BY JOHN T. CURRAN
On June 24th, 2022, the Feast of the Sacred Heart of Jesus, His Sacred Heart answered the prayers of faithful Catholics of the past 50 years through the overturning of Roe v. Wade. The Supreme Court of the United States of America in 1973, opened the door for the atrocious legalization of elective abortions resulting in the killing of over 63 million innocent souls in the womb, and some even outside the womb, in the nearly 50 years that followed.
Catholics at nearly every Sunday Mass, through the Prayers of the Faithful, have been praying for this event for nearly half a century. God has answered. While the killing will continue in Godless states, it will no longer be due to federal law…no longer can state legislators shrug their shoulders and excuse themselves, saying, “There is nothing we can do, it will be overturned by the Supreme Court.” Yes, the tables have turned. The onus is now upon the state legislators and the Governors.
The Catholic Church has officially been pro-life, as the Catechism of the Catholic Church states, “Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception.” (CCC 2270) Catholics have long respected Jer. 1:5, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you.”
The Church’s teachings have led in recent years to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) issuing statements that abortion is the paramount moral issue of the day in the United States. However, mixed messages from Bishops vitiated the moral teachings of the Church. The late Cardinal Bernardin of Chicago was an obstacle to pro-lifers’ efforts. The obtuse Cardinal promoted his “seamless garment” thesis that the brutal killing of unborn babies, the pinnacle of God’s creation, by surgical abortion, ripping their limbs, and decapitating their priceless heads from what was left of their bodies was somehow no less an evil than other social issues, that all suffering humanity deserved equal attention. Joseph Cardinal Bernardin, by his authority over the third largest archdiocese in the United States with a population of around 2 1/2 million Catholics, wielded enormous influence as a stumbling block to both priests and laity alike, casting doubt in the minds of priests as to the prudence of going “all out” in urging the laity to make the pro-life issue the number one issue. Laity, likewise, were encouraged to doubt themselves if tempted to make abortion a single issue in the voting booth. Bernardin and many of his episcopal peers were very successful in planting the seed that Catholics were “narrow-minded” and somehow “bigoted” if they considered the merits of politicians solely on where the politicians stood on abortion.
Bernardin’s legacy lives on in the hearts of some modern Bishops, and liberal Catholics. Bishop Timothy Doherty of the Diocese of Lafayette in Indiana, following the lead of Cardinal Cupich of Chicago, was a signatory to a May 13, 2021, letter, along with 66 other Bishops, five of whom were Cardinals. The letter urged the USCCB not to discuss at the Fall 2021 USCCB conference the Eucharistic worthiness of politicians, especially President Biden, who promote abortion. Why? Could it be these Bishops, for nefarious motives, place their allegiance to Democrat values above that of the innocent human life of the unborn? The full list of signatories can be found here.
Pro-life Catholics have understood that many, many Bishops, and priests, are enamored with the liberal social programs of the Democrats. The settling of illegal immigrants into the United States brings hundreds of millions of dollars into the church coffers. Hence, the Bernardin “seamless garment” doctrine that by listing a few of the Democrat pet issues, they will somehow, nullify the logical conclusion that a Catholic’s first duty is to ensure the right to life, and therefore justify voting Democrat rather than Republican. For decades, the National Republican Party Platform enshrined the Right to Life, while the Democrat platform promoted Women’s “Reproductive” Healthcare – an oxymoron if there ever was one. By reproductive healthcare, the Democrats mean funding Planned un-Parenthood and codifying abortions up to the moment of birth and beyond, for starters.
The Edison exit polling in the 2020 presidential election revealed that 52% of Catholics voted for Biden, a man who describes himself as a “devout” Catholic but is vitriolic in his abandonment of protection of pre-born babies. Biden is constantly promoting moral acts condemned by both the Catholic Church and Jesus Christ! The failure of the Church to publicly identify and correct the moral confusion sown by President Biden is a scandal of enormous proportions. Every Communion Biden receives is an objective pounding of a thorn into the Heart of the Sacred Heart of Jesus. The failure of most Bishops to speak up is an abomination!
The 52% figure cited in the preceding paragraph is an indictment of the utter failure of the Bishops to catechize their flocks. If that were the result of a school project, would you give a grade of a D or an F?
Most people have heard of the Father Altman saga. Fr. Altman, Pastor of a small Wisconsin parish catapulted into international fame when he stated, “You cannot be both Catholic and Democrat.” (We will come back to Fr. Altman shortly.) Most people have not heard of Msgr. Jeffrey Burrill, the General Secretary of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. One of his duties was handling sex abuse issues for the Bishops. He was found to be an extensive user of the Grindr app, a hookup app for homosexuals. Burrill was a user of Grindr, not only in private time but while working from his office in Washington D.C. and while traveling to various cities on business for the USCCB. He left extensive evidence that he frequently visited homosexual brothels. Due to the extensive damning evidence published by The Pillar, Msgr. Burrill immediately resigned in July 2021 when his homosexual activity was revealed. Now, the USCCB is not an insignificant operation. The 2019 financial report states the annual revenue was $188 million and assets totaled $377 million.
