Sunday, September 18, 2011

WFUV Media Player

WFUV Media Player: The Big Broadcast - 9/11/2011

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Canon 915: Even the Pope Doesn't Get It Yet?

In raising two Americans to the Cardinalate, Raymand Burke and Donald Wuerl, the Holy Father raises the question: Does he really "get it" regarding Canon 915?

Cardinal Burke has demonstrated, conclusively, definitively, that giving Communion to pro-abortion Catholics, including pro-abortion Catholics occupying public office, is "grave matter"--or, as lay people are more likely to say, "a mortal sin." (All the other conditions of a formal mortal sin being present.)

When asked recently to explain why so many bishops persist in giving Communion to pro-abortion politicians, Archbishop Burke gave one answer: corruption. None of the excuses such bishops have given hold any water. Primarily, they have claimed, falsely, that Canon 915 is a penal canon, and they therefore have the right to exercise discretion in imposing the "penalty" of denial of Communion. But Canon 915 is not a penal canon, and Cardinal Burke has demonstrated that it imposes a STRICT, GRAVE obligation.

That means, simply, an obligation which leaves one exactly two choices: obedience, or mortal sin. There is no third option, no matter how many in the hierarchy clearly wish to live under that illusion.

Truthfulness and charity require all Catholics who understand this issue to keep reminding bishops and priests of the truth that Cardinal Burke has made clear.

Cardinal Burke's original article on Canon 915:

Monday, October 25, 2010

Cardinal-elect Donald Wuerl | Sophistry and Evasion Continue

No comment by Archbishop Donald Wuerl has ever responded directly to the conclusive case Archbishop Raymond Burke has made that disobedience to Canon 915 is always grave matter. In this blog post, Canon Lawyer Ed Peters dissects one of Archbishop Wuerl's typical statements.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Catholics and the Tea Party

   Quote(11) nullification
June 18th, 2010 | 5:45am
The proper response to Roe v. Wade, in accordance with Catholic teaching that a command to commit a crime must be disobeyed, is nullification. The governors, who are commanded by Roe to commit the crime of discriminating against a group of people by denying them the protection of the homicide laws, were and are required by Catholic teaching to disobey.

In April of 1973, Cardinal Krol, president of the NCCB, issued a statement to that effect.

"The bishops" have never again articulated what the Catholic Church's teaching REALLY requires of governors or any other government official with respect to Roe or abortion. What they HAVE done is give medals, honorary degrees, awards, speaking opportunities, lavish funerals, and Communion, to pro-abortion Catholics.

People who have been actual, active pro-lifers know that "the bishops" are marginal, shadowy, irrelevent figures as far as the pro-life movement is concerned.
 Written by Fr. Vincent Fitzpatrick

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Dr. Charles Rice | Commencement Address | Christendom College | May 15, 2010

