administrator.

      • GG

        A good Shepherd never leads one astray and does not put truth at odds with “pastoral” practice.

        • Daniel P

          I agree. I’m just saying that the word “shepherd” and “pastoral” are not optional words in the Christian tradition. Even if others pervert them, they cannot be cast aside; they must instead be reclaimed and used for their proper purposes.

          • GG

            The problem is that word, like others, has become an escape clause to reject Christ through His Church all the while claiming fidelity.

      • JP

        I whole heatedly agree. Perhaps, I should have used a different verb. Today, when I read or hear the word pastoral used in its current context, I picture a shepherd who gently allowed his sheep to do as they please until they are consumed one by one by a predatory wolf. All the while, the shepherd is filled with self satisfaction of a job well done.

        • GG

          Have you read about the recent prelate in the UK who resigned? He had sexual affairs with at least two women, one was married! He said publicly he never preached about sexual immorality as if that is a badge of honor and then said he was a “good” bishop. That pretty much is the perfect example of the problem we have today within the Church.

          • slainte

            The Church is not defined by those who have failed to live up to Christ’s standards.

            Pray for all priests that they shall not be overcome by the spirit of this world.

            • GG

              No one said that defines the Church. That defines the problem.

              • slainte

                Original Sin is the problem and its residual effects upon all of us.

                The priest in question did the right thing by resigning. His failure to live up to his priestly vows is a personal failing.

                • DE-173

                  If he was compromised by his personal indiscretions to the point that
                  “He said publicly he never preached about sexual immorality”, his resignation came to late. Of course, I’m cynical enough to wonder if the timing may have been affected by his eligibility for a pension.

                  • slainte

                    A priest’s resignation is not sufficient to release him from the sacrament of Holy Orders.

                    I hope that the Bishop intervenes personally to do justice and resolve what appears to be a very regrettable situation.

                    • DE-173

                      The word was “prelate” so we must assume the individual was a Bishop or Cardinal. Justice would be for the Pope to expeditiously accept the resignation.

                    • slainte
                    • DE-173

                      Here’s the surprise line…

                      “He was known for a liberal approach to numerous areas of Church teachings, including artificial contraception.”

                      The Pope needs an ecclesial prison to incarcerate jerks like this-and this cretin can share a cell with Rembert Weakland.

                      I’m beginning to think all Bishops should be subject to regular, frequent and comprehensive character assessments.

                    • slainte

                      The Church is truly obligated to speak out in support of Pope Paul VI’s encyclical Humanae Vitae and in opposition to contraception and abortion.

                      The appointment and elevation of Bishop Blaise Cupich to Archbishop and replacement for Cardinal George in Chicago does not bode well for Catholics who stand in opposition to abortion.

                      While bishop of Spokane Washington, now Archbishop Cupich discouraged his priests from joining in prayer with members of 40 Days for Life outside abortion clinics. http://www.lifesitenews.com/news/spokane-diocese-clarifies-40-days-position-but-privately-discourages-priest

                      Very discouraging to those who seek to defeat abortion.

                    • DE-173

                      Agreed. Although the article says forbid, not discourage.
                      What I hear about this guy makes me think he’s a Hunthausen wannabee.

                    • Tim Danaher

                      Better yet, randomly test 10% of each bishops flock on core church doctrines. Let’s see what is being transmitted to the people.

                    • ForChristAlone

                      The man was a bishop – shepherd – responsibly charged by Christ to lead people to His flock, to protect those sheep already in he fold, and to go in search of those gone astray. It seems by his own admission, that the shepherd had done none of this. In fact, he was the CAUSE for others going astray.

                    • DE-173

                      The floors of hell….

                    • Mickey’O

                      Probably promote the priest who had a mistress to the head of Religious Instruction…..

                    • slainte

                      He had two mistresses….he was a busy boy. : )

                • GG

                  The logic he used was flawed and represents an ideology counter to the Gospel.

                  • slainte

                    For a Catholic Archbishop to turn his back on the unborn is a travesty.
                    .
                    Moreover in 2002 then Bishop Cupich is reported to have closed a Catholic Church in Rapid City in order to stop the Catholic faithful from attending their Latin Mass during the Tridium. The Bishop sought to compel them to join him in another Church where the Novus Ordo was being offered.

                    The ousted faithful elected to celebrate the Latin rite mass on the sidewalk.

                    http://rapidcityjournal.com/bishop-bans-latin-services/article_b37a5c37-b5a4-5af6-8014-48d9f5ef9da7.html

                    • DE-173

                      Wonder if he’ll ferret out a young Barack Obama to send to Alinsky training, like Bernardin?

                    • Tamsin

                      “go, make disciples of all communities”

                    • slainte

                      Including the Bishop’s two mistresses?

                      This is beginning to remind me of “Sister Wives”. : )

          • DE-173

            He no doubt saw his compromised position as “enlightenment”.

    • GG

      Very true. It has become a code word. As in I believe what the Church teaches, and then a big but, the truth is just in some dusty book that makes people sad so ignore that. Just pretend the truth may exist but what really should matter is that I make you feel good no matter what the heck you are doing.

  • NE-Catholic

    In a word, YES! But it doesn’t appear to be unwillingly.
    From Rome down to the ‘bright, best hope’ in the US hierarchy, i.e. Cardinal Dolan – grand Marshall of New York’s St. Patrick’s Pervert Parade – between the Pope’s apparent unconcern about his lack of precision in speaking on matters of faith and morals embrace by the Roman Catholic Church and the laisse faire attitude about endorsing public immorality as discussed in the article – the foundation appears to be of sand.

  • s;vbkr0boc,klos;

    In the enthusiasm of conversion I investigated all manner of Catholic lay orders and groups. I was a Marxist in my youth and so immediately recognized that all those I considered were utterly repulsive to me because they were transparently Communist front groups using the glib language of ‘inclusion’ and social justice. And NO I do not give any of them a pass – there has been too much ‘blood under the bridge’ for there to be anymore ‘useful idiots’ in the church.

    • Fred

      I wish there were more like you who experienced firsthand and rejected. When I watch people who walk around with their chic Che Guevara shirts I want to laugh out loud at their brazen display of stupidity and ignorance. Maybe a year in the hell that is modern Venezuela would do them good. It will be even more interesting when those that are happy to embrace anything but Christ are forced to wear their plain burka’s without choice and comply with Sharia.

    • DE-173

      I assume you are familiar with Eugene Genovese’s epiphany about Marxism’s body count?

      • s;vbkr0boc,klos;

        It says something for Gene’s integrity that his research on slavery from his Marxist days (Roll Jordan Roll) holds up well even now.

        • DE-173

          Indeed. The lack of others counting the cost also says something as well.

  • I am not “afflicted by same-sex attraction.” I’m just Gay.

    • GG

      What is Gay?

      • Kalpurrnia

        And why advertise it?

        • Why do Straight people advertise? Have you ever put photos of your spouse and/or kids on your desk at work?

          • Carl

            PolishBear, do you have your talking points memorized or do you still work off a flow chart? When do you hear people describe themselves as heterosexual? So no, heterosexuals don’t advertise. In fact if heterosexuals openly flaunt or depict sexual acts it’s called public perversion and violates the law—homosexuals call it a parade!

            I’ve never seen sloppy wet kissing and petting pictures of heterosexual couples.

            Can it be said that some are not afflicted with pornography but are “just enjoying themselves/”

            • DE-173

              He just has a devotion to futility. He has no chance of producing anything here, but he keeps at it. Homosexuality is at its heart a devotion to futility.

          • Scott W.

            Because true marriage (a man and a women and their children) are natural, just, good, and beautiful and all other arrangements, be they heterosexual or homosexual, are not.

          • GG

            That is not advertizing. That is normality.

            • Ah, I see now. So if you put a picture of your spouse on your desk at work, it’s just a sweet expression of love. If I do the same, it’s a militant, subversive act. Gotcha.

              • slainte

                Your Catholic faith calls all unmarried persons to celibacy.

                • GG

                  It not only calls us to celibacy it calls us to truth. That means we do not cause others to stumble by claiming homosexual desire is normal and good. We do not minimize the serious nature of the problem because we have an exaggerated concern for a particular lobby that seeks to undermine societal standards and virtue.

                  • slainte

                    I do not support the lobby you reference nor do I turn away from truth.

