Archbishop’s homily: Hope is the grace to trust that God is who he claims to be…

Over the past 41 years, the prolife movement has been written off as dying too many times to count.  Yet here we are, again and again, disappointing our critics and refusing to die.  And why is that?  It’s because the Word of God and the works of God do not pass away.  No court decision, no law and no political lobby can ever change the truth about when human life begins and the sanctity that God attaches to each and every human life.

The truth about the dignity of the human person is burned into our hearts by the fire of God’s love.  And we can only deal with the heat of that love in two ways.  We can turn our hearts to stone.  Or we can make our hearts and our witness a source of light for the world.

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The new (Catholic) McCarthyism: “Are you now, or have you ever been, a critic of Pope Francis?”

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Archbishop Charles Chaput of the Philadelphia Archdiocese has been unfairly depicted as a critic of Pope Francis.  This stems from an interview he had with John Allen of the National Catholic Reporter.

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Archbishop Chaput: “The HHS mandate can only be understood as a form of coercion.”

“Access to inexpensive contraception is a problem nowhere in the United States,” he said. “The mandate is thus an ideological statement; the imposition of a preferential option for infertility. And if millions of Americans disagree with it on principle–too bad.”

The archbishop went on to observe that abortion advocates use fraudulent language in describing their position.

“The fraud at the heart of our nation’s ‘reproductive rights’ vocabulary runs very deep and very high,” he wrote. “In his April 26 remarks to the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, the president never once used the word ‘abortion,’ despite the ongoing Kermit Gosnell trial in Philadelphia and despite Planned Parenthood’s massive role in the abortion industry.”

Link

Editor’s note: Judging by the revelations concerning the Archdiocese of New York, Obama and his minions already know that coercion is very likely to succeed.

His former Archdiocese now in shambles, retired Philadelphia prelate waxes affectionately about the “many graces” of the 2nd Vatican Council.

Through the council, “many graces” were given to the Church, he said, but following Vatican II, the Church also faced many challenges, and “not all of them have been met.”

Among these challenges has been the question of what constitutes “the Spirit of Vatican II,” Cardinal Rigali said, citing Pope Benedict XVI, who said “there is no spirit of Vatican II independent of what Vatican II says.”

He also recalled the former Pontiff’s quote, “Not everything that happened in the name of Vatican II belonged to Vatican II.”

A proper reading of Vatican II sheds light on our efforts to faithfully understand the intersection of the Church and the modern world, the cardinal explained.

“As we read the documents 50 years later, it’s amazing to see how relevant they are, how much they apply to the Church,” he remarked.

Link

Editor’s note: Maybe something was lost in translation … or maybe the Cardinal’s memory has failed.  One thing’s certain though … the current Archbishop of Philadelphia – Charles Chaput – who inherited the mess – has necessarily been invoking the Holy Name of Jesus with greater and greater frequency. The big question: Is he invoking the Traditional pre-Vatican II Jesus (as in praise, worship and petitions) … or the modernist, “worldly” post-Vatican II Jesus (as in accidentally hitting his thumb with a hammer?)

Archbishop Chaput on Catholic philosophy and elections, along with some recommended reading.

Any committed Christian might be tempted to despair. But the truth is that it’s always been this way. As the author of Hebrews wrote, “here we have no abiding city” (Heb 13:14). Augustine admired certain pagan Roman virtues, but he wrote the City of God to remind us that we’re Christians first, worldly citizens second. We need to learn—sometimes painfully—to let our faith chasten our partisan appetites.

In the United States, our political tensions flow from our cultural problems. Exceptions clearly exist, but today our culture routinely places rights over duties, individual fulfillment over community, and doubt over belief. In effect, the glue that now holds us together is our right to go mall-crawling and buy more junk. It’s hard to live a life of virtue when all around us, in the mass media and even in the lives of colleagues and neighbors, discipline, restraint, and self-sacrifice seem irrelevant.

Brad Gregory, the Notre Dame historian, seeks to show how we got this way in his recent book The Unintended Reformation: How a Religious Revolution Secularized Society. His answers are surprising, and for some readers, controversial. But his book is also important—and in its explanatory power, brilliant.

Link

Chaput: “We just have to be insistent. Catholic identity takes precedence over everything.”

Abortion, Archbishop Chaput says, “is very serious issue that requires absolute adherence on the part of Catholics,” Chaput explains. “And if we don’t stand united on this issue, we’re bound to failure — not only in the area of protecting unborn human life but in maintaining our religious freedom,” he continues.

And lest you worry he’s forgotten he’s a spiritual shepherd and become a canvasser for the Grand Old Party in the latter-days of a presidential election, he cautions: “You cannot trust Republicans to be pro-life twenty years from now,” Chaput says. “You can’t let any party take your vote for granted. That’s unfortunately what’s happened. . . . That’s why the position of the Democrats has gotten worse and worse and worse . . . Catholics haven’t abandoned them.”

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Denver Catholic Archbishop Charles Chaput says pro-abort Democrats simply don’t know Christianity

“We need to remember two basic truths. Here’s the first truth.

