Dolan: “Let down, disappointed and disturbed” over Obama HHS ruling

He made the remarks last night:

On the even of his pilgrimage to the Holy Land, Archbishop Timothy Dolan ripped President Obama for birth control policies he contends run counter to Catholic teachings.

Soon-to-be elevated to cardinal by Pope Benedict, Dolan said Wednesday night that the White House was wrong to require the Catholic Church to provide employees with health insurance that includes contraception coverage.

Dolan said Obama called Friday morning to say he has no plans to change the policy, which is part of the President’s national health care reform.

“You bet we got a disagreement,” Dolan said following a lecture at Fordham University Law School at Lincoln Center.

“It’s not about contraception. It’s about the right of conscience,” he told reporters.

“The government doesn’t have the right to butt into the internal governance and teachings of the church,” Dolan said. “This is not a Catholic issue, it’s an American issue. We’re strong on this issue of conscience, and that’s what’s at stake here.”

Dolan said he had been hopeful Obama would change his mind about the policy after he paid a recent visit to the Oval Office.

But on Friday, Obama made it clear he’s not budging, Dolan said. Experts predict an epic court battle.

“While I appreciate his courtesy Friday morning to give me a call with the somber news, I had to tell him I was terribly let down, disappointed and disturbed.”

There was no immediate response from the White House.

UPDATE: A commenter alerted me to this item from yesterday:

National Organization for Women President Terry O’Neill says that it is “poppycock” for America’s Roman Catholic bishops to say that Catholic institutions have a conscience.

“The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ claims that institutions can have consciences–that’s poppycock,” said O’Neill.

“[F]or a bunch of men who, forgive me, don’t get pregnant and who refuse to allow women into their own ranks of leadership, to presume to say that they can make a thing that has a conscience that trumps the conscience of an individual woman is simply laughable, but in a sad way,” she said.

Comments

  1. Maybe, just maybe this will be the wake-up call that Catholics needed to understand just how anti-life this President really is. With 64 million Catholic voters we need to make our voices heard. I think Bishop Dolan is showing great leadership in particular taking the tact that this is an attack on an American core value-our individual freedoms and our right to practice our faith. The freedom of individual conscience is under major attack by the very government that is supposed to be of, for and by the people. Even if you are pro-choice, you need to honest ly ask yourself if the government. Takes away your right here to practice your faith, to live out your conscience, what will they do next? This is how totalitarian states started. Bishop Dolan is right on target-please support him.

  2. Mike Andrews says:

    Thanks, Father Jenkins! Thanks, Sr. Carol Keehan and the Catholic Healthcare Association! Thanks, E. J. Dionne Jr. and the editors of Commonweal!

    You and other prominent Catholics and Catholic organizations of stature have given President Obama ample cover in the guise of Catholicity to subvert and ultimately eliminate freedoms of conscience and religious faith not only for Catholics but now for people of all religions. These freedoms, founded firmly on the First Amendment, aren’t just freedoms for the Church to teach and think but to act.

    Just what have you done? Account for your actions to the millions of Catholics whom you assured would not be troubled with the new healthcare law.

  3. vox borealis says:

    This is so clearly an election ploy. Obama wants to excite his far left base by taking on the church and handing out free condoms, which everyone knows solves every problem in society, right? RIGHT? And it will end up in the courts, after the election. Even if the HHS ruling is eventually struck down, it won’t matter for the election.

    And if Obama and his cronies manage to win in the courts, he’ll have succeeded is all but eliminating religious conscience as a factor in the public sphere. Gravy!

    Oh yeah, plus we tax payers–including those opposed to the HHS ruling—get to foot the bill for the trial, as *we* pay for the government’s lawyers. A trial that will cost the Church millions. Extra gravy!

  4. Henry Karlson says:

    I would like to ask where people were when presidents before Obama consistently ignored the rights of conscience, such as objection to the Iraq War? It is not something new — all one has to do is ask the JW’s.

    I fear the problem is the increased political rhetoric by all sides is making it so that this happens. There are many other ways to deal with this than to make it all about Obama. It isn’t. It’s a long-established problem within the US long before Obama and it is just coming out now. And I do fear, often with an exaggerated concern for something like remote material cooperation when more formal cooperation with evil (torture, unjust war, et.) hardly got a mention (let alone when states already require this, we hardly hear any rhetoric against them).

  5. Henry is correct. The outrage over this (and for the record, I’m dismayed by this, but not surprised) seems rather politically convenient. The truth is that while abortion may be seen as a more heinous crime than military adventurism, there is a profound (but mostly unrecognized) difference between being at the top of the chain of command where people are directly following orders to kill unjustly and taking an open hands-off policy that infuriates those who would like to see morals legislated as tightly as they were in first grade.

    But really, there’s no way I’m likelier to vote for Mitton Gingtorum in November.

  6. Henry and Todd, unlike the current issue, there are “just wars.” IMO, WWII was the last one, but that’s just my opinion. When presidents declare war, we don’t know all the facts, including the confidential intelligence. That said, JPII did ask Bush not to go to war, and there certainly were plenty who agreeed with JPII, even non Catholics.

    But here’s the thing guys. That was then, this is NOW. Regardless of who got it right with the wars, any educated Catholic or informed American KNOWS that this is wrong, as it’s both a freedom issue and rock solid Catholic Issue. When any American loses the right to his or her conscience, it’s more than big deal.

    We can’t change the war history, but we can most certainly, with American Catholics alone, change and influence the right of conscience/American Freedom Issue. To muddy the waters with the “what could have been or not been” is pointless at this point; new issue, different president.

  7. Henry Karlson says:

    Yes, there are just wars. But when it is not just then it is a grave evil. That is the thing. And the thing is, the conscience of the soldier should be freed to say “this is unjust, my church says it is unjust” and they should not be penalized for it. This continues to be an issue, whether or not there is war in Iraq. It is still an issue of conscience. But hey, I guess conscience clauses for direct action in unjust evil is less important than clauses for remote material cooperation…

    And the fact that there are many areas of conscience, not just remote material cooperation with condoms, which are neglected makes one wonder. Why not the rhetoric in the past? Why no discussion of how “anti-Catholic” lack of conscience objection for other concerns? Again, if we really want to affect change, let’s be honest and across the board. I will end by quoting one bishop (http://www.catholicpeacefellowship.org/nextpage.asp?m=2123) :

    “If the Church does not protect its youth from the spiritual, moral, psychological, emotional and physical destruction of being forced to kill unjustly – in other words, being forced to commit murder – who will protect them? What is left of the just-war Catholic adolescent’s conscience, soul, psyche, emotional structure, etc., if he or she is forced into the situation of being legally ordered to kill another human being (whose killing the Catholic boy or girl believes to be unjust) when such a Catholic boy or girl has no legal recourse by which to say no? Prison, or desertion, or fleeing to another country, or martyrdom, etc., are, of course, options. In fact, they are the only options presently available under U.S. law for Catholic youth who have been formed in and have accepted Catholic just-war theory as a standard of conscience.”

  8. Since it’s 2012, it’s hardly pointless. Except for Ron Paul, every one of the president’s potential major party opponent has favored, to some degree, a direct grave evil. I don’t believe that a Catholic, in good conscience, can vote for a warmonger. I object that the thoughtful, well-considered case against war has been ignored by every president in the last generation, especially Republicans.

    And there are two significant possibilities here to consider:
    - We set up our own national health insurance system.
    - We persuade people to be pro-life rather than legislate it for them.

  9. “We persuade people to be pro-life rather than legislate it for them.”

    I think the Popes and Church leaders have been attempting that for 40 years. It hasn’t worked because of pick and choose Catholicism. The issue at hand has nothing to do with “just war”. Stick to the issue of contraception, sterilization and abortifacients.

  10. With regard to the ensuing debate above–I’m slightly sympathetic, but there is the reality that there are straws that break the camel’s back. I think a lot of Catholics, including this pacifist, are saying “enough”.

    I look forward to the epic Supreme Court case. I genuinely do; it will tell us where we stand as Catholics in this country.

  11. The thing that I respectfully do not understand about this is the sense of “disappointment” that Catholic prelates keep expressing. Obama has been clear about his anti-life agenda since before he was elected. He has filled appointed positions with people who are radically pro-abortion and anti-traditional marriage. When someone acts according to his clearly and repeatedly stated beliefs, it makes no sense to be disappointed in him. I am not the least bit disappointed in Obama; he has behaved exactly as I expected him to behave.

  12. Henry Karlson says:

    Yes, stick only to “conservative talking points,” instead of the full range of evils before us, and all the conscience objections which have so far been neglected!

  13. Henry Karlson says:

    And, more importantly, worry about remote material cooperation with even more than formal cooperation with evil (and ignore the different level of evils involved, where unjust wars certainly are greater evils than using condoms).

    I think his grace, Bishop Botean is quite right: once direct, formal cooperation with evil is expected and one can’t object, we have already lost the battle; why should you be surprised with secondary evils? We need to focus on the universal truth, not just sexual politics.

  14. Obama is a post-American, post-Christian ogre. Lies to the face of Dolan a month ago, then calls him and tells him to jump in a lake. Yes, post-American. There I said it. He can’t resist his anti-American dictatorial impulse to run everything by himself, vowing to “act on his own” more and more, which no president has ever done with perhaps the exception of Lincoln during the Civil War.

  15. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr. Henry Karlson:

    “the conscience of the soldier should be freed to say “this is unjust, my church says it is unjust” and they should not be penalized for it”

    The U.S. Armed Forces are manned by volunteers. The actual fighting is done (depending on which expert you consult) by about 5% to 15% of the total force. All fighters have to volunteer at least a second time (some 3,4 or 5-times for further training) and undergo some very unpleasant training (from which they can withdraw at any time) before they are assigned to a fighting unit. On notification of deployment to a combat zone a fighting Officer objector may simply resign his commission to prevent deployment. An fighting Enlisted objector may either request objector status or to be reassigned to either a support or service unit.

    “if he or she is forced into the situation of being legally ordered to kill another human being (whose killing the Catholic boy or girl believes to be unjust) when such a Catholic boy or girl has no legal recourse by which to say no”

    Members of the U.S. Armed Forces are prohibited by regulation and law from participating in war crimes and are required to report said crimes if they have knowledge of them even if they did not participate in them.

    “such a Catholic boy or girl has no legal recourse by which to say no?”

    All U.S. Service Members are rigorously trained in their obligations under the Geneva Conventions. Said Conventions and Church Just War Teachings are remarkably compatible. U.S. Service Members are required to disobey any order contrary to the Conventions. No U.S Service Member has ever stood Court Martial for complying with the Conventions.

