Sunday 25th January 2015

Home » Frontpage » Currently Reading:

While Warning Against Harsh Language… Phoenix Paper Portrays Bishop As An Anti-Semite

November 21, 2013 Frontpage No Comments

By DEXTER DUGGAN

PAYSON, Ariz. — The host for my overnight stay in this mile-high Arizona mountain town asked if I wanted to read the Phoenix New Times cover story about the Phoenix Catholic Diocese’s Bishop Thomas Olmsted. The October 24 issue of the free weekly was on the dinner table.
The article was typical of a liberal war against the Church, despite the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ compliantly liberal political stands. Only total surrender by the Church on morality, too, will win a ceasefire.
The weekly’s illustration rendered Olmsted in bright red vestments, clutching a crosier that had been rammed through a Star of David, impaling it. Atop Olmsted’s crosier was the depiction of an unborn baby. The story title: “Jews Against Hate? That’s So Gay!”
Although my newspaper-savvy host had begun his retirement in the mountains after doing media-relations work for municipal government, he said he didn’t find the point to the story and didn’t try to finish reading it. He said he occasionally picks up New Times when he drives down to Phoenix.
I used to be an avid reader of the libertarian-liberal New Times for its coverage of Arizona political corruption, but I lost interest in the tabloid after a new editor arrived some time ago.
This early November evening in Payson, we’d be cooking up a dinner of cubed chicken, rice, and apple turnovers after a green salad. It was a meal with a theme. Unlike the New Times on the dinner table, whose attack was a farrago topped by a mishmash, ladled with bile.
Just because an indigestible story idea may have sounded yummy to the writer’s Catholic-averse buddies one night didn’t mean it would be nourishing in the light of day.
If the article wanted to take bigotry off the menu, it set a strange plate. You are what you eat.
Asserting widespread prejudices held by young students, the article said one Phoenix first-grade girl “is one of many in our schools who hold unsettling thoughts.”
And who’s better than liberals to get into people’s thoughts, to correct them.
But when did Olmsted try to smash the Star of David? Don’t try to get ahead of the story.
The Anti-Defamation League, New Times said, has a program called “World of Difference” that trains “willing students as ambassadors against hate.”
“Hate” seems to encompass whatever the liberals define it as. Including the indisputable but also the politically incorrect.
We meet “Carmen,” who is quoted: “As a freshman, I was ignorant of so many things. One of these was bigotry. I never, before ADL, realized the amount of bigotry in my home, my school, my extracurricula [sic] — in short, I was blind. ADL opened my eyes.”
She gives examples of insulting word usage, like “Jew” and “faggot” and “retard,” and how she tried to remove these from a few people’s speech.
Although we’re told that harsh personal terms need to be banished, the article went right ahead to say the ADL program “aims to instill civility in juvenile savages” who are “mired in a teen-age wasteland.” Savages? Wasteland?
Moreover, the article indicated that definitions of prejudice were pliable: “Molly Brown remembered her eyes being opened when an exercise asked: ‘Is it okay having two gay parents?’”
Julie Smith, clerk of the public school board in the Phoenix suburb of Gilbert, told The Wanderer that “I would say yes,” that some of the “World of Difference” training promoted homosexuality.
“To me, this is not the acceptable role” for the liberal ADL to pursue with students, Smith said during a November 12 interview. Also, it’s “contrary to what we believe as Catholics.”
But when did Olmsted try to smash the Star of David? Be patient.
Smith was named in the New Times story as opposing the ADL’s political positions, although Smith told The Wanderer that the New Times writer didn’t speak with her. She suggested he’d watched live-streaming of school board meetings.
She said the article incorrectly said she opposes the ADL’s stand on separation of church and state. “Where he got the separation of church and state [claim] from, I find to be very odd.”
Earlier this year, Smith told The Wanderer, she was performing her job as clerk of the board by looking over vouchers for money allocated or spent. One line item was for $10,000 to the ADL.
This wasn’t an expense the current or previous Gilbert school board had authorized, she said.
“I was beyond surprised” that Gilbert would use taxpayer dollars for such a “highly political” group as the ADL, she said, adding later in the interview that ADL provides funds to groups advocating abortion, “gay marriage,” open borders, and gun control — stands contrary to the majority of people in Gilbert.
The $10,000 was to train the peer-counselor students, she said.
The New Times article said World of Difference-trained students said they don’t “teach liberal opinions.”
To her knowledge, Smith said, no program like World of Difference is offered in the Gilbert public schools now.
In her own life, Smith said, “I don’t separate people based on their sexual orientation . . . or their girth or the color of their eyes” or such factors, she said. However, she added, what the ADL training labels as “tolerance” “is probably contrary to my beliefs as a Catholic.”
For decades, liberal activists have been removing the influence of religion from public schools — schools that now, if one is to believe New Times, are seething with hatred and bigotry.
Asked about this image of widespread prejudice, Smith laughed at the overdrawn story. “I didn’t realize it was that bad out there,” she said ironically. Although “it’s not as if I go out walking around” looking for this, “I absolutely do not see that kind of thing,” she said.
But when did Olmsted try to smash the Star of David? Actually, he didn’t. The artist’s illustration just meant the Phoenix bishop is an anti-Semite. The article about banishing harsh terms portrays the bishop as anti-Jewish. And the reason for that?
New Times said that when the ADL decided to honor the Catholic diocese’s superintendent of education in 2009 at its fund-raising banquet, for her assistance with its peer-training program, Olmsted wrote a message for a free ad he was offered for the dinner program.
Olmsted’s message, New Times said, saluted the superintendent for her defense of “the dignity of all human life from conception until natural death.”
That sounds like mild enough words about human dignity. But New Times hit the ceiling. This is “a salvo,” “inappropriate,” “his provocation,” something that Olmsted needed to be talked out of. Instead, “the bishop retaliated” by canceling Catholic teachers’ participation in “Bearing Witness,” a program about what Jews believe and an examination of the Holocaust, the article claimed. The diocese also replaced “World of Difference” in Catholic schools with another program.
Asked by The Wanderer to comment, Phoenix diocesan spokesman Rob DeFrancesco said:
“The Diocese of Phoenix is grateful for the Anti-Defamation League’s work to educate students, educators, and parents on the harmful effects of bullying, and for the resources they provide aimed at preventing discrimination. More than 150 Catholic schoolteachers throughout the Diocese of Phoenix have been trained in the ‘A World of Difference’ and ‘Bearing Witness’ programs.
“In recent years, though,” DeFrancesco continued, “our Catholic schools have moved to a different model of training, utilizing the Discipline with Purpose program, which provides similar instruction that is more in line with the teachings and traditions of our Catholic faith.”
DeFrancesco didn’t reply to other questions The Wanderer raised, such as concerning New Times’ portrayal of Olmsted as an anti-Semite — even while New Times castigated judgmentalism.
The open season on Catholics couldn’t be plainer. Could a person even imagine such a horrible portrayal as, say, a rabbi stomping on a Catholic Eucharist to illustrate an article? That, properly, wouldn’t get beyond a story-planning meeting.
However, a large image of Olmsted impaling the Star of David not only is acceptable, but also published twice in color, on the cover page and on the first page of the article inside the tabloid.