Society has an obligation – and Christians have a Gospel duty – to provide adequate and compassionate support for unwed and abandoned mothers women facing unintended pregnancies; and women struggling with the aftermath of an abortion. It’s not enough to talk about ‘pro-life politics,’ The label ‘pro-life’ demands that we work to ensure social policies that will protect young women and families, and help them generously in their need. In the archdiocese of Denver we try very hard to do that through the Gabriel Project and other forms of outreach and support.

“Here’s the second truth. Killing an unborn child is never the right answer to a woman’s or society’s problems. Acts of violence create a culture of violence—and abortion is the most intimate form of violence there is. It wounds the woman, it kills the unborn child and it poisons the roots of justice and charity that bind us all into one human family,” he said.

In his clarification for church members, he denounced the “spin” among politicians seeking to justify abortion and appease militant pro-abortion interests, including the billion-dollar Planned Parenthood, the nation’s largest player in its abortion industry.

“Catholic public leaders inconvenienced by the abortion debate tend to take a hard line in talking about the ‘separation of church and state.’ But their idea of separation often seems to work one way. In fact, some officials also seem comfortable in the role of theologian. And that warrants some interest, not as a ‘political’ issue, but as a matter of accuracy and justice,” he wrote.

“Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi is a gifted public servant of strong convictions and many professional skills. Regrettably, knowledge of Catholic history and teaching does not seem to be one of them,” Chaput continued.

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Kennedy had a “morally destructive” effect on two generations of Catholic politicians

Fifty years ago this fall, in September 1960, Sen. John F. Kennedy, the Democratic candidate for president, spoke to the Greater Houston Ministerial Association. He had one purpose. He needed to convince 300 uneasy Protestant ministers, and the country at large, that a Catholic like himself could serve loyally as our nation’s chief executive. Kennedy convinced the country, if not the ministers, and went on to be elected. And his speech left a lasting mark on American politics. It was sincere, compelling, articulate – and wrong. Not wrong about the patriotism of Catholics, but wrong about American history and very wrong about the role of religious faith in our nation’s life. And he wasn’t merely “wrong.” His Houston remarks profoundly undermined the place not just of Catholics, but of all religious believers, in America’s public life and political conversation. Today, half a century later, we’re paying for the damage.

Now those are strong statements. So I’ll try to explain them by doing three things. First, I want to look at the problems in what Kennedy actually said. Second, I want to reflect on what a proper Christian approach to politics and public service might look like. And last, I want to examine where Kennedy’s speech has led us – in other words, the realities we face today, and what Christians need to do about those realities.

Read the article

And the follow-up

“If you speak up for the unborn child in this life, someone will speak up for you in the next, when we meet God face to face.”

Cleveland, Ohio, Mar 9, 2010 / 10:24 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Calling pro-life advocates and all Christians to courage and virtue, Archbishop of Denver Charles J. Chaput provided a list of “dos and don’ts” for the pro-life movement on Tuesday evening. He urged an end to divisions and false oppositions, encouraging pro-lifers to be joyous and hopeful witnesses through public action and new technologies.

Delivering the keynote speech for Cleveland Right to Life’s symposium “Bringing America Back to Life” on March 9, the archbishop said pro-life unity is a sign of God’s Spirit, while division is the sign of “Someone very different.”

“As a bishop, I’ve been baffled by the energy wasted on internal pro-life bickering. We can never allow our differences to become personal.”

“Don’t create or accept false oppositions,” he added, criticizing efforts to drop the legal fight to end abortion by seeking “common ground.”

In his view, Americans have not taken such gradualist approaches to reducing injustices such as racism or sexual assault.

“We make sexual assault illegal — even though we know it will sometimes still tragically occur — because it’s gravely evil. It’s an act of violence, and the law should proscribe it.”

If abortion is really an “intimate act of violence,” an end to it is necessary through law. Pro-lifers cannot be satisfied with “mere ‘reductions’ in the body count,” he continued, adding that a legal approach combined with support for pregnant women is needed.

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Denver archbishop explains why lesbian couple’s child not admitted to school

The Church does not claim that people with a homosexual orientation are “bad,” or that their children are less loved by God.  Quite the opposite.  But what the Church does teach is that sexual intimacy by anyone outside marriage is wrong; that marriage is a sacramental covenant; and that marriage can only occur between a man and a woman.  These beliefs are central to a Catholic understanding of human nature, family and happiness, and the organization of society.  The Church cannot change these teachings because, in the faith of Catholics, they are the teachings of Jesus Christ.

The policies of our Catholic school system exist to protect all parties involved, including the children of homosexual couples and the couples themselves.  Our schools are meant to be “partners in faith” with parents.  If parents don’t respect the beliefs of the Church, or live in a manner that openly rejects those beliefs, then partnering with those parents becomes very difficult, if not impossible.  It also places unfair stress on the children, who find themselves caught in the middle, and on their teachers, who have an obligation to teach the authentic faith of the Church.

