Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Exposing the Lies in the New York Times

In an article posted yesterday, Doug pointed out that the New York Times, which to some is the most authoritative source of news in this country, has been engaging in a campaign to discredit the Holy Father. The story mostly involves a U.S. priest, Fr. Lawrence Murphy, who abused many boys at a Church-run School for the Deaf in Wisconsin. The Times has implicated the Holy Father in what it paints as a conspiracy to cover-up the case and to refuse to bring Fr. Murphy to trial.

Now Fr. Thomas Brundage, JCL, the priest who presided over the canonical criminal trial against Fr. Murphy, has written a rebuttal in which he points out serious factual errors in the Times account.

"With regard to the inaccurate reporting on behalf of the New York Times, the Associated Press, and those that utilized these resources, first of all, I was never contacted by any of these news agencies but they felt free to quote me. Almost all of my quotes are from a document that can be found online with the correspondence between the Holy See and the Archdiocese of Milwaukee. In an October 31, 1997 handwritten document, I am quoted as saying ‘odds are that this situation may very well be the most horrendous, number wise, and especially because these are physically challenged , vulnerable people.' Also quoted is this: 'Children were approached within the confessional where the question of circumcision began the solicitation.'

"The problem with these statements attributed to me is that they were handwritten. The documents were not written by me and do not resemble my handwriting. The syntax is similar to what I might have said but I have no idea who wrote these statements, yet I am credited as stating them. As a college freshman at the Marquette University School of Journalism, we were told to check, recheck, and triple check our quotes if necessary. I was never contacted by anyone on this document, written by an unknown source to me. Discerning truth takes time and it is apparent that the New York Times, the Associated Press and others did not take the time to get the facts correct.

"Additionally, in the documentation in a letter from Archbishop Weakland to then-secretary of the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith Archbishop Tarcisio Bertone on August 19, 1998, Archbishop Weakland stated that he had instructed me to abate the proceedings against Father Murphy. Father Murphy, however, died two days later and the fact is that on the day that Father Murphy died, he was still the defendant in a church criminal trial. No one seems to be aware of this. Had I been asked to abate this trial, I most certainly would have insisted that an appeal be made to the supreme court of the church, or Pope John Paul II if necessary. That process would have taken months if not longer.

"Second, with regard to the role of then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger (now Pope Benedict XVI), in this matter, I have no reason to believe that he was involved at all. Placing this matter at his doorstep is a huge leap of logic and information."

Read it all-- well worth your time.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Prophetic Words from a (sort of) Protestant Friend of Catholics

From the blog of Anglican priest Fr. John Hunwicke, published almost two months ago:

"Well, the news that the Pope is to visit Britain is hardly news, is it, and we still know absolutely nothing about the itinerary. A month or two ago, I speculated on what might happen if the Holy Father comes - as rumour had it he would to Oxford. . . .

"More speculations from me: the media are distinctly more overtly hostile now than they were during the last papal visit in 1982. For one thing, John Paul's lifetime opposition to varying forms of totalitarianism tended to restrain the secularists a little at a time when memories of Stalinism were a trifle fresher. No such considerations apply now. And they've got a real head of steam going. I don't suppose the Hitlerjugend question will be much good except for a few sneers and cartoons; unless the "investigative journalists" who are undoubtedly even now burrowing away can come up with something really new and dramatic in this field, to make very much of it would just cause yawns. But one possibility is that they will attempt to smear the Sovereign Pontiff by suggesting that he was involved in paedophile cover-ups. They might use their familiar weapons of suggestio falsi and suppressio veri by examining all the cases that might have passed over his desk, and then testing whether any of the characters involved might have crossed the pontiff's path in other contexts: so as to suggest that he protected a vast network of iffy cronies."

Read it all.

