Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York said claims by a former senior adviser to President Trump that Catholic bishops advocate for immigrants for economic benefit and to fill pews are “preposterous and rather insulting.”
Speaking to SiriusXM’s The Catholic Channel on Thursday, the cardinal dismissed the comments made to CBS News by Breitbart editor Stephen Bannon, saying “I don’t really care to go into what I think is a preposterous and rather insulting statement that the only reason we bishops care for immigrants is for the economic [incentive] because we want to fill our churches and get more money.”
“That’s insulting and that’s just so ridiculous that it doesn’t merit a comment,” he said.
Earlier on Thursday, Mr. Bannon said on CBS News that he believes the Catholic Church has been “terrible” to Mr. Trump on the issue of immigration, accusing bishops of supporting immigrants out of “economic interest” and because they are “unable to really come to grips with the problems in the church.”
Cardinal Dolan emphasized that the church’s teaching to welcome immigrants comes straight from the Bible.
“The Bible is so clear, so clear, that to treat the immigrant with dignity and respect, to make sure that society is just in its treatment of the immigrant is [a] Biblical mandate,” he said on The Catholic Channel. “It’s clear in the Old Testament—my Jewish neighbors remind me of that all the time—and it’s clear from the lips of Jesus when he said, ‘Whatever you do to the least of my brothers you do to me. When I was a stranger—meaning an immigrant or a refugee—you welcomed me.’”
He’s right, you know.