Bishop Morlino of the Diocese of Madison, on the Wisconsin union standoff

… To the documents quoted by Archbishop Listecki I would also offer a quotation from the encyclical of Pope John Paul II, Laborem Exercens*, which gives us even more “food for thought” on this matter:

“Just efforts to secure the rights of workers who are united by the same profession should always take into account the limitations imposed by the general economic situation of the country. Union demands cannot be turned into a kind of group or class ‘egoism,’ although they can and should also aim at correcting — with a view to the common good of the whole of society — everything defective in the system of ownership of the means of production or in the way these are managed. Social and socioeconomic life is certainly like a system of ‘connected vessels,’ and every social activity directed towards safeguarding the rights of particular groups should adapt itself to this system.

“In this sense, union activity undoubtedly enters the field of politics, understood as prudent concern for the common good. However, the role of unions is not to ‘play politics’ in the sense that the expression is commonly understood today. Unions do not have the character of political parties struggling for power; they should not be subjected to the decision of political parties or have too close links with them. In fact, in such a situation they easily lose contact with their specific role, which is to secure the just rights of workers within the framework of the common good of the whole of society; instead they become an instrument used for other purposes.”

Read the entire letter

*Click here to read Laborem Exercens on the Vatican website



Catholic League president Bill Donohue defended the bishops as the true voice of the Catholic Church:

Anyone seeking to know the position of a newspaper on any given issue would be well advised to consult the editorial page. Anyone seeking to know the position of a labor union on any given issue would be well advised to consult what union officials say. Anyone seeking to know the position of the Catholic Church in the U.S. on any given issue would be well advised to consult the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). The fact that some reporters, union members or Catholics disagree with some of the positions taken by the editors, officials or bishops is interesting, but changes nothing.

This needs to be said as media outlets are now trying to cast the bishops as one voice among many in the Catholic community. Of course, adding to the confusion are fraudulent Catholic groups like Catholics United, a front for its benefactor, George Soros; the National Catholic Reporter, a newspaper known mostly for its rejection of Catholic teachings on sexuality; groups like NETWORK, a Catholic organization whose founder Sister Marjorie Tuite was threatened with expulsion from her order because of her aggressive pro-abortion position; and an array of dissident nuns. Previously, Donna Quinn, the co-director of the National Coalition of American Nuns, signed a statement demanding abortion coverage in the health care bill.

All of this started when a nun who heads the Catholic Health Association (CHA) said she liked the Obama bill. It quickly metastasized into something so bizarre that we now have a liberal Catholic, E.J. Dionne, wondering why the bishops are undermining the CHA!

The Catholic League stands with the USCCB, Cardinal Francis George, Archbishop Joseph Naumann, Archbishop Charles Chaput, the Council of Major Superiors of Women Religious, and all those Catholics who truly oppose abortion and refuse to compromise Church teachings.