Saturday 25th April 2015

Home » Frontpage » Currently Reading:

The Pope, The President, And The Right To Life

March 28, 2014 Frontpage No Comments

By FR. FRANK PAVONE

(Editor’s Note: Fr. Frank Pavone is the national director of Priests for Life. This commentary on the March 27 meeting between Pope Francis and President Obama is reprinted with permission from priestsforlife.org. All rights reserved.)

+    +    +

Pope Francis and President Obama met in Rome today, and the meeting has naturally generated commentary, both before and after the fact, including by the president himself at the National Prayer Breakfast last month.
I am confident that the meeting itself will bear good fruit. I am not so confident that the commentary about it will bear as much fruit.
What I mean is that I believe we are heading for a media and blogosphere circus in which commentary after commentary will reinforce the error that we can promote “human rights” and “social justice” while ignoring the most fundamental right of the most vulnerable people: the right to life of the children in the womb.
It’s not because I think the Pope or his advisers aren’t fully committed to protecting them. They certainly are. And I have had the privilege of conversing with the Pope about the pro-life efforts of the Church.
But there is a profound contradiction between Obama’s position in favor of abortion and the Church’s position against it, and my concern arises from the fact that so much commentary makes light of this contradiction, either by saying it’s not important, or by pretending it’s not there.
And sometimes this impression is given in commentary even by those who share the Church’s pro-life position.
Miguel Diaz, a Catholic theologian who served as Obama’s ambassador to the Vatican until recently, commented, “Some said that under [Pope John Paul II] and [President Ronald Reagan] there was a meeting of the minds, and it’s potentially true again under Obama and Francis around the issues of social justice.”
But in reality, that is not potentially true at all.
The contradiction between Obama’s position and the Pope’s position on the right to life is a contradiction about the very core and foundation of social justice. Without the right to life, everything else falls. Pope Francis himself made reference to this in his recent apostolic exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium, when he said:
“[D]efense of unborn life is closely linked to the defense of each and every other human right. It involves the conviction that a human being is always sacred and inviolable. . . . Once this conviction disappears, so do solid and lasting foundations for the defense of human rights, which would always be subject to the passing whims of the powers that be” (n. 213).
Pope John Paul II, about to be canonized as a saint, made a similar point 25 years ago in another apostolic exhortation, Christifideles Laici:
“[T]he common outcry, which is justly made on behalf of human rights — for example, the right to health, to home, to work, to family, to culture — is false and illusory if the right to life, the most basic and fundamental right and the condition for all other personal rights, is not defended with maximum determination” (n. 38).
And Renato Cardinal Martino, who served as president of the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, that is, the Vatican’s office charged with fostering the understanding and pursuit of social justice within the whole Church, explained:
“The Holy Father speaks of the protection of life as the fundamental realization and respect for human rights. Without that realization, without that respect for the right to life, no other discussion of human rights can continue” (Interview on EWTN, 2004).
That’s the kind of commentary we need to see about the discussion between the president and the Pope.

Share Button

Comment on this Article:

Untitled 2

Attention!

On-Line Store is now working. Order your print edition of The Wanderer TODAY!

CLICK HERE!

Scandalous Commencement Honors Announced at Eight Catholic Colleges

At least eight Catholic colleges have announced scandalous speakers or honorees at their 2015 commencement ceremonies, according to The Cardinal Newman Society’s annual review of college graduations. Many colleges wait to release the names of their honorees and speakers, so…Continue Reading

Charlotte’s Catholic bishop bans PFLAG event with LGBT-affirming nun from Uptown church

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — An upcoming speaking engagement with an LGBT-affirming Catholic nun will have to be relocated after news Monday that she and the event have been banned from an Uptown church by Bishop Peter Jugis of the Roman Catholic Diocese…Continue Reading