A Misrepresentation

What actually may have angered New Times the most is the bishop’s opposition to abortion. Recall the unborn baby depicted atop his crosier in the illustration.
Having spent pages fuming over prejudice, the article recalled that Olmsted leads recitation of the rosary outside a local Planned Parenthood abortuary. The article then misrepresented the situation that led Olmsted to remove the Catholic accreditation of the local St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center after it performed an abortion in 2009 — the article mistakenly said 2010 — on a mother suffering pulmonary hypertension.
St. Joseph’s didn’t lose its status for saving the mother’s life, as New Times apparently would like readers to believe. Instead, staff performed a direct abortion, without making any effort to save the baby as well as the mother.
At a 2010 news conference announcing his decision, Olmsted said the baby “was healthy and there were no problems with the pregnancy; rather, the mother had a disease that needed to be treated. But instead of treating the disease, St. Joseph’s medical staff and ethics committee decided that the healthy 11-week-old baby should be directly killed.”
When news of the abortion broke, an official at the hospital said it wouldn’t rule out performing more abortions in the future.
At his 2010 news conference, Olmsted also announced that a lengthy review revealed that St. Joseph’s also was involved in other violations of Catholic medical ethics.
The October 24 New Times mentioned none of this while denouncing prejudice and bigotry.
Killing unborn babies is nowhere near as harsh as words.

Against Common Decency

In a November 7 interview with The Wanderer, Phoenix Catholic Larry Hillmert said he has read New Times for 25 years and it occasionally carries a story that no one else has, so “rarely you get a story with some value. It gives you the anti-Establishment view.”
However, he said the October 24 attack on Olmsted was hard to follow.
“You have this paper with philistine values writing for low-information younger readers, so anything they write doesn’t necessarily have to fit factual evidence, as long as it appeals to the emotional leanings of the readers,” Hillmert said.
The article “not only goes against common decency but against common sense as well,” he said.

