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Saturday, August 18, 2012

An Email from a Friend re Cardinal Dolan

An online friend sent me her letter to Cardinal Dolan with the reminder that no one who opposes Church teachings should be given a platform in the Catholic Church. She also included quotes on scandal from the Catechism of the Catholic Church. I thought I'd share her email in the hopes that others will imitate her by sending their own thoughts to Cardinal Dolan

Salve, Cardinal Dolan:

I read with sadness that you have personally extended an public invitation to President Obama, someone who holds bigoted anti-Catholic views and is for the slaughter of our preborn children and for the legalization of sodomy with same sex marriage. Archbishop Dolan, are you causing grave scandal? How is the HHS mandate to be overturned when the very person who instituted this anti-Catholic bigotry law is publicly offered a platform for his anti-Catholic actions, which is in direct contradiction of the USCCB's statement that states:

"...The Catholic community and Catholic institutions should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles. They should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions. ..."

How am I to answer a Catholic who insists on voting for Obama, a pro-death candidate, when they cite Archbishop Dolan offering a public platform to Obama? Please--for the sake of the integrity of your office and to avoid potential grave scandal, rescind this invitation to Obama to be present at the Al Smith dinner. Quid est Veritas?

Deo Gratias!
Darla Meyers
Hudson, Wisconsin

Respect for the souls of others: scandal

2284 Scandal is an attitude or behavior which
leads another to do evil. The person who gives scandal becomes his neighbor's tempter. He damages virtue and integrity; he may even draw his brother into spiritual death. Scandal is a grave offense if by deed or omission another is deliberately led into a grave offense.

2285 Scandal takes on a particular gravity by reason of the authority of those who cause it or the weakness of those who are scandalized. It prompted our Lord to utter this curse: "Whoever causes one of these little ones who believe in me to sin, it would be better for him to have a great millstone fastened round his neck and to be drowned in the depth of the sea." 86 Scandal is grave when given by those who by nature or office are obliged to teach and educate others. Jesus reproaches the scribes and Pharisees on this account: he likens them to wolves in sheep's clothing. 87

2286 Scandal can be provoked by laws or institutions, by fashion or opinion.

Therefore, they are guilty of scandal who establish laws or social structures leading to the decline of morals and the corruption of religious practice, or to "social conditions that, intentionally or not, make Christian conduct and obedience to the Commandments difficult and practically impossible." 88 This is also true of business leaders who make rules encouraging fraud, teachers who provoke their children to anger, 89 or manipulators of public opinion who turn it away from moral values.

2287 Anyone who uses the power at his disposal in such a way that it leads others to do wrong becomes guilty of scandal and responsible for the evil that he has directly or indirectly encouraged. "Temptations to sin are sure to come; but woe to him by whom they come!" 90

"...The Catholic community and Catholic institutions should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles. They should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions. ..."


  1. Dolan's behavior is no differnt than that of the other bishops. Like them, he is more concerned about maintaining his political connections that about standing up for truth. Unfortunately, that's the way it's been in the Church hierarchy for centuries!

    Many of the "Establishment Catholics" (like Bill Donahue and the EWTN-owned Register, see Simcha Fischer's recent column) will not confront any bishop for any reason. Remember, Donahue was the man who defended Law when the clerical sex-abuse crisis broke in Boston.

    I think it's time for Catholics in New York to engage in some civil disobedience. I suggest that they picket the chancery in force and stage a sit-in so nobody goes in or out until Dolan withdraws the invitation. If he doesn't, then do the exact same thing at the site of the dinner and make sure that nobody -- not even Obama and Dolan -- gets in or out.

    The American bishops have abandoned God, let alone the faithful. Consequently, they no longer deserve their allegiance. Catholics should stop being infatuated with ecclesiology and fight the borderline apostates who run the Church!

  2. Don't the Legionaries of Christ own the Catholic Register?

    I think you're right about "establishment Catholics." Michael Voris calls them the elite. Funny, the dissenters don't mind attacking the hierarchy all the time and the bishops don't go nearly as ballistic as when faithful Catholics challenge what they're doing. But it's not too surprising. Dietrich von Hildebrand described it in The Devastated Vineyard: "The drivel of heretics, both priests and laymen, is tolerated; the bishops tacitly acquiesce to the poisoning of the faithful. But they want to silence the faithful believers who take up the cause of orthodoxy. . . ."

    The faithful picketing the bishops is long overdue I think. Someone already emailed me about organizing a demonstration.

  3. Mary Ann, the Legionairres sold the NCR to EWTN after (or because of) the scandal with Maciel, I think. Anyway, EWTN owns the newspaper.

    Unfortunately, a lot of Catholics believe that criticizing a bishop's prudential actions (which Dolan's decision to invite or not to invite certainly is) equals criticizing the bishop's office or even the bishop himself. Fischer's article is a prime example. So is much of the drivel conceived by the bloviating Mark Shea.

    My problem with such people (and I include Donahue in that bunch) is that they wind up sounding more like hacks who must toe the party line at all times and in all circumstances, rather then people who are dedicated to truth.

  4. Yes, I wonder where that idea ever came from. Anyone who reads Dietrich von Hildebrand or is familiar with such stalwarts as William Marra and Fr. John Hardon surely should know better. I remember fighting the same battle with home school guidelines when a priest wrote a silly article on "love your bishop." I do love my bishop; I pray for him every day. But I believe we are called to love the truth (Jesus Himself) first. May God give us all wisdom and pour out on us all the gifts of the Holy Spirit.

  5. I think it has to do with groupthink, Catholic style. Too many people equate their fundamental sense of identity with being in the "right" church, adhering to the "right" ideology or expressing support for the "right" causes. Basically, all of these are various forms of lip service. That's not solely a Catholic problem, of course. But it takes courage to think for oneself (as the Holy Spirit guides) and to reject the prevailing conventional wisdom. Sadly, it's much easier just to following the lemmings than to be a person of integrity.