    “they are the only options presently available under U.S. law for Catholic youth who have been formed in and have accepted Catholic just-war theory as a standard of conscience”

    The good Bishop is utterly ignorant of reality. This is inexcusable. There are many moral problems (no Sacraments, pornography, compliance with artificial contraception and abortion, Solider-mothers forced to leave their young children, prostitution, etc) facing a follower of Jesus Christ in the U.S. or any Armed Forces. For some reason the Catholic peace activists (with the exception of the SOG Dorothy Day)always ignore the real dangers to our soldiers’ immortal souls.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  16. Richard W Comerford says:

    “The truth is that while abortion may be seen as a more heinous crime than military adventurism”

    “may be seen”??? There are about 4,000 American children murdered in their mothers’ wombs every day in the USA. Minority children are disproportionately targeted. This is mass murder on an industrial scale that dwarfs anything Hitler or Stalin did.

    “there is a profound (but mostly unrecognized) difference between being at the top of the chain of command where people are directly following orders to kill unjustly”

    Unjust killings by U.S. Soldiers are prohibited by the Geneva Convention, federal statute, DOD Directives & Service Regulations. Unjust killings by U.S. Civil Servants are not prohibited by law. The President is at the top of Both the Civil & Military chain of commands.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  17. We were right here along with other Right to Life people protesting against these policies.

  18. You have your moral imperatives confused. While “military adventurism” may be wrong, the killing of innocent children in the mother’s womb is not comparable in the least to what you propose.

  19. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr. Henry Karlson:

    “Yes, stick only to “conservative talking points”.”

    “contraception, sterilization and abortifacients” are not “conservative talking points” but intrinsic evils.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  20. Whatever our liberal friends may say or propose the Obama administration has launched a frontal attack on Freedom or Religion by making having the state make religious organizations and religious people violate their consciences. The Obama administration is trying to demolish our First Amendment Rights.

  21. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr Henry Karlson:

    “where unjust wars certainly are greater evils than using condoms”

    And you know this how?

    “We need to focus on the universal truth, not just sexual politics.”

    It is an universal truth that artificial contraception is an intrinsic evil.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  22. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr. Ironic Catholic:

    “I think a lot of Catholics, including this pacifist”

    A Catholic may, under certain circumstances, have not only the right but the duty to defend the weak & innocent from an armed aggressor.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  23. Henry Karlson says:

    So, because people are volunteers to the military, they loose rights to oppose unjust wars? That doesn’t make sense. Why should they be told, once they become a soldier, moral objection to orders is no longer allowed? The whole point is to free them so they can be a soldier, defend their nation, but not be forced to do so in ways which destroy their conscience (and demand them ignoring it). The fact that they are being asked to engage in actions of direct evil and people find it ok because it is volunteer demonstrates the serious problem. If you can demand direct, formal cooperation with evil because someone “volunteered” for something which is not, in itself, evil, again, all bets are off.

    You point out they don’t have to obey “war crimes.” But who determines such “war crimes” and when? Again, they are not free to object to direct, formal cooperation with unjust wars. The state says “it’s not a war crime,” so there goes that objection.

    There are indeed a great number of moral problems affecting our soldiers. The bishop is not naive nor ignorant of this. The fact is, however, the “right to conscience objection” is already denied due to “employment.” That’s the point. And this for direct work with evil. We are a society must first see the full spectrum of the evil before us, instead of looking at it politically. As long as I see all this used for GOP talking points, ignoring all other concerns, I smell a rat….

  24. Henry Karlson says:

    Yes, where does one get then notion that murdering someone is a great evil than using a condom.. I wonder..

    And your confusion about what intrinsic evil entails continues to be the basic mistake we see in our society.

    1) Gravity of evil is not the same thing as whether or not it is an intrinsic evil. A lie is an intrinsic evil, but often very little gravity.

    2) Formal cooperation is more direct and has more direct guilt than remote material cooperation. When I see people are more concerned about remote material cooperation (of only some kinds, ignoring other kinds — I mean, how many people give up on their health care based upon the policies their insurance companies give out?) than direct, or act as if they are the same thing (ie., remote material cooperation with giving out condoms is the same thing as using them!), I once again wonder where this is coming from. Usually, it’s politics. I smell a rat once again.

  25. Henry Karlson says:

    The question of funding them through remote material cooperation is not the same thing as the question of one using them oneself.

  26. Henry Karlson says:

    This is the kind of non-Christian response which is making the situation worse and spiral out of control.

  27. Democrat party stalwarts NOW (National Organization of Women) has weighed in on the subject.

    “National Organization for Women President Terry O’Neill says that it is “poppycock” for America’s Roman Catholic bishops to say that Catholic institutions have a conscience.

    “The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ claims that institutions can have consciences–that’s poppycock,” said O’Neill.

    “[F]or a bunch of men who, forgive me, don’t get pregnant and who refuse to allow women into their own ranks of leadership, to presume to say that they can make a thing that has a conscience that trumps the conscience of an individual woman is simply laughable, but in a sad way,” she said.”

    2008 – “the National Organization for Women Political Action Committee (NOW PAC) proudly endorses Sen. Barack Obama for President of the United States.”

    Keep voting Democrat.

  28. No, you’re wrong. What’s happening is that individual citizens, on a personal level, are making abortion choices one at a time. You and I largely have no effect on that. The president, too.

    The president does, as the commander-in-chief, bear direct responsibility for killing done by the American military. No single person has killed 55 million or more fetuses. But many millions of women have made one or two, or rarely, more.

    What many anti-abortion activists don’t get, or don’t want to realize is the lack of control. They can’t persuade. Many resort to caricature, name-calling, and other juvenile methods of making their opinion known.

    Conservative Catholics don’t like the president, don’t want him to get reelected, prefer his opponents. Yawn. So what? Same as yesterday. Same as tomorrow.

  29. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr Henry Karlson:

    “So, because people are volunteers to the military, they loose rights to oppose unjust wars?”

    Quite the opposite. As one commentator put it “A volunteer can de-volunteer” anytime he wants to. In terms of objecting this is a much better situation than with conscription.

    “Why should they be told, once they become a soldier, moral objection to orders is no longer allowed?”

    Again quite the opposite. U.S. soldiers are drilled, literally drilled, in their obligation under the several Geneva Conventions which in large part mirror Church teachings regarding war.

    “The fact that they are being asked to engage in actions of direct evil”

    True. Artificial contraception, abortion, pornography & now sodomy are not covered by the several Geneva Conventions and U.S. soldiers are not only allowed but encouraged to participate in these intrinsic evils.

    “If you can demand direct, formal cooperation with evil because someone “volunteered” for something which is not, in itself, evil, again, all bets are off”

    A U.S. soldiers by treaty, law & regulation may not engage in post birth murder, rape or looting; but may engage in abortion, artificial contraception, pornography & sodomy.

    “You point out they don’t have to obey “war crimes.” But who determines such “war crimes” and when?”

    Again, as mentioned above, the Geneva Conventions, which largely matter Church teaching regarding war; but (sadly) do not prohibit abortion, artificial contraception, and sodomy.

    “The bishop is not naive nor ignorant of this.”

    He, like most Catholic pacifistic other than the SOG Dorthy Day, certainly sounds both naive & ignorant.

    “the “right to conscience objection” is already denied due to “employment”.”

    Not true. Even under conscription. Combatants are essentially volunteers. If they do not want to fight. for whatever reason, they can “de-volunteer”.

    “instead of looking at it politically. As long as I see all this used for GOP talking points, ignoring all other concerns, I smell a rat….”

    And you are not “looking at it politically”?

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  30. I did not know the NAGs still existed.

  31. No thanks. But I have no intention of voting for Ritt Sangrich either.

  32. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr. Henry Karlson:

    “The question of funding them through remote material cooperation is not the same thing as the question of one using them oneself.”

    It is a serious matter for anyone to voluntarily cooperate with intrinsic evils either remotely or otherwise.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  33. Oregon Catholic says:

    I’m wondering when we can hear what specific action the USCCB will take to fight this other than bemoaning it. We need a specific call to action that Catholics and other churches can get behind.

  34. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr Henry Karlson:

    “Yes, where does one get then notion that murdering someone is a great evil than using a condom.. I wonder..”

    I wonder too. Every act of murder or artificial contraception is for a soul, objectively speaking. a grave, serious or mortal sin that, if unforgiven at the time of death can, Objectively speaking, send that soul to eternal damnation.

    “Gravity of evil is not the same thing as whether or not it is an intrinsic evil”

    Abortion, artificial contraception and sodomy are not only intrinsic evils but grave to the point that they are, objectively, speaking serious or mortal sins.

    “Formal cooperation is more direct and has more direct guilt than remote material cooperation.”

    The degree of subjective guilt is for God, not Mr. Karlson, to judge.

    “I once again wonder where this is coming from. Usually, it’s politics. I smell a rat once again.”

    If politics, and not faith, is your priority than you will always be disappointed.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  35. Mrs Ironic Catholic, Richard. Nice to meet you.

    I encourage you to look at Gaudium et Spes #79, and then the entirety of the Compendium on Social Doctrine of the Catholic Church. I’m not saying the whole Church is bound to pacifism, obviously it is not. I certainly prefer Just War Theory to mindless crusaderism. But the Church does claim that some are called to pacifism as a witness, and pacifism doesn’t mean not protecting the innocent–it means doing so without resorting to violence. As such a witness, I despise that my tax dollars are going to two wars, one of which didn’t even meet just war standards (and I’m not optimistic about the other). I also despise when my tax dollars go to abortions.

    In any case, my point was: this move is deeply wrong on the Obama administration’s part.

  36. naturgesetz says:

    That participation by soldiers in recent and current wars is a “grave evil” is not defined Church teaching. It is merely the personal opinion of Henry Karlson and others, and lacks any stature remotely comparable to the clear official teaching of the Catholic Church with regard to contraception and abortion. HK and his ilk are entitled to their opinion, of course, but to pretend that Republican Presidents are as evil because of prudential acts which were not contrary to clearly defined and taught doctrine as are those who support abortion and try to make the Church complicit in contraception is poppycock. They are letting partisan zeal override their faith. The commonly accepted just war doctrine says that unjust wars are immoral. It is the responsibility of the “ruler” to refrain from unjust wars. But it is his responsibility to make the decision, not some bishop in Ohio (who is entitled to his personal opinion, but whose opinion does not constitute the official teaching of the Catholic Church).

  37. naturgesetz says:

    “Ritt Sangrich” Aren’t you the clever one!

    Is it supposed to mean something?

  38. Henry Karlson says:

    See, that once again, fails to reach the Catholic Church’s position (as his grace pointed out in his full discussion of the point). If it is all in the hands of the state, then there are no unjust wars — Hitler’s Wars were just and no war crimes involved because Hitler made the decision. That is, however, not the Church’s position. The Church is clear that the authority to determine when to go to war is in the hands of the state, but it does not say that the state determines by itself what is or is not a just war. And if it is not just, then participation in it is participation with evil — and formal cooperation with it is formal cooperation with evil. This is basic. And this goes back to the Church’s position on conscience – even if it is a “just war,” should one who is a soldier not be able to follow conscience if they think it is not, or if his religious group determines it is not? This is exactly the same concern, but, it is funny how people so much for the issue of conscience in engaging remote material cooperation always think nothing wrong with formal cooperation with evil in war and think a soldier should just remove their conscience then. Again, if you want to understand why we are where we are today, it is this disregard for conscience in our society for formal cooperation with evil. So far, no one is forcing people to use condoms through HHS, but, people are being forced to have formal cooperation with evil in the military.

