Good news from Los Angeles: gays, progressives and liberals hate to see Cardinal Mahoney go!

These are only some of the comments of a disappointed, openly gay priest who is no longer permitted to exercise priestly faculties:

Cardinal Mahony, wrote Fr. Farrow, “who likes to view himself as a progressive, would never voluntarily be replaced by a member of the ultra-reactionary group, Opus Dei. His replacement by someone from Opus Dei clearly communicates that Mahony has lost all practical influence in Rome and was not able to name his successor.”

“What does this mean for the future of the Catholic Church in Los Angeles and California?” asked Farrow. “It means a sharp thrust to the right. The Archbishop of Los Angeles does not merely run the church in LA; he also has tremendous influence on naming the bishop in its associated sees (i.e. San Diego, Orange, Monterey, Fresno, and Riverside) and Region XI, which includes the rest of California. Many of these sees will soon require new bishops and Gomez will have tremendous influence in naming who those bishops will be. He will also reshape the education and formation of new priests for the whole region since St. John’s Seminary, where priests are trained and formed, is under his direct control.”

“(Archbishop) Gomez is an excellent choice from the perspective of Rome,” wrote Fr. Farrow. “He is a member of Opus Dei and therefore ‘orthodox’ and more importantly subservient to Rome. He is a Latino who speaks broken English with a heavy Spanish accent and possesses a populist ‘easy going’ demeanor. He will be a huge hit with Latinos in Southern California and politicians will think twice before confronting Gomez on any point.”

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Editor’s note: After a long string of various scandals and embarrassments, plus some $600 million in abuse settlements, things (finally) appear to be looking up for left-coast Catholics!

Tom Roeser and the spirit of Fr. Ernie respond to certain Catholic commentators, politicians

Catholics bound by the moral law can agreeably participate in the secular political system where civil law may contradict the moral. But in no sense should the civil law intrude upon the conscience of the Catholic and require his compliance… nor frankly can the Catholic inflict the Church’s morals on the state beyond what is understood as the democratic process.

It is important to accept this as Murray’s wise guide-and nothing more. It certainly didn’t mean that Murray recommended that Catholics surrender their consciences and bow to unjust civil law. Far from it. But this is what John F. Kennedy implied when he addressed the Houston ministerial association in a speech written by one John Cogley, who ultimately left the Church. In his speech Kennedy assuaged the Protestant ministers by saying that he would not inflict his Church’s views on the country, that he would serve as president who happened to be Catholic-not as a Catholic president. This sounded dangerously scandalous to one of Catholic formation-except that Kennedy added this which I paraphrase: if an issue ever arises where civil action contradicts my religious conscience, I shall resign. That was enough to close the credibility gap.

Not that the John Kennedy we have come to understand would allow his Catholicism to interfere with his duties. In fact it is commonly known now that he did in fact allow sexual immorality to coincide with his duties and in fact it is still an open question as to whether his immorality… his promiscuous attentions to a young woman also the mistress of a Mafia chieftain… did him in! I shall not digress further! [Laughter].

… “There are two powers by which this world is chiefly ruled: the sacred authority of the Popes and the royal power. Of these the priestly power is much more important because it has to render account for the Kings of men themselves at the Divine Tribunal. For you know that although you have the highest place in dignity over the human race, yet you must submit yourself faithfully to those who have charge of divine things and look to them for the means of your salvation… For if in matters pertaining to the administration of public discipline, the bishops of the Church, knowing that the Empire has been conferred on you by divine instrumentality, are themselves obedient to your laws, lest in purely material affairs contrary opinions may seem to be voiced, with what willingness I ask you, should you obey those to whom is assigned the administration of divine mysteries?”

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