Friday, October 23, 2009

A Kennedy Spits at the Church, and His Bishop Responds Harshly [UPDATED]

(Hat tip: Creative Minority Report)

Congressman Patrick Kennedy thinks he knows more about Catholic Social Teaching than the U.S. Bishops:

Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-R.I) told that the Catholic Church is doing nothing but fanning “the flames of dissent and discord” by taking the position that it will oppose the health-care reform bill under consideration in Congress unless it is amended to explicitly prohibit funding of abortion.

I can’t understand for the life of me how the Catholic Church could be against the biggest social justice issue of our time,
[ED.: What you can't understand "for the life" of you - pun intended - is that "the biggest social justice issue of our time" is - and has been for over 30 years - the cause of protecting the unborn in law and in dignity. Once you've come to that realization and start to use your political power to further that cause, then maybe we'll start listening to the rest of your social justice pontificating.] where the very dignity of the human person is being respected by the fact that we’re caring and giving health care to the human person--that right now we have 50 million people who are uninsured,” Kennedy told when asked about a letter the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) had sent to members of Congress stating the bishops' position on abortion funding in the health-care bill.

“You mean to tell me the Catholic Church is going to be denying those people life saving health care? I thought they were pro-life?
[ED.: You wouldn't know "pro-life" from Adam. What chutzpah for this death merchant to lecture the Bishops on what it means to be pro-life! I deleted the choice words I first typed here. I'll leave it to Kennedy's Bishop to take him to task - more on that in a moment.] said Kennedy. “If the church is pro-life, then they ought to be for health care reform [ED.: If I support it, it must be "Catholic", abortion funding notwithstanding.] because it’s going to provide health care that are going to keep people alive. So this is an absolute red herring and I don’t think that it does anything but to fan the flames of dissent and discord [ED.: Well, now you're talking within your area of expertise. You - and the rest of your clan - certainly know a thing or two about dissent and discord.] and I don’t think it’s productive at all.
(emphasis and editorial commentary added)

Kennedy's bishop, Thomas J. Tobin, of the Diocese of Providence, was not pleased. His response was immediate and harsh:
(PROVIDENCE, R.I.)-The Most Rev. Thomas J. Tobin, Bishop of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence, today issued the following statement in response to a Cybercast News Service article that reported:

Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-R.I) told that the Catholic Church is doing nothing but fanning “the flames of dissent and discord” by taking the position that it will oppose the health-care reform bill under consideration in Congress unless it is amended to explicitly prohibit funding of abortion.

“Congressman Patrick Kennedy’s statement about the Catholic Church’s position on health care reform is irresponsible and ignorant of the facts. But the Congressman is correct in stating that “he can’t understand.” He got that part right.

As I wrote to Congressman Kennedy and other members of the Rhode Island Congressional Delegation recently, the Bishops of the United States are indeed in favor of comprehensive health care reform and have been for many years. But we are adamantly opposed to health care legislation that threatens the life of unborn children, requires taxpayers to pay for abortion, rations health care, or compromises the conscience of individuals.

Congressman Kennedy continues to be a disappointment to the Catholic Church and to the citizens of the State of Rhode Island. I believe the Congressman owes us an apology for his irresponsible comments. It is my fervent hope and prayer that he will find a way to provide more effective and morally responsible leadership for our state.”
(emphasis added)

My Comments:
Typical Kennedy mindset: the Church isn't being truly "Catholic" unless it's supporting Democrats and Democrat policies.

But the gene pool at the compound in Hyannisport is getting shallower and shallower.

At least the previous generation of Kennedys had enough residual Catholicism to pretend to be faithful to the Church, and fudged their political preferences as being consistent with the demands of their faith because of their so-called "personal opposition" to the immoral B.S. for which they continued to vote and publicly advocate. Unburdened, however, by such hypocrisy - or by the need to be seen as the face of Catholic America, this present generation of Kennedy's - from Kathleen "Obama is more Catholic than the Pope" Kennedy Townsend right down to Patrick "disappointment to the Catholic Church" Kennedy - have absolutely no qualms about directly attacking the Church, her Bishops, and her Magisterial teaching.

UPDATE (26 October)
The Archbishop of New York has a thing or two to say about what is truly "the biggest social justice issue of our time":
... Many issues and concerns in addition to protecting the baby in the womb fall under the rubric of the right to life—child care, poverty, racism, war and peace, capital punishment, health care, the environment, euthanasia—in what has come to be called the consistent ethic of life. All those issues, and even more, demand our careful attention and promotion.

But the most pressing life issue today is abortion. If we're wrong on that one, we're just plain wrong.

When our critics—and their name is legion—criticize us for being passionate, stubborn, almost obsessed with protecting the human rights of the baby in the womb, they intend it as an insult. I take it as a compliment.

I'd give anything if I could claim that Catholics in America prior to the Civil War were "passionate, stubborn, almost obsessed" with protecting the human rights of the slave. To claim such would be a fib. But, decades from now, at least our children and grandchildren can look back with pride and gratitude for the conviction of those who courageously defend the life of the pre-born baby...
(emphasis added)

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At 10/23/2009 8:58 PM, Blogger Rick said...

The gene pool is definitely shallower. We don't expect character from these guys. This one shows that we don't have to expect brains either.

At 10/24/2009 6:35 PM, Blogger lamt said...

The Kennedy's have been 'spitting' at the Catholic Church since there have been Kennedys. And, thankfully, the Church has always, does still and will continue to outlive all of them.

Also predictable is how 'the biggest social justice issue' always seems to be at hand when one of them takes a public office and is in need of publicity--that he's in shock and awe that the Catholic Church 'could be against' abortion is so absolutely pretentious as to be laughable.


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