Media Attack on Church’s Authority

“The most dangerous storm is that which touches the heart of believers, shaking their faith and threatening their capacity to entrust themselves to God.” Pope Benedict

Since the passage of the health care bill, there have been many attacks against the Church and these assaults target the hearts of believers. It is difficult to follow and impossible to respond to all the acts of aggression the Church is now suffering.

The New York Times has been running a campaign against the pope attempting to link him to gravely sinful and evil acts carried out by members of the clergy against youth. While these acts and their cover-up are inherently evil, the attempt to link the pope to this scandal is a message stating that it is impossible to follow Christ today. We are in the midst of a profound crisis of truth and the media’s effort to associate Pope Benedict with this scandal is an attempt to reduce and damage the Church’s teaching authority. How can a person be entrusted with the gift of infallible teaching in faith and morals if he covers grave sin? This question alone is able to damage hearts. This attack on the Church is attack on Christ and has as its goal despair.

When the media engages in such sharp, coordinated criticism, it is normally a precursor to later political action. A similar movement took place preceding the latest war with Iraq. This media campaign may signal the beginning of organized movements against the Church in Europe and the United States as legislatures and courts try to force the Church to change and accept a politically-correct, relativistic position. This is part of a vast social engineering project meant to further isolate the Church from society and prevent those attracted to Christ from following Him.

See Traces Editorial “Greater Than Sin”

Archbishop Dolan - To Whom Shall We Go?

Fr Raymond de Souza - A Response to the NYT

Michael O’Brien
Media’s Attack

US Congressmen Defy Their Bishops and America Pays

It is truly tragic that health care “reform” got such strong support from Catholics in Congress. These “Catholics” openly defied their bishops, and now we have federally-subsidized abortion.

What these numbers suggest (2 out of 3 Catholics voted in favor of the President's version of health care reform) is that an entire generation of Catholics (the baby-boomers) seem to be utterly incapable of standing up for, or even following, the teachings and authority of the Church.

Moreover, party identity is now a much stronger determining factor in American politics than church identity (Catholic or non). The uniqueness that was once Catholic culture in America is now almost completely gone, having been swallowed up by the secular culture of our society. Long gone are the days when Catholics were feared or despised because of their loyalty to the pope. Over the course of the 20th century, Catholics have assimilated to the point where they no longer stand out as a separate voting block.

When we give up our Catholic identity in favor of acceptance and assimilation, and cease to be defiantly different, we allow the radical transformation of our society. The healthcare bill is but one, tangible example of that reality.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Health Care Observations

After being profoundly disturbed by the passage of the health care bill, I will offer several posts dealing with the reality the American people have chosen. With this move, we as a culture have embraced nihilism and chose to eliminate all authority separating the person from the national government. This may signal the beginning of a post-federal government in the United States as all local authority is eliminated and power is concentrated in the massive central governing machine. Our founders warned us specifically against this as it endangers freedom and ultimately our humanity.

While the administration and democratic leaders were busy attempting to mislead the faithful as to the Church's teaching, they were able to find willing religious who unfortunately collaborated in publicly orchestrated campaign to oppose the bishops to pass this legislation. Our Church leaders failed by allowing the manufactured confusion to deceive the faithful and did not recognize the political reality. The bishops seemed to act through fear and did not understand American culture or the media. Their silence against those who sought to confuse the faithful almost showed that our leadership was itself divided. We let the presidental administration deceive the Catholic faithful concerning Church teaching and did not sufficiently oppose this movement. We have to admit that our bishops failed us.

This is the first of several posts that will explore our failings that led to the passage of this bill. This is a sad day for the United States.