  39. The president supports an immoral act that goes against natural law and that violates the life of an innocent person. No one has the right to make legal, support or much less, impose a moral monstrosity such an abortion. Each soldier, by the way, in the United States Army has sign a document where they in their own conscience agree to participate in violent action and even come to lethal harm. No one force a soldier to join the armed forces. No one asked an aborted baby if he agreed to the act.

  40. Richard W Comerford says:

    Ms. Ironic Catholic:

    “I encourage you to look at Gaudium et Spes #79, and then the entirety of the Compendium on Social Doctrine of the Catholic Church.”

    You mean where it reads: “Those too who devote themselves to the military service of their country should regard themselves as the agents of security and freedom of peoples.”?

    “Just War Theory to mindless crusaderism”

    The Crusaders did a much better job at this than our 20th & 21st Century government – Ridley Scot to the contrary.

    “But the Church does claim that some are called to pacifism as a witness”

    Not pacifism. #79: “it seems right that laws make humane provisions for the case of those who for reasons of conscience refuse to bear arms, provided however, that they agree to serve the human community in some other way”

    “and pacifism doesn’t mean not protecting the innocent–it means doing so without resorting to violence”

    Once back in the Dark Ages my unit was parachuted into the Republic of Liberia. What was found there, and in neighboring Sierra Leonne, defies description. Sometimes innocents cannot be protected without resorting to force of arms. Universal pacifism is contrary to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  41. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr Henry Karlson:

    “as his grace pointed out in his full discussion of the point”

    I think not.

    ‘should one who is a soldier not be able to follow conscience if they think it is not,”

    U.S. soldiers are, by law & regulation, largely able to follow their consciences regarding the justness of war.

    “or if his religious group determines it is not?”

    U.S. soldiers are who convert to a pacifist religion are, by law & regulation, allowed to be honorably discharged from service.

    “no one is forcing people to use condoms through HHS, but, people are being forced to have formal cooperation with evil in the military”.

    Not true. U.S. Military Commanders, have on several occasions since 1975, defined pregnancy as a disease. Women Service Members who do not use artificial contraception, and become pregnant in an untimely manner, are not often selected by their Commanders for retention and forced out of the Armed Forces.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  42. Actually, Rudy, this is mostly wrong. The president declines to prevent immoral acts, four-thousand-some a day, by legal means. There is a big difference.

    The commander-in-chief is morally responsible for military and civilian deaths in an unjust war. And he is morally responsible for casualties suffered by unjust methods in an otherwise just war.

    Whiole it is true that nobody asks a fetus to sacrifice for the life, health, or good feelings of the mother, that decision is not forced by a government, nor does it ordinarily take place more than one at a time.

    I appreciate your passion on the issue, especially as a fellow pro-life Catholic. But I will not give you a free pass on exaggerations, untruths, and poor arguments just because I agree with you.

  43. I think you know what it means. It means not-Obama. I prefer Newk Paulney, though.

  44. Exactly. Time to set up national health insurance for Catholics.

  45. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr. Henry Karlson:

    “This is the kind of non-Christian response which is making the situation worse and spiral out of control.”

    Mr. Kevin’s response is political. The Church encourages her children to engage in politics. And if Mr. Kevin;s response is honest and just then it is indeed Christian.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  46. Todd, is it wrong to legislate or to have the courts rule that a grave evil is not legal in this country? We have all kinds of laws that have at their heart a moral basis. Should we make all forms of murder legal and then ask the church and the people to pursuade rather than legislate it for them?

    What many will not accept on the left is that Catholic teaching has things which we are to accept and believe as a matter of faith by being Catholic. Do deny them or dissent creates the question if you are truly Catholic or not. They are non negotiable teaching. The last I am aware of was when Pope John Paul II declared that the Church now or in the future does not have the right to allow women to be priests. Pope Benedict has said:
    “As far as the Catholic Church is concerned, the principal focus of her interventions in the public arena is the protection and promotion of the dignity of the person, and she is thereby consciously drawing particular attention to principles which are not negotiable. Among these the following emerge clearly today:

    - protection of life in all its stages, from the first moment of conception until natural death;

    - recognition and promotion of the natural structure of the family – as a union between a man and a woman based on marriage – and its defence from attempts to make it juridically equivalent to radically different forms of union which in reality harm it and contribute to its destabilization, obscuring its particular character and its irreplaceable social role.”

    Those are very strong statements and ones which Catholics must believe because of the way the Pope has framed them as being non negotiable and they did not include anything about nations going to war. Even in the statement from Pope JPII on iraq, he was not making a flat out not negotiable statement as above. Note:
    “War is not always inevitable. It is always a defeat for humanity,” Pope John Paul II said.
    “And what are we to say of the threat of a war which could strike the people of Iraq, the land of the prophets, a people already sorely tried by more than 12 years of embargo?” he said.
    “War is never just another means that one can choose to employ for settling differences between nations.”

    I do not see anything in the statements that say Catholics must not support the war in Iraq. The Pope is encouraging the US President and allies to pause and think about it some more. Note again, war is not always inevitable is a far cry from saying this war must not occur and declaring it wrong. He wants to make sure we are not looking at it as just another means we can choose, but does not rule out nations making that choice. In other words, he is calling for humanity to find new ways of dealing with conflict than war, but is not saying all war for any reason must be avoided. He is not ending just war teaching as a matter of Catholic faith in some non negotiable way. Thus Catholics are free to form our conscience with his view in mind and that we should give it serious consideration. I am certain that he would no agree with this being used as some way to avoide the not negotiable teaching on abortion or see it as anything remotely equal.

  47. No one asked half a million Iraqis if they wanted to be killed for no better reason than our national machismo and profit.

  48. Henry, can you show me anywhere that the Pope or mageterium have stated in not negotiable teaching the end of Just War understanding? Is the war in Afghanistan a just war? Was the support of the war in Lybia a just war? Do we have the right to defend ourselves from attack? There is a lot to consider about war which is why the Church does not have a single non negotiable teaching on war other than one would like to see it go away and certainly be used as last resort? I know of non that exist. I do know of Cathlic non negotiable teaching easy to find on abortion and protection of marriage between one man and one woman and also on never allowing women priests as an example.
    Please don’t try to quote a single bishop as it shows how little you know about what is required for Catholic non negotiable teaching which comes from the Pope and Magesterium and are teaching to be held definitely and absolutely.
    Will be waiting for those clear statement links.

  49. Well said Richard.

  50. The problem is even more fundamental than you suggest. It starts well before we even get to the issue of whether bishops support the right of soldiers to oppose war for reasons of conscience. It has to do with how forcefully bishops exercise their own consciences and doctrine on the issue (or fail to do so).
    There was no real moral outrage by bishops against what was clearly an unjust war. They weren’t completely silent, to their credit, but the tenor was “gee guys, we really wish you didn’t have to go forward with this.” There was not a single instance of a bishop threatening to withhold communion for a politician who voted for the war. Obama’s positions, by contrast, have been met from day one with bughouse hysteria and a standing narrative in which he is evil incarnate, not fit to even set foot on Catholic universities.
    This is not rooted in distinctions in doctrine on the two issues, nor is it proportionate to those differences. The bishops, and the Catholic conservative establishment generally, is part of the partisan machinery of the GOP, in the same way that evangelicals have been for decades. There is NO policy of the Democrats they will ever approve of, and no depredation of the Republicans they will not tolerate, so long as they remain loyal on the abortion issue and work to safeguard the Church’s privileged legal position in society.
    Nor is it true that Obama is somehow forcing mass sterilization or abortion on churches or anyone. This is not about the freedom of a church to be a church. It is about multi-billion dollar corporate businesses in which the church chooses to enmesh itself. Corporations which serve and employ predominantly non-Catholics.
    Another inconvenient fact is that rank and file Catholics themselves use artificial contraception and these other services at the same rates as the general population. The only ones being “oppressed” here are the bishops and the thin but strident demographic of hardcore observant Catholics who feel the government should enforce their doctrine upon all society.

  51. White you stick to “liberal talking points” that have nothing to do with the issue at hand. But that is what your ilk seems to like to do. Whatever religion you are anyway.

  52. George, on planned parenthood abortion mill web site on the inaugeration of their endorsed guy Obama, they have this to say:

    On January 20, 2009, a new day dawns for reproductive health and rights with the inauguration of President Barack Obama, who makes clear his commitment to ensuring access to comprehensive health care for women and their families. With a partner in the White House and allies in Congress..

    Yep, a PARTNER IN THE WHITE HOUSE AND ALLIES IN CONGRESS.

    http://www.plannedparenthood.org/about-us/who-we-are/history-and-successes.htm

    For those fighting so hard here to defend Obama, one should not be surprised to see the abortion mills joy in his attack on religious freedom by their PARTNER IN THE WHITE HOUSE.

  53. naturgesetz says:

    Henry Karlson,
    Obviously the fact that there are criteria for jus ad bellum means that it is possible for a decision to go to war to be objectively unjust, making the war itself unjust; and criteria for jus in bello mean that a just war can be conducted unjustly at any level from commander-in-chief to individual soldier. I was aware of that when I wrote my comment contrasting your personal opinion and Bishop Botean’s with clear Church teaching.

  54. Oregon, you are right. Now is the time for the USCCB to finally come to terms with the fact that the person in the White House is out to do whatever he can to harm religious belief to further his pro abortion and anti religious views. This should end forever the attempt by some of the Bishops to still support the Democratic Party of death and attack on religion in this country.

  55. his grace is not Pope or the full magesterium. As such, his view is his own opinion, nothing more. Only when the Bishop teaches in union with the Pope and Magesterium on specific non negotiable issues must we as Catholics accept them.

  56. naturgesetz says:

    Ah! Now I get it. I thought at first glance that you were just playing with one name.

    So if I correctly understand your “No thanks” as a response to “Keep voting Democrat,” that, together with refusing to vote for Sangrich or Paulney means you’ll be sitting out the presidential election or going for a third party or independent candidate. Probably just as well. As long as you don’t vote for Obama you are doing no harm.

  57. After watching the baloney in last night’s State of the Union, I think he is also delusional. Does he really believe that things are getting better? Hope and change. HA!

  58. Nice way to call me a liar. Well, too bad this is not the real world and you do not have to prove that I am a liar. You impound my honor and in other venues I would challenge you to prove it or be responsible for your statements. Sincerely,

  59. I was on the internet and among my family and friends, yelling my head off. Thanks for asking; I was beginning to think nobody cared.