So, what’s this got to do with Fr. Altman? Well, Fr. Altman has been suspended from parish duties and can no longer speak Truth to his parish flock regarding the best ways to promote the sanctity of life. Msgr. Burrill, meanwhile, has been reinstated to Wisconsin parish life, because, as his Bishop stated, “there was no evidence that Msgr. Burrill engaged in any illegal activity.” Can you imagine?! He received carte blanche approval to engage in immoral, though legal, sexual activity.
Click here to see 2-min video of Fr. Altman’s reaction with CUP leader Vicki Yamasaki (3 minutes after the ending of Roe v. Wade)
Sexual activity between consenting adults, mind you, is not illegal in the United States. Has this become the new standard for the Church in the United States? The standards of the world, rather than the Standards of Jesus Christ? If manboy sex is legalized or pedophile activity is legalized, will our Church leaders be OK with this? Bestiality is legal in most states; is your Bishop OK with your priests spending their nights in a barnyard? The reinstatement of Msgr. Burrill sends a terrible message.
It is highly recommended that you read Goodbye, Good Men by Michael Rose. It documents the sordid state of many of our seminaries as recently as 20 years ago. Despite attempts to clean up homosexuality, the stories of Msgr. Burrill and Cardinal McCarrick show the depth to which acceptance of the homosexual culture within the priesthood is still entrenched.
Clergy enslaved by sins of the flesh are in the wrong line of work. It must be exceedingly hard to preach against sins of the flesh if one is currently addicted to that lifestyle. Abortion is the ultimate sin against the flesh. One could hardly expect the Church leaders who promote homosexuality, such as the newly elevated Cardinal McElroy of San Diego, to be leaders in the formation of the consciences of their laity.
So, are the Bishops entitled to take credit for the historic overturning of Roe v. Wade? One would question that if the Bishops were successful in forming public opinion, then why did more Catholics vote for a pro-abortionist in the 2020 presidential election than for the man, who in the previous four years appointed three of the six Supreme Court judges who voted to overturn 50 years of state-sanctioned child killing? One would think that if the Bishops were successful in forming the consciences of their flocks that the states with the most Catholics would be on the cutting edge of pro-life legislation. Nope, didn’t happen that way.
Consider: none of the eight most Catholic states, ranging from Rhode Island (42% Catholic) to Illinois (28%) have trigger laws or laws that will soon outlaw abortion. Five of seven of the least Catholic states, ranging from Arkansas (8% Catholic) to Mississippi (4%) have trigger laws in place that have already or within 30 days will outlaw abortion. Why is it that Mississippi, the state with the lowest percentage of Catholics, with only 4%, was the state whose Attorney General litigated the Dobbs case that resulted in ending the federal sanctioning of the murders of sixty-three million babies? Can the Bishops honestly take any credit for this? Why did this court case not originate from the highly Catholic states of California, New York, or Illinois? What does this tell you about the ability of the leadership of the Catholic Church to affect, through the laity, meaningful influence in pro-life legislation?
USCCB committees, pro-life position papers, and eye-rolling have little meaning when the Bishops are preoccupied with following the mass media in condemning innocents like 16-year-old high schooler Nick Sandman, a little lamb left to fend for himself in the 2019 March for Life in Washington D.C. Not only were media giants attacking him, but he received numerous condemnations from Bishops, including his own. Instead, the Bishops should have praised Sandman and his Covington, KY classmates for the sacrifice they made for the unborn. Sandman has since been exonerated, winning millions of dollars in civil lawsuits. Yes, words matter, but actions speak louder. The Bishops have failed miserably in the defense of the civil rights of the pre-born, just as they failed in defending the civil rights of blacks before it was made popular by the media.
Faithful Catholics need to ramp up their prayers and fasting, calling upon God to send courageous Bishops who will defend the Faith of the Church Fathers. Offer up your frustrations through Mary, the Mother of the Church, that God speeds up the purification of the Church. Pray as though all depends upon God. Conversely, Catholics need to act as though the future of the Church depends totally upon their actions. Time-honored activities, such as writing to Bishops, and discussing your concerns with your parish priests, are your duty. Finally, support Corpus Christi for Unity and Peace (CUP) so that efforts to educate others on the beauty of our Mother Church are magnified.