Share Button

Comment on this Article:

Cardinal: No pro-life victory without reaching the marginalized

Washington D.C., Jan 22, 2015 / 03:01 am (CNA/EWTN News).- For the pro-life movement to truly succeed, it must fight not only abortion, but also the broader “throwaway culture” wherever life is being discarded, said Cardinal Sean O’Malley of Boston…Continue Reading

70 Churches Destroyed in ‘Anti-Charlie Hebdo’ Protests

The Christian community in Niger says it is in shock in the wake of weekend violence that has claimed the lives of 10 people and led to the destruction of dozens of places of worship and Christian homes. The protest,…Continue Reading

ITALY: Muslims smash, urinate on statue of Mary

A man was kneeling in prayer before the statue of the revered Madonna, with the photograph of a loved one in hand, in the small chapel of St. Barnabas in Perugia (Italy), when he was attacked by five “immigrants.” The…Continue Reading

At new in-flight press conference Francis says good Catholics are not required ‘to be like rabbits’

Catholics fail to practise “responsible parenthood” when they have too many children, Pope Francis has said during an in-flight press conference on the way home from Manila. He also denounced the teaching of “gender theory” in schools, likening it to…Continue Reading

CRUX’s “spirituality columnist” is “devastated” the Pope upholds Catholic teaching

Margery Eagan appears to be angling for a job as editor of National “Catholic” Reporter. Or perhaps spokesman for the LCWR: The news that Pope Francis has strongly defended the Church’s ban on artificial birth control left me, in a word, devastated. Goodness. Even…Continue Reading

St. Paul-Mpls. archdiocese declares bankruptcy in response to abuse lawsuits

The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Friday, saying it cannot meet its financial obligations from an unprecedented wave of clergy sex abuse lawsuits. The move freezes lawsuits against the church, protecting the archdiocese…Continue Reading

Pope Francis strongly defends church teaching against contraception

Pope Francis issued his strongest defense yet of church teaching opposing artificial contraception on Friday, using a rally in Asia’s largest Catholic nation to urge families to be “sanctuaries of respect for life.” Francis also denounced the corruption that has plagued…Continue Reading

Bella Dodd, who rejected Communism in favour of faith, is a lesson for young jihadis

Her story shows how easily the best human impulses can be twisted to evil Having blogged last week about John Beaumont’s book, The Mississippi Flows Into The Tiber, with all the extraordinary, uplifting and grace-filled stories of conversion that it…Continue Reading

Fox News’ Bret Baier, actor Gary Sinise cancel on Catholic group after gay gripes

FOX News Channel’s chief political anchor, Bret Baier, has shown himself to have a thinner skin than might be guessed from his on-air persona.  Baier has caved in to pressure from the homosexual activist group ‘Good as You’ to back…Continue Reading

Federal judge strikes down South Dakota’s gay marriage ban

SIOUX FALLS – A federal judge has declared South Dakota’s same-sex marriage ban unconstitutional, but has stayed the decision pending appeal. U.S. District Judge Karen Schreier on Monday issued a summary judgment in favor of the six couples who filed…Continue Reading

Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke on the Catholic “Man-crisis” and what to do about it

Recently, I had the great honor to have an audience with His Eminence Cardinal Raymond Leo Burke to discuss the state of Catholic men in the United States. Here is the full transcript: Matthew James Christoff of the New Emangelization Project:…Continue Reading

Catholic laypeople must have maturity to speak up about bad things happening at highest levels in Church

This morning (Dec. 28), I spoke during Mass in the parish church of St Theresa of the Child Jesus, in north west London, about the Extraordinary Synod on the Family in Rome last October. Interestingly, my talk was very well…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 Angelus: Jesus Wanted United Christians

(Vatican Radio) On Sunday and before the Angelus, the Pope recalled the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity and its theme, “Give me a drink”, the sentence uttered by Jesus to the Samaritan woman. He told the faithful gathered that the “desire for unity” of the disciples of Jesus is part of our “thirst not only material for water, but…Continue Reading

Pope Francis: Religious who pray for Christian unity an “invisible monastery”

(Vatican Radio) The vital role that men and women religious of different Christian Churches play in the ecumenical journey was at the heart of Pope Francis’s meeting on Saturday with participants in a conference on consecrated life and the search for Christian Unity. The three day meeting, which concludes on Sunday, comes in the context of both this Week of…Continue Reading

Pope Francis: Thursday Mass in Santa Marta

pope713

(Vatican Radio) The most important thing is not the grace of a physical healing, but the fact that Jesus saves us and intercedes for us: this was the focus of Pope Francis’ remarks following the readings of the day at Mass on Thursday morning in the chapel of the Santa Marta residence in the Vatican. Commenting on the Gospel of…Continue Reading

Pope Francis Blesses The Lambs On The Feast Of St. Agnes

lambs

(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis marked the Feast of St. Agnes with a centuries-old rite: the blessing of the lambs, from whose wool the Pallium will be made. As per tradition, the small lambs, traditionally less than a year old, were carried to the Casa Santa Marta, where the Pope blessed them in the atrium, in baskets. Come summer these same…Continue Reading