  60. Henry, if we are going to look to a bishop, why not look to a Cardinal who the Pope has seen in his wisdom to lead the The Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, which is the highest judicial authority in the Catholic Church (apart from the Pope himself, who as the supreme ecclesiastical judge, is the final point of appeal for any ecclesiastical judgment). Here is what he has to say about abortion and voting and Catholics who hold public office.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OK514UNkvfU&feature=related

    I find it hard to ignore what the Pope has said about not negotiable issues I have posted and this video from in essence the head of the Catholic Church Supreme Court. So this kind of trumps your dissenting bishop.

  61. Deacon Greg Kandra says:

    Gentlemen:

    Kindly take it down a notch, or take it outside.

    I don’t want to shut down comments on this thread, because this is an important issue that merits thoughtful discussion. If you disagree with what someone says, at least respect the person saying it and stop making emotional accusations. Or you’re gone.

    “See how these Christians club one another…”

    Dcn. G.

  62. Todd, stealing is a sin.

  63. Its stunning to see how this debate degenerated into the issue of military service. It is not. It is about the U.S. Federal Government under the Obama Administration imposing their will on the consciences of Catholics who object to practices that are considered as grave evils by their religion. This is no longer about Catholics or even about culture, this about our fundamental right of Religious Freedom and the Federal Government trying to destroy it.

    The Military Service issue is a distraction introduced, I would assume not to innocently here.

  64. Oregon Catholic says:

    Reply to Kenneth,
    When we went into Iraq there was the huge build-up of suspicion of WMD. Were we misled by our gov’t – possibly. Did Sadam add to the suspicion by his past actions and refusing to allow inspections – most certainly.

    We were well into the war in Iraq before it became clear there was no WMD. Many people changed their minds about the moral justness of the war then, but were perfectly justified in supporting that war based on the info they had before it started.

  65. Moral laws certainly aren’t wrong. But presidents do not stand at the crux of the legislative issue. In this instance, he guides policy. But no abortions are forced on anyone, except by parents, husbands, or boyfriends. Or the government of China.

    You’re bringing a lot of side issues, though certainly moral ones to this conversation. It has the effect of diluting your point, and your abililty to persuade.

    Catholics are free, as you say, to form their conscience with regard to the proximity of cooperation with evil. As long as the president does not have an abortion, obtain an abortion, perform an abortion, or direct people to have abortions against their will, he is not a killer as extreme pro-lifers suggest. At least he’s no more of a killer than you or I or other pro-lifers might be who have yet to withdraw from society and remove themselves from the grid of society.

    And to add yet another moral dimension, the connection between poverty and abortion rates would suggest that no politician should reject any measure that, for whatever good or bad reason, addresses poverty in any substantive way. Any pro-lifer’s credibility is strained who doesn’t recognize that reality.

  66. Henry,

    I fail to grasp your nuanced point. You seem to be drowning in self delusion…I realize its kosher for Catholic intellectuals to see more “Nuanced Points” than any kind of practical material reality…most likely to set up their own egos.

    Would you like a rope or branch or something to help you out of the quicksand?

  67. Henry Karlson says:

    Rudy

    Two things. The HHS is not forcing Catholics to have abortions, to use contraceptives. However, in unjust wars, Catholics ARE being forced to have formal cooperation with evil. It’s interesting to see how people don’t want to allow conscience when it comes to war. Again, if you are going to argue for religious conscience, THIS must be included. Rejecting it demonstrates the concern is not about conscience but something else. Again, all the “well, it might be a just war” doesn’t deal with _conscience_ and the one whose conscience says it is not. And those who say that Bishop Botean have no authority to say what he did do not realize the authority of one’s bishop (especially him in relation to the Romanian Catholics). The principle of “my bishop says it is unjust, and my conscience agrees” leads to the need for that religious Catholic to be 1) a part of the military but 2) not required to engage in a war they found unjust. As long as this REAL situation with DIRECT FORMAL cooperation with what one’s conscience sees as evil is responded with “conscience should be allowed to rule,” then remote material cooperation with evil (which is not the same morally as DOING the activity — and this is not about abortion, since it is about contraceptives, which even many pro-life evangelicals support) has less foundation for being protected. Again the people wanting to fight for religious conscience have to fight for it; not pick and choose just those politically supportive for their party. Again and again I say– be consistent and universal. That people are unwilling to do so says they don’t care about religious conscience objections — they have shown it in this thread!

  68. George Mason says:

    Deceitful man Karlson!
    Paying for an abortion that you don’t agree with is direct and proximate material cooperation, not remote.
    And your trying to change the issue to war and torture is a pathetic rouse since you have no leg to stand on on this matter of mandating Churches pay for abortion pills and contraception.

  69. George Mason says:

    @Todd, what do you mean by politically motivated?
    Do you mean the Church does not teach contraception and abortion are intrinsic evils?
    Sadly, the only political motivation is your moronic assertion.

  70. Sorry, Mark; I think that is a little too glib. A bishop is a product of years of rigorous training in philosophy and theology. He is a successor of the apostles and a recipient of the graces of ordination by which he’s conformed to Jesus Christ in a special way. His moral views — especially if he is one’s own bishop — are way more than just one man’s opinion, and cannot be casually dismissed as such simply because he does not speak infallibly. I say all this as one who’s well aware of what episcopal folly, treachery, and cowardice can be. In any case, where the Iraq war is concerned, the episcopal consensus, all the way to the late Holy Father, was heavily opposed to that misadventure. As for our secular leaders, “prudent judgment” is not a synonym for license ad libitum: the invasion of Iraq was always the intended outcome, rationalized post hoc by a tissue of lies and rhetorical misdirection. It’s simply false to suggest the question was weighed and examined in a prudent, judicious manner.

    As for you, Henry Carlson: As citizens we may or may not have any power to wreck the pop con railroad happily staffed by both major parties, but our duty to try is no less deniable than our duty to proclaim the Gospel. It is arrant sophistry to pretend that an act that’s intrinsically evil can ever be rationalized. No more of this, please.

  71. George Mason says:

    Haters of the Church whom I need not name will always try to broaden the issue so as to keep the anti-life status quo.
    They readily avoid necessary distinctions because their arguments cannot stand up to distinctions.
    Don’t let them distract you from the main injustice being addressed. They don’t care about addressing it. They just want to get you tired and to give up.

  72. Rejecting it demonstrates the concern is not about conscience but something else.

    Or that the perfect should not be the enemy of the good. To argue that only the sinless may oppose sin is, literally, diabolical.

  73. Isn’t that the modus operandi of the left to change the subject. Enough verbal engineering and they think we will buy what they say. Did you listen to the State of the Union? Where are al those jobs that were created?????

  74. Henry Karlson says:

    The subject at hand is the conscience, and the need for Catholics to be able to follow their conscience. It’s funny how issues of conscience when it comes to war is seen as “changing the subject.” It proves to me that for at least some, the subject isn’t conscience at all. Thanks!

  75. Well, my point wasn’t military service, but a president’s responsibility to wage war justly, and be held accountable. It is a more direct accountability than he possesses as being a not-legislator and not in the judiciary.

  76. Henry Karlson says:

    True the perfect should not be the enemy of the good, but it is also true, one shouldn’t using band-aids when a tourniquet is need. And it is also true, remote material cooperation with evil is not the same thing as formal cooperation with evil; people still ignore this important point. People are acting like the president is making people use contraceptives — he isn’t; in this way, talking about their use as being non-negotiable and an intrinsic evil is not the same question as health care funding which has remote material cooperation with such actions (the second has not been declared an intrinsic evil nor a non-negotiable). And even if it is an intrinsic evil, that does not declare the gravity: masturbation, lying — intrinsic evils, nonetheless, no one is saying you can’t donate to politicians…

  77. @ Henry Karlson you wrote “The HHS is not forcing Catholics to have abortions, to use contraceptives”

    Yet, Obama is forcing Catholics at hospitals to participate in abortions and distribute contraceptives against their conscience or the risk their employment.

    “ACLU Asks Obama Admin to Force Catholic Hospitals to Do Abortions”
    “In February 2011, President Obama rewarded his friends and repealed most of the Bush regulations, including gutting the sections that contained definitions for terms in federal conscience laws. ”

    It will come a time when Catholics are treated like the KKK by the Democrat party for their positions on gay marriage, abortion, and other social issus that are not seen as ‘progressive’ enough.

  78. True, but insurance is not.

  79. Not according to some of your confreres; they say a vote for a third party is a vote for Mr Obama. By the same logic, a vote for Mr Romney is a vote for Mr Obama, the only difference being a more widespread self-delusion in the voting public.

    PS: It’s all four names. Easier than last month.

  80. ron chandonia says:

    I certainly agree with the majority here that introducing the Bush presidency and the Iraq War was a red-herring effort to get us off topic. But that effort resulted in some deeply disturbing rebuttals, none more so than this statement:

    Universal pacifism is contrary to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

    That would not only be a surprise to Dorothy Day, it would be a surprise to Jesus himself. And I think it speaks to an issue more fundamental by far than the scope of insurance coverage offered by Church-run institutions.

  81. I’d be interested in Ed Peter’s opinion on this: if a Catholic bishop, through the diocesan health insurance plan, pays for the abortion undertaken by an employee of the diocese, or a covered dependent of an employee, is the bishop excommunicated latae sententiae?

    Now I say “I told you so…” From the beginning Obamacare has been about destroying the legal framework which allows health insurance to exist.

  82. Oregon Catholic says:

    I wonder if there are any diocesan health plans that don’t specifically exclude abortion as a covered service. I doubt they’d be that careless.

  83. That’s what the one-year delay in implementing the regulations is for. So that the bishops, religious orders, &etc. will have a “reasonable” amount of TIME to re-write their policies and start paying for contraception and abortion.

    Those bishops, always being so unreasonable… ::rolleyes::

  84. I assume you mean to follow their properly formed and informed consciences. Formed by the teachings of Jesus Christ and the magisterium. Ever hear of “erroneous consciences”-there are plenty of them on the abortion issue.

  85. naturgesetz says:

    Henry,

    Richard Comerford has amply demonstrated that there are protections in place for conscientious objectors to war. So your calumny that other commenters here do not support the conscience rights of people with regard to war is untenable and provides no support for your attempt to provide an excuse for Obama. In fact, it is you, not we, who are inconsistent in our support for freedom of conscience.

    And BTW, if a soldier were commpelled to participate in a war he considered unjust, that is material cooperation, not formal. Formal participation is mental approbation.

  86. Oregon Catholic says:

    Henry,
    I wonder if you realize there is a pretty big discrepancy between the theology and philosophy of your Byzantine Catholic Church and the RCC even though we are in communion. Sometimes you are really arguing apples when we believe oranges. I don’t see where it does much good to argue over these things. It’s better to just explore differences than to try to prove one or the other ‘right’ which is wrong :-). I find many things more attractive about the Eastern Church and Orthodoxy right now than I do the RCC. But as long as I’m a member, I’m bound to follow the way the RCC teaches and so are the vast majority of others here.

