When Members of the Catholic Press Fail the Church

In a news story that received little media attention last year, LifesiteNews.com and Breitbart, reported that the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation awarded the National Catholic Reporter a $2.3 million grant to provide positive publicity for the work that is being done by Catholic women religious. It was a noble goal that emerged from Conrad Hilton’s experiences having been taught by faithful nuns during his childhood. Keeping with his wishes to provide for the nuns that helped to shape him, the Hilton Foundation has long supported women religious through its Conrad Hilton Fund for Sisters—a foundation that has been funded with nearly $200 million and has made almost 10,000 grants to various religious communities over the past 26 years.

But, Conrad Hilton could not have predicted that his foundation would one day be helping to fuel the animosities between the Magisterium and the Leadership Conference of Women Religious (LCWR) by funding a newspaper which has had a long history of attacking individual bishops, and criticizing the teachings of the Church.  Recalling the faithful women religious of his youth who taught him to love and serve God, it is unlikely that Hilton would have wanted his money to support the kinds of attacks on the bishops—and the teachings of the Catholic Church itself—that the National Catholic Reporter is now engaged in. This new Hilton-funded initiative has effectively purchased positive publicity for the nuns—at the same time the bishops’ are attempting to bring the LCWR closer to the heart of the Church through the doctrinal assessment they have been conducting since 2009.

Defending against such a suggestion, Brad Myers, senior program officer, was quoted in the article published in LifeSiteNews as claiming that the Hilton Foundation “does not take a position on the controversy between the Vatican and the leadership conference.” Myers published a policy paper in February, 2013, indicating that the grant was not related to the current issues related to the doctrinal assessment of the LCWR.

While that is true, an analysis of recent articles published by the National Catholic Reporter reveals a strong defense of the nuns—often at the expense of the bishops’ goals. Devoting an entire channel on the newspaper’s website to the sisters’ response to the bishops’ investigation, the National Catholic Reporter seems to have taken sides against the Magisterium.

For example, on August 26, the Hilton-Funded “Global Sisters’ Report” published an article lauding an 82-year old former Sister of Mercy, who was recently “ordained” as a “Roman Catholic Woman-Priest.”   Entitled “Women Priests Act on a Deep Call to a Different Ministry,” the article introduced another former Franciscan sister who was also “ordained.”

During the entire month of August, 2014, nearly every story posted on the National Catholic Reporter’s “Sisters’ Stories” site is a negative response to the bishops and their Vatican-directed investigation of the LCWR. Out of more than two dozen stories about the sisters on the Sisters’ Stories site, only five reported on issues like “Helping Haitians Find water and Self Sufficiency”; or the new renewable energy resolution that was passed by the LCWR. Nearly all of the stories on the site throughout the month focused on the struggles the nuns have experienced with the hierarchy. With daily articles and incendiary headlines like, “Sisters Ahead of Hierarchy in Living Vatican II Renewal”; “Outside Control of LCWR is Unacceptable”; “Cry Out, Sisters, Cry Out” by Joan Chittister; and Eugene Kennedy’s “The Real Reason for the Vatican’s Problem with LCWR,” the overarching theme of the Sisters’ Stories website is that the sisters are the victims of an oppressive patriarchy whose goal is to silence all women in the Church. To reinforce that view, David Gibson authored an article on September 2, entitled “Vatican’s Doctrinal Chief Renews Criticism of US Nuns, Says He’s No Misogynist.”

It is likely that the National Catholic Reporter will continue its campaign of promoting an alternative Magisterium—one that endorses women’s ordination, married priests, and a diminished hierarchy for the Church. Responding to this in January, 2013, the Most Reverend Robert W. Finn, Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Kansas City St. Joseph—the diocese where the National Catholic Reporter is headquartered—authored a column in The Catholic Key, the online edition of the official diocesan newspaper criticizing the National Catholic Reporter for “undermining Catholic teachings.” Writing that the National Catholic Reporter has been “lionizing dissident theologies while rejecting established Magisterial teaching,” Bishop Finn has raised questions over whether the newspaper should call itself Catholic.