“I Can’t Breathe”… The Plight Of The Preborn

By REY FLORES (Editor’s Note: This article is reprinted from www.all.org, the website of American Life League. All rights reserved.) + + + This past year has seen race relations decline as a result of a well-orchestrated attempt by a corrupt government that wants to divide us at all costs. And the propaganda peddlers known…Continue Reading

“Flee Immorality,” Church Unity, & Right To Life March

By JOHN F. KIPPLEY (Editor’s Note: John F. Kippley is the author of Sex and the Marriage Covenant: A Basis for Morality and other books and articles. With his wife Sheila, he is a coauthor of Natural Family Planning: The Complete Approach and cofounder of NFP International. This commentary appeared on his January 18 blog…Continue Reading

A Book Review . . . Christianity’s Gift To The World

By JUDE DOUGHERTY Siedentop, Larry. Inventing the Individual: The Origins of Western Liberalism. Cambridge, MA, Harvard University Press, 2014. Pp. viii + 434. Does it still make sense to still talk about the West in what some call a “post-Christian world”? Larry Siedentop, emeritus fellow of Keble College, Oxford, asks, “Can the West still be…Continue Reading

Author And Monk Thomas Merton Turns 100

By RAY CAVANAUGH The most famous Trappist monk of the 20th century was not originally a Catholic. Thomas Merton, born 100 years ago this January 31, was baptized first in the Church of England. Both of his parents were artists: His father was from New Zealand and his mother was from the U.S. Merton was…Continue Reading

Culture Of Life 101 . . . “Abortifacient Brief: Abortion Pill Reversals”

By BRIAN CLOWES (Editor’s Note: Brian Clowes has been director of research and training at Human Life International since 1995. For an electronic copy of this article with footnotes, contact him at bclowes@hli.org.) + + + The scientific name of the abortion pill RU 486 is mifepristone, which is sold under the brand names Mifegyn,…Continue Reading

Advertisement

Our Catholic Faith (Section B of print edition)

Mary’s Perpetual Virginity . . . The Faith Of The Early Christians

By RAYMOND DE SOUZA, KM Part 6 What did the Early Christians believe about the Catholic doctrine on the perpetual virginity of the Mother of Jesus? Those men, women, and children who sacrificed everything for the true faith — even their very own lives? They were imprisoned, tortured, murdered. Some were burned alive, racked, beheaded. Others were crucified, flayed alive,…Continue Reading

I Believe — We Believe

By DON FIER Over the past three weeks of this series on the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC), we have been reflectively examining the characteristics of the indescribably wonderful gift of faith that Almighty God has so generously availed mankind. As so adeptly summarized in the Compendium of the CCC, we know that faith is “the supernatural virtue which…Continue Reading

Catholic Replies

Q. I remember a nun telling us back in Catholic school that after God ejected Adam and Eve from the Garden of Eden, He promised that He would eventually send them a Messiah. Where is that in the Bible? — M.R., Indiana. A. In chapter 3 of the Book of Genesis. Actually, the promise was made before God expelled our…Continue Reading

Joy And Fulfillment

By FR. ROBERT ALTIER Fourth Sunday In Ordinary Time (YR B) Readings: Deut. 18:15-20 1 Cor. 7:32-35 Mark 1:21-28 In the first reading today God makes a promise and a command. He promises that He will raise up for the people a Prophet like Moses. At the same time, He requires that the people will listen to that Prophet because…Continue Reading

Cardinal Ranjith’s Address To Pope . . . We Need Your Prayers, As Well As Your Guidance

(Editor’s Note: Here is the text of a speech given the morning of January 14 by Malcolm Cardinal Ranjith, archbishop of Colombo, in gratitude to the Holy Father. He addressed these words at the end of the Mass of Canonization of St. Joseph Vaz that Pope Francis celebrated. He was interrupted by applause several times. See page 1 of this…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Anthony Of Egypt, Abbot

By CAROLE BRESLIN While we can understand that God is infinite, it is difficult to comprehend the stretch of such infinity. Certainly our finite minds cannot begin to comprehend it. Hence, since our minds our finite, the more we have cluttering our minds with worldly affairs such as possessions, relationships, and activities, the less time and room we have in…Continue Reading

Catholic Heroes . . . St. Stephen, Protomartyr

By CAROLE BRESLIN In the popular Christmas carol, The Twelve Days of Christmas, a different gift is given for each of the twelve days of Christmas. This celebration of twelve days begins with December 26, the Feast of St. Stephen, and ends with the Epiphany, traditionally celebrated on January 6. The Catholic Church celebrates the Christmas octave, eight days of…Continue Reading