  87. One can forgive O’Neil for stating that an institution can’t have a conscience. Being president of NOW, she is speaking from the core of her own experience.

  88. pagansister says:

    Just because the Church is required to provide it’s employees (it is a business) with insurance that includes being able to purchase birth control, doesn’t mean that their Catholic employee’s would be buying the forbidden product(s). As a non-Catholic, who worked for the Catholic Church as a teacher, I didn’t need the insurance they offered, however if I had needed it, I would expect to be able to buy contraceptives and have it covered by my insurance. My birth control, as a non-Catholic, would not be the Churche’s business. Non-Catholics do not have to follow the teachings of the contaception rule, and as long as they are not (as a teacher in my case) contradicting that teaching or any other beliefs of the Church for that matter, as an employee, I don’t think there is a problem. During my 10 years working for the Church, with 5 year olds, I would not even considered speaking against the teachings. I respected (and still do) the things I was teaching them. Last but not least, I do know that some of the teachers I taught with did use contraceptives. They wished to limit the number of children they had for many reasons. Kids aren’t “cheap” to raise.

  89. Looks like our Franco-esque commander in chief had a little melt down in Arizona today. Governors can’t be allowed to criticize the One in books.

    He is the most juvenile, prickly person to ever be elected to the presidency.

  90. Richard, I didn’t say the Church was against JWT. It’s not; it is the “law of the land”. I read those same sentences you quote from GS #79. Just that some are called to a pacifist response.

    If you want the more full-throated response, look at the Compendium on Social Doctrine:

    497. The Magisterium condemns “the savagery of war” [1032] and asks that war be considered in a new way.[1033] In fact, “it is hardly possible to imagine that in an atomic era, war could be used as an instrument of justice”.[1034] War is a “scourge” [1035] and is never an appropriate way to resolve problems that arise between nations, “it has never been and it will never be”,[1036] because it creates new and still more complicated conflicts.[1037] When it erupts, war becomes an “unnecessary massacre”,[1038] an “adventure without return”[1039] that compromises humanity’s present and threatens its future. “Nothing is lost by peace; everything may be lost by war”.[1040] The damage caused by an armed conflict is not only material but also moral.[1041] In the end, war is “the failure of all true humanism”,[1042] “it is always a defeat for humanity”: [1043] “never again some peoples against others, never again! … no more war, no more war!” [1044]

    498. Seeking alternative solutions to war for resolving international conflicts has taken on tremendous urgency today, since “the terrifying power of the means of destruction — to which even medium and small-sized countries have access — and the ever closer links between the peoples of the whole world make it very difficult or practically impossible to limit the consequences of a conflict”.[1045] It is therefore essential to seek out the causes underlying bellicose conflicts, especially those connected with structural situations of injustice, poverty and exploitation, which require intervention so that they may be removed. “For this reason, another name for peace is development. Just as there is a collective responsibility for avoiding war, so too there is a collective responsibility for promoting development”.[1046]

    –I disagree with you on the moral heft of the ancient Crusaders, but in any case, I wasn’t specifically referencing them, just a form a warfare bereft of any moral limits (hence “mindless crusaders”).

    –Finally, as this is not what this post of Dcn Greg’s is about, I’m bowing out to tend to other things. Peace (is it OK to wish you that?), Mrs IC

  91. Actually, the issue is freedom of religions (not just Catholics) to adhere to their own religious convictions in running their operations (hospitals, schools, universities, whatever), not just or unjust war or abortion or contraception. The point seems to be getting lost here. To adhere to their own values, if these are in conflict with HHS rules, they will have to refuse to serve and refuse to hire and even hand out pink slips to recipients or employees. So, they will be limited in what they can do to just their own co-religionists. That’s the issue. I would think this will affect not just Catholics, but Orthodox Jews and probably Muslims as well.

  92. “(W)hat do you mean by politically motivated?”

    No idea. I didn’t write it.

    “Do you mean …?”

    Not at all. Only that one has to commit them for it to be evil.

  93. Richard W Comerford says:

    Ms. The Ironic Catholic:

    “Just that some are called to a pacifist response.”

    The Church has not called anyone to be a pacifist. Rather she has called upon all to be Saints. A Saint (or in the case of Dorothy Day – a Servant of God) may heroically object to an unjust act of war; or (like St Louis or Joan of Arc) may lead other Christians in just war.

    “If you want the more full-throated response, look at the Compendium on Social Doctrine”

    I have glanced at it once, twice or thrice. Nowhere does the Compendium call upon Christians to be universal pacifists. Indeed nowhere does the Compendium even allow Christians to be universal pacifists. It does, however, allow Christians under certain circumstances to defend by force of arms the weak and innocent from unjust aggression.

    “I disagree with you on the moral heft of the ancient Crusaders”

    Really? Then I give to you as example The Poor Fellow Soldiers of Jesus Christ of the Temple of Solomon of Jerusalem (a.k.a. Knight Templars) who were so renowned for their knowledge of Islam and respected for their charity that Muslim Lords would employ them as peace makers between warring Muslim factions. Can you imagine any Western military being asked by a 21st Muslim ruler to broker peace between, lets say, Al Qaeda and the Taliban? Sadly I cannot. When its comes to the historical Knight Templars Ridely Scott, et al, are idiots.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  94. Richard W Comerford says:

    Ms. pagansister:

    “I do know that some of the teachers I taught with did use contraceptives”

    This is objectively speaking an intrinsic evil, a serious sin, that can damn the poor soul to Hell for all eternity.

    “They wished to limit the number of children they had for many reasons”

    Children are a gift from God. If we are generous with God. He is generous with us.

    “Kids aren’t “cheap” to raise.”

    And the reason Catholic Schools, Parishes, hospitals and all are disappearing is because we (and Europe, Japan and Israel) have merrily practiced artificial contraception for two generations and in so doing committed suicide. Hopefully the Muslims and Hispanics who replace us will not be so selfish and carefully count the cost of children.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford.

  95. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr. ron chandonia:

    “That would not only be a surprise to Dorothy Day”

    Really? So when the Servant of God said that we Americans may have to protect ourselves with our weapons of war but only after we had first exhausted our spiritual weapons she was speaking as a universal pacifist?

    “it would be a surprise to Jesus himself”

    And where did Our Lord and Savior teach us not to protect the weak and innocent from unjust aggression?

    “And I think it speaks to an issue more fundamental by far than the scope of insurance coverage offered by Church-run institutions”.

    I have yet to find any alleged Catholic pacifist, other than the SOG Dorothy Day, who loved their country, embraced the Church’s teachings on war and understood and sympathized with soldiers. This is probably why her cause was first seriously advanced by an American Cardinal who also happened to be a U.S. Navy Admiral.

    The modern, allegedly Catholic, peace movement in the USA has failed year, after year, after year because it has separated itself from Christ, His Vicar and His Church and devolved into just another political gaggle.

    The SOG Dorothy Day will be a Saint for the 21st Century because she was not a universal pacifist in keeping with the constant teachings of the Church.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  96. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr Henry Karlson:

    “The subject at hand is the conscience, and the need for Catholics to be able to follow their conscience.”

    No. The subject at hand is the subject of the Culture of death vs. the culture of life.

    “It’s funny how issues of conscience when it comes to war is seen as “changing the subject.”

    The racist slaughter of 4,000 American children in their mothers’ wombs every day for the profit and political power of our first Black President (who famously wants his daughters to be able to murder his grandchildren) is part and parcel with torture, unjust war and other abominations.

    “It proves to me that for at least some, the subject isn’t conscience at all.”

    Indeed as always it is a matter of politics which trumps faith.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  97. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr. Henry Karlson:

    “talking about their use as being non-negotiable and an intrinsic evil is not the same question as health care funding which has remote material cooperation with such actions”

    “Actions” like the racist slaughter of 4,000 babies in their mothers’ wombs every day in the USA?

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  98. ron chandonia says:

    Richard W. Comerford and others who have convinced themselves that the gospel not only permits but actually requires warfare in defense of the innocent are advised to read chapter 11 of the Compendium again. Pay particular attention to section 497:

    497. The Magisterium condemns “the savagery of war” and asks that war be considered in a new way. In fact, “it is hardly possible to imagine that in an atomic era, war could be used as an instrument of justice”. War is a “scourge” and is never an appropriate way to resolve problems that arise between nations, “it has never been and it will never be”, because it creates new and still more complicated conflicts. When it erupts, war becomes an “unnecessary massacre”, an “adventure without return” that compromises humanity’s present and threatens its future. “Nothing is lost by peace; everything may be lost by war”. The damage caused by an armed conflict is not only material but also moral. In the end, war is “the failure of all true humanism”, “it is always a defeat for humanity”: “never again some peoples against others, never again! … no more war, no more war!”

  99. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr ron chandonia:

    “Richard W. Comerford and others who have convinced themselves that the gospel not only permits but actually requires warfare in defense of the innocent”

    No. What the Church teaches us is that both nations and individuals have, under certain circumstances, a right and sometimes a duty to self defense; and ,again under certain circumstances, a right and even a duty to defend an innocent third party from unjust aggression.

    “497. The Magisterium condemns “the savagery of war” .”

    There is much wisdom here. And as a very broken down, old Special Forces I agree with everything in this section based on my own particular experience. However nowhere in this section are we taught that we no longer have, under certain circumstances, a right to self defense, nor are we relived of the obligation again under certain circumstances to come to the aid of an innocent third party nor are we taught that unjust aggression will cease, innocents will never again be slaughtered and the Age of Aquarius has arrived.

    Wake up. We live in a fallen world. Our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ never commanded us to be pacifists. Rather he commanded us to move our neighbor. Something much, much harder than fashionable pacifism.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  100. It’s not just Catholics, Orthodox Jews and Muslims that will be affected, but Evangelicals as well.

  101. naturgesetz says:

    What 497 does not address is what to do if, despite this call for peace, one side actually goes to war. It does not say what the response may be.

    “What if they gave a war and only one side came?” to paraphrase Bobby Kennedy.

  102. naturgesetz says:

    One point that should be borne in mind is that Catholic hospitals, like Catholic schools are undertaken by the Church as an integral part of our mission. And (as canon 216 teaches us) this is so regardless of whether the diocesan bishop runs it directly or whether the hospital is a separately incorporated entity. This is an issue of the freedom of the Church to conduct our mission in accordance with our faith.

  103. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr. N:

    From # 97:

    “Insofar as men are sinful, the threat of war hangs over them, and hang over them it will until the return of Christ”.

    “As long as the danger of war remains and there is no competent and sufficiently powerful authority at the international level, governments cannot be denied the right to legitimate defense once every means of peaceful settlement has been exhausted”.

    “Those too who devote themselves to the military service of their country should regard themselves as the agents of security and freedom of peoples. As long as they fulfill this role properly, they are making a genuine contribution to the establishment of peace.”

