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Hypocrites!

November 11, 2017 Frontpage No Comments

By CHRISTOPHER MANION

“Hypocrites!” That’s what Bishop Mark Seitz called Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton last summer when Paxton led a group of officials defending the Constitution. Meanwhile the bishop admitted that he had never publicly corrected, much less condemned, Catholic Cong. Beto O’Rourke, his 100 percent pro-abortion U.S. representative.
Well. While El Paso’s petulant prelate maintains his right to remain silent, let’s take a look at what his alleged “hypocrite,” Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, has been up to.
Last week, Paxton went into federal court to defend SB 8, a Texas law prohibiting “dismemberment abortion.”
“I will always fight to protect the basic human rights and dignity of the unborn,” Attorney General Ken Paxton told the Population Research Institute.
“The Texas Legislature, through the passage of Senate Bill 8, took reasonable steps to prohibit the live dismemberment of babies still in the womb, a brutal, gruesome and inhumane procedure that involves an abortionist tearing a fully formed child apart limb by limb,” Paxton said. “It’s time the American people fully understand the horrific practices occurring in our country.”
While Attorney General Paxton defends the right to life of preborn Texans in federal court, Bishop Seitz has never apologized for calling him a “Pharisee” and a “hypocrite” for his stand on DREAMers. And Bishop Seitz is not alone.
Throughout Texas and throughout the country, countless Catholic bishops are represented in the Senate and the House of Representatives by 100 percent pro-abortion politicians. Yet the vast majority of these bishops have seldom if ever uttered a public word of disapproval of those manifestly grave scandals, much less do their duty under canon law and publicly condemn them.
Of course, virtually all our bishops receive federal taxpayer funding for their secular welfare agencies, and often publicly lavish praise on these same pro-abortion officials at ceremonies staged to celebrate the generosity of the government that gives them hundreds of millions a year, rather than the taxpayer from whom the money was taken.
Meanwhile, while praising the generous government, prelates continue to complain about the stingy people in the pews, as New York’s Timothy Cardinal Dolan did a year ago in a letter to all his pastors.
One wonders. Shouldn’t we tell them that we “gave at the office”?

Rebukes For the Faithful,
Not For Dissenters

These days, while bishops exhibit fawning affection for their federal paymasters, they are quick on the draw when decrying motes in the eye of faithful laity and priests.
On July 31, the Feast of St. Ignatius of Loyola, Capuchin Fr. Thomas Weinandy, one-time chief of staff for the U.S. Bishops’ Committee on Doctrine and a member of the Vatican’s International Theological Commission, wrote to the Holy Father. In his letter, he warned the Pope of the “unease” and “chronic confusion” among the faithful caused by his “seemingly intentional lack of clarity,” especially in his apostolic exhortation Amoris Laetitia. The Pope is fomenting a studied ambiguity which “risks sinning against the Holy Spirit,” Fr. Weinandy wrote.
Speaking in defense of millions of the faithful, Fr. Weinandy told the Holy Father that “you seem to censor and even mock those who interpret Chapter 8 of Amoris Laetitia in accord with Church tradition as Pharisaic stone-throwers who embody a merciless rigorism. This kind of calumny is alien to the nature of the Petrine ministry.”
Fr. Weinandy also criticized the Pope’s “choice of some bishops, men who seem not merely open to those who hold views counter to Christian belief but who support and even defend them. What scandalizes believers, and even some fellow bishops,” he continued, “is not only your having appointed such men to be shepherds of the Church, but that you also seem silent in the face of their teaching and pastoral practice.”
Having received no reply from Pope Francis, Fr. Weinandy released his letter publicly last week. Within a day, he was gone, axed by USCCB bishops, many of whom have complaisantly celebrated pro-abortion Catholic politicians for decades.
In the uproar that followed Fr. Weinandy’s firing, Daniel Cardinal DiNardo, USCCB president, issued a curious “explanation.” Affirming the unity of U.S. bishops with Pope Francis, he added that “Christian charity needs to be exercised by all involved. In saying this, we all must acknowledge that legitimate differences exist, and that it is the work of the Church, the entire body of Christ, to work towards an ever-growing understanding of God’s truth.”
“By all involved”? Whom did Cardinal DiNardo have in mind here? Fr. Weinandy? Or Pope Francis?
We’re not sure — yet. After all, the concerns articulated in Fr. Weinandy’s letter mirror those of the four cardinals who last year made public their grave concerns about the same exhortation in their Dubia. Their invitation to “dialogue” hit the Vatican’s stone wall because, you see, that “dialogue” door swings only one way: to the exit labeled “Dissent.”
Our beloved bishops have no doubt taken note of what we might delicately describe as Pope Francis’ pastoral petulance. Indeed, one might observe that, in publicly rebuking Fr. Weinandy, the bishops’ conference was merely facing reality: Had their rebuke not been forthcoming, there are a thousand ways that the Vatican clique surrounding Pope Francis could have reacted — all of them detrimental to the future careers of certain bishops.