Pope Francis accepts resignation of Bishop Robert W. Finn

Vatican City, Apr 21, 2015 / 04:47 am (CNA/EWTN News).- Bishop Robert W. Finn of Kansas City-St. Joseph has resigned, nearly two and a half years after being the first U.S. bishop convicted of a misdemeanor in failing to report…Continue Reading

The IRS Assures an Atheist Group It Will Monitor Churches

It was bad enough, as I wrote here last August, that the Internal Revenue Service appeared to reach an agreement to monitor the pulpits of ill-favored churches. What’s worse is that the IRS, directly counter to Freedom of Information Act…Continue Reading

ISIL video purports to show killing of Ethiopian Christians

A video purporting to show the killing of Ethiopian Christians by Islamic State-affiliated militants in Libya has been released online. The 29-minute video appears to show militants holding two groups of captives, one by an affiliate in eastern Libya known…Continue Reading

Cardinal Burke Responds to Recent Criticisms

In an Italian-language interview, the patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta said, ‘I am not against the Pope; I have never spoken out against the Pope. … My purpose is to serve the truth.’ Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke,…Continue Reading

‘Prominent’ Catholics attacking Archbishop Cordileone are big donors to Pelosi and pro-abort Democra

SAN FRANCISCO, CA, April 17, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) — Big donors to the Democrat Party and pro-abortion Nancy Pelosi are among those publicly harassing San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone for protecting Catholic identity in the area’s Catholic high schools. A big-ticket…Continue Reading

American Sisters accept Vatican reforms on doctrine, theology

Vatican City, Apr 16, 2015 / 04:15 am (CNA/EWTN News).- In a joint report marking the conclusion of a multi-year mandate for reform, members of the LCWR have agreed to corrections called for by the Vatican, and said they will…Continue Reading

Cardinal George, archbishop emeritus of Chicago, dies at 78

DEVELOPING: Cardinal Francis George, the archbishop of Chicago from 1997 to 2014, died Friday at the age of 78 after a long battle with cancer, the Archdiocese of Chicago has confirmed.

We Must Pray For And Defend This Good Bishop

bishopcord

I call on all the readers here to pray and offer fasting and alms for the spiritual defense of Archbishop Cordileone of San Francisco. Will San Francisco be the Alamo of the Church in these USA? Today, in the ultra-liberal…Continue Reading

Prominent Catholics call on pope to oust S.F. archbishop

In an unprecedented move, more than 100 prominent Roman Catholic donors and church members signed a full-page ad running Thursday in The Chronicle that calls on Pope Francis to replace San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone for fostering “an atmosphere of…Continue Reading

This teacher cannot sue the Catholic Church for firing him because he openly rejects Catholic teachings: Legal experts

OMAHA, NE, April 14, 2015 (LifeSiteNews.com) – Legal experts agree that, if you openly flout Christian teachings, you have no right to sue a religious school for firing you – in most instances. That analysis comes after a sexually active…Continue Reading

Untitled 5 Untitled 2

Attention Readers:

  Welcome to our new website. Readers who are familiar with The Wanderer know we have been providing Catholic news and orthodox commentary for over 145 years in our weekly print edition. Now we are introducing the online daily version of our print journal.


  Our daily version offers only some of what we publish weekly in print. To take advantage of everything The Wanderer publishes, we encourage you to subscribe to our flagship weekly print edition, which is mailed every Friday or, if you want to view it in its entirety online, you can subscribe to the E-edition, which is a replica of the print edition.
 
  Our daily edition includes: a selection of material from recent issues of our print edition, news stories updated daily from renowned news sources, access to archives from The Wanderer from the past 10 years, available at a minimum charge (this will be expanded as time goes on). Also: regularly updated features where we go back in time and highlight various columns and news items covered in The Wanderer over the past 145 years. And: a comments section in which your remarks are encouraged, both good and bad, including suggestions.