MAY 15, 2010
Professor Emeritus, Notre Dame Law School

      When President O’Donnell asked me to give this address, I expressed one concern:  “Will there be a protest?  And will you prosecute the protestors?  Or at least 88 of them?”  He made no commitment.  I accepted anyway. 
      So what can I tell you?  This is a time of crises.  The economy is a mess, the culture is a mess, the government is out of control.   And, in the last three years, Notre Dame lost 21 football games.  But this is a great time for us to be here, especially you graduates of this superbly Catholic college.  This is so because the remedy for the general meltdown today is found only in Christ and in the teachings of the Catholic Church.  Let’s talk bluntly about our situation and what you can do about it.
      We are living through a transformation of our federal government.  A one-party regime, the leader of which was elected with 54 percent of the Catholic vote, is substituting for the free economy and limited government a centralized command system of potentially unlimited jurisdiction and power.  Its takeover of health care, against the manifest will of the people, not only funds elective abortions and endangers the elderly and conscience rights.  It was enacted in disregard of legislative process and by a level of bribery, coercion and deception that was as open as it was unprecedented. 
      To find a comparable example of the rapid concentration of executive power by a legally installed regime, we have to go back to 1933.  Adolf Hitler was named Chancellor on January 30.  Over the next few weeks he consolidated his power.  The decisive event was the Reichstag’s approval of the Enabling Act on March 23, 1933, by which it ceded full and irrevocable powers to Hitler.  That was the point of no return.  The Enabling Act received the needed two-thirds vote only because it was supported by the Catholic party, the Centre Party.1  Our “Health Care Reform,” enacted with the decisive support of Catholic members of both houses of Congress, may be the Enabling Act of our time in the control it cedes to government over the lives of the people.  It includes the federal takeover of student aid.  What do student loans have to do with health care?  The common denominator is control.  No student will be able to get a federally guaranteed educational loan without the consent of a federal bureaucrat.  This opens the way to make political loyalty a test for educational advancement, as it was in Nazi Germany and the Soviet Union.  This confirms the wisdom of Christendom’s decision to forego all federal aid. 
      Unlike Germany in 1933, we have legal means of redress.  I am proud to say I am a Tea Party guy.  In November, the reaction may dislodge the Congressional arm of the ruling class.  But that reaction will be only temporary unless we go to the source of the evil.  The root problem is not political or economic.  It is religious.  And that is where you come in.
      “The social crisis,” said Fr. Thomas Euteneuer, “happens when we elect people to rule over us who are immoral.  …. [P]eople who don’t have a moral bearing to elect other moral people, elect immoral politicians to serve over them…. So immoral lifestyles produce immoral leaders.”2  In other words, we elect immoral, rather than moral, people because we have lost the ability, or the desire, to tell the difference.  The answer, said Fr. Euteneuer, is “to turn back to God. … What we need is a conversion of heart.” 
      We rightly urge fidelity to the Constitution.  But no paper charter can survive the disappearance of the morality that produced it.   In 2001, thirteen days after 9/11, Pope John Paul II, in Kazakhstan, cautioned the leaders of that Islamic republic against a “slavish conformity” to Western culture which is in a “deepening human, spiritual and moral impoverishment” caused by “the fatal attempt to secure the good of humanity by eliminating God, the Supreme Good.” 
      You graduates will enter a culture in which the intentional infliction of death upon the innocent is widely seen as an optional problem-solving technique.  The Columbine shootings set a precedent.  If you have a grievance against your classmates, fellow employees or IRS agents, the answer is to blow them away.  Legalized abortion is the prime example of murder as a problem solver.  And the execution of someone like Terri Schiavo occurs routinely, without public notice, when the family and caregivers agree to withhold food and water because it is time for the patient to “die with dignity.” The separation of morality from killing has counterparts in the separation of morality from economics, from sex and from personal decisions in general. 