                    I try to turn toward Truth and hope that God might guide me in the compassionate treatment of others who are sinners just like I am.

                    He who lives by the sword, dies by the sword. Christ is Love and it is through love that souls are saved and sin is defeated.

                    We would do well to imitate Him.

                    • DE-173

                      Assuming you are the original “slainte” and not a counterfeit adopting the name of a reliably orthodox poster who has beem quiet recently, then as an attorney, you understand “words have meaning”.

                      Nobody is “living by the sword” here, and for you to equate those of us who advocate clarity with violence merits an apology.

                    • slainte

                      DE…I stood outside an abortion clinic last year in Connecticut and was shouted down by a woman who was an employee of Planned Parenthood. She thought my fellow pray warriors and I were disrespectful to the young pregnant women inside PP, who were having a difficult time making their important “choice”. The woman’s language was colorful and visceral; her tone harsh. We could have responded in kind to her intentional provocation but we elected instead to engage her gently with dialogue.

                      After patiently listening to her complaints, we asked her why she was so angry when our sole offense was praying silently for mothers and babies. After a long period and much discussion, she eventually disclosed to us that she herself had undergone an abortion some years earlier. Before the procedure, she consulted with her sister, who also had aborted a child, and was informed by her sister that she should do whatever she wanted since the baby was just a clump of cells. Consequently, she chose to abort her baby.

                      She then went on to tell us that from the moment of her abortion, and every single day since, she thinks of her baby especially when she wakes up in the morning and then she realizes yet again that she cannot change what she did. As a result, she finds herself in a state of limbo unable to remove the emotional scar caused by the abortion and unable to forget the event that caused it.

                      She proceeded to tell us that in addition to her job at Planned Parenthood, she works at a local shelter caring for children that “nobody wants”…the children of alcoholics and drug addicts who were “damaged”. Her self imposed penance of caring for what she views as the rejected and unwanted children of others (when she could no longer care for her own aborted child) wasn’t lost on us.

                      We tried to respond to her…quietly, kindly, and gently. Under all the bluster, she was among the walking wounded and she was a lapsed Catholic. We encouraged her to go to Confession…but she was not ready to do this because she didn’t think God would forgive her.

                      We then suggested that she attend Eucharistic Adoration as we thought that God would reach out to her and comfort her if she placed herself directly in His presence in the Blessed Sacrament.

                      At the end of our interaction with her, I knew that if we had responded to her vitriolic attacks with more vitriol, we would have lost the opportunity to remind her of her human worth and dignity and thus direct her back to God. We only had a few minutes with her to demonstrate Christ’s healing love.

                      I suspect that those who experience same sex attraction, and who come here frequently, also need to be received gently by their fellow Catholics with an open and generous heart so that Christ’s loving presence radiates forward in a way that causes them to want to return to God and to live in conformity with His will.

                      I reject the sword because it so frequently injures and causes more distress to those who are already profoundly wounded by decisions which they wish they could reverse. God forgives all for those who seek His goodness with a repentant heart. It doesn’t matter how many sins or how profound they may be. Seek Christ and He will set you free.

                    • DE-173

                      “I reject the sword because it so frequently injures”

                    • slainte

                      I apologize to you.

                      I did not intentionally set out to hurt or disparage you or any poster on this site.

                      I used to pride myself on being very blunt and outspoken. Over time though, I have come to realize that in my effort to speak truth bluntly, I deeply hurt others.

                      I don’t want to do that anymore…so I have intentionally tried to self correct and change in a meaningful way which reflects an understanding of a God who is loving, gentle, and kind.

                    • DE-173

                      Who said I was hurt? I’m just not that fragile. Fortunately, I grew up before people’s egos were weakened by the elimination of dodgeball. If you step in this ring expect to take hits.

                    • GG

                      That is a great point about context. You come to an article that points out some painful truth. The comments will be blunt and insightful. But, as usual, some will confuse being Christian with being effete. We are told to weigh each word like a lawyer so as not to cause anyone to claim offense. We are handicapped in that the truth must be hidden under a basket using the new left wing ideology.

                    • Objectivetruth

                      Eleven of the twelve apostles, twenty nine of the first thirty one popes all died horrific martyred deaths because every fiber of their being could not back down or be water down from the Truth of Christ. They were definitely attacked not only physically but verbally, but they stood tall. I’ve got to imagine Paul was chased every single day by mobs with rocks. As Irish tradition states, the Holy Spirit is more like a goose than a dove. Sputtering, spitting, loudly defending its turf.

                    • ForChristAlone

                      “God forgives all for those who seek His goodness with a repentant heart.” And there is no one here whom I have ever heard respond in any other way than with compassion to any sinner who posted here with a repentant heart.

                      Your story about that woman was touching but she also didn’t hang around to promote the virtue of abortion.

                    • slainte

                      Abby Johnson worked for Planned Parenthood. She saw the error her ways, quit, and became a significant thorn in PP’s side as a proponent of the pro-life movement.

                      We would be blessed if the young woman I referenced came back to God for healing then joined Abby Johnson and others standing in opposition to PP and offering hope to women seeking an abortion.

                    • ForChristAlone

                      What you describe there was, I believe, a true person-to-person encounter. Just as Christ would have done. And I agree that the likelihood of her coming to terms with the Truth was increased by how you handled it. Good work, slainte

                    • ForChristAlone

                      Excellent!

                    • Objectivetruth

                      I have yet to see a “gay” poster on this website come here open minded and looking for a greater edification on Christ’s teaching or His Catholic Church. None. They all come on Crisismagazine to attack the Catholic Church.

                      Polish Bear is an example. The only charity for him (and others) are to ignore them, don’t engage them. They’re not here to be converted. Notice in the Passion narrative how Christ ignores and does not respond to Herrod when he asks the Anointed One to do a trick, magic, a miracle to prove His divinity. Jesus knew Herrod’s heart was hardened, and it would be a waste of time to respond him.

                      Christ did not convert everyone to His ways, and neither will we. Polish Bear and other “gay” trolls are to be prayed for, but at this point like Herrod, ignored. Polish Bear knows what the Church teaches, he has chosen to say “No, I will not serve!” To Christ. Pray for him.

                    • slaine

                      OT, Polishbear has posted commentary at Crisis in connection with matters unrelated to SSA.

                    • GG

                      No evidence I, or anyone here, lives by the sword. Why assert that?

                      I will say that Truth is like a sword in that it divides.

                    • slainte

                      Truth delivered bluntly can cut through a person’s psyche like a sword. Hence,,,,charity (love) should accompany truth.
                      .
                      Some of the posts responding to PolishBear were cutting.

                    • GG

                      Truth is hate to those who hate truth.

                    • slainte

                      Truth is Love…mercy….and compassion.

                      The tone one uses to deliver Truth matters to those receiving it.

              • GG

                Mostly true. What is amazingly appalling is how far this civilization has fallen in such a short time. No one in their right mind would ever consider two men posing as husband and wife to be anything that should be publicly affirmed or respected. It is a shocking and an affront to public morals, right reason, and sanity.

                Now, we have made it so that when I post what is true and good it is seen as bad and corrupt. We have inverted the Gospel.

              • JP

                It’s subversive if you two are french kissing naked in a hot tub.

              • DE-173

                It’s a counterfeit.

              • asmondius

                Here’s a gold star for your refrigerator.

          • DE-173

            There is no such thing as “straight’. It’s a neologism of lavendar linguistic engineering.

            • Lavender Linguistic Engineering 101. I love it.

              • DE-173

                Well then we have a “breakthrough”.

          • asmondius

            I’m not ‘straight’, I’m Normal.

    • ForChristAlone

      Untrue….SSA…no such thing as a “gay”

    • Dave

      Sex is quite obviously meant for reproduction, and the male organ is also quite obviously meant to fit with the female organ. It is quite obviously not meant to fit into an orifice where waste is excreted. So, if it is not an affliction to be attracted to a sex with a mismatching orifice and no hope of fulfilling a primary purpose of the act, what would you call it, exactly?

