05/05/2004: Andrew Greeley for Pope!!! Andrew Greeley for Pope!!!!
Rev. Andy has an excellent piece in the New York Daily News yesterday: Church is playing politics
There is currently a discussion among some Catholic bishops about refusing the sacraments to Democratic Sen. John Kerry for not opposing abortion, thus doing the Republican National Committee's work for it.Well said Father Greeley. If only the hierarchy were as Christian as you and most of the laity.
But the Pope and the national hierarchy also have condemned the death penalty and the war in Iraq. Are these bishops willing to deny the Eucharist to Catholic politicians who support the death penalty or the Iraq war? And if not, why not?
Moreover, will they tell Catholics that it is a sin to support an unjust war and to vote for a candidate who is responsible for such a war? And, again, if not, why not?
I can think of a couple of reasons. First, denouncing abortion will get you attention in the Vatican. Attacking the death penalty and the war are not likely to promote your career. Second, the rules are different for Democrats and Republicans. It is curious, to say the least, that 30 years after Roe vs. Wade, the issue of denying the sacraments would be raised during this election year.
Bishops also threaten political leaders who support civil unions between homosexuals. Given their tolerance for sexual abusers in the priesthood, that looks a bit hypocritical. I have never heard any of them criticize gay bashing. Followers of Jesus cannot tolerate hatred of anyone, especially since the church now teaches that the homosexual condition is not freely chosen.
I subscribe to the consistent ethic of life that the late Joseph Cardinal Bernardin enunciated some years ago. I believe abortion is wrong. I believe the death penalty is wrong. I believe preemptive war is wrong. I will take seriously the "pro-life" enthusiasts when they are ready to protest against and denounce the death penalty. I will take them seriously when they also denounce criminally unjust wars.
Len on 05.05.04 @ 01:16 PM CST