      There is no mystery in this.  We are living through what Fr. Francis Canavan, S.J., called “the fag end of the Enlightenment,” the collapse of the effort by philosophers and politicians, over the past three centuries and more, to build a society as if God did not exist.3  That Enlightenment culture is built on three lies, secularism, relativism and individualism.  They are components of what Benedict XVI called a “dictatorship of relativism… that recognizes nothing as absolute and which leaves only the ‘I’ and its whims as the ultimate measure.”4  Those three lies are weapons deployed by our enemy, Satan, the father of lies.  Your job, for which you are well equipped, is to counter his lies with the truth.  If you speak the truth, you will have an impact beyond what you know.  Cardinal Edouard Gagnon described a conversation he had with John Paul II:
    [T]he Holy Father… told me, “error makes its way because truth is not taught.  We must teach the truth.… not attacking the ones who teach errors because that would never end—they are too numerous.  We have to teach the truth.”  He told me truth has a grace attached to it.  Anytime we speak the truth…. an internal grace of God… accompanies that truth.  The truth may not immediately enter in the mind and heart of those to whom we talk, but the grace of God is there and at the time they need it, God will open their heart and they will accept it.  He said, error does not have grace accompanying it.5
      Remember that Truth, with a capital T, “is a person, Jesus Christ.”6   And Christ is not some lawyer, CEO or community organizer.  He is God.  Cardinal Avery Dulles described three foundational principles: “that there is a God, that he has made a full and final revelation of himself in Jesus Christ and that the Catholic Church is the authorized custodian and teacher of this body of revealed truth.”7  The Catholic faith is not a set of doctrines.  It is a lived encounter with Christ, who lives in, and teaches through, the Church.8
      The Magisterium, or teaching authority of the Church, is a great gift, not only for Catholics but for others to whose conscience it appeals “on the basis of reason and natural law.”9  The forces of evil concentrate their fire on the Vicar of Christ, who is the authoritative interpreter of the moral law.  We must respond with loyal defense of him and of the Church.  We are not, to borrow Fr. Euteneuer’s phrase, the Church Impotent.  We are part of the Church Militant.  Our job is to fight for the Truth.  Don’t be conned by their lies:
  1. The first lie is secularism: There is no God or he is unknowable.   They say that is what the First Amendment means, but that, too, is a lie.  On September 24-25, 1789, the First Congress approved the First Amendment and called on the President to proclaim a day of “thanksgiving and prayer… acknowledging… the many … favors of Almighty God.”10  President Washington proclaimed that day of prayer.  The First Amendment required neutrality on the part of the federal government among religious sects while recognizing the power of the state and federal governments to affirm the existence of God.  The Supreme Court has now imposed a duty on all governments to maintain an impossible neutrality between theism and non-theism.  The words “under God,” according  to Justice William Brennan’s still accurate description of the Court’s approach, may remain in the Pledge of Allegiance only because they “no longer have a religious purpose or meaning.”  Instead they “may merely recognize the historical fact that our Nation was believed to have been founded ‘under God.’” 11
   At all levels of government, the suspension of judgment on the existence of God has evolved into an establishment of secularism.  Today, affirmations of God are considered non-rational, and are generally excluded from the public discourse which is shaped by utility and power rather than right or wrong.
      The existence of God is not self-evident.  But it is unreasonable, even stupid, not to believe in God, an eternal being that had no beginning and always existed.  The alternative is that there was a time when there was absolutely nothing.    But that makes no sense. St. Thomas Aquinas said, “if at one time nothing was in existence, it would have been impossible for anything to have begun to exist; and thus even now nothing would be in existence--- which is absurd.”12  As Julie Andrews put it in The Sound of Music, “Nothing comes from nothing.  Nothing ever could.” 
   The only basis for transcendent rights against the State is the creation of the immortal person in the image and likeness of God.  Every state that has ever existed, or ever will exist, has gone out of business or will go out of business.  Every human being that has ever been conceived will live forever. That is why you have transcendent rights against the State.  The person does not exist for the State.  The State exists for the person.  And for the family.