Since the publication of Bishop Finn’s column in the Catholic Key, the National Catholic Reporter has escalated its attack on the bishop personally—using its pages to publish an insolent “Open Letter to Pope Francis” demanding the removal of Robert W. Finn as bishop of the Kansas City-St. Joseph, MO diocese. Authored by Bill Tammeus, a Presbyterian elder and former faith columnist for The Kansas City Star, the “Open Letter” published on the pages of the National Catholic Reporter criticizes Bishop Finn’s handling of abuse cases in his diocese and advises the Pope to “require Finn to take a year off for study and meditation…. Then you could assign him to write his confessions and make them available to a church that is seeking to understand why so many bishops responded so badly to this abuse crisis.” Concluding his anti-Catholic rant by advising Pope Francis to “make him [Bishop Finn] a doorkeeper in the Sistine Chapel,” Tammeus wrote that it would be better for Bishop Finn to be a doorkeeper, as the psalmist suggested, rather than “live comfortably in the tents of the wicked.”

It is not “news” that the National Catholic Reporter seems to have taken sides against many of the bishops in the Catholic culture wars, and it is not “news” that the National Catholic Reporter continues to dredge up old cases of clerical abuse in order to try to diminish the authority of the bishops, but what is puzzling for faithful Catholics is why the Catholic Press Association (CPA) continues to reward the newspaper by honoring it with the Association’s most prestigious awards. In 2014, the CPA awarded the National Catholic Reporter first place for “Best News Writing Originating with the Paper—National Event”; as well as a first place award for “Best News Writing Originating with the Paper—International Event.” In addition to news writing, the CPA honored Michael Sean Winters yet again with a first place in the category of “Best Online Blog—Individual.” Lauding Winters’ writing as “impressive,” the press association has described him as “demonstrating consideration for a broad range of opinions.” It is likely that the CPA missed his latest hyperbolic headline: “Are the Bishops Committing Murder?

In 2014, the National Catholic Reporter was also honored with a First Place award in the category of “Best Investigative News Writing”; and individual writers for National Catholic Reporter won second and third place prizes in that same category. The Reporter also won a second place award for the “Best Analysis Background Round-up News Writing” (the Gerard E. Sherry Award), and third place in the “Best Editorial Page” category. In the “Best Personality Profile for a National Newspaper,” National Catholic Reporter was awarded second place—second only to Catholic Health World, the publication of Sr. Carol Keehan’s Catholic Health Association. Catholic Health World lobbied heavily in favor of passing President Obama’s Affordable Health Care Act—replete with funding for abortion and mandates for providing insurance coverage for birth control and abortifacients. Catholic Health World is also a recipient of multiple awards from the Catholic Press Association. Orthodox Catholic books and newspapers—those that support the teachings of the Church—rarely win these awards.

An independent Catholic media is important—all Catholics benefit from faithful Catholic media outlets. In 2009, Cardinal Francis E. George, then president of the USCCB, warned that “if any institution, including the media, calls itself Catholic, it is the moral responsibility of the bishop to assure that it is Catholic…. That offers the bishops a chance to clarify the relationship and see if the entity in question is operating within the bounds of Catholic communion.”

In 2010, following a webinar on “Faithful Catholic Media: Continuing the Conversation,” jointly sponsored by the Catholic Press Association and the USCCB, Auxiliary Bishop Gabino Zavala of Los Angeles, then chair of the USCCB Committee on Communications, identified three aspects of Catholic media which make it unique. “One is that Catholic media can help Catholics understand what is happening in our world and in our Church from a Catholic perspective…. Another is that Catholic media are “civil and respectful” unlike what is seen in the secular media.” And, finally, the third unique aspect of Catholic media is “its ability to advise bishops on how best to engage with media organizations.”

In his recommendations for the future of the relationship between the bishops and the Catholic media, Bishop Zavala concluded that Catholic media should expect stronger collaboration with bishops: “good collaboration requires efforts on both sides…. Our diocesan offices should view your organizations as collaborators rather than as outsiders.” Perhaps it is time now—five years after Bishop Zavala recommended it—for the collaboration to begin.

Anne Hendershott


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

  • ForChristAlone

    Dr. Hendershott writes: “what is puzzling for faithful Catholics is why the Catholic Press Association (CPA) continues to reward the newspaper by honoring it with the Association’s most prestigious awards. In 2014, the CPA awarded the National Catholic Reporter first place for “Best News Writing Originating with the Paper—National Event”; as well as a first place award for “Best News Writing Originating with the Paper—International Event.”