 
  We encourage you to become a daily visitor to our site. If you appreciate our site, tell your friends. As Catholics we must band together to rediscover our faith and share it with the world if we are to effectively counter a society whose moral culture seems to have no boundaries and a government whose rapidly extending reach threatens to extinguish the rights of people of faith to practice their religion (witness the HHS mandate). Now more than ever, vehicles like The Wanderer are needed for clarification and guidance on the issues of the day.

Catholic, conservative, orthodox, and loyal to the Magisterium have been this journal’s hallmarks for five generations. God willing, our message will continue well into this century and beyond.

Joseph Matt
President, The Wanderer Printing Co.

Untitled 1

A Powerful Weapon: 15 Quotes on the Holy Rosary

We live in evil times. I hardly need elaborate the multitude of crises that fill the globe. Sadly, many are being swept away by this flood of evil and are succumbing to an overwhelming anxiety and discouragement. But no matter how tempting it is, we must not shrink back. We must pray and fast with a living faith and a firm confidence—and there is no better way to…Continue Reading

12 Ways to Become a Committed Catholic Man

There is a Catholic “man-crisis.” Large numbers of men who were baptized Catholic have left the Church and the majority of those who remain are “Casual Catholic Men”, men who do not know the Catholic faith and don’t practice it. This large-scale failure of Catholic men to commit themselves to Jesus Christ and His Church has contributed to the accelerating…Continue Reading

Today . . .

Pope is a modern-day St George fighting the forces of evil

pope761

(Vatican Radio) Monsignor Guillermo Karcher is an Argentinian priest and pontifical usher and has known the Pope for over 20 years. It was he who held Pope Francis’ microphone when he addressed his first words to the world from the balcony of St. Peter’s Basilica following his election. In an interview with Vatican Radio marking the Pope’s name-day of Jorge or George, Monsignor Karcher described the Pope as a modern- day St. George because “he…Continue Reading

Pope: Our Vocation Is To Care For The Covenant Of Marriage

(Vatican Radio) At his general audience on Wednesday, Pope Francis continued his catechesis on the family, focussing again on the complementarity of men and women. Pope Francis commented on the second account of the creation of man in Genesis (following his commentary at the previous audience on the first account of man’s creation. The first man, Adam, is created “alone” – and God determines to make for him “a helper suited to him.” When the…Continue Reading

Pope: the Church today is a Church of martyrs

pope521

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis today said that “ours is a Church of martyrs”. Speaking during morning Mass at Casa Santa Marta the Pope recalled the many Christians who are currently being persecuted and killed for their faith. Drawing inspiration from the First Reading of the Act of the Apostles which tells of the stoning and martyrdom of Stephen, the first Christian martyr, the Pope remembered “our brothers whose throats have been slit on the beaches…Continue Reading

Pope appeals to the world to act to avoid more tragedies of migrants

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis has appealed to the international community to take swift and decisive action to avoid more tragedies of migrants seeking a better life. His heartfelt cry to the world came following news of the sinking of yet another boat carrying migrants in the Mediterranean Sea in which it is feared 700 people may be dead. The Pope was speaking on Sunday morning after the Angelus prayer in St. Peter’s Square, where he…Continue Reading

Obama’s Republican Collaborators

By PATRICK J. BUCHANAN The GOP swept to victory in November by declaring that this imperial presidency must be brought to heel, and President Obama’s illicit seizures of congressional power must end. That was then. Now is now. At this writing, Congress takes up legislation to cede His Majesty full authority to negotiate the largest…Continue Reading

Natural Selection And The Natural Law

By DONALD DeMARCO These two expressions — Natural Selection and Natural Law — sound very much alike. Yet their implications are radically different. In fact, they differ to the degree that matter differs from spirit. Charles Darwin’s major opus, The Origin of the Species, is immensely influential. Despite its influence, few have read or properly…Continue Reading

Culture Of Life 101 . . . “Is Church Teaching On Contraception Infallible?”