    • slainte

      PolishBear, You are a child of God…willed into existence and loved intensely by a compassionate and merciful Creator.
      .
      Your experience of same sex attraction is merely that …a sensory experience which doesn’t define your essence or your humanity. It is no more relevant than whether you are a doctor, a lawyer, or one who suffers from allergies.
      .
      Revelation requires that we order our inclinations and our behaviors to the Will of God thus freely subordinating our will to His.
      .
      It’s not easy being human or conforming our lives to the Word…but we are all called to do it and we all must carry the Cross. Some experience tougher trials than others but in all things His Grace is sufficient to sustain us.

      • Objectivetruth

        Beautiful post, Slainte.

        Waiting for Polish Bear’s response……..waiting……still waiiiiiiitinnng….

        …..zzzzzzz…….

        Shake the dust off of your sandals, Slainte….

        Polish Bear’s made his choices. One can only pray for him.

        • slainte

          There’s always hope OT…and I have observed you spend a great deal of time evangelizing posters when others threw up their hands and walked away.

          It would be great if PolishBear just find his way to mass…God will take care of the rest. : )

    • Daniel P

      Hi PolishBear,

      I’m not sure we’re making you feel welcome here, but know that the Catholic Church is not here to attack you — even if individual Catholics don’t always get that memo. The Church teaches that being gay (by which I just mean “being attracted to people of the same sex”) is not sinful, but same-sex sexual activity is sinful. If one believes that — and surely a person is permitted to believe what their religion teaches! — then being attracted to people of the same sex DOES seem like an affliction.

      So my question is this: are you saying that Catholicism is false, or are you saying that non-Catholics don’t need to use Catholic terminology? I obviously disagree with the first point, but agree with the second.

      • DE-173

        “I’m not sure we’re making you feel welcome here, ”

        There’s a lot of people promoting abberance that wouldn’t “feel welcome” here.

        There isn’t a person on this board that isn’t a sinner, and I’ll bet many of us have deeply habituated sins that defy their immolation. Chances are that there are alcoholics on here, who will tell you that it’s something that is an innate tendency and that assertion is attested to by strong familial tendencies. Still, we treat alcoholism as a disorder, even if at one time acoholism was treated as chronic drunkeness. Alcoholics may resist treatment, but they don’t march in the streets adocating the elimination of DUI laws.

        As for the rest of us sinners, we don’t however confuse sin with sanctity and instead of defiantly advertising our sin, we shamefully crawl to another broken sinner.

        Homosexuals and other sinners are always “welcome”, or else nobody would be here. When however one inheres defiantly and exclusively to promote and normalize their sin, and merely seek to argue male fide, the expectation that such a combatant should be afforded the contrived gentilities of an eigth-grade cotillion is unrealistic.

        • Daniel P

          The sinner is always welcome. The sin is not.

          You tell me whether we’ve welcomed PolishBear, whether the posts here show a deep humbleness of heart. Some of them may. But most of them don’t.

          • GG

            Please give us a break from that propaganda. The poster pushing the gay propaganda is well known here. The posts that react to his agitprop are mostly appropriate given his stance and long history.

            The victim card, faux charity card, and all the rest do not justify your position.

            • slainte

              Daniel P’s response is the Catholic response because it reflects Christ’s mercy and compassion.

              • GG

                No, it is not. His response overlooked much. Christ is the Truth. He does not pretend or become smarmy in a faux effort to appease those with an agenda contrary to nature.

                • Daniel P

                  And when did I pretend or become smarmy?

                  • GG

                    Like you, I call ’em as I see ’em.

                  • ForChristAlone

                    Besides, who was talking about homosexuality before PolishBear rudely interrupted and Daniel P rushed to the defense of the interrupter? Is this a play within a play that no one alerted us to? Must EVERY topic here ultimately reference perverse sexual behaviors?

                    • Daniel P

                      Sorry, but you’re taking my comment in the worse sense possible. I was trying to be evangelistic. I stand by my method in doing so.

                    • ForChristAlone

                      Please refrain from evangelizing off topic. Or you might choose to begin your own website that caters to evangelizing active homosexuals.

              • DE-173

                But who are you to judge?

                Ever ask a judge to treat a witness as hostile?

                • slainte

                  When we nailed Him to the cross and stripped Him of His dignity, He continued to love us with such depth that He pleaded with His Father on our behalf:

                  “….”Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do… And they cast lots, dividing up His garments among themselves..” Luke 23:34

                  As sinners ourselves and the recipients of His boundless mercy, compassion, and forgiveness, shouldn’t we share His gift with those who struggle with earthly trials..even those who may at first appear arrogant and uncompromising? Love melts the hardened heart.

                • GG

                  What I find troubling is that some seem to have more concern for a homosexual apologist than for the affect on our children and society. We exaggerate the concern for lobbyists while the propaganda goes on and on infecting people like a virus.

                  You counter truth with error and all you get is worry about tone and style.

                • ForChristAlone

                  But I feel PolishBear;’s pain….

                  • GG

                    Ha, and who feels the pain of people propagandized by his posts?

            • Daniel P

              I have not seen PolishBear before, so I know nothing of him being a propagandist. This means I can only greet him as one sinner greets another. I cannot speak to what your knowledge or your duties are.

              • DE-173

                Well then charity demands that you accept our assurances that he only posts about homosexuality, and as a militant advocate.

          • DE-173

            Welcome is given to guests, not grafittists.

            • Objectivetruth

              Polish Bear’s an agitator. Only here to mock us.

          • DE-173

            You’ve confused humility with surrender.

            • slainte

              Christ conquered all sin with Love.

              Only Love can defeat the spiritual arrows of the principalities and thrones.

              • DE-173

                Love starts with truth.
                For

                • Daniel P

                  Did Jesus’s love for the woman at the well start with truth? No. It started by him taking the lower place, becoming her servant. It *culminated* in truth.

                  • GG

                    Not every encounter is like the one at the well with our Lord.

                  • DE-173

                    Are you seriously trying to pass this off as lacking in directness?

                    “You are right when you say you have no husband. 18 The fact is, you have had five husbands, and the man you now have is not your husband. What you have just said is quite true.”
                    John 4

                    • Daniel P

                      Please notice the word “start”. Jesus did not start with truth. Jesus started by asking HER for a drink — which meant, putting himself in a lower place than her, since she was a Samaritan. Then, later, he spoke the truth quite directly.

                    • DE-173

                      Here was the opening salvo:
                      “I am not “afflicted by same-sex attraction.” I’m just Gay.”

                      We didn’t get a chance to ask for a drink of water, we were told that we were about to be served vinegar.

                      You’re not even being clever in your attempt to offer confusion and obfuscation via petty quibbling.

                    • ForChristAlone

                      To ask someone for a drink is to place oneself in a lower position? You’ve heard too many homilies based on social theory and too few on the call to repent.

                • slainte

                  After Peter betrayed Christ three times, Jesus still chose to build His Church on this very human sinner who was was so weak and, at times, depraved in his actions.

                  We are all so fallen and so broken and so in need of God’s mercy. When we receive His grace, we are obligated to share it with others lest we be hypocrites like Peter.

                  • M

                    Slainte, you speak so clearly of love that I feel quite moved by your words. You are an inspiration here!

                    • slainte

                      Thanks M…but I still don’t believe in climate change and I do not support those who would profit from advancing a false and contrived claim. : )

                  • DE-173

                    Christ was able to have Peter as the first Pope because he was formed in the crucible of rebuke.

                  • Objectivetruth

                    And Christ gave Peter the opportunity to repent over some BBQ fish by asking him three times “Do you love me, Peter?” Obviously, the issue of the fisherman’s denying Him thrice was still very much on Christ’s mind.

                    • ForChristAlone

                      Haven’t you ever wondered who told on Peter? I mean Christ was probably not in earshot and was busy being tortured. So who informed? If I were Peter, I would have said, “Who told?”

                    • Objectivetruth

                      My guess is Andrew…….Peter had dibs on better fishing grounds than him, better boat………!

                      Remember FCA….last Supper…..”one of you will deny me.”

          • ForChristAlone

            The sinner who promotes his sin here IS unwelcome.

      • GG

        Just to be clear, homosexual attraction is disordered just as many desires are not ordered toward the good. Promoting the “gay” ideology is objectively sinful. To promote homosexual desire as healthy, normal, and good is contrary to right reason and virtue.