    Why Catholic bishops continues to tolerate CATHOLIC FISHWRAP is the same reason they themselves continue to fund, sponsor and protect groups like Catholic Relief Services (the former director of which is now an Obama political appointee – surprise!), the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, Catholic Charities USA, and the annual collection for retired troublemakers.

    • somnipod

      Social justice, social justice, social justice.. whenever its stressed above everything else we know it’s a dissenting group

      • Watosh

        Yes, that is my feeling too. Unfortunately because of this association of dissenting groups with “social justice,” many Catholic abiding members tend to reject the idea of “social justice” entirely. The Catholic Church has long supported social justice. The papal encyclicals of the the 20th century written by Popes who are considered as very conservative and very catholic do endorse the idea of social justice, however it is not a radicalized version of social justice.

      • Catholic Social Teaching is the way to go. I suggest Tea Party Catholic by Samuel Gregg for a wonderful explanation and reinforcement of the basis for CST as opposed to Social Justice, which effectively puts the state in charge of the redistribution of wealth and doe snot provide an arena for the flourishing of the individual.

    • emmettcoyne

      Let the weeds and wheat grow until harvest; the master of the harvest will do the separating.
      Why are you so interested in uprooting now?

      • Vinnie

        In the interim we still have to live our lives on earth and that’s very difficult and frustrating when you can’t see anything, or even move, due to the height and thickness of the weeds. As you say though, faith and truth will prevail.

      • mmj

        In Charity…it is not about “pulling out”…but “cultivating & converting”…a great effort demanded by us for the salvation of souls.. it is that simple. Christ himself in Scripture & in his Church tell us that we have a serious obligation in Works of Mercy…or our own souls are jeprodized if we fail to offer the Truth to a “wayward sou”l. First to pray…beg for Holy Spirit to help us to be fauthful ourselves (see beam in my eye)…then for graces to help our brothers & sisters in Christ. As a former bishop said to my parish in his segregated diocese…when he put an end to segregation in our parishes and schools in his diocese..”…as your shepard, I will die for you for you are my flock…my sheep…but I won’t go to hell for you…”.
        CF Ezekiel 33: 7-9 & Matthew 18: 15-20 ( 23rd Sunday O.T.) & CCC 1829; 2284-2286 ;

        • PetrusRomanus1

          Would you be willing to “march into hell for a heavenly cause?” I know someone who did, and lives to tell about it!

      • Randy Gough

        Don’t uproot now, just don’t feed the weeds.

    • Reasonable_Opinion

      Be carefull of your broad brush. Case in point: Catholic Relief Services, now (recently) under the episcopal direction of Archbishop Paul Coakley of Okalahoma City, site of an upcoming Black Mass spectacle he is fighting vigorously against. Problems at CRS? You bet? MANY, many years in the making. Should we stop funding CRS vs. taking corrective measures? Yes, we need BETTER Catholic Media–print and electronic.

      • ForChristAlone

        The Holy Spirit at work in the selection of Archbishop Coakley to provide oversight of CRS. I totally agree that this has been many years in the making and will take time for them to return to the true mission of the Church which is evangelization and stop engaging in political shenanigans. I call on them to end ALL contracts with State and Federal governments. The Church needs to get out of Satan’s bed.

  • Conor

    I do not understand why so many of the “consciences,” which tell Catholics that they cannot “in good faith” support the positions of the Magisterium, do not also tell them that they cannot in good faith receive Communion.

    • PetrusRomanus1

      Who are they to judge? The clergy sex abuse crisis and coverup is not one of the bishops’ finer moments!

      • kmk

        Bad timing on your attempt to distract PR1. It is time to move on.

      • dacort8202

        A homosexual priest abuse crisis, aptly dealt with by the spectacle of NCR’s almost to-the-man approval of gay marriage. What a ridiculous bunch of people.

    • GG

      It is not about truth or faith. It is about having unfulfilled desires.

  • Vinnie

    Along with this and non-Catholic Catholic colleges and hospitals, I’ve always wondered how practicing Catholics will always vote for pro-choice and pro-homosexual marriage candidates. I guess it’s all summed-up in, “I’ve met the enemy and he us us.”