Most parents who send their children to Catholic schools want an environment where the Catholic faith is fully taught and practiced.  That simply can’t be done if teachers need to worry about wounding the feelings of their students or about alienating students from their parents.  That isn’t fair to anyone—including the wider school community.  Persons who have an understanding of marriage and family life sharply different from Catholic belief are often people of sincerity and good will.  They have other, excellent options for education and should see in them the better course for their children.

Read more at the Denver Catholic Register

Archbishop Chaput speaks of JFK – and Baptists more friendly than Catholics

Fifty years ago this fall, in September 1960, Sen. John F. Kennedy, the Democratic candidate for president, spoke to the Greater Houston Ministerial Association.

He had one purpose.  He needed to convince 300 uneasy Protestant ministers, and the country at large, that a Catholic like himself could serve loyally as our nation’s chief executive.

Kennedy convinced the country, if not the ministers, and went on to be elected.  And his speech left a lasting mark on American politics.  It was sincere, compelling, articulate – and wrong.

Not wrong about the patriotism of Catholics, but wrong about American history and very wrong about the role of religious faith in our nation’s life.  And he wasn’t merely “wrong.”  His Houston remarks profoundly undermined the place not just of Catholics, but of all religious believers, in America’s public life and political conversation.  Today, half a century later, we’re paying for the damage.

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Archbishop Chaput of Denver shares a Health Care Bill email with us

What the hell don’t you understand about the term separatin [sic] of Church and State. Keep your evil hands off of our Health Care Bill. Mind your own business. We don’t care about your beliefs, and if you want to meddle in our affairs, we will be coming for you. If that’s how you want to play, we will come for your pedophile priests, your ill-gotten money you stole for decades. The Catholic church is just another organized crime syndicate that should be put out of business. Get the f–k away from Congress, or you will regret it … .

That’s a real e-mail from a real person.  The man who sent it last week was either very candid or very foolish about his anger: he added his real name and e-mail address.  I’ve withheld them here because I like to hope that most people, or at least many of them, are better than the poisonous things they sometimes write. But this e-mail does teach a useful lesson, because it’s not just a case of a random bigot getting in touch with his inner bully.  Instead, it’s a snapshot of the anti-Catholic bitterness that drives some of the loudest voices in the current health-care debate.

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Denver archbishop warns against ‘spirit of adulation’ surrounding Obama

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“I like clarity, and there’s a reason why,” began the archbishop. “I think modern life, including life in the Church, suffers from a phony unwillingness to offend that poses as prudence and good manners, but too often turns out to be cowardice. Human beings owe each other respect and appropriate courtesy. But we also owe each other the truth — which means candor.” – Archbishop Charles Chaput of Denver

Click here to read the whole story

An important related article from Archbishop Chaput

Doing the Lord’s work

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Doing the Lord’s work

The archbishop’s column this week is adapted from his remarks to the John Paul II Society in Ireland, scheduled for Feb. 7.

People sometimes say we’re living at a “post-Christian” moment. That’s supposed to describe the fact that Western nations have abandoned or greatly downplayed their Christian heritage in recent decades.  But our “post-Christian” moment actually looks a lot like the pre-Christian moment. The signs of our times in the developed world—morally, intellectually, spiritually and even demographically—are very similar to the world at the time of the Incarnation.

The truth is, the challenges we face as Catholics today are very much like those facing the first Christians. And it might help to have a little perspective on how they went about evangelizing their culture. They did such a good job that within 400 years Christianity was the world’s dominant religion and the foundation of Western civilization.

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Democratic Convention’s non-invitation of Archbishop Chaput an “insult,” Democrat says

Democratic Convention’s non-invitation of Archbishop Chaput an “insult,” Democrat says

 

Archbishop of Denver Charles J. Chaput

.- Archbishop of Denver Charles J. Chaput was not invited to pray or speak at the upcoming Democratic National Convention in Denver, Colorado, in what former Boston mayor Ray Flynn called a “serious oversight” and an “insult” to the values of pro-life Catholics.

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How to Conduct Politics as Catholics

How to Conduct Politics as Catholics

The Denver Memorandum

A book by American archbishop Chaput is making a stir ahead of the presidential elections, against those who want to water down the faith or remove it from the public sphere. “L’Osservatore Romano” is the first to review it, and recommends that it be read “in the United States and elsewhere”

by Sandro Magister

ROMA, August 13, 2008 – A few days ago, a book was released in the United States that will be widely discussed, especially in the run-up to the presidential elections. The author is Charles J. Chaput, archbishop of Denver.

Chaput, 64, born to a farming family in Kansas, is a member of the Native American tribe of the Prairie Band Potawatomi. He is a Franciscan, of the Capuchin order. Before going to Denver, he was bishop of Rapid City in South Dakota. He is among the candidates for two top-level archdioceses waiting for new archbishops: New York and Detroit.

The title of the book itself gives a hint to its contents: “Render Unto Caesar. Serving the Nation by Living Our Catholic Beliefs in Political Life.” It is right to give Caesar what belongs to him. But one serves the nation by living out one’s own Catholic faith in political life.

Chaput moves decisively against the prevailing cultural tide in the media, in the universities, among political activists, a tide that wants to thrust the faith from the public stage.

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Regarding pro abortion politicians receiving communion

Buy the book here