        • Daniel P

          I don’t disagree with any of that. But promoting Fascism is probably objectively sinful too. That does not mean that the Fascist understands his sin, or why it is a sin. We should assume the Fascist does not understand his sin, and begin by showing the Fascist Christ’s love. Then, once the Fascist knows us to be merciful, he will be more graciously able to come to a knowledge of his own sin.

          • DE-173

            Equating militant homosexuality to political fascism is an instructive variation of a “Freudian slip”.

          • GG

            This poster has a history. We do not need a psychological profile or in depth study to see the obvious.

            We should always keep in mind how the new ideologues of evil affect our children. Their subjective state is one issue, how their behavior and words cause scandal is another.

            • DE-173

              “This poster has a history. We do not need a psychological profile or in depth study to see the obvious.”

              Indeed. Res Ipsa Loquitar.

              As does Daniel P, who has a history of promoting the idea that a sharp and direct rebuttal of defiant apologists for this particular form of deviancy is somehow lacking compassion.

              • Daniel P

                If we had posters who had had abortions and were defending them, I would make the same point. Culture war rhetoric does not convert people. It never has.

                • DE-173

                  So says you. Do you think ANYTHING in a combox converts people because I don’t.

                  Once again, this is not a good faith poster, but a dedicated disruptor and you do us disservice with this tedious quibbling-I’m beginning to wonder if you are a “jammer”.

      • ForChristAlone

        Being afflicted with SSA is NOT the same as saying you’re “gay” which implies an active homosexual lifestyle.:

      • Objectivetruth

        Notice how Polish Bear didn’t answer your question. He never does. When you try and engage a “gay” person on this site from a Catholic perspective, they never reply. They’re not hear to be converted. Only to mock Catholics.

        Don’t feed (engage) the gay trolls on this site, you’ll get no where. I’ll say it again: NO WHERE!

        Only say a prayer for them. And shake the dust off of your sandals, and move on.

        • Daniel P

          The problem is that people on this site aren’t always good at identifying trolls. For instance, I have been repeatedly accused of being a troll. That hurts, and I don’t understand what’s motivating the people who make such accusations. So I have some sympathy for others so accused.

          However, you’re right that Polish Bear doesn’t seem interested in having dialogue, and that does very much support the claim that he was just here to hear himself speak.

          • Objectivetruth

            I understand what you’re saying, Daniel. I think you’re here in an honest effort to engage.

            And by “troll” I don’t mean the little guy that lives under the bridge. I mean the gay activist that “trolls” Catholic websites like a fishing trawler, tossing his pro “gay” net/line in the water. Seeing if he can get a Catholic on his hook. The bait used is anti Catholicism.

          • slainte

            Daniel… I suspect PolishBear reads and observes here at Crisis…he has posted on matters unrelated to SSA.

            Just keep up the great work Daniel….something will draw him out.

            Are you reading PolishBear…say something or write something or do something. : )

            • asmondius
        • ForChristAlone

          Objective, you’re right. If one of those living the homosexual lifestyle comes here and is not open to the “voice of faithful lay Catholics,” they should not be allowed to dominate and derail the topic at hand.

    • asmondius

      I’m not homicidal, I’m just Quirky.

  • M

    A church that stands against racism, child abuse, judging others, and exploitation of the poor? That is not a “secularist-leftist narrative.” That is merely Catholicism at its most beautiful.

    • GG

      Facile and disingenuous.

    • asmondius

      Yup – no Jesus necessary.

  • While I admire the author’s charity in his penultimate paragraph, I’m afraid that our bishops, still less our pope and his coterie of cardinals, are not nearly as feckless as he makes them out to be. The apparent political ineptitude is merely an appearance. The defeatism and self-loathing of the current regime is a feature, not a bug.

  • GG

    “Third, they seem concerned that hitting the adversary too hard is
    uncharitable. They seem to confuse true Christian charity with false
    compassion. They don’t understand the crying need to go on the offensive
    against the secular left.”

    The Prelate who accused others of ranting, has he accused the homosexual lobby of ranting? Perhaps he has I was just wondering which other groups he has criticized?
    Ted Kennedy?

  • Jean-Francois Orsini

    Go Stephen! See you in a couple of weeks at the annual conference of the Society of Catholic Social Scientists of which you are the president!

  • Patricia La Barbera

    This is a very courageous post. I also admire your charity, but we are in a war. According to Jesus Christ, this war is inevitable, but surrender is not. Faithful Catholics, clergy and laity, must wake up and realize they are an important part of the Church Militant. I’m reading When the Church Was Young: Voices of the Early Church Fathers by Marcellino D’Ambrosio. This book, along with many others, is an inspiration. The early Fathers also had to fight secular battles, as well as battles within the Church. These people were not politically correct and sometimes not “nice.” Many of them were martyred. May they be role models for us to be faithful and courageous soldiers of Jesus Christ.

  • Fred

    It’s laughable because the church in the West has more or less subjugated itself to the state, afraid to lose its tax exempt status and monitored for “hate speech” that doesn’t conform to the government guidelines for morality. In my mind I can imagine a very modern scenario where Jesus rails against the Pharisees who serve more to protect institutions and buildings than the messy work of saving souls.

  • DE-173

    “The prelate who used the phrase “zenophobic ranting” effectively characterized the millions of Americans who are concerned with the massive violations of U.S. immigration laws on the southern border as mere bigots.”

    Let’s call a spade a spade. That prelate was Sean Cardinal O’Malley.

    Now let’s look at his background. He’s an Irish Catholic living in Taxachusetts, and I’m sure as a young man given the institutional memory of “Irish need not apply”. We know that existed and might make one alert to the chance that it’s occurring again.

    He’s also been associated with Latino causes since 1973, when he became associated with Centro Católico Hispano (Spanish Catholic Center).

    The Centro was founded in 1967 by the Archdiocese of Washington, and it was originally headed by Spanish missionaries Fr. Rutílio and Sister Ana María. It is an organization which provided educational, medical and LEGAL help to immigrants.

    His educational background: He graduated from The Catholic University with a master’s degree in religious education and a Ph.D. in Spanish and Portuguese literature.

    Like most U.S. Bishops, he’s long on esoteric episteme, short on practical techne.
    The question is “doth he protest too much”? Few people can afford to indulge the deep and abiding interest it takes to obtain a “Ph” in something like Spanish and Portuguese literature. It seems that he might infact be projecting a deficiency on others, because of his own personal interest.

    Could it be that he is in fact afflictted with a variation of “Stockholm Syndrome” or his protest was a xenoPHILIAC ranting?

    • slainte

      DE. the memory and experience of An Gorta Mor (the Famine), the Penal Laws, and a general understanding by many Irish Catholics (and their descendants) that our ancestors were intentionally targeted for genocide because of their ethnicity and Catholicism resonates deeply within our collective psyche. Like the Jews who have rightly sworn never to forget the Shoah, the Irish will not forget the terrible injustices (the death and emigration of 1 million plus people) foisted upon them by a foreign state and its supporters.

      I suspect that this deeply entrenched memory colors how Irish Catholic clergy view the world and it causes them to summarily reject and respond defensively against any perceived marginalization of others.

      I don’t know that I agree with all of the positions adopted by Irish American clerics, but I very much understand what motivates them. An Gorta Mor has long reaching effects.

      • GG

        I cannot possibly see how this relates?

        • slainte

          I refer you to DE’s post regarding the Irish Catholic Cardinal O’Malley from Taxachussetts and what makes him tick.

          I disagree that Marxist politics informs the Cardinal. Rather, it is the Cardinal’s Irish Catholic heritage which causes him to push back against oppression. He acts in the name of Christ, not a secular leftist philosophy which disavows Christ.

          • GG

            Again, I fail to see the relevance. His Irish extraction causes him to say what he said? Not buying it.

            • slainte

              It causes him to view all immigrants as victims and those who block their path as oppressors. Hence the leftist language.

          • DE-173

            “Rather, it is the Cardinal’s Irish Catholic heritage which causes him to

            Correction: A disordered sense of unique victimhood, plus excessive immersion in his intellectual interests makes him believe that he is uniquely sensitive to and vigilant against ethnic prejudice.
            There is absolutely no comparison between what LEGAL immigrants faced decades ago and what is GIVEN to ILLEGAL immigrants today.

            Now it might be viewed as heresy to compare Boston to New York, but if O’Malley imagines himself to be a lest clannish version of John Hughes, he is mistaken.