Medical Science Under Dictatorship

Dr Leo Alexander traces the origin of the concentration camp to the German medical community whose professional association advocated for the sterilization/euthanasia of mentally ill or physically disabled persons. This movement emerges and gains consensus among physicians before the Nazis come to power and, through this, the medical profession offers their consent to Hitler’s extermination plan. The consequences of this move are disturbing as the original orders to kill German citizens corresponded to the direct petitions of the medical community. This sets in motion the programs that will later be used to murder men and women in the millions and the Jews were specifically targeted. Perhaps the most important element of this paper was that Hitler’s extermination plan was set in place through the ‘compassion’ of the medical community. The end of the article examines the role of eugenics in American society leading up to World War II. If you only read one article on this page, please read “Medical Science Under Dictatorship” which was first published in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1949.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Please Pray for Life

Rep. Bart Stupak and his coalition of 12 pro-life Democrats are facing enormous pressure from the extreme left to pass a bill that would require taxpayers to fund the destruction of life. Apparently a few of Stupak's coalition have caved and are now willing to vote for the Senate's version of "healthcare" reform, which will not bar the use of federal funds for abortions.

Although some of the Democrats have tried to mislead the public and insisted that federal funds will not be used to fund abortions under the Senate bill, other Democratics have been more honest. Rep. Henry Waxman, Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee (which helped draft the latest bill) admitted to Rep. Stupak that "we want to pay for abortions."

Rep. Stupak's fragile coalition (and the country) desperately need our prayers!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Communion and Liberation Easter Poster

Another beautiful poster by Communion and Liberation to accompany us during this Lenten season.

"The Christian Good News responds positively to man's thirst for justice. What then is the justice of Christ? Above all, it is the justice that comes from grace, where it is not man who makes amends, heals himself and others. Conversion to Christ ultimately means this: to exit the illusion of self-sufficiency in order to discover and accept one's own need-the need of others and God, the need of His forgiveness and His friendship." Benedict XVI

"This is the point: God was moved by our nothingness. Not only that. God was moved by our betrayal, by our crude, forgetful, and treacherous poverty, by our pettiness. Like a father and mother who cry with emotion, a cry that is totally determined by the desire for the child's good, the child's destiny. It's compassion, pity, passion. He had pity on me." Luigi Giussani

To find out about Ways of the Cross on Good Friday in major US cities, please check the CL website.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Bishop Wuerl and the Crisis of Heroes

The DC Council voted to recognize same-sex marriage and created a crisis for Catholic Charities in the Archdiocese of Washington by forcing them to provide health benefits to homosexual couples. The Diocese could not extend this coverage and the Washington Post suggests that the Church had two options: it could expand benefits to include same-sex partnerships or it could eliminate spousal benefits. Both of these responses are problematic and unjust. Most Reverend Donald W. Wuerl has decided to comply with the law by eliminating benefits for the spouses of new employees in the Catholic Charities office. While this does allow the Church to continue to receive the $22 million in support from the city, this choice makes life more difficult for families who will work for Catholic Charities in the future. Although current employees may continue to receive spousal benefits, the actual cost of compliance will be felt by the families of future employees. The WP reports that currently less than 100 of the 850 employees use the spousal benefit, it is reasonable to expect that this number would grow as the nation’s economy worsens. Current spouses suffering future unemployment will not be able to gain coverage. The bishop’s solution is to make it more difficult for families who will come to work for Catholic Charities in the future.

Archbishop Wuerl, there is another option: you can refuse the city’s money. Twenty-two million dollars is not enough to sacrifice your conscience and make life more difficult for families that fall under your stewardship as pastor of the Archdiocese. Your willingness to receive this money is a sign of weakness. You have reacted to one injustice by choosing another. Our culture has few heroes; as a bishop you are called to a higher standard. You cannot be afraid to stand-out and oppose our civilization when it directly challenges you. You did not seek this battle, but you are called to confront it. Do not be afraid of the criticism you will receive and do not forget your responsibility to the faithful. The organization you command, Catholic Charities, does not exist only for those who receive its services; it also exists for its workers and their families. Today, you have chosen to hurt those who will work for Catholic Charities in the future. You have chosen an easy solution that will hurt families. Is this really the result you want? Will you let the DC Council harm your worker's families? You have another option.