The Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph Has a (Good) Plan for Reforming CCHD

Over at the Catholic Key Blog, the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph has published its plan for reforming the Catholic Campaign for Human Development.  Already a year old, their CCHD plan is very convincing.

I began reading it with a healthy skepticism… until I came to this:

Our first decision, then, was to cease funding all community organizing projects in our diocese and not to grant such requests in the future. While the diocese still supports the concept of providing a voice to those who lack a voice in our society, we believe that there are a variety of mechanisms to achieve such a goal that can take place without funding community organizing groups that offer positions contrary to Church teaching.

Everyone who has kept up on the controversy surrounding CCHD grant-making knows community organizing groups are the hub of the problem.

 

The Diocese recognizes that funding organizations that directly support — or are in coalitions that directly support — abortion and same sex marriage send the wrong message.

Funding community organizing groups gives the impression that we are permanent allies, when in fact we are not. We welcome alliances with such groups on particular issues, and we recognize that we will have to be on opposing sides on other issues.

The Diocese has recommended two economic development organizations for funding: the Kansas City Urban Youth Center and Northwest Missouri Enterprise Facilitation. KCUYC provides after school programs for urban youth who live in the poor apartment complexes, while NWMEF provides low income people with business mentoring. Receiving local funding from the Diocese’s portion of the national collection were organizations working to eliminate the death penalty, treating single mothers for drug and alcohol dependence, building community gardens in poor neighborhoods, and providing food, clothing, dental care, and high school to troubled youth and senior citizens.

Reading the overview of the Diocese’s plan, I was convinced this approach is precisely what is needed to end the criticism of CCHD.  There’s no need to give any Catholic money to organizations which aid and abet the culture of death, in any way. 

Bishop Finn and the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph are leading in a positive direction. But giving up the funding for community organizers will not go over so well in many chanceries… and at the USCCB.

Deal W. Hudson

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Deal W. Hudson is ​publisher and editor of The Christian Review and the host of "Church and Culture," a weekly two-hour radio show on the Ave Maria Radio Network.​ Formerly publisher and editor of Crisis Magazine for ten years, his articles and comments have been published widely in publications such as the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Washington Post, and U.S. News and World Report. He has also appeared on TV and radio news shows such as the O'Reilly Factor, Hannity & Colmes, NBC News, and All Things Considered on National Public Radio. Hudson worked with Karl Rove in coordinating then-Gov. George W. Bush's outreach to Catholic voters in 2000 and 2004. In October 2003, President Bush appointed him a member of the official delegation from the United States to attend the 25th anniversary celebration of John Paul II's papacy. Hudson, a former professor of philosophy for 15 years, is the editor and author of eight books. He tells the story of his conversion from Southern Baptist to Catholic in An American Conversion (Crossroad, 2003), and his latest, Onward, Christian Soldiers: The Growing Political Power of Catholics and Evangelicals in the United States, was published in March 2008. He is married to Theresa Carver Hudson, also a Baptist convert, and they have two children, Hannah and Cyprian who was adopted from Romania in 2001.

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