            • slainte

              I love Archbishop John Hughes…it would be interesting to see an encounter between him and Cardinal O’Malley or better yet Cardinal Dolan. Fireworks! 🙂

              • DE-173

                You think Dolan’s up to an engagement with Dagger John?

                • slainte

                  Dagger John was a relentless defender of the faith who feared neither politician nor prince. When he spoke, they trembled.

                  Cardinal Dolan is not in the same league as Dagger John.

          • ForChristAlone

            I cannot speak for his acting in the name of Christ; I presume as much. But I think he gives equal time to acting in the name of the Party of his Irish heritage – the Democrats.

            But your point about his acting from his Irish history seems borne out by how he spells his first name (which I always thought a bit pretentious – but, then again, I find men with full beards a bit pretentious).

            • slainte

              Many Irish Americans support the democrat party because it was once believed to be the party that represented the interests of the working man.

              Many don’t realize that this is not true.

              • DE-173

                Unfortunately, many do know it and have made it the family business. I give you the Kennedys, the Bidens, and the Caseys of Greenridge.

              • ForChristAlone

                Yes, I know. I come from a long family history of NYC Irish Democrat unionists. I just never belonged and so went off to college. Luckily, I had an English Protestant mother (who provided for my education in the Catholic faith which she promised to do) so I decided to aspire to become part of the upper crust. I cultivated a taste for tea at 4 and never much enjoyed the bar scene.

                • slainte

                  We share a similar background except both of my parents were Irish. I grew up in Manhattan and went to Fordham. My dad would not permit us to enter a pub…not appropriate for young ladies. : )

                  • ForChristAlone

                    I was not THAT upper crust and not THAT far removed from my Irish heritage since I studied at Manhattan College where bars were aplenty.

                    • slainte

                      Two of my siblings attended Manhattan. I am familiar with that area of the Bronx, in particular Gaelic Park.

                      My parents were kind and down to earth people; not at all snobs. They had a healthy aversion to a “drink culture” which destroyed so many lives and they protected us from it.

                      We resided in a neighborhood comprised mostly of native Irish and European Jews, the latter having survived the Holocaust. I recall the green tattooed numbers imprinted on their arms by the Nazis.

                      It was a typical New York upbringing where Catholics (and everyone who wasn’t Jewish was Catholic) identified each other by their parish. New York City was very different back then.

                    • Kilo4/11

                      As you no doubt have noticed, the term “anti-semite” gets thrown around nearly as easily as “racist”. Since you are well educated and, as a native New Yorker, probably know many Jews, I’d be very interested to hear whether you agree that they use the holocaust to further their political aims, and, if so, to what extent.

                    • slainte

                      Israel Kalman, the son of holocaust survivors, uses the Holocaust to further Jewish political (and theological) aims in an unexpectedly benevolent and enlightened way.

                      For your consideration, Mr. Kalman’s recent article is entitled “How Israel Can Bring Peace to the World”.

                      http://www.mercatornet.com/articles/view/how_israel_can_bring_peace_to_the_world

                      “…He says, “You will do more than restore the people of Israel to me. I will make you a light to the Gentiles, and you will bring my salvation to the ends of the earth.” Isaiah 49:6

                    • Kilo4/11

                      Thanks. I’ll read it.

                • slainte

                  Well I hope you drink Barry’s tea from a teapot, good and strong, with milk and sugar and that your pinkie doesn’t elevate when you life the cup.

                  The tea goes quite well with Irish brown bread or soda bread with a slather of kerry gold butter.

                  If I were Italian, I would say Mangia! : )

            • DE-173

              I tried the beard thing once. Not being a member of ZZ top or the Robertson clan, I never enjoyed a shave quite like the day it came off.

      • DE-173

        I lived in an area where the Irish not only forgot what miseries and indignities they suffered, they turned around gave as good as they got. In my area, the became the dominant force in poltics and religion and made sure they took care of their own. Imagine working twelve hours in a coal mine without a meager lunch because your good “Irish Catholic” “co-workers” “took” it, not even because they were without, but because they wanted to make life difficult for people who didn’t qualify for the AOH.

        I will never exculpate those individuals who splintered off to form the Polish National Church but I can see how they might have felt “excluded” and “marginalized”, when the Irish dominated local religion and poltics and made sure those institutions were instruments of patronage. I still think it absolutey galled some of the really nasty people in my area to see a Polish Pope.

        Before O’Malley starts complaining about “xenophobic rants”, he might want to read Animal Farm and see if some if there’s just a bit of resemblance to the pigs wearing the farmer’s clothes in HIS house.
        Personally, I think we need more ethnicities represented among the Episcopacy, just for “diversity”.

        • slainte

          The Irish who injured your ancestors were wrong and I apologize for their misdeeds.

          • DE-173

            Don’t apologize to me. Apologize to the man who died in 1970.

            The point is, it’s still going on and no group has a monopoly om victimhood.

        • Michael Wallis

          The Irish-American clerical ascendancy has much to answer for in their
          cowardice and betrayal of the Faith, and their abuses of the faithful.
          Similarly Irish American pols have become the most cowarly tools of the
          Left. O’Malley is an amadaun.

      • Objectivetruth

        I once asked my elderly grandmother why our family came over from Ireland and her response was “we were starving.”

  • Aliquantillus

    The diagnosis of the author is correct. But a remedy seems impossible under the present Papacy of Mercy, which only confirms Church authorities in the conviction “that hitting the adversary too hard is uncharitable”. The author exactly graps the essence of Bergoglianism when he says that “in the desire to be “pastoral” — that is, able to reach people, even some Catholics, who they fear might tune them out — they don’t want to emphasize or to be clear enough about Church teachings that are unpopular in the secular culture”. This is exactly what is happening and which is favoured by the Pope. The recent appointments and dismissals in the Roman dicasteries, the Pope’s support for Card. Kasper’s theology, &c, all point to the same fatal direction: more mercy, less rules, more pastoral adaptations to impossible situations, less condemnation of sinful behaviour. The Church could hardly have a Pope who is less fit for the big confrontation with the aggressive secularism of the present time than the one she has. He is disarming the Church in a time of heavy attack. This will not end well.

    • Major914

      I tend to agree, while holding out a bit of hope that if it comes to that, there will be a subsequent turning away from a course of worldly acceptance that means this apparent diversion ends better than it should.

      The Church must provide an alternative to the world–and just let those who have ears to hear do so. Conviction of sin is necessary before true grace can be apprehended. Chasing after the world is the fatal road many mainline protestant churches went dramatically down from the late 19th, early 20th century… That, indeed, has not ended well…

    • ForChristAlone

      Bergolianism – I love it.

      Your comments reminded me of a lunch I had in NYC at a fashionable East Side French bistro hosted by a married couple, both doctors. He is a world renowned cancer researcher and she an OB-GYN. They both know that I am a practicing Catholic. They are by their own admission liberals and atheists. They were salivating waiting for my response to their question, :What do you think of the new Pope?” as if I was in ongoing orgasm since the conclave. They were dismayed when I told them I was disappointed (and that was almost a year ago). These hardened secularists were more enamored of Bergolio than I was.

      • GG

        I would imagine the change in tone and de-emphasis of small minded rules has caused them to embrace our Lord and they have joined the Church now?

        • ForChristAlone

          Yes, and because they are so fabulously wealthy (an East Side condo constructed out of two adjoining condos, a home on the gulf side of Florida and original artwork that includes Warhol, Degas, Dali and Chagall) they have been asked by the Cardinal Archbishop of New York to accept membership in the Knights of Malta. Oh darn, I forgot to tell them that Cardinal Burke has been demoted by Bergolio and will now head up the Knights of Malta.

      • DE-173

        You should have tied them in knots with counter questions. They’d come away congratulating themselves on their ability to have a dialogue with a troglodyte.

        • ForChristAlone

          I tried to behave myself; they were picking up the tab.

  • Vinnie

    Wow! Right after reading this I went back to reading The Screwtape Letters (chapter 25) and read this: “What we want, if men become Christians at all, is to keep them in the state of mind I call ‘Christianity And’. You know – Christianity and the Crisis, Christianity and the New Psychology, Christianity and the New Order, Christianity and Faith Healing, Christianity and Psychical Research, Christianity and Vegetarianism, Christianity and Spelling Reform. If they must be Christians let them at least be Christians with a difference. Substitute for the faith itself some Fashion with a Christian colouring.”