  1. The second lie of Satan is relativism.  To say that all things are relative is absurd, for that statement itself must be relative.  The jurisprudence of relativism is some form of legal positivism, which asserts that there is no higher law that limits what human law can do.  A law of any content is valid if it is enacted pursuant to prescribed procedure and is effective.  Hans Kelsen, the leading legal positivist of the 20th century, said that Auschwitz and the Soviet Gulags were valid law.  He could not criticize them as unjust because justice, he said, is “an irrational ideal.”13  Kelsen claimed that relativism is the philosophy of democracy.  John Paul II said relativism leads instead to totalitarianism:  “If one does not acknowledge transcendent truth, then the force of power takes over, and each person tends to … impose his own interests … with no regard for the rights of others.”14 
      In your personal and professional lives you will be pressured to be a relativist, to lie, cheat or steal.  As John Paul put it, the negative prohibitions of the Commandments, which are a specification of the natural law, “allow no exceptions.”15  But you will pay a price for your fidelity. 
      Let me tell you a story.  Captain James Mulligan, of the United States Navy, spent seven years, half of them in solitary confinement, in the Hanoi Hilton after his plane was shot down in 1966.  He was a cell-mate for a time of later Senator Jeremiah Denton.  He, as were the others, was tortured severely and often to try to make him betray his fellow prisoners and his country.  Captain Mulligan put his reliance on prayer, especially the Rosary.  Under torture, he laid it on the line in a prayer he composed that we ought to make our own: “Lord, give me the strength and the guts to see this thing through to the end, one way or another. No one else knows, Lord, but you and I know, and that’s all that’s necessary.  You suffered for your beliefs, and I must suffer for mine.  Right is right if no one’s right; wrong is wrong if everyone’s wrong.”16  That is the answer to relativism. 
  1. The third lie you will confront is individualism.  Social contract theories denied the social nature of man.  They postulated a state of nature in which each person was an autonomous, isolated individual with no relation to others unless he consents.  That is the origin of pro-choice as we know it today.  Planned Parenthood didn’t think it up.  The mother has no relation to her unborn child unless she consents.  The husband and wife have no continuing relation unless they continue to consent.  And so on.  The autonomous individual is his own god.  Conscience is not a judgment about the objective rightness or wrongness of an act.  It is the individual’s unfettered decision as to what he wills to do.  Whatever he chooses is, for him, the right thing to do.  That is portrayed as the way to freedom.   But “authentic freedom” cannot be separated from the truth.17  You are “free” to choose to put sand in the gas tank of your car.  But you will no longer be free to drive your car because you have violated the truth of the nature of your car.  You are “free” to choose to lie, to fornicate, etc., but you will diminish yourself because you have violated the truth of your nature.  You have chosen the moral equivalent of putting sand in your gas tank.  And there is one thing the autonomous individual of liberal mythology can never do.  He can never put himself out of existence.  He is going to live forever and will spend eternity someplace.  Where, is up to him.
      It is time for us to shed our inferiority complex. We allow ourselves to be conned into thinking that the smart guys are the academics who think that something can come from nothing, who are sure that they can’t be sure of anything and who think that freedom means, without limit, the power and right to do whatever they want.  This culture has lost not only its faith but also its mind.  They need to hear the truth, especially about the right to life. 
      But there we have a problem.  Our prolife efforts are compromised by our timidity on contraception.    The Anglican Lambeth Conference of 1930 was the first time that any Christian denomination had ever said that contraception could ever be objectively right.  The Magisterium teaches the truth, that contraception is wrong, first, because it deliberately separates the unitive and procreative aspects of sex; second, by so changing the nature of the conjugal act, the man and woman make themselves, rather than God, the arbiters of whether and when life shall begin; and third, contraception frustrates the total mutual self-donation that ought to characterize the conjugal act.  If man makes himself the arbiter of whether and when life shall begin, he will make himself the arbiter of when it shall end as in abortion and euthanasia.  John Paul II described abortion and contraception as “fruits of the same tree.”18  If it is man’s decision whether sex will have any relation to reproduction, why can’t Freddy and Harry get a marriage license?  In 2004, Pastor Donald Sensing of Trinity United Methodist Church in Franklin, TN, wrote that opponents of same-sex marriage are “a little late.  The walls of traditional marriage were breached 40 years ago” with the general acceptance of the contraceptive pill.19 
