Gerard Nadal doesn’t pull any punches with his response to an interview given by Cardinal Timothy Dolan on Fox News recently. Take a look.
Fox News reports that Cardinal Dolan, in an interview with David Gregory of Meet the Press, claims that the Church was “outmarketed” on the issue of gay marriage. From the report:
Asked why the church is losing the argument on gay marriage, Dolan responded, “Well, I think maybe we’ve been outmarketed sometimes. We’ve been caricatured as being anti-gay.”
He said the church supports “traditional marriage and is not “anti-anybody,” adding, “When you have forces like Hollywood, when you have forces like politicians, when you have forces like some opinion-molders that are behind it, it’s a tough battle.”
Without knowing it, Cardinal Dolan has identified the core of the problem. Our leadership, with few exceptions, have adopted the superficiality of branding and marketing as a cheap substitute for the grittiness and tenacity of evangelization. Worse still, while we have abandoned evangelization and hewing to the hard line of the Gospel, it is the other side who have been engaged in the grit and tenacity of evangelization.
That’s right. The other side has been engaged in three decades of evangelization, while the majority of our priests and bishops have endeavored to be “non confrontational” and “nonjudgemental”.
The results speak for themselves.
While the Church has been entirely kicked out of the public schools, with students being disciplined for wearing shirts bearing the word, “Christmas”, the other side has succeeded in getting complete acceptance in schools with gay/straight alliances, comprehensive sex education, and now state laws permitting transexual and transgender students permission to use whatever bathrooms they please.
That’s not marketing. That’s evangelization.
Our leaders have stood by, largely mute, while we have been kicked out of the public square by a vocal minority who have moved in to occupy the ground formerly held by the Church. That all begs the question as to how such a coup could have happened.
In truth, more than 85% of married Catholics ignore the Magisterium when it comes to the right use of sex in marriage and the use of contraception.58% of Catholics approve of gay marriage.
To say that those numbers are the result of marketing is to suggest that the Gospel has roots shallower than grass. And on that matter, Pope Francis has spoken loud and clear.
Many priests reacted with scorn to the challenge by Francis that they and their bishops get out of the rectory and go out among the people in a bold new way. Francis sees clearly that the Church is dwindling in influence because the people don’t know who they are. They have lost sight of their great dignity while so very many of our clergy refuse to engage the culture for fear of alienating people or seeming judgmental. That timidity is often defended as the cardinal virtue of Prudence.
It’s cowardice, pure and simple.
The New Evangelization certainly has it’s work cut out for us. There’s going to need to be some preaching, the likes of which folks haven’t seen, or heard, since 1900, or so.
The wicked will say, “Yes, we have enjoyed the world, and all its vanities, but what has it given us in return. Not happiness, not contentment; what a life of restlessness was ours. There is no peace for the wicked; we surfeited our souls and bodies with sin. Oh, had we done half as much to save our souls as we did to enjoy the illusive joys of our life on earth, we would be saints. We have grown tired in the way of iniquity and perdition; we have walked in difficult paths.”
Then the saints, all robed in white, with palm branches in their hands, in sign of triumph, will go joyfully to heaven, there to begin the eternal chant of paradise. The wicked, howling, blaspheming, and despairing, are caught in a terrible whirlpool that starts beneath their feet, sucking them down into eternal perdition. And these shall go to eternal perdition, but the just into life eternal!
Gulp! We might need to start reminding folks about the #1 Reason the Catholic Church won’t support Same-Sex Marriage.