  • Justin

    The social justice teachings of the Church do tend to align with the agenda of the secular left, just as the sexual teachings of the Church tend to align with the agenda of the cultural right. That’s purely random. Both are still Church teachings. There’s nothing un-Catholic about protecting children from abuse, addressing abuse and harassment of women, wanting excellent health care for all, and standing up against racism, just as there’s nothing un-Catholic about encouraging and supporting traditional marriage and large families. As Pope Francis has pointed out, teachings on homosexuality, abortion, and birth control haven’t changed. The Church’s approach to these issues, however, is changing but not in a way that can be called “secular leftist.” There’s nothing secular about take a pastoral approach to these issues while insisting that the Church’s teachings remain clear. I think Pope Francis is getting a bad rap here.

    • DE-173

      “There’s nothing un-Catholic…” “…wanting excellent health care for all”
      Wanting something is one thing. Assuming however that the state can provide something (that by the way defies definition) that is impossible to achieve, (sorry, but providers differentiate and price products in healthy markets, one-size-fits all production without alternativesis generally the marker of tyranny) and requires deception, coercion and corruption in order to promote the failed results as improvement (let alone perfection) isn’t Catholic Social thought, it’s statism, a form of idolatry.
      The corpulent Cardinal of New York believes that he was lied to by Barack Obama when Obama promised “protection” from abortion and birth control mandates prior to the enactmenty of Obamacare is only partially right. Obama lied. But the biggest liar was Cardinal Dolan-to himself. He lied to himself that assurances from ANY politician to provide the land of milk and honey were reliable and he lied to himself when he thought that the assurances of THAT politician to do anything but pursue to the unlimited expansion of the culture of death were reliable.

    • JP

      Catholics in an earlier age were hard realists. Wanting “excellent” health care for all may be a great sentiment; but, as a matter of realistic policy is a juvenile fantasy. The Catholic Left lives in a Progressive Utopian fantasy world, which when projected onto reality is nothing more than a grim jackbooted bureaucrat ready to force compliance. Every single issue that the heterodox have got involved in has created nothing but sorrow and strife.

      Of course the Pope points out that nothing has changed as far as abortion, birth control, and marriage. But, he is about to do more to undermine the teachings of the Magesterium than any secularist has ever done. Remember it was over 40 years ago when Humanae Vitae was written. But, the Magesterium never enforced these teachings. There is more than one way to “transform” the Church.

      • Justin

        There’s no monolithic view of how Catholicism translates into politics. From a Catholic perspective, the issues I most value are social. I vote in a way that I feel best promotes the common good. For me, that’s health care, options for the poor and vulnerable, the dignity and rights of workers, and care for God’s creation. Please don’t tell me I live in a juvenile fantasy because these are not the political issues you embrace above all others, and please don’t tell me my beliefs are not Catholic. They are solidly grounded in Catholicism.

        • DE-173

          “I vote in a way that I feel”

          Surest sign of a left-wing activist. They don’t think, they feel.

          “There’s no monolithic view of how Catholicism translates into politics.”

          Well then, you tell that to those clerics who consistently maintain that regardless of the loss of national identity, the refusal to assimilate, the potential epidemiolgical consequences or other considerations, we are supposed to reward lawlessness and engage in irredentism, that there is no prudential judgment in such complex matters, only an inescapable general warrant

          “For me, that’s health care, options for the poor and vulnerable, the dignity and rights of workers, and care for God’s creation.”
          Trafficking in banal cliches that often make propenents FEEL good and superior while doing real harm to the people they claim to advocate for-implicitly demeaning them as in need of the “enlightened” isn’t just a juvenile fantasy, it’s a social crime against humanity.
          We’ve been trying the statist solution for at least a century now, and it’s given us 70% illegitimacy,tens of millions dependent on a strange god, government and 17 TRILLION (Woops, now closaer to 18) in debt.

          • GG

            Allow me to translate. Pro abortion and pro sodomy are not really that big a sin. The real sin is global warming and welfare reduction.

            • Justin

              Don’t hate those who sin differently from you. Don’t hate anyone, period. Global warming is a much bigger social issue than “sodomy.” Personally I never think about “sodomy” because it’s not something I do or feel inclined to do. The time some people put into conjecturing about anal sex, I’ve put into learning about global warming and how it affects the poor. The last three popes have all emphasized environmental concerns. Pope Francis talks a lot about greed and exploitation. Are you seriously suggesting these are minor issues for true Catholics?

              • ForChristAlone

                There’s no such thing as global warming. No science there at all but plenty of “feelings.”

              • GG

                That you would impute hate to me reveals your logic. Truth is hate to those who hate truth. As I wrote you do not think the sodomistic agenda is a grave concern. You must not care about children.

                Care for creation is part of our obligation. But, propaganda based science is not. I am not aware the temperature causes youth poverty.

                The Popes have taught clearly abortion is one of the gravest issues of our time. The homosexual agenda was termed a new ideology of evil by pope JPII akin to ideologies like Nazism.

              • Objectivetruth

                The issue is driving a car that gets poor gas mileage probably won’t put me in hell. Living a life of sodomy probably will.

                Not all sins are equal.

              • DE-173

                “Global warming is a much bigger social issue than “sodomy.” ”

                Oh, in other words you are are really exactly what I though initially, a political animal attempting to masquerade as faithfully religious.

                Since Christ told us to save souls, not the earth, you are dead wrong.

                Hey newsflash: “sodomy” doesn’t need quotes and the new term is “climate change”. You’ll need to check with the normal suspects, you know HuffPo, MSNBC, DailyKos and the rest of the weapons of mass ignorance, so you use the approved term.

            • slainte

              The new left’s attempt to depersonalize and institutionalize sin.

              Doesn’t work….sin is a personal choice by a human person to engage in a act contrary to the will of God.

          • Justin

            “Surest sign of a left-wing activist. They don’t think, they feel.”

            OK, substitute “think” or “believe” for “feel”. I vote for what I feel, believe, and think promotes the common good. Aren’t we all supposed to do that? Don’t you do that yourself?

            As for the rest, you assume that anybody who thinks differently from the way you do is merely trying to feel superior or to be deceptive or whatever other scurrilous motive you want to impute to them. Don’t be guided merely by politics but by your Catholicism.

            • ForChristAlone

              He’s being guided by common sense and what his experience has told him is true.

            • DE-173

              You don’t get it, do you? You made an unsolicited declaration of the way you vote, I questioned the method and now exposed by your own words, you want to change it aND ACCUSE me of some “scurrilous motive”.
              You want people “feeling”? Nuremberg, 1936.

        • ForChristAlone

          Let me guess: you are 60 years old or over and live in the Northeast or on the Left Coast. The experiment has been tried and it has failed. How many trillions have been spent on anti-poverty programs and we still talk about government programs for the poor. We could have given every poor family 5 million dollars to invest and fired all the anti-poverty government workers giving them an opportunity to actually work for a living.

        • Nick_from_Detroit

          If you vote for democrats/leftwingers, you are not voting for the care of God’s creation. Since they support killing God’s creation in the womb.
          Also, protecting women & children from abuse and standing against racism are not left/right issues. Nice try.

      • ForChristAlone

        “Of course the Pope points out that nothing has changed as far as abortion, birth control, and marriage. ”
        Exactly the problem Holy Father Francis does NOT see: We have had 50+ years of lips service paid to abortion, birth control and marriage by the leadership of the Catholic Church and, at the same time, had Karl Marx shoved down our throats. We’ve had enough of the lip service by Holy Father Francis and his bishops.

    • ForChristAlone

      Pastoral = Statist

  • AugustineThomas

    What do you expect? They can’t be bothered with the complexity of Christ’s message, they’re devout followers of Jorge the Heretic.

  • Glenn M. Ricketts

    I don’t think it’s always “unwittingly.”

  • thebigdog

    Secularists use the language of political correctness to proselytize for their religion of Leftism. Matthew, Mark, Luke and John are replaced with their 4 anti-Gospels:

    – Women are victimized by men
    – Blacks are victimized by whites
    – Homosexuals are victimized by heterosexuals
    – Atheists are victimized by Christians

    To cooperate with Secularists is to attack America and Christianity and become Satan’s minion.