    • somebigguy

      Except that “he” is not “us.” NCR are apostates.

      • Vinnie

        My point is that it’s not just them. It goes WAY beyond.

  • Cap America

    It’s good to follow the money here. I can’t imagine how the Hilton Foundation can believe it is HELPING matters here. . . by funding a non-Catholic newspaper and non-Catholic association of religious.

  • somebigguy

    National Catholic Reporter is an absurdity; it makes anti-Catholic rags like the NY Times and Boston Globe look fair and balanced.

    NPR stands more for Nothing Catholic Reported.

    • Think you meant NCR…though NPR (National Public Radio) may qualify also.

      • somebigguy

        Pardon me; NCR. Freudian slip!

  • Michael Skiendzielewski

    An independent Catholic media is important—all Catholics benefit from faithful Catholic media outlets. In 2009, Cardinal Francis E. George, then president of the USCCB, warned that “if any institution, including the media, calls itself Catholic, it is the moral responsibility of the bishop to assure that it is Catholic…. That offers the bishops a chance to clarify the relationship and see if the entity in question is operating within the bounds of Catholic communion.”

    Ms. Hendershott, would you please explain the meaning of the first sentence in the above paragraph? The first part states “…..an independent Catholic media is important….” and then the second part of the statement is “……all Catholics benefit from faithful Catholic media outlets….” How can a Catholic media outlet be “independent” and “faithful”?
    Of course, the second sentence re Cardinal George is specious and ironic. The Cardinal talks about the Bishop’s “moral responsibility” regarding “Catholic” media but many American Catholics would love to understand his “moral responsibility” with regards to Father Daniel McCormack.

    • GG

      [How can a Catholic media outlet be “independent” and “faithful”?]

      Independent does not mean error embracing or rejecting of the truth.

      • JP

        Can an independent media that calls for the violent overthrow of our government be deemed “faithful”?

        NCR is not an “independent” newspaper or media outlet. It is a partisan organization masquerading as a impartial observer of the RCC.

        • GG

          It is decidedly partisan and dissenting.

    • Anne Hendershott

      Thank you for your comment–but I have to disagree with your statement that a Catholic media outlet cannot be both “independent” and “faithful.” When a media outlet calls itself “Catholic,” the faithful should have some confidence that the outlet is in communion with the Truth of the Catholic faith–the gospel as it comes to us through the Magisterium. Celebrating the ordination of former nuns is counter to these teachings. And, when a Catholic media outlet like National Catholic Reporter suggests that these “ordained” nuns are “called” to the Roman Catholic priesthood, that media outlet can no longer be viewed by the faithful as Catholic. The bishop of the diocese has a moral responsibility to assure the faithful that those who claim to speak for the Church are indeed speaking the Truth. When a self-identified “Catholic” media outlet chooses to proclaim a “gospel” that is counter to the Magisterium, that outlet should lose the ability to call itself Catholic.

      • Michael Skiendzielewski

        Ms. Hendershott, thank you for your response to my comment. However, you did not offer any additional statement relative to my statement about Cardinal George and “moral responsibility” and Father Daniel McCormack.

        • Anne Hendershott

          I am sorry but really cannot comment on that specific case since I do not know the details of it–I only know what is publicly reported in the media. And, as you know, that is pretty unreliable.

          • skiadvocat

            If what is reported in the media “pretty unreliable”, how, Anne, do you come to know about, understand and draw conclusions regarding any of the matters related, for instance, to the clergy abuse issues among the US Roman Catholic Church and its leadership? For example, what have you found out, discovered or researched objectively about the matters related to the management of clergy abuse allegations in the Archdiocese of Minneapolis St. Paul under Archbishop Nienstedt? Anne, you responded with “I only know what is publicly reported in the media”….if so unreliable, why even read it?

  • emmettcoyne

    The Magisterium has become an idol!

    • fredx2

      Perhaps the rapidly-becoming-conscious universe of the LCWR can save it?

    • DE-173

      Rebellion is the idol.