    We live in a fallen world. There will always be wars and rumors of wars until Christ returns in glory. In the meantime we must focus on loving our neighbor. Said focus may require us to defend ourselves or our neighbor by force of arms. Pacifism is contrary to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  104. naturgesetz says:

    Richard ,

    You have made explicit the point I was driving at. The quote says it all.

  105. ron chandonia says:

    There is no Christian duty to defend anyone or any national interest by force of arms. In section 500, in fact, the Compendium specifically notes that the use of military force is not required even of those whose country is under aggressive attack:

    A war of aggression is intrinsically immoral. In the tragic case where such a war breaks out, leaders of the state that has been attacked have the right and the duty to organize a defence, even using force of arms.”

    Or they could defend themselves as Jesus did, with what Dorothy Day called “traditional, spiritual weapons like prayer.” BTW, it was in a cutting reference to those who refused to follow the example of Christ–perhaps on the theory that turning the other cheek is a maxim suitable only for the Age of Aquarius–that Dorothy Day wrote, “”If we are not going to use our spiritual weapons, let us by all means arm and prepare.”

  106. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr ron chandonia:

    “There is no Christian duty to defend anyone or any national interest by force of arms.”

    Tell that to your daughter next time a sexual deviant has broken into your home and is raping her in front of her mother.

    “the Compendium specifically notes that the use of military force is not required even of those whose country is under aggressive attack”

    The Compendium in fact specifically speaks of the duty to self defense “even using force of arms” and you quoted it: “leaders of the state that has been attacked have the right and the duty to organize a defence, even using force of arms”

    “with what Dorothy Day called “traditional, spiritual weapons like prayer.”

    The SOG is correct and in keeping with the constant teachings of the Church.

    ”If we are not going to use our spiritual weapons, let us by all means arm and prepare.

    “it was in a cutting reference to those who refused to follow the example of Christ–perhaps on the theory that turning the other cheek is a maxim suitable only for the Age of Aquarius”

    And you know this is cutting how?

    ‘Dorothy Day wrote, “”If we are not going to use our spiritual weapons, let us by all means arm and prepare”.”

    The correct quote:

    “I can write no other than this: unless we use the weapons of the spirit, denying ourselves and taking up our cross and following Jesus, dying with Him and rising with Him, men will go on fighting, and often from the highest motives, believing that they are fighting defensive wars for justice and in self-defense against present or future aggression.”

    The SOG is entirely correct yet again. Indeed if all men use weapons of the Spirit then there will be neither invasions nor need for self defense. But the SOG lived in the age of Hitler & Stalin. Men who did not use weapons of the Spirit. Notice that the SOG does not deny the Church’s teaching regarding the right and duty to self defense. The SOG was perfectly in step with the Church. You are not.

    Good luck protecting your daughter during the Age of Aquarius.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  107. pagansister says:

    Believe me when I tell you, Richard C, those wonderful teachers I taught with are not headed for any hell or simular place, IMO. They were (and are) excellent parents, who were raising their children in the Church. In fact the elementary school offered sex education to the 8th graders, and ome of the lessons introduced condoms as one of the many lessons. However with that, a couple of the girls that graduated from the school, got pregnant in HS–guess they didn’t listen to the teaching. They even brought their children in to the school to show the principal! No, no marriage took place. Of course included in the lessons, the Catholic position on artificial contraception, and making sure that they know that having sex before marriage is a No No. The Church can only do so much—-the ultimate decision on when a child is born is up to the 2 people involved.

    You mentioned that children are a gift from God. Then you should have no problem with those (Hispanics and Muslims) who are not using birth control. Who is “us” that they will replace?? Just askin’.

  108. pagansister says:

    Gee! Richard W Comerford—I thought the Age of Aquarius was already done—I know I was there—Is there more? :o)

  109. Richard W Comerford says:

    Ms pagansister:

    “I thought the Age of Aquarius was already done—I know I was there—Is there more?”

    We have just gone through a period, in both our Church and country, where predators were allowed to prey on innocents. No one saw fit to defend the children. And the Age of Aquarius is apparently still with us. If the reports are to be believed a young fit and physically powerful assignment coach at Penn State watched an elderly man rape a boy in a public shower and did nothing.

    This most UN-Christian pacifism which sacrifices the weak and innocent to the lusts of the powerful would have been unthinkable 50-years ago. Now it is the norm. This may be the reason why no Vicar of Christ nor Council united with him has ever taught that we had a right to a universal pacifism. It is contrary to the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  110. Todd says “As long as the president does not have an abortion, obtain an abortion, perform an abortion, or direct people to have abortions against their will, he is not a killer as extreme pro-lifers suggest.” So if he puts justices on the court who make murder legal, he is not a killer? If we knowingly vote for a president who will put justices on the court to continue the legal killing of people, are we innocent of their death?

    Everything Hitler did in Germany was legal according to German law. He and his party put judges in place who approved evil laws. Democrats by actions in the Senate since Bork have fought any attempt to put pro life justices on the court and when in power, the presidents have put pro abortion justices on the court. Republicans have put people on the court, often second or third nominations when the Democrats have blocked justices like Bork, who have sometimes turned out to be bad on life, but it has never been the party policy to support killing babies.

  111. Richard W Comerford says:

    Ms pagansister:

    “Believe me when I tell you, Richard C, those wonderful teachers I taught with are not headed for any hell or simular place, IMO.”

    I pray that no one goes to Hell. Even New York Yankees. Yet the Church teaches that Hell exists. That some sins are so serious that objectively speaking a soul that dies with such a sin unforgiven does indeed go to Hell. And that artificial contraception is intrinsically gravely and intrinsically evil.

    “They were (and are) excellent parents, who were raising their children in the Church.”

    I hope so. But any soul which publicly and stubbornly over time denies a truth of the faith whether it be faith or morals separates himself from the Church.

    “In fact the elementary school offered sex education to the 8th graders, and ome of the lessons introduced condoms as one of the many lessons.”

    If true a grave evil.

    “got pregnant in HS–guess they didn’t listen to the teaching”

    The promotion of artificial contraception always brings about out of wedlock pregnancies.

    “The Church can only do so much—-the ultimate decision on when a child is born is up to the 2 people involved.”

    No. In justice it is up to God.

    “Then you should have no problem with those (Hispanics and Muslims) who are not using birth control.”

    Only artificial birth control is gravely & intrinsically wrong.

    “Who is “us” that they will replace?”

    “Us” are those idiots who have turned their backs on the Gospel of Jesus Christ and embraced the culture of death.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  112. Todd, sitting out is better than voting for Obama. Voting for someone more pro life than Obama which is any of the republican candidates is still better. I have serious doubts about Romney, but if he is the nominee, I will vote for him and watch carefully. We can still have huge influence from pro life perspective with Romney as we did with Bush 43 and his backing off Meyers. We not only have zero with Obama, but we know he is going to put a pro abortion baby slaughering judge every chance he gets.

  113. Romulus, I think I stated the requirement that the Bishop be in union with the Pope and Magesterium and if not it is just his opinion. You left out this part of what I said.

    On Iraq, I have seen nothing stating this was something that all Catholics had to support. Can Catholics not follow what a bishop or even a pope says if they are not speaking ex cathedra? Pope JPII got very close to speaking ex cathedra about the death penalty, but did not and left it with the caveat that the state could in fact still have the death penalty if they could not insure that the person was prevented from killing again. His basis was that in today’s technology, we should be able to keep the guilty from harming others. Of course by law, this becomes much more difficult as prison rights groups have made it ever more difficult to isolate a prisoner from other prisoners and also places guards more in harms way. Thus we can support the death penalty if we choose based on those concerns. I do not support the death penalty, but believe I am correct in what I am saying and why the Pope did not make it firm without exception and ex cathedra. There was nothing stated about Iraq that was ex cathedra or even the policy that we can never support war. Just war is as far as I know still what is Catholic teaching.

    If I am wrong on this, would love to have some links to the Vatican stating otherwise.

  114. Richard, curious if you have your own blog?

  115. ron chandonia says:

    You have obviously invested a great deal in an ethic that is really quite noble: Protect the innocent by killing the guilty. It certainly beats killing the innocent and letting the guilty walk free. But it is not the ethic of Jesus, the teaching of the Sermon on the Mount, the faith of the ancient Fathers of the Christian Church. It is really a pagan ethic–the very highest expression of pagan civic responsibility–in Christian dress. That is what Dorothy Day meant in that long quote you cited where she contrasted Christians with other men who resort to violence “often from the highest motives, believing that they are fighting defensive wars for justice.” Perhaps it is justice; however, it is not God’s justice.

  116. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr. Mark:

    “Richard, curious if you have your own blog?”

    God forbid!!!

    However the Holy Father like all of his predecessors in the 20th Century has urged Catholics to get involved in media (in so doing our host, the Deacon, does the people of God a great service). I find commenting on those few subjects I have personal knowledge of (Soldiers, Cops & things that go bang) from the Church’s point of view to be the best use of my very limited skills.

    IMO a Catholic blog should be a search for the truth – a search always leading to Christ.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  117. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr ron chandonia:

    “You have obviously invested a great deal in an ethic that is really quite noble: Protect the innocent by killing the guilty”

    Nope. Ask any experienced solider or cop. The innocent cannot be protected by killing the allegedly guilty.

    “It certainly beats killing the innocent and letting the guilty walk free”.

    Well that happens about 4,000 times a day, every day, in the USA.

    “But it is not the ethic of Jesus”

    Our Lord and Savior has an “Ethic”???

    “the faith of the ancient Fathers of the Christian Church”

    God and His Church do not change. The faith of the ancient Fathers is our faith.

    “It is really a pagan ethic–the very highest expression of pagan civic responsibility–in Christian dress”

    Nope. The SOG called it “Americanism” a heresy defined by Pole Leo XIII on 1899.

    “Dorothy Day meant in that long quote you cited where she contrasted Christians with other men”

    Nope. The “other men” are Christians too. read the entire document.

    “Perhaps it is justice; however, it is not God’s justice.”

    No. If it is not God’s justice then it is not justice.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  118. pagansister says:

    RW comerford:
    I will not go line by line with your reply—you are sincere in what you wrote. However on 2 parts I must respond—and that is promotion of artifical birth control brings on out of wedlock pregnancies. IMO, that would be using artificial birth control prevents many out of wedlock pregnancies thus preventing the possibility of abortions. Also, I still consider that the 2 people involved should be the ones who decide when to bring a child into this world. I would not leave that to anyone else.

  119. Richard W Comerford says:

    Ms pagansister:

    Re: Humanae Vitae

    “promotion of artifical birth control brings on out of wedlock pregnancies”

    Since 1964 when the American Bishops. led by Boston’s Cardinal Cushing, started to publicly promote artificial contraception: abortion, divorce, illegitimate birth, sodomy, suicide, pornography and sexually transmitted diseases have sky rocketed literally destroying our country.

    “artificial birth control prevents many out of wedlock pregnancies thus preventing the possibility of abortions”

    It is not a possibility There are 4,000 American children legally murdered in their mothers’ wombs every day in the USA. This mass murder is racist.What Jesse Jackson (before he became rich and famous) correctly described as “genocide”. Artificial birth control opened the gates to the American Holocaust.