    • DE-173

      And the newest Gospel.. Muslims are victimized by Dhimmis.

  • Watosh

    Yes, no question our Church leaders have been influenced by the secular left. This is a serious problem, but one that many Catholics like Mr. Krason are well aware of. There is another problem though in reacting to these secular leftist influences, some Catholics unwittingly succumb to secular rightest influences which are not so obvious, but still take the church in a wrong direction.

    • ForChristAlone

      Where are these “secular rightist influences” to be found?

      • Watosh

        That is the danger represented by secular rightest influences, it is seldom recognized. It is a stealth influence that almost everyone is not aware of, obviously ForChristAlone is unaware of these influences. Not only are people unaware of these influences, they get very antagonistic to suggest that they exist. I will tell you one place where they are found, that is in the accepting the idea that the only mortality in economic activity is the profit motive. Of course corporations need to make a profit, but to elevate this to the one and only absolute purpose of a corporation is based on the liberal economic theories of the enlightenment. It does not reflect the Catholic view. The idea that soulless corporations which have little accountability should be allowed to become so powerful that they need answer to no one is wrong. Having the government own everything is wrong, having a few, soulless, unaccountable, shadow mega-corporations own most of the wealth is wrong by the same token. Who controls the major media outlets that determine what the people think and believe? About 5 or 6 major corporations. They have the services of expert, experienced public relations types, propagandists actually, who prepare the people to support whatever foreign adventure promises profit. The threat of ISIS and of Moslems taking over the world is hyped to get the public behind military intervention. Stock prices for Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics, Raytheon and Northrop Grumman set all-time record highs last couple of weeks as it became increasingly clear that President Obama was committed to a massive, sustained air war in Iraq and Syria. They were attacking and destroying mostly American equipment possessed by ISIS I might point out. And while in around thirty years homosexuality, which was considered undesirable, now has the enthusiastic support of most Americans. Even echoes of this are felt in some of the views of Catholic Prelates. How was this done. Easy, use TV types to talk about homophobia. Public behavior is so easy to manipulate. One person douses themselves with ice cold buckets of water and it sweeps the nation. While the right charges the news broadcasters with being liberal leftists, which many are, nevertheless they never take a position that the corporations employing them is against. Never anymore. Yet so many who rail against the liberal influences, defend making profits and gaining more and more power and riches as what makes America great. Look at the outrage against the beheadings by ISIS, but the ignoring of the innocent victims who we blow apart with these drone attacks. Cui bono?

        • ForChristAlone

          We had an expression in college: “if you can’t dazzle them with brilliance, baffle them with BS.”

          • Watosh

            We too had a saying on the street when I was young, “Don’t judge other people by yourself.”

  • ArthurMcGowan

    Immigrants (from all countries, legal and illegal) vote about 70% pro-abortion. (And illegal aliens VOTE.) No one has the right to enter any country and vote for genocide.

    Mr. Krason is far too “charitable.” We have always had pro-abortion bishops, archbishops, and cardinals. They have treated pro-lifers like scum for forty-some years. They have devised diabolically clever rhetoric (“seamless garment”) for the benefit of the abortionists. They insist on giving Communion to pro-abortionists–even though doing so is manifestly a mortal sin.

    http://tinyurl.com/canon915

    Now, they are campaigning tirelessly to import a tidal wave of pro-abortion voters, to swamp the pro-life movement once and for all.

    And who appointed these pro-abortion activists disguised as Catholic prelates, and leaves them in place?

    • mary moore

      Why the obsession with abortion? That’s not even what the article is about, but your comment refers to it half a dozen times.

      • DE-173

        You said you were leaving, troll.

      • ForChristAlone

        If you think he’s obsessed with abortion, then why are you drawing everyone’s attention to his remark. Unless, of course….

      • slainte

        Mary Moore states: “Why the obsession with abortion?..”

        Because Christ commands us as Catholics to love our brothers and sisters as ourselves, and our smallest brothers and sisters are those in the womb experiencing their first stages of development. We are their voices and their protectors.

        We are graced with a duty to rescue these children from untimely and barbaric deaths in Jesus’ Holy name.

        Recall Mary…Christ’s words:

        “40 “….‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’

        41 “Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me,you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.

        42 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink,

        43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after
        me.’

        44 “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’

        45 “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’ Gospel of Matthew: 25:40-45

      • asmondius

        Seems to have caught your attention…..

  • jacobum

    The Headline to this column says it all. To even ask the question indicates a late arrival to the reality of the last 50 years. The answer is “No, they are not doing it unwittingly. The “New Church” and “New Faith” of Vatican 2 has been doing it actively and consciously. The One True Faith outside of which there is no salvation, has been relegated to the basement, replaced by evolving truth, feelings, and man centered worship of self.

  • Seppe

    While there are probably some who are “unaware”, there are indeed many who know exactly what they are doing: advocating for big-government socialized medicine, promoting George Soros’ vision of an “Open Society” without borders, promoting Bill Gates’ “Common Core” curriculum in Catholic Schools, and more…

  • tom

    It always comes down to 30 pieces of silver.

  • Jenny Tomsic Bioche

    This why I read Crisis. Thank you Mr (Dr.?) Krason!

  • ForChristAlone

    Are (American) Church Leaders Unwittingly Promoting A Religious Agenda?

  • mary moore

    The Jesus I learned about in Catholic school would have favored protecting immigrants, minorities and the environment. Conservative Catholics do themselves a disservice by ceding humanitarian positions on these issues to the “secularists” and attacking them as enemies.

    • slainte

      If you are 50 or younger, the Catholic Church you grew up in did not catechize you. Thus, your understanding of the Faith is likely impaired.

      Read and study the Baltimore Catechism, then evaluate whether the Faith as you presently understand it comports with the age old truths of Catholic tradition.

      Catholicism is more than social justice.

      • mary moore

        I’m 62 and spent grades 1-12 in Catholic school. We studied the Baltimore Catechism, the one with the blue cover. Sorry.

        • ForChristAlone

          Then, my guess is that you were absent alot or were a very poor student.

          • asmondius

            Might be the statin drugs…..

    • GG

      Jesus is not a liberal democrat.

      • slainte

        GG we finally agree on something. I knew it was just a matter of time. : )

    • ForChristAlone

      We cede nothing and you are ignorant of the facts (but that shouldn’t get in your way)

    • asmondius

      In other words, He does your bidding.

  • John Albertson

    What is left of the school system in the Archdiocese of New York is succumbing to this secularization, with enthusiasm. Cardinal Dolan has cheerfully welcomed Common Core, although it was imposed without any consultation of pastors or parents. More recently, he has introduced the Universal Pre-K program, even though it requires covering crucifixes and all other religious objects in the classrooms of Catholic schools. …But the archdiocese will receive money from the government for this.

    • ForChristAlone

      The Archdiocese of New York IS the government

  • Alan Lille

    Speaking of secularism, this is Americanism at its finest. The author should take note that the Popes from Leo XIII to the present have been critical of capitalism and liberalism in general. People on the right are promoting a secular agenda as much as people on the left. It was this type of thinking that led Benedict XVI to criticize in Caritas in Veritate, the false binary logic of market-plus-state.

    • Carl

      Look up Subsidiarity in your CCC—if you have one. There’s a reason secularists never mention this pillar of social teaching. Secularist’s “social justice” pillar is really just one sub-set of the Common Good pillar. Solidarity and Human Dignity rounding out the social doctrine.
      What you’re really describing in your post is a psychological circle or can be described in straight line. Extreme libertarianism (anarchy) and an overbearing state authority lead to the same thing—oppression.

  • Jdonnell

    This is another silly article, masking Republican politics as Christian thinking.

    • ForChristAlone

      And you’ve recently been released from the hospital

      • Jdonnell

        Typical Republican response: try to shoot the messenger.

        • ForChristAlone

          Yep

          • Jdonnell

            Shooting the messenger is an ad hominem attack and as any traditional thinker knows it is illogical. Typical Republican attack. Yep.

            • ForChristAlone

              yep

              • slainte

                yep : )

              • Jdonnell

                Dear ForRepiblicansAlone:
                Yep.

                • ForChristAlone

                  RepUblicans, yep

          • asmondius

            Sloppy work – they’re still making noises.