  • Florian

    National Catholic Reporter is NOT a ‘Catholic’ entity. They have been told to remove “Catholic” from their title but have refused…

    • PetrusRomanus1

      Back in 1968 the National Catholic Reporter also received an “official condemnation” from Robert Finn’s predecessor in KC-SJ, Bishop Charles H. Helmsing. Subsequently, NCR has offered detailed coverage of the ongoing Catholic clergy sex abuse crisis and coverup, for which NCR has been castigated in much the same way as Bernard Law, former archbishop in Boston, tried to take out the Boston Globe.
      The bishops haven’t learned, which they might have done if they were reader of NCR, and understood what they read. But that was more than three Billion dollars ago.

      • I see nothing true in NCR that I couldn’t find out in some other way. I see a lot of falsehood, dissent, and anti-Christian behavior coming from them on this subject.

      • I’ve lived in the Greater Boston area my entire life, and I do not recall Cardinal Law ever trying to “take out the Boston Globe”. In fact, quite the opposite occurred, as I very clearly recall. Could you please clarify your accusation? Perhaps you are simply confused?

        • DE-173

          Very confused:

          “The Roman Catholic church has long practiced its own version of Sharia law by punishing same-sex preference couples, and silencing any theologian or cleric who offers so much as a kind thought toward these “sinners” and “moral misfits.” George’s own diocese is in the news for firing a gay music director who married his partner. Truth is, Catholic clergy, many of whom are gay, can’t even have an honest and open discussion on the subject of same-sex marriage. Shame.”

          • GG

            You can pretty much bet the opposing posts always involve some issue about genital sexuality or gender.

        • fredx2

          It’s the sort of “fact” that one learns when one reads the NCR.

    • Michael Skiendzielewski

      Florian, you do understand that there is a difference between Catholic (capital C) and catholic (small c).

      Definition: adjective ) including a wide variety of things; all-embracing. synonyms: universal, diverse, diversified, wide, broad, broad-based, eclectic,liberal.

      In other words, the RCC does not own the word C(c)atholic.

      • kmk

        I don’t call myself a murderer because I’m pro life.

      • What exactly does it mean to say the the RCC does not “own” the word “Catholic”? That statement strikes me as pure obfuscation.

        You do not “own” your name, either, but does that make it righteous for me to usurp your name in order to impersonate you, or misrepresent you, or profit from a (false) association inherent in the name?

        Or are you seriously trying to suggest that the NCR is using the word “Catholic” in its moniker only to imply a kind of generic universality, and not to imply a belonging-to the Church which is universally known by that name?

      • Does not matter- NCR is neither. The closest thing they are is post-Christian Modernist Deist.

      • GG


        • DE-173

          Not even propaganda, puerile rebelllion.

          • Michael Skiendzielewski

            Puerile? Lack of maturity? How do you know so much about me?

            • DE-173


              You have a rather lengthy and obvious public record, which could only be the result of intentional construction, so why act surprised?

      • DE-173

        Neither do the apostates.

  • Francisca

    I don’t like NCR – and have more to say about the nun issue – but in terms of their awards…what other Catholic print periodicals do *any* kind of investigative journalism?

    • GG

      I do not know of any including NCR which is biased beyond belief.

  • Marcy

    No wonder the “Nuns on the Bus” have one slick, fancy, gas-eating, bus and promo material. Maybe they house the homeless in it when they are not using it? http://www.faithinpubliclife.org/blog/nuns-on-the-bus-greeted-by-mass-rally-at-rep-ryans-office/

  • kmk

    You are also spreading anti-Catholic propaganda by your frequent reference to the National Catholic Reporter. Many are not aware of the significant difference between National Catholic Reporter and National Catholic Register. Please correct this.

  • jacobum

    The National Catholic Reporter is no more Catholic than Crisis is Buddhist. Pure, unadulterated, in your face, heterodoxy. Not even worthy of being used for fish-wrap. Their only use is to track the degeneration of modernist mind (oxymoron) and their latest outrageous statement(s). As to why Bishops, priests and religious etc continue to support them?..”Modernism” in any language, format, or person is still heresy whether they be clerical or not. The Bishops et al more than likely either agree or silently support the NCR position(s)

  • Paul Helman

    Did Dr. Henderschott ever clear up her alleged tax evasion problems?