      God has chosen to depend on human cooperation for the creation of new citizens for the kingdom of heaven.  The contracepting couple alter the conjugal act to prevent that creation.  What they say to God is something like this: “For all we know, God, it may be your will that from this act of ours a new human person will come into existence who will live forever.  For all we know, that may be your will.  And we won’t let you do it.”  That is awesome.  “Contraception,” said John Paul II, “is so profoundly unlawful as never to be, for any reason, justified.  To think or to say the contrary is equal to maintaining that in human life situations may arise in which it is lawful not to recognize God as God.”20
      Catholics practice contraception at the same rate as everyone else.  One reason is that they have not been adequately informed.  Many Catholic churches and schools are closing or consolidating for lack of parishioners and students.  A fair response would be respectfully to say: “Most Reverend Bishop (or Father), you would not have this problem if you and your predecessors had been doing your job, over the past four decades and still today, of educating your people about the evil of contraception and about the entire positive teaching of the Church on marriage and the gift of life.” Christendom graduates know the score on this.  Don’t be afraid to live it.  And teach it, by word and example.
      The link is clear between the premises of the Enlightenment and of contraception and such evils as pornography, promiscuity, divorce, in vitro fertilization, cloning and others.21   Scientists at Newcastle University, in England, announced last month that they had created a “designer embryo” with the DNA of one man and two women, a child with two mothers.22  Our scientists are probably not far behind.
      Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, now Benedict XVI, addressed this point in 2002.  He discussed the description in Genesis 3 of the posting of angels east of Eden with flaming swords to keep man, after the Fall, from eating of the Tree of Life.  After the Fall, man was forbidden to eat of that tree which gave immortality, “since to be immortal in this [fallen] condition would… be perdition.”  People are now, Ratzinger said, “starting to pick from the tree of life and make themselves lords of life and death, to reassemble life….[P]recisely what man was supposed to be protected from is now… happening; he is crossing the final boundary….[M]an makes other men his own artifacts.  Man no longer originates in the mystery of love, by… conception and birth… but is produced industrially, like any other product…. [W]e can … be certain of this: God will take action to counter an ultimate crime, an ultimate act of self-destruction, on the part of man.  He will take action against the attempt to demean mankind by the production of slave-beings.  There are indeed final boundaries we cannot cross….”23 
      This is serious business.  Nineveh repented, prayed and was spared.  Sodom and Gomorrah did not and were destroyed.24  Those options could be ours.
      If we look at all this in merely human terms, our cause is hopeless.  But we don’t depend on our own strength.  And we don’t know everything.  Don’t be discouraged when bad things happen.  “God permits everything,” said St. Maximilian Kolbe, “in view of a greater blessing.”25  Trust God.  Fr. Walter Ciszek, S.J., who spent 23 years in Soviet prisons, said what God wants, especially in times of adversity or danger, is “an act of total trust,” demanding “absolute faith: faith in God’s existence, in his providence, in his concern for the minutest detail, in his power to sustain me, and in his love protecting me.”26
      Trust God.  And pray, especially, to Mary, his Mother and ours.  At Lepanto in 1571, the odds against the Christian fleet were so great that Las Vegas would have taken that bet off the board.  But they prayed the Rosary and Mary gave the victory.  She can take care of our problems today.  This really is a great time for us to be here.  We know we are on the winning side.  God is not dead.  He isn’t even tired. 
      Thank you for the privilege to be with you.  God bless you, your families and Christendom College.  And God bless the United States of America.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Archbishop Timothy Dolan on "Immigration": the comments continue...