    “I still consider that the 2 people involved should be the ones who decide when to bring a child into this world. I would not leave that to anyone else.”

    Christian planned parenthood is Christian marriage. The Church teaches that parents must be open to children. And what you are actually doing is kicking God out of family life.. Christians must have a radical trust in God.

    All of the above was prophetically outlined by Pope Paul VI in his Encyclical Humanae Vitae. But the American Catholic Establishment (with a few heroic souls remaining in full communion with the Vicar of Christ) embraced defacto heresy. And now we are paying the price with 50-million dead and counting.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  120. pagansister says:

    Well Richard C., you have your beliefs and I have mine. You do seem to want to insist that artificial birth control brings on out of wedlock pregnancies—and gave me a number from somewhere (who knows where?) that claims 4,000 terminations a day in the U.S. Well, try to think of it this way—-without ANY birth control methods—-that number could be higher. Make sense? Does to me.

    IMO there are many Christians of different denominations (some Catholic) who limit their children to the number they can feed, shelter and clothe, who lead very devout Christian lives.

  121. Finally Catholics are opening their eyes. I hope that Catholics will turn out in mass (excuse the pun) to vote against this outrage of a presidency. Of course I can see reading through here that the Liberals will never open theirs.

  122. Richard W Comerford says:

    Ms pagansister:

    “you have your beliefs and I have mine”.

    My beliefs are what the Church has constantly taught regarding faith and morals for 2,000-years.

    “and gave me a number from somewhere (who knows where?) that claims 4,000 terminations a day in the U.S.”

    The number of 4,000 murders a day in the USA comes research arm of Planned Parenthood titled the Alan Gutmyer Institute. They should know. PP is well paid with our tax dollars by our government to murder our children – especially children of color.

    “Well, try to think of it this way—-without ANY birth control methods—-that number could be higher.”

    Many so called birth control methods are in fact abortions. And you are assuming that men and women after exposed to the Truth that is Christ cannot live lives of virtue.

    “IMO there are many Christians of different denominations (some Catholic) who limit their children to the number they can feed, shelter and clothe, who lead very devout Christian lives.”

    For souls who have entered into Christian marriage to limit their children by murder or artificial contraception is gravely and intrinsically evil. Happily, in the USA today, there is no reason to limit children solely for reasons of food, shelter and clothing which are in great supply and are only limited by a lack of love.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  123. pagansister says:

    Richard W. Comerford: “Happily, in the USA today, there is no reason to limit children solely for reasons of food, shelter, and clothing which are in great supply and are only limited by a lack of love.” WHAT?? EVERYONE in the USA can afford to raise children? I don’t know where you live, but that is most certainly not what I would consider an accurate statement. As in the past, there are always the poor and unforrtunately probably will always be. In the 7 states I have lived in over my life time there has always been people who couldn’t afford to feed their children. In the recent past some of those were folks who used to make a reasonable income, but then lost their jobs etc. So I don’t buy the EVERYONE in the USA can afford to raise children.

    As to abortion being used as a birth control method—maybe once, but I don’t think (as a woman ) that I would use it more than that. Brith control methods are much less painful in more ways than one.

    One last thing: My sisters are both devout Christians—but they did limit their children. One has 2, the other 3. They have, IMO, broken no laws of their faiths. I’m the rogue in the family—having left the church at 17. I also limited my childen to 2, and didn’t have to have an abortion to do so.

    Hope your day is going well. :o)

  124. pagansister says:

    Manny, without liberals who would you have to disagree with? :o)

  125. pagansister says:

    Oh, one more thing RWC. —my sisters never had an abortion either as a method of limiting their children. Not every woman does that.

  126. Richard W Comerford says:

    Ms pagansister:

    “WHAT?? EVERYONE in the USA can afford to raise children?”

    If you are citing food, shelter and clothing as handicaps to racing a child in the USA you (happily) are quite mistaken.

    “there are always the poor and unforrtunately probably will always be”

    “In the 7 states I have lived in over my life time there has always been people who couldn’t afford to feed their children”

    Then if their children were in school the teachers and administration were utterly incompetent. The food resources available for children though public schools alone are utterly staggering.

    Today in the USA there are, thank God, enormous resources available in terms of food, shelter, clothing and public education for raising children – even for the poorest of the poor.

    “some of those were folks who used to make a reasonable income, but then lost their jobs etc.”

    Food, shelter and clothing are available for the homeless in every State.

    “So I don’t buy the EVERYONE in the USA can afford to raise children.”

    No one can afford to raise a child. But with faith in Christ they can afford to love them. And with love God provides.

    “As to abortion being used as a birth control method—maybe once, but I don’t think (as a woman ) that I would use it more than that.”

    Abortion is gravely & intrinsically evil. Murder most foul. Pure & simple.

    “My sisters are both devout Christians—but they did limit their children.”

    The Church teaches that a soul may limit children by natural means.

    You should read Humanae Vitae.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  127. pagansister says:

    RTichard W.C., reply to Jan. 28, 3:04 PM We are most certainly not going to agree on the things we have been discussing. In many cases and for many reasons, the “natural method” of birth control is highly risky. Thus my sisters and I put our faith (none of us are Catholic anyhow) in the “artificial” methods and they worked perfectly. Breaking no rules of faith. So with that, I think I’m done with this discussion. It’s been “real”.

  128. Richard W Comerford says:

    Ms pagansister:

    “We are most certainly not going to agree on the things we have been discussing.”

    I am not looking for agreement. I am defending the Faith.

    “the “natural method” of birth control is highly risky”.

    You are quite wrong. Unlike artificial methods which cause cancer, stroke and other medical problems natural contraception poses no, absolutely none, health risks to women.

    “Thus my sisters and I put our faith (none of us are Catholic anyhow) in the “artificial” methods and they worked perfectly”

    Thank God no cancers or strokes.

    “Breaking no rules of faith.”

    This is a matter of natural law not faith. Prior to the 1923 Lamberth conference no mainstream theologians, philosophers or medical doctors openly embraced artificial contraception. Artificial contraception was considered a perverse and unnatural act which led to the destruction of the family and society. They were right. Our post Christian, neo-pagan society is dead. Only Christ can revive it.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  129. pagansister says:

    RWC: The”natural” method’s risk I was referring to are the chances of getting unintentionally pregnant are higher than the many “non-natural” methods. Not all women have regular cycles. As to risks of the artificial ones, pregnancy and giving birth can be very risky too—my Mother almost died having one of my sisters. So, pregnancy isn’t always safe either. BTW, if one chooses condoms—no cancer or stroke risk AND they can prevent STD’s. But those are considered wrong by the Church too. (even for married folks). IMO, Natural Law regarding having children would have women continously pregnant—baby machines—when women had huge families because it was “their job as a wife”, so many stayed pregnant until they either died in childbirth or finally went through the change (if they lived long enough to do that). Those that didn’t want huge families either denied their husbands sex and were lucky enough to have a husband who respected her enough to not insist. Women for centuries had ways of NOT getting pregnant every time they had intercourse. Some worked better than others, of course. Brith control (and unfortunately abortions) are not new to time in this world.
    As to defending the Faith—well done, good and faithful servant.

  130. Richard,
    Thanks for the defense of the faith. It is pretty hard discussing things here that are beyond the understanding of people who don’t beleive in anything. I wonder why they waste their time and energy other than to annoy but I guess they get their enjoyment in doing just that. Sad.

  131. Richard W Comerford says:

    Ms pagansister

    “The”natural” method’s risk I was referring to are the chances of getting unintentionally pregnant are higher than the many “non-natural” methods.”

    The stats disagree with you. Mother Theresa, among others, urged lepers to use natural methods with much better results than artificial methods.

    “Not all women have regular cycles.”

    Of course not. But the cycle can with modern medicine be regularized.

    “As to risks of the artificial ones, pregnancy and giving birth can be very risky too—my Mother almost died having one of my sisters.”

    Life is risky. Modern medicine has dramatically reduced the risk of birth.

    “BTW, if one chooses condoms—no cancer or stroke risk AND they can prevent STD’s.”

    No. Some folks have allergic reactions to condoms. And despite our world being flooded with condoms users still become infected and pregnant. In other words condoms do not work as advertised.

    “But those are considered wrong by the Church too. (even for married folks)”

    They are wrong under natural law AND they do not protect against STD.

    “Natural Law regarding having children would have women continously pregnant”

    No. Just the opposite. Natural law claims that man using his reason can determine what is true and what is false in human behavior or morals.

    “when women had huge families because it was “their job as a wife”, so many stayed pregnant until they either died in childbirth or finally went through the change (if they lived long enough to do that)”

    What are you talking about? A nursing mother delays her ability to conceive.

    “Those that didn’t want huge families either denied their husbands sex and were lucky enough to have a husband who respected her enough to not insist.”

    Again nursing mothers delay their ability to conceive. History 101 shows that giant families are a relatively new phenomena die to medical advances.

    “Women for centuries had ways of NOT getting pregnant every time they had intercourse.”

    Of course. The methods are called pregnancy, nursing and menopause. Large families were not the norm throughout history..

    “Brith control (and unfortunately abortions) are not new to time in this world.”

    Sin and evil are not new to time in this world.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  132. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr RomCath:

    Sadly the Faith (broadly speaking) has not been taught in the West, to include many seminaries, for at least a generation (See Notre Dame). JP II and B. XVI have both called for the Faith to be spread, preached and taught starting at ground zero throughout the West. The Vicars of Christ have urged Christians to use all modern Media.

    Good for Deacon Greg to heed the call of Christs’ Vicars.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  133. No, he didn’t. It appears pretty clear that Brewer made the story up. http://talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/2012/01/oooops_brewer_story_not_holding_up_well.php?ref=fpblg

  134. pagansister says:

    Excuse me, RomCath, but you seem to think that i don’t believe in ANYTHING! You have no idea how wrong you are. FYI, I post here because it is interesting and I enjoy the exchange of ideas. Most of the folks I discuss things with are kind and understanding devout Catholics (and a few others like me who aren’t) who apparently feel it is worth answering/discussing topics on this blog. The Deacon has been kind and allows me to express my opinions—which I try to do with respect for the other person’s statements. Have a great day or night as the case may be. :o) As I said above, RWC. has done a great job of his defence of the faith.