    • Anne Hendershott

      Actually, it was not a tax evasion problem, rather the highly publicized IRS “problem” you are perhaps referring to was an IRS audit that was politically motivated because of my writing. Our Attorney has filed two Freedom of Information requests to attempt to determine exactly why I was audited. So far, our FOIA requests have been denied by the IRS. I am not the only one – There are several faithful Catholics who were audited around the time I was. Several of those audited during this period-including Dr. Ben Carson, and Bill Donohue of the Catholic League–had been critical of President Obama’s Affordable Health Care Act. So, it is still going on – Thanks so much for your concern.

      • Paul Helman

        Interesting. I apologize for my error as it was not intended. Did the IRS tell you in person, over the phone or in writing, or imply over any medium, that your taxes were under heightened scrutiny “because of your writings,” or reveal that the audit was politically motivated, as you suggest? Curious how you came to this conclusion. Correlation, after all, doesn’t imply causation.

        • ForChristAlone

          Besides calumny and detraction, you’re also boorish.

        • Anne Hendershott

          You are correct about that – I do not have proof (yet). It is just that the questions the auditor asked all focused on why I was writing the articles in 2010, and who was paying me to write them. We had to produce information on the source of the money we deposited into our bank accounts. But, of course, we do not have proof–and correlation does not imply causation. There are several others – I published an article on pro-life organizations and individuals who have been audited in the past few years–similar to the experiences of the Tea Party. The article was published in Human Life Review and it would give you a bit more information on what many of us believe is a targeting by the IRS of the pro-life community.

          • DE-173

            “It is just that the questions the auditor asked all focused on why I was writing the articles in 2010”
            Not a legitimate inquiry. All that he should be focused on is establishing that the declarations of income shown on your tax return have supporting documents. If you are an employee, that is a w-2, If you are writing as an independent contractor, a 1099 would be the ordinary document. If you do not receive a 1099, retain a copy of the remittance advice attached to the check, and if there is no RA, a copy of the check itself, and deposit the check by itself, so the deposit amount matches the check amount.
            As for the hit and run poster “Paul Helman”, “tax evasion” is a criminal act that can only be asserted after a conviction in court. Being audited not only does not prove one is engaged in tax evasion, it doesn’t even imply it.
            Now if you want to slither out of your den to debate taxes with a CPA, have at it.

        • DE-173

          Did the IRS tell you in person, over the phone or in writing, or imply over any medium, that your taxes were under heightened scrutiny “because of your writings,” or reveal that the audit was politically motivated, as you suggest?
          Lois Lerner lost her emails, remember?

        • RufusChoate

          I suspect her research and published work on the “Politics of Deviancy” has more to do with both your and the IRS’s interest in her tax returns than any interest in defending your leftist world view.

        • DE-173

          No, the IRS “loses” its documentation, or are you expecting Lois Lerner to disturb her retirement and admit she was abusing authority and engaged in a personal vendetta.

    • GG

      Calumny, detraction all in one post. Nice.

    • ForChristAlone

      If you’re Catholic, you have earned yourself a “Go To Jail Card.” To get out of jail, you will please enter the confessional of an orthodox priest to repent of your sin.

      If you are not Catholic, I am not sure what you’ll do. But just know this: eternity is just that…

      • JaneG

        Are you saying you go to hell if you ask if someone has their legal affairs in order? Man, the Catholic Church has really gotten strict.

        • ForChristAlone

          Are you Catholic? If so, you’ll need to bone up on scripture. If not, we would welcome you into the Church.

        • GG


    • RufusChoate

      I take it that the best argument you have is the inference that the Byzantine Tax Code might have been violated in some way by the author.

      As my Uncle, former IRS Regional Director, quipped to my Father in a moment of candor about the IRS… “Give us anyone’s tax return and we can make them a criminal in half an hour and bankrupt him if he tries to defend himself then to put a lien on his estate if he persists in fighting us and we will do it at the behest of who ever in the White House asks.” He was a lifelong Democrat in a family of Republicans.

      Isn’t that odd that you as an American Catholic find “Tax Evasion” a more serious offense than causing scandal in the church?

    • DE-173

      Moderator: As the Paul Helman post asserts condition that cannot be inferred absent a criminal conviction, it should be removed as libel.