    • Nick_from_Detroit

      Funny, I didn’t see the word “Republican” used once in Mr. Krason’s essay.
      I also find it strange that you admonish ForChristAlone for ad hominem, and, yet, this comment is nothing but. Physician, heal thyself. God Bless!

      • Jdonnell

        Quite the contrary, I admonish on the basis of a “masked” pitch for Republicans. It is thus no surprise that the word “Republican” is not explicit. Hiller didn’t explicitly use the word “genocide” either.

        • Nick_from_Detroit

          I suspect that your tinfoil-hat is on too tight. Have it checked, stat!
          Who is this “Hiller” to whom you referred? And what was his interest in genocide?
          Also, ForChristAlone didn’t make a pitch. He/she made a snarky reply to you. As I just did. I suspect you couldn’t argue you way out of a paper bag. God Bless!

          • Jdonnell

            I don’t argue in paper bags. You have no argument here, just snippy silliness. My analogy is extreme, but perfectly logical: the fact that an operative word is absent from an agenda is no proof that the agenda doesn’t exist, whether Republican or Nazi. Detroit’s sorry state seems to have nicked you.

            • Nick_from_Detroit

              Well, you know what they say about the first person to bring up the nazis, don’t you? Except, you really haven’t made an argument to lose, have you?
              Detroit’s sorry state is completely the fault of democrats/leftwingers who systematically destroyed the family, and city, over the past five decades. Like they did to most big cities across America.

              And, simply stating the fact that the political left is at war with Catholics, always has been, is not an endorsement of the GOP. That is sophomoric thinking. God Bless!

              • ForChristAlone

                …or bodes some condition far worse

            • ForChristAlone

              diagnosis = paranoia

            • Nick_from_Detroit

              Hey? Where’d you go? Oh, I see that you are claiming that the Jews run Hollywood. How strange for a leftist. Not!

        • GG

          And yours is a masked pitch for relativism.

          • Jdonnell

            How absurd. Nothing in my statement suggests relativism. My statement is in fact not a masked pitch for anything but an inference based on the repeated way that “secularism” gets “leftist” snuck in alongside it. That provoked my comment. It has nothing to do with relativism.

            • GG

              Quite the contrary, I admonish on the basis of a “masked” pitch for relativism. It is thus no surprise that the word “relativism” is not
              explicit. Hitler didn’t explicitly use the word “genocide” either.

              • Jdonnell

                I offer what is obvious evidence; you offer none. It goes with your obvious mentality.

                • ForChristAlone

                  ad hominem alert

  • AcceptingReality

    Mr Krason, I agree with you that they are furthering the secular leftist narrative on just about everything. But you are far too “charitable” in your critique. I don’t think they’re doing it “on the unawares”. I think they’re doing it because they are secular leftists. I believe they view the world through the lens of a leftist ideology and try to “shoe horn” Catholic Christianity in to fit that agenda. I say this knowing that our pastor seems extremely well versed on things written in the New York Times and has more than a passing interest in the superstars of Democratic politics. He seems to idolize the Kennedys, the Roosevelts, the Clintons….

  • Mickey’O

    You just now figured out the catholic church has been hijacked by the State????? Religions ALWAYS serve the State, always.
    I left the “Roman Catholic Church” a decade ago for the the Society of St. Pius V, and I thank God for that decision. The SSPV priest pointed out how the Vatican was promoting Protestant and Communist drivel as dogma. He predicted another Papal Schism within 20 years, and I think we are are going to see one. Given what Bishop Bergoglio has said and done, it’s a done deal.

    • ForChristAlone

      So I am wondering why someone who’s left the Roman Catholic Church (and the non-Roman Catholic Church as well) would spend his time perusing a website that is a “voice for faithful Catholic laity”? Are you monitoring our eventual demise? Pretty peculiar behavior. Doubtful anyone here bothers to monitor the blog site for the Society of St Pius V.

    • DE-173

      What was that again, Martin Luther?

    • asmondius

      Ever notice how predictions of, the Church’s demise have worked out?

  • bonaventure

    The absolute most tragic truth is that current Church leaders are not supporting the left wing agenda “unawares.” They are aware, deliberate, and decisive. Like when they supported Obamacare in the U.S., and are currently — and very publicly — engaged in a feud about, literally (!), changing the Church’s sacramental theology (think the Kasper-Burke feud surrounding this month’s synod).

  • Micha Elyi

    “Unwittingly”?

  • guest

    More fundamentally, the church has bought into the socialist agenda since the late 1800’s and early 1900’s. This has allowed the church to relieve itself of the responsibility of ministering by turning over directly (as in the case of healthcare: obamacare and medicare) and indirectly (myriad other social services which are bank rolled by the government) many functions that use to be the churches responsibility. It has permeated the fabric of Catholicism and affects the philosophical and political out look of the hierarchy and the laity. I am amazed that there was “shock” that the government has been trying to mandate that catholic institutions and citizens support policies and practices that violate basic Catholic principles (Europe anyone?). What could one expect if you continue to strengthen and support a completely secular (and more and more atheistic) entity?? Of course there is also a significant element within the church (e.g., nuns on the bus) whose ultimate goal, whether conscious or unconscious or intentionally or unintentionally, is the destruction of the Catholic church. That members of the hierarchy are, effectively, mouthpieces for the leftist agenda is deeply disturbing. Good article but discouraging.

  • The reasons for this advancement of the secularist agenda, by Church leaders, you list as:

    1. a lack of political sophistication
    2. inadequate understanding of crucial public issues
    3. misguided charity
    4. misguided desire to be “pastoral”
    5. simply be a lack of courage, or financial entanglements with grants.

    Another reason, a very fundamental one, comes to mind: the desire to be and to advance in both “cities,” forsaking neither – the city of man and the city of God. Stated other ways: the desire to find a middle ground between, to compromise both, light and darkness; the desire to love the Bride of Christ and to consort with the harlot Babylon; the desire to have both the praise of man and the praise of God; the desire to serve both God and Mammon; the desire to follow Christ, cross-free.

    In an address to seminarians (April 15, 2014), Pope Francis warned them against becoming “half way priests,” and stressed the need to have “rectitude of intention” in their vocation. He stressed the need for prayer, for humility, for spiritual guidance, for time with Holy Scripture, for frequent confession – for formation.

    We need a holy laity. We need holy priests and deacons. We need holy bishops. We need renewal.

  • Michael H. Smith

    Dr. Krason, I believe you are too kind to our Church leaders. Not to tar them all with the same brush, but go to the USCCB website, and other than the lip-service paid to traditional Catholic concerns for the souls of the faithful, their issues writings read more like that one would expect from the Democrat Party platform than the legitimate concerns of the successors of the Apostles.

    I have heard no bishop object to the policy statements on, say, global warming/climate change—increasingly discredited by thoughtful scientists, or the constant demand government expand welfare and medical care programs though they are hopelessly inefficient, wasteful of our shrinking national resources—all caused by excessive government,. and destructive of our health, our families and our culture. Demanding we all but erase our borders, letting in millions to further tax our already over taxed social service, medical and educational facilities only adds to the perception that not only are the bishops naive regarding how government works and policy issues, but blindingly so regarding economics. Worse, they, like liberals everywhere seem incapable of learning from their mistakes.

    Bishops have demanded government provided medical care since the early 1900’s in spite of growing evidence of the last half-century that it was a disaster in the making. Now that the system is being deliberately destroyed, they seem neither to notice nor to care—their tepid, morning after protestations about forcing Catholic employers to provide birth control and abortion notwithstanding. Throw open the borders even wider and then cry crocodile tears over the further ruination of all morals, ethics, and the virtues that make this formerly the best country in the world—bar none! They just took $4 millions of our dwindling in value taxpayer dollars to pay Uncle Sam for housing illegal alien children.

    I pray, and cry about the state of Gods’ Church every day, about the tens of millions of souls thrown overboard in the bishops quest to “modernize” the mass and, indeed, the entire Church—all to the loss of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. About the only way I can see to get their attention, other than be a democrat party “catholic” politician who works actively to destroy the Church and her moral teachings, is to promote myself as a new, undocumented bishop! Only a threat to their power would make them take notice! They obviously don’t care about the souls of us marginalized Catholics they keep poking in the eye! Millstones, anyone?

    Michael H. Smith
    Chase City, Virginia

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