Fr. Vincent Fitzpatrick says: Your comment is awaiting moderation.
“Dwight Spivey says:
April 30, 2010 at 8:34 am
A response from Archbishop Dolan to the comments on this page would be greatly appreciated by all, I’m sure. I understand he is busier than I can possibly imagine, but please don’t give us such an inflammatory and divisive statement and not respond to our honest and sincere comments on it. Thank you.”

Demagogues don’t answer questions. They just put out their propaganda and fool who they can fool, and then move on. Notice how Obama doesn’t have press conferences. Notice how the White House never issues any statements “explaining” or "clarifying" his countless lies about taxes, health care, the Arizona law, etc. There’s never any: “What I meant to say was…” There’s just silence. Questions don’t really exist. Notice that Obama has never returned a phone call or answered a letter from Gov. Jan Brewer. People who don’t agree (i.e., have not been duped) are not worthy to receive any answer.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

usccb's memo to a battered wife: no taking names!

Kevin Appleby, a spokesperson for the USCCB, said the organization works with who they can on each individual issue. [S]aid Appleby. “If we took names every time that a legislator disagreed with us and said we’re not going to work with them anymore, we wouldn’t be very effective.”

There's the problem. Get kicked in the teeth, come back for more. Get kicked in the teeth again, come back for more. Get kicked in the teeth, come back for more. To do otherwise would be "taking names."

In order to do his job AS A BISHOP, a bishop MUST "take names." I.e., a bishop must take note of the fact that a prominent Catholic has become MANIFESTLY WICKED. When a MANIFESTLY WICKED Catholic parades up to receive Communion, a blow is struck against the Church.

What IS a Catholic bishop? 1) a shepherd of souls, custodian of the truth and the sacraments, protector of the Church against scandalous wolves? 2) a meek, suppliant wether in a herd (the USCCB) that lobbies in Washington for the expansion of the Marxist central government?

Thanks to Kevin Appleby for inadvertently pointing out a major reason that the USCCB is a corrosive, corrupting force in the Church. Aside from liturgical atrocities and rhetorical tricks that kneecapped the pro-life movement, the other principle legacy of Joseph Bernardin is the Church's addiction to taxpayers' money.

As long as Canon 915 is dead letter, the pro-aborts will continue eating the heart out of the Catholic Church in America, with each sacrilegious Communion--purchased from the bishops with government money.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

dolan, chaput, dinardo, george, etc., etc.--in bed with ALINSKY network

The colonization of the Catholic Church in America by Saul Alinsky is complete. A Catholic diocese is hardly a diocese without myriad ties to Alinskyite organizations promoting amnesty for and legalization of illegal aliens--not to mention abortion, gay marriage, and other fronts in the Left's war on Western Civilization. Thank Joseph Bernardin (D-Chicago) for much of Alinsky's success on these fronts.

Monday, May 10, 2010

fr. pfleger's ghostwriter

Here’s one bishop (Timothy Dolan, D-NY) who’s taking orders from Archbishop ("you need to preach amnesty from the pulpit") Pelosi:

Saturday, May 8, 2010

big crackdown on doctrinal deviations: archbishop pelosi calls on fellow bishops to "instruct" voters against dissent

Who are the cardinals, archbishops, bishops coming to Archbishop Pelosi for instruction in the Catholic Faith?

Fox News

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Thursday urged Catholic leaders to "instruct" their parishioners to support immigration reforms, saying clerics should "play a very major role" in supporting Democratic policies.

"The cardinals, the archbishops, the bishops that come to me and say, 'We want you to pass immigration reform,' and I said, 'I want you to speak about it from the pulpit. I want you to instruct your' -- whatever the communication is," said Pelosi, who is Catholic, speaking at the Nation's Catholic Community conference sponsored by Trinity Washington University and the National Catholic Reporter.

"The people, some (who) oppose immigration reform, are sitting in those pews, and you have to tell them that this is a manifestation of our living the gospels," she said.

While it's not unusual for clergy to speak about politics from the pulpit, it is uncommon for a lawmaker to openly encourage them to preach a specific policy.

Asked for clarification, a Pelosi spokesman issued the statement: "From health care to energy security to immigration reform, the speaker believes the faith community has played and will continue to play a critical role in our national debate."

Pelosi said the church "has an important role to play" in teaching about dignity and respect, and "as a practical matter" it's not possible to tell 12 million illegal immigrants to "go back to wherever you came from or go to jail."

After Arizona passed a controversial immigration law, with Gov. Jan Brewer saying she was forced to act because Congress hasn't, Washington has been at a loss on how to proceed on new federal policies that could put millions of illegal immigrants on a path to citizenship. Lawmakers on both sides admit that passing a bill during this election year is highly unlikely.

The Arizona law, which is slated to take effect July 29, makes it a state crime to be in the U.S. illegally. It directs police to question people about their immigration status when they may be in the country illegally and when they already are the subject of police contact.

In other remarks at the Catholic briefing, Pelosi said she prays for her colleagues all the time, Democrats and Republicans alike.