  • Bob One

    I read both NCRs. Along the way I have also read a lot of diocesan newspapers. The diocesan newspapers are mostly a way for the Bishop to get his PR out to the older crowd. Young kids don’t read newspapers. The National Catholic Reporter often takes on the Bishops, but in a nice way. As Catholics, concerned Catholics, we should not want or expect our newspapers to be the PR pieces for the Bishops, written by and for the Bishops. We need independent papers that will give us the news the NC Review won’t give us. If we didn’t have the NC Reporter we would have to invent it. Although I have read much in the Reporter with which I don’t agree, I have never read anything that was “un-Catholic”. Like in our daily civil lives, we need both sides. You can’t watch Fox News without MSNBC if you want to know what is going on in the world, and vs.vs. as well.

    • ForChristAlone

      “I have never read anything that was ‘un-Catholic’.”

      I guess it all depends on just how much you yourself are Catholic.

    • GG

      More propaganda.

    • John200

      You have read plenty that was un-Catholic in the NCR. Unless you threw it out before reading it, which would be a proper Roman Catholic response to the cascade of heresy/apostasy/schism (you pick).

      If you forgot, look again. The thing is festooned with un-Catholicism.

  • Tony

    The difference between a faithful soldier and a traitor is just this: the faithful soldier can be found on the field where the battle is engaged, while the traitor hangs back, and says that he will obey a majority of the commands that come his way, but not the particular one that would bring him where the fight is. It’s as if one were to say, during the rage of the Arian heresy, “I will obey the Church’s teachings here and here and here, but I believe they are behind the times, holding to that old-fashioned notion regarding the divinity of Jesus.” Or, to Bartolomeo de las Casas, “I will obey the Church’s teachings here and here and here, but don’t tell me to release my slaves, thank you; this is a new world, and you have no idea what it involves, so get with the times.” The National Catholic Refuser is a disgrace.

  • fredx2

    I had to laugh when the NCReporter proudly reported that they won those awards for journalism. Never in my life have I read a paper as slanted as the NCReporter. They simply omit any facts from stories that are inconsistent with their progressive world view. It’s like reading Pravda.

  • RaymondNicholas

    Anytime I read or hear a bishop, priest, nun, catholic teacher, and theologian put together a bunch of meaningless, vague sentences with a preponderance of multi-syllabic words, I run the other way. I call it pastoral gobbledigook, meant to shield a herectical view or capitulation. The catholic press is no different from the secular press; it does nothing but insulate and protect those who pay them by ignoring or mis-casting the real issues facing the Church. The catholic press has betrayed the Faith in no less a way than the clerics. I will not appease, work with, or financially support any heretic or apostate.

  • jay

    What’s a good Catholic news source?

    • ForChristAlone

      The New York Times. Seriously. What you need to do is read any article written about the Catholic Church or references the Catholic Church and assume that the truth will be found in just the opposite of what they assert.

    • kmk

      A good Catholic news source is the Bible. Seriously, it’s all there, it’s all been done before, just change the labels.

  • distractedbrony

    In the interest of fairness, I’m not sure exactly what about Tammeus’ “Open Letter” makes it an “anti-Catholic rant”. I do think that the pages of a Catholic magazine might not have been the best place to print it, but that reflects badly on the magazine, not the author.

  • Jdonnell

    The nuns are in the trenches, while too many bishops are luxuriating in mansions. Some of the comments posted in response to this article show a right-wing lack of charity. Anyone who sneers at social justice is a Christian in name only.

    • Connie Boyd


  • jdrman

    Do serious Catholics actually read the distorter/Fishwrap?

  • realist

    About the worst in Catholic media now is EWTN News Nightly run by this Brian Patrick who should be fired for dishonesty and lack of integrity. Watching his program you’d think obama was George Washington. Need I say more? It’s like watching frickin CNN or NBC.
    It’s a waste of time and I’d junk the thing if I were in charge of Ewtn and hope everyone forgets it even existed. For some real Catholic news watch Raymond Arroyo’s EWTN
    World Over Live.

  • LHJ

    I stopped reading NCR and put it on my list of adversarial sites. I didn’t know all of this. There is certainly a lot going on in the Catholic world. Thank you for the update.