  135. pagansister says:

    Richard WC: You seem to have an argument for everything. :o) Women who are nurisng can get pregnant while nursing—I have known at least 2. One who was nursing got pregnant 3 months after her first child was born. Nursing is not a perfect natural birth control. Large families were not the norm? Maybe not but many farm couples had large families so they could have extra help to work the farms. Catholics used to have larger families than now, if I remember correctly. There were only 2 families that I remember that had more than 3 kids while I was teaching in the RC School—one family had 8 the other 5. The 8 were all single births. The 5 were 3 singles and a set of twins. The family with 8 had to stop sending their children to the school because they couldn’t afford it. I do agree that having multiple children at once is due to the ability to use invetro. (is that against Church teaching too?) However, “natural” pregnancies in the past may have produced twins and maybe triplets, but generally not 5 or 6.
    I am still of the strong opinion that using condoms prevents many STD’s, and Aids (and unwanted pregnancies) better than NOTHING. Yes, of course, some can be allergic to condoms. That is a reason to condem their use? Nope. However IMO they do more good than evil. And the added bonus of stopping an unwanted pregnancy thus less chance of a possible abortion.
    You mentioned menopause as a way to stop worrying about pregnancy? Do you have any idea how many “menopause” surprises there have been? Many.

  136. Richard W Comerford says:

    Ms pagansister:

    “You seem to have an argument for everything.”

    Not me. Paul VI. See Humanae Vitae.

    “Women who are nurisng can get pregnant while nursing”

    Of course. And so can women relying the pill, IUD and condoms. However most nursing women do not. This is why the size of families throughout history have been relatively limited compared to the fruitful years of the mother.

    “Nursing is not a perfect natural birth control.”

    Neither is the pill, IUD or condoms. And nursing does not cause cancers and other health risks. That is why for a Christian couple, or any couple cognizant of natural law, marriage is true planned parenthood. Children can happen.

    “And the added bonus of stopping an unwanted pregnancy thus less chance of a possible abortion.”

    World wide, since WWI, the increased use of condoms matches the increased incidence of STD.

    “I am still of the strong opinion that using condoms prevents many STD’s, and Aids (and unwanted pregnancies) better than NOTHING.”

    Absolutely not. Africa prior to WW II had the lowest rate of STD due to traditional tribal and clan morality based in large part of natural law. Africa was flooded with condoms during WW II. STD rates sky rocketed. Now Africa is a cesspool of STD. And it is the Wests’ fault. We pushed sexual immorality and artificial birth control. The only certain protections against STD are chastity and monogamy.

    “That is a reason to condem their use?”

    The reason to condemn the use of condoms is that every single act is, objectively speaking, gravely & intrinsically evil which threatens the salvation of the immortal soul. One immortal soul is worth more than the entire created universe.

    “However IMO they do more good than evil.”

    An action which is intrinsically evil can only be inimical to humanity.

    “Do you have any idea how many “menopause” surprises there have been?”

    Of course. Just as many women on the pill have had surprises. But normally women who are nursing or have reached menopause do not conceive.

    Sexual intercourse naturally leads to the possibility of pregnancy under any condition. However if sexual intercourse and children are deliberately and artificially separated then the man, woman and possible child become dehumanized and abortion, STD and divorce, among other evils, result.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  137. pagansister says:

    RWC: For those that are NOT Catholic, there is nothing “intrisically evil” about using birh control, condoms being one which I will not stop saying are the best prevention (other than not having sex) of helping to stop the spread Aids and STDs. Sometimes those in Africa who go to Catholic organizations for help, will not be offered condoms, thus the Aids and STD’s continue to spread. I understand the Churche’s position on that, and also realize that if it wasn’t for Catholic charities in some countries, improvements in some places wouldn’t take place. There are many other charity organizations who will provide condoms to those that ask/need them. We will not agree. In many ways, IMO, it is, to use your words, “intrinsically evil” in some ways to bring a totally unwanted child into the world—so prevention is best. Won’t go into children who are born to abuse, and suffer from day one, because the mother didn’t want it to begin with and didn’t either terminate or put the child up for adoption. I’m sure you will tell me that those children can be taken away from the parent to be put into a system which is in some cases (not all cases) are not much better than what they came from, but that doesn’t always happen before the child is physically & mentally damaged or dead.
    Yes, the pill, condoms etc. are not perfect prevention and in some cases can be harmful to the woman, (however not any I have known in my life). However they are more reliable than, again IMO, than the “natural method”. BTW, you mentioned that for period regulation can be achieved with meds? Those might include birth control pills, huh?
    I disagree that the “west” caused all the problems in Africa with condoms. Think about it—if you lived in the horrible conditions that some, by no means all, Africans in some countries (those with constant revolutions, terrorists etc) live, having sex is a brief way of forgetting the circumstances. I think preaching how wrong it is to have sex before marriage etc. will fall on deaf ears. Thus, having sex with a condom makes for less chance of bringing about either a pregnancy, STD or abortion. Yes, I know, evil , and you have numbers.
    I’m done wth this discussion. We’re starting to go around in circles. Yes, I’m really done this time. Thanks for the interchange.

  138. Richard W Comerford says:

    Ms pagansister:

    “For those that are NOT Catholic, there is nothing “intrisically evil” about using birh control”

    Funny prior to 1923 and the Lamberth Conference artificial contraception WAS intrinsically evil for almost all Christian denominations, many non-Christan and outlawed in most of the civilized and uncivilized world. Funny how men make evil good.

    “intrinsically evil” in some ways to bring a totally unwanted child into the world”

    Unwanted by who – you? Who decides a child is unwanted? The West? Worried about preserving natural resources? How do you know that both the mother & father and grand parents do not want the child? If no one else wants it my wife and I want it. There is always room in our home for one more.

    “condoms being one which I will not stop saying are the best prevention (other than not having sex) of helping to stop the spread Aids and STDs”

    Make sure you remind our African brothers & sisters of that. Africa has been awash with condoms since the end of WWII. And the magic rubber has not even slowed down STD and Aids.

    “Sometimes those in Africa who go to Catholic organizations for help, will not be offered condoms, thus the Aids and STD’s continue to spread.”

    Clearly you have never worked in Africa. I will say this again. Africa has been awash in condoms since WWII. The only medical supply in abundant supply in Africa is the condom. NO ONE who wants one goes without. Thanks in large part to the US Taxpayer. And thus AIDS and STD continue to spread.

    “Won’t go into children who are born to abuse, and suffer from day one, because the mother didn’t want it to begin with and didn’t either terminate or put the child up for adoption.”

    Do you think that the unborn child does not suffer when it is butchered, poisoned or burned to death in its’ mother’s womb? We live in a fallen world. Suffering cannot be avoided. However suffering is no excuse for the murder of innocents.

    “but that doesn’t always happen before the child is physically & mentally damaged or dead.”

    My wife and I adopt children that no one, NO ONE, else wants. We will take the child as our own.

    “However they are more reliable than, again IMO, than the “natural method”.”

    Even Planned Parenthood disagrees with you. See Life Site News.

    “Those might include birth control pills, huh?”

    Indeed they do. My wife once took the Pill for that very same reason. The Pill is not inherently evil. Only its use to prevent the transmission of human life is evil.

    “I disagree that the “west” caused all the problems in Africa with condoms.”

    The West did not cause all of Africa’s problems with condoms. Slavery, colonialism, materialism, Marxism and sexual immorality have also done great harm. And now Communist China is exploiting Africa.

    “if you lived in the horrible conditions that some, by no means all, Africans in some countries (those with constant revolutions, terrorists etc) live, having sex is a brief way of forgetting the circumstances.”

    And they love their children just as much if not more so than we selfish Americans do.

    “I think preaching how wrong it is to have sex before marriage etc. will fall on deaf ears.”

    Quite the opposite. The horrors of violence may open the human heart to the Good News of Jesus Christ and the reality of natural law.

    “having sex with a condom makes for less chance of bringing about either a pregnancy, STD or abortion”

    So says the West. In Africa today the encouragement of chastity and virtue on a national level is the only thing that is slowing down (and even reversing) STD.

    “Yes, I know, evil , and you have numbers.”

    Numbers is an inadequate word. We are talking about the deliberate destruction of Christian and traditional African family life on the altar of corrupt Western values.

    “We’re starting to go around in circles.”

    Circles formed by the culture of life and the culture of death.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  139. pagansister says:

    Like I said, TWC. I’m done. :o)

  140. Seems to me if something is “intrinsically evil” it is intrinsically evil for everyone. Whether you think it is evil or not doesn’t change the fact that it is. To say something is intrinsically for one and not the other makes no sense at all.

  141. pagansister says:

    I disagree, RomCath , that if something is “intrinsically evil” that means it is for everyone. As I expect you were (correct me if I’m wrong) referring to my statement that in the eyes of some religions, artificial birth control is “intrinsically evil” but that is not the case in all religions. So, opinions vary on that and other “evil” things. However I do agree that there are things that could be classified as “intrinsically evil” in all cases. :o)

  142. Richard W Comerford says:

    Re: On Intrinsic Evil & Birth Control

    “referring to my statement that in the eyes of some religions, artificial birth control is “intrinsically evil” but that is not the case in all religions”.

    Prior to 1923 it would be hard to find a Christian denomination which did not hold that artificial birth control was a grave & intrinsically evil. Most nations, Christian or otherwise, outlawed artificial contraception. Then in 1923 the Anglican Communion at its Lambreth Conference suddenly decided that artificial birth control was a grave & intrinsically evil after all. This Anglican revision of morality had a huge impact on all Christian denominations and led to the death of Western Civilization. By 1964 American Catholic Bishops were urging Catholic lawmakers to decriminalize artificial contraception.

    Four years later American and other Western Bishops went into defacto schism with the successor of Peter when Paul VI published his prophetic encyclical Humanae Vitae. Now the Catholic Church in the West has to deal with empty Churches, empty classrooms and an immorally corrupted priesthood.

    This is not a matter of denominational differences. Western Man choose to defy God and ignore natural law. In doing so he has committed suicide.

  143. pagansister says:

    Western civilization is done? That is very pessimistic, RWC. My outlook on life is much more optimistic. I would think your Faith would give you a much happier out look on the future.

  144. pagansister says:

    RWC. Western Man has defied God? Perhaps Western Man has different ideas of what that God wants. No one knows what God wants. NO one. IMO, not even the RCC. As I said above with your statement that mentioned Western Civilization is done—you are very pessimistic. I find that sad. Fortunately not eveyone feels as you do.

  145. Richard W Comerford says:

    Mr pagansister:

    “Perhaps Western Man has different ideas of what that God wants.”

    Until very recently the Men of the West had a very good and united idea of what God wanted. It was called the Ten Commandments.

    “No one knows what God wants.”

    And you know this how?

    “As I said above with your statement that mentioned Western Civilization is done—you are very pessimistic.”

    No. My hope is in Christ – not man. I am very optimistic.

    “Fortunately not eveyone feels as you do.”

    I pray that everyone shares my hope in Christ. But as for the worldings? Where is their hope? Worldly Western Man (and the Man of Japan, China, South Korea, Israel and all) is so full of despair that he cannot even reproduce himself. He is dying out. The numbers speak for themselves. Demographics is destiny.

    God bless

    Richard W Comerford

  146. This is not about religious freedom, people neeed to understand that employment laws are applicable to all not just a few. The other reliogious denominations are on line and understand what this is truly about so why is the Catholic Church propogating that this is a mandate against religious freedom when it is not?

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