"It's a beautiful thing to listen to different points of view. From a religious perspective we come from a similar Catholic background but sometimes we have to come to a different conclusion about how we translate that into public policy," she said.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Operation Rescue Exposé of Southwestern Women's Options in Albuqueque, N.Mex.

"Abortion Capital" Series Exposes
Horrific Late-Term Abortion Business
May 6, 2010 
Albuquerque, NM - Operation Rescue has released the final installment of a five part series of investigative reports titled "Abortion Capital," exposing the dangers of the new late-term abortion business, Southwestern Women's Options in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

Part One explains how permissive abortion laws in New Mexico drew the late-term abortion industry to that state when the infamous Women's Health Care Services (WHCS) in Wichita, Kansas, permanently closed last year.

Parts 2-4 focus on each abortionist who works at Southwestern Women's Options, including Texas abortionist Curtis Boyd, and California abortionists Shelley Sella and Susan Robinson, who worked for WHCS doing abortions through the latest stages of pregnancy.

Part Five explores the late-term abortion method used by Boyd, Sella, and Robinson, and documents complications and reaction from other abortionists who consider it to be unsafe.

"We expect that there will be serious, life threatening emergencies at Boyd's abortion clinic just like there were at WHCS, where the Induction abortion method was developed. Women need to be warned of the very real dangers that they face at Boyd's Albuquerque clinic. It is only a matter of time before a woman dies from abortion complications there," said Newman.  "The nature of the process makes it inevitable."

"We plan to use every legal option available to close this clinic for the protection of women and their viable babies. The first step is to raise public awareness and warn others of the dangers so they don't fall victim to this predatory late-term abortion mill, and we pray that the Abortion Capital series of reports will help do that."

Read the entire series:
Abortion Capital, Pt. 3: "A baby came out and it was moving"
Abortion Capital, Pt. 4: The Dancing Dog
Abortion Capital, Pt. 5: "We think the process is safe. Nothing is perfect"

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Archbishop Timothy Dolan on "Immigration": Comments Continue

Fran Rossi Szpylczyn says:
Thank you for your words on this subject Archbishop Dolan. It strikes me that most Catholics, who do either agree or feel ambivalent about the Arizona law, might not really fully comprehend the heft of anti-Catholic protest that you present here. Legal or not, Catholics were reviled and hated. And it was in that very cauldron that our faith thrived in this land. There is a lesson there, but that is another story for another day!
A few points about the draconian nature of the bill…
One is that there are numerous Arizonans who are “brown skinned” (the use of that language causes me to shudder) and are of Mexican heritage. Their families have been in Arizona long before it was Arizona. Now they have to produce “proof” of who they are? I personally find that, as an American and as a Catholic, appalling. And I say this as a Catholic who had a Jewish father. I do not have to scratch the surface very far to think of my own relatives who had to carry and produce identification that ultimately lead to their own suffering and untimely deaths.
To those who wish to say it is different, it is not. The good people of that time had many of the same “justifications” that I see here and elsewhere.
Another point is that this burdens numerous already over-burdened law enforcement agencies in Arizona. Imagine that the NYC police would have to take this on… Think on that for a moment and imagine its implications.
Who is speaking of the “rights” of those who have entered illegally? I don’t know about anyone else, but I think that this issue and Archbishop Dolan’s post are an invitation into a greater understanding of basic human dignity. We live in such perilous and punitive times; God have mercy on us all.
My final point would be that we must all approach the topics that are most visceral for us and the things that make us uncomfortable with great curiosity and not just steadfastness. If we do so with our faith and the enormity of our great Catholic tradition, we might all be astounded as to where we are led. I remind myself of this as well as there are numerous issues that my faith challenges me to see with new eyes. Such is the process of our faith.

