• Bernard Fischer

    Instead of parsing a single statement of the Cardinal, what of his whole life? Did he take strong, unambiguous statements about the sanctity of life from conception to natural death? Did he admonish his flock to vote for life? Did he pray outside abortion clinics in his diocese? Or did he, by his actions, treat abortion as one issue among many? Not being from Chicago, I would like to know.

    • RUTH_ANN

      I’m from Chicago. I have a photo of my daughter, age 6 at the time, and the late Cardinal Bernardin, on my prayer room wall. I always read his columns in the Catholic newspaper, and on a few occasions I heard him speak. He was a holy man. What more is necessary? Furthermore, abortion, egregiously evil as it is, actually is one evil among many. Pope Francis has exhorted Catholics to be balanced about all the issues that deserve our attention.

      • Bernard Fischer

        The question is not whether he was a holy man, but whether he was soft on abortion. His supporters claim the “seamless garment” theory was taken out of context to give cover to pro choice / pro abortion Catholics. His detractors say he saw abortion as equal to every other social cause. So you can be bad on abortion, but good on unions and good on food stamps and still be a good Catholic because you have two out of three right. Is there a hierarchy of issues or are they all the same?

        So the question I have is, by his life which view did Cardinal Bernardin espouse?

        • RUTH_ANN

          My understanding of holiness is that the holy person believes and acts in accordance with God’s teachings and those of the Church. I think that says it all. And, yes, the holy person’s life will reflect that. Thing is, who sees and understands our whole life—inside and out? God, of course. No one else.

          What, exactly does it mean to be “soft on abortion?” All evil is evil, and there’s lots of it floating around! I don’t know if there is a hierarchy of evil. Maybe so. If so, I didn’t have to learn it during my elementary, secondary, and post-secondary Catholic education. Nor, have I heard such a hierarchy preached at Mass. I think it’s best to avoid all that is evil and strive for goodness. Be good. Do good. God will take care of the rest.

          • Bernard Fischer

            Thanks for your reply, but you still haven’t answered my question. I now where YOU stand, but I still don’t know where Cardinal Bernardin stood.

          • RUTH_ANN

            Oh. I see your point. I’m sorry I was unable to accommodate you. Good luck and God’s blessings to you on your journey to finding the answer which you seek.

          • oregon nurse

            There is a hierarchy of sin, i.e., venial and mortal. Isn’t that the same thing as hierarchy of evil? I also don’t see how the death of an innocent human being can be anything other than the worst of evils.

          • RUTH_ANN

            That sounds like a valid interpretation of venial and mortal sin. I, however, never heard that interpretation from an authoritative source, like the Catechism of the Catholic Church.


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