A reader sends along a letter

The letter below was inspired by the amazingly contemptuous and snotty reply Fr. Biondi made to C&EI; reader John Hearn, (you can see it in the comments boxes on that blog). I wonder if he will be equally snotty when he knows that several Catholic media will probably get a copy of whatever he writes back to this reader:

Dear Father Biondi:

I have written you four times in the past 18 months and have telephoned your office a number of times where I usually have spoken with an individual who only will identify himself as “Jay.” I have tried to reach you in your capacity as a director of the Tenet Healthcare Corporation. Tenet owns our local hospital complex, MetroWest Medical Center, where babies are killed deliberately for profit. When I first tried to reach you I assumed that, because you are a Roman Catholic priest, and because the Catholic Church is unequivocally opposed to abortion, I would easily procure your cooperation in helping curtailing this aspects of the hospital’ s business.

So far my expectations have not been met and, indeed, you have not even acknowledged my communications. Therefore I was surprised to see that you did take the time to reply to a rather cheeky comment placed by John Hearn recently on a website called, “Catholic And Enjoying It.” You appear to have been attempting to diminish the sting of Mr. Hearn’s criticism with hyperbole and ridicule. You refer to the three persons of the Blessed Trinity and sarcastically ask, “Since when is there a 4th, God John Hearn, who is all knowing of all things that are ethical, religious and moral?”

In November 2002 I wrote you as follows:

“You must be aware that your continued presence on the board of directors of an abortion-providing organization appears to be a grave scandal and, in any event, is enormously demoralizing to Roman Catholics in general, but particularly those who are engaged in pro-life work….If you are unable to do anything from your position on the Tenet board to stop abortions at Tenet facilities, you would be doing all Catholics, but particularly pro-lifers, an enormous favor by resigning from the board.”

You are coming up for reelection to the Tenet board on July 23, 2003. I am writing now to ask that you withdraw from the election. This could, in a small way, help mitigate the grave scandal to your Church and the Jesuit Order which has resulted from your complicity with an organization which provides abortions for profit. I realize that this would mean foregoing the $100,000 plus in fees and benefits you receive from Tenet, but this certainly is a small price to pay to diminish the scandal you now are causing.

In my letter to you of May 24, 2002, I quoted Evangelium Vitae and the Catholic Catechism (2272) on canonical penalties attached to participation in abortion. I suggest you review and ponder this teaching between now and the July 23 elections. I would also point out that the St. Louis Province of the Jesuit order has a serious stake in the matter if, indeed, you are relinquishing your Tenet compensation to the Order, as this would make the Provincial leaders who accept this money also complicit in the crime of abortion.

I am including a number of Catholic leaders on the distribution of this message in the hope that that some of them may be able to add weight to my arguments regarding the untenability of your current relationship with the Tenet organization.


Reader’s name

Copy to:

Very Rev. Frank Reale,S.J.

Rev. Timothy M. McMahon

Deal Hudson, Crisis Magazine

Jim Rygelski, St. Louis Review

Molly Corcoran Kertz, St. Louis Archdiocese Pro-life Committee

Most Rev. Richard G. Lennon (via Father Robert Kickham)

Mark Shea, “Catholic And Enjoy It”

John Hearn