Battle Lines Being Drawn…

All of this will come to a head at the annual fall meeting of the USCCB on November 13-14 in Baltimore, where bishops will elect certain conference leaders. The election of the new chairman of Committee on Pro-Life Activities will be particularly critical. The two nominees for the position are Blase Cardinal Cupich of Chicago and Archbishop Joseph Naumann of Kansas City, Kans.
According to sources close to the bishops, it would be difficult to find a starker contrast.
Archbishop Naumann ended diocesan ties to the Girl Scouts of America because it was pro-abortion. He and other Kansan bishops produced a video prior to the 2016 elections to be shown in all parishes that carried a statement to keep “the human rights catastrophe” of abortion “at the forefront of their minds when voting” as a “moral obligation” for Catholics.
In 2008, after meeting with her privately, Archbishop Naumann publicly directed pro-abortion zealot Kathleen Sebelius, then secretary of Health and Human Services, not to present herself for Holy Communion until she publicly renounced her abortion advocacy.
In 2010, Archbishop Naumann publicly rebuked Sr. Carol Keehan and the Catholic Health Association for supporting Obama’s Affordable Care Act that includes taxpayer funding for abortions and contraceptive drugs and devices.
Archbishop Naumann was also one of the few bishops who publicly criticized the “unlimited tax-funded abortions up to and including birth” position of Catholic 2016 vice-presidential nominee, Tim Kaine.
Cardinal Cupich’s disdain for pro-lifers goes back to his days as the young bishop of Rapid City. Under his leadership, the “Pro-Life Committee” in the Rapid City diocese became the “Social Justice Committee.”
When he became bishop of Spokane, he effectively forbade his priests and seminarians to participate in the 40 Days for Life vigils, which emphasize prayer and fasting to end abortion.
At the 2015 USCCB annual meeting, Archbishop Cupich joined Robert McElroy, bishop of San Diego, urging that poverty and the environment be given equal attention to opposing abortion. In Chicago, he has welcomed sodomites, insisting that the perverted terms, “gay and lesbian, LGBT . . . should be respected.”
In responding to the Texas massacre of Christians in Sutherland Springs, Cardinal Cupich didn’t mention the atheist shooter, but called for “comprehensive national gun control” and national health care. Our friends at Ignatius Insight observe that his comments contained “no mention of evil, sin, Jesus Christ, God, eternal hope (or even mercy).”
And in order to practice Pope Francis’ version of discernment, the cardinal insists that “we be prepared to let go of cherished beliefs and long-held biases.”
Which biases? Against adultery? Sodomy? Abortion? If Cardinal Cupich wins this election, the answer will surely be quickly forthcoming.
Indeed, Cardinal Dolan, who now chairs the bishops’ pro-life committee, has already opened the door to further politicization. A year ago, he used his homily at the Mass before the annual March for Life to link the pro-life cause to support for amnesty for illegal aliens and sanctuary cities.
The USCCB has been so hostile to President Trump, and so ungrateful for his numerous pro-life initiatives countering the Obama-Clinton Culture of Death, that anything is possible in Baltimore. Our bishops have already rebuked Fr. Weinandy the truth-teller. What’s next? In Baltimore, they might well give us the answer.

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