By BRIAN CLOWES (Editor’s Note: Brian Clowes has been director of research and training at Human Life International since 1995.) + + + There are two primary means by which the Church may declare a teaching infallible. The first and most definitive statement of infallibility is the Pope’s solemn declaration ex cathedra that a matter…Continue Reading

Cheers For Cardinal Mueller’s Defense Of The Faith

By MAIKE HICKSON (Editor’s Note: Maike Hickson, who has written reviews and essays for The Wanderer, wrote the following editorial for LifeSiteNews. All rights reserved.) + + + During the last month, Gerhard Ludwig Cardinal Mueller, prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, has given several interviews in which he made many…Continue Reading

The Long Retreat In The Culture War

By PATRICK J. BUCHANAN The Republican rout in the Battle of Indianapolis provides us with a snapshot of the correlation of forces in the culture wars. Faced with a corporate-secularist firestorm, Gov. Mike Pence said Indiana’s Religious Freedom Restoration Act would not protect Christian bakers or florists who refuse their services to same-sex weddings. And…Continue Reading

The Wanderer Interviews His Eminence Raymond Cardinal Burke . . .

burk10

By DON FIER Part 1 (Editor’s Note: Raymond Leo Cardinal Burke, Patron of the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, who previously served as Prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura in Rome from June 2008 until November 2014, recently visited the Shrine of Our Lady of Guadalupe in La Crosse, Wis. Prior to that he served as Archbishop…Continue Reading

Advertisement

Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

Catholic Replies

Q. I would be interested in your analysis of the enclosed article that was in my parish’s Sunday bulletin. — F.W.R., Florida. A. Here is the text of what appeared in the bulletin: “Addition to homilies/reflections on the daily Scripture readings at daily Mass. It is permissible, according to the Roman Catholic liturgy regulations, that any competent lay person may…Continue Reading

Our Hearts Will Be At Peace

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Fifth Sunday Of Easter (YR B) Readings: Acts 9:26-31 1 John 3:18-24 John 15:1-8 In the second reading, St. John says that if our hearts do not condemn us, then we have confidence in God and we will receive from Him whatever we ask. We live in a relativistic society where very little is seen as…Continue Reading

Rededication Of The Diocese Of Honolulu To The Divine Mercy Divine Mercy, Or Diabolical Mercy?

By MOST REV. LARRY SILVA (Editor’s Note: Bishop Larry Silva of Honolulu on Divine Mercy Sunday, April 12, rededicated his diocese to the Divine Mercy. The rededication took place at a Sunday evening Mass at Our Lady of Good Counsel Church, Pearl City, Oahu. He first dedicated the diocese to the Divine Mercy on Sunday, April 23, 2006, at Star…Continue Reading

A Leaven In The World… Traditional Latin Mass Leading A Southern Baptist To Rome

By FR. KEVIN M. CUSICK “The Lord is risen, Alleluia!” A most blessed Easter season to you and your family. Only the Lord knows what He wants to accomplish with our obedience, and we must trust Him to see His will through to the end, while asking only for the grace that we remain faithful in doing His will as…Continue Reading

Did Jesus Christ Found A Church? If He Did, How Can She Be Identified?

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 2 In the previous article we saw that Jesus gave to the apostles the royal ministry, that is, the power to exercise authority over the people in His Church, to shepherd over, to rule over, and even to judge them. He also gave to the apostles the prophetic ministry, to be the teachers of…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Isidore Of Spain

By CAROLE BRESLIN Saints come from all walks of life. There are scholars and illiterate, rich and poor, men and women, religious and laity, kings and peasants. There are those who are more active in their faith and those who are more contemplative. Despite the widely varying backgrounds of the saints, they all have several things in common. First of…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Anselm

By CAROLE BRESLIN St. Anselm was born in France near the Swiss Alps around 1033. At the age of 15, he wished to enter religious life by joining a monastery. Sadly, his influential father was so against it that the monastery refused to accept him. This so discouraged the youth that he drowned his sorrows in worldly pursuits. He deeply…Continue Reading