Fran Rossi Szpylczyn says:
While I agree with you, I am both curious and bemused by the dissenting commenters. How is church teaching right except for when one disagrees with it? And trust me – no one would easily call me a rule-bound person. (Not that I am breaking them either!)
Dissenting commenters – do you think you know more than the good Archbishop? Perhaps you do, perhaps you do.
Perhaps when we disagree with authority we should ask more questions.
Or maybe just lean into our discomfort about what we disagree with and what we actually know about it.
I say this as someone who is no stranger to disagreement. Expressing it is easy. Examining it and submitting to truth… Not. So. Much.
Fascinating post and thread. Human dignity still hangs in the balance.

Fr. Vincent Fitzpatrick says:
Your comment is awaiting moderation.
Fran Rossi Szpylczyn:

Please note that everything Archbishop Dolan had to say was about “immigration.” Since the Arizona law is about ILLEGAL immigration, one could justly say that Archbishop Dolan’s comments were not even about the Arizona law, but some imaginary law in Archbishop Dolan’s cranium.

But assuming that Archbishop Dolan was actually commenting on the situation in Arizona, nothing he had to say had anything to do with the teaching of the Catholic Church.

Thus, none of the “dissenters”–people disagreeing with the Archbishop–is disagreeing with any teaching of the Catholic Church.

I.e., none of these “dissenters” is being selective about the teaching of the CHURCH. So your original question is simply irrelevant.

Comments by an Archbishop about a law that doesn’t exist. Comments by an Archbishop that have nothing to do with Catholic teaching. Comments by an Archbishop that smear decent Americans seeking to protect themselves from mayhem, theft, home invasions, cop-killing, decapitations and other forms of murder, etc., all the while failing to acknowledge the existence of any of these ongoing horrors.

I await Archbishop Dolan’s upcoming comments about the whiners in Haiti, gobbling up international aid when there really was no earthquake.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Democrat Party Hack caught impersonating Archbishop of New York! "Archbishop Timothy Dolan" posts pro-chaos rant! Confuses "immigration" with ILLEGAL immigration!

Archbishop Dolan’s screed was disgraceful and juvenile, filled with mockery of decent Americans as racists, nativists, Know-Nothings, etc. He even mocked their supposed patterns of speech: “‘for’ner.’” He contributed NOTHING to the discussion in the way of facts OR principles. His endorsement of the fact-blind ideology of Cardinal Mahony is shocking. Right out of the box, he misrepresents the issue as “immigration,” when the issue is ILLEGAL immigration.

Fortunately, Abp. Dolan’s own blog is filled with factual, intelligent responses to his comments, from people on the ground in Arizona, and from well-informed Catholics. That is, people who cite the relevant passages of the Catechism–something Abp. Dolan failed to do in his insulting, bigoted rant.

If a bishop has something to say that illuminates a current public issue with the light of Catholic teaching, he should speak. If all he has to offer are the talking points of the left-most wing of one political party, he is abusing his office as a bishop.

Archbishop Dolan has established himself over the past few months as just such a bishop. Unless he develops an understanding of where his authority as a bishop begins and ends, he is not an asset to the Church, but a destructive, misleading voice, and deserves to be called out on his irresponsibility by both clergy and laity.

Archbishop Dolan's nastier, even more insulting version of Mahonyism

The Gospel in the Digital Age

Immigration Reform

Here we go again!

Anyone who does not believe that “history repeats itself” has only to take a look at the unfortunate new law in Arizona.

Throughout American history, whenever there is tension and turmoil in society — economic distress, political rifts, war, distrust and confusion in culture — the immigrant unfailingly becomes the scapegoat.

It’s a supreme paradox in our American culture — where every person unless a Native American, is a descendent of immigrants — that we seem to harbor an ingrained fear of “the other,” which, in our history, is usually the foreigner (immigrant), the Jew, the Catholic, or the black. (cf. Religious Outsiders, by R. L. Moore, or Immigrants and Exiles, by K. Miller).

So we can chart periodic spasms of “anti-immigrant” fever in our nation’s history:  the Nativists of the 1840’s, who led mobs to torch Irish homes and Catholic churches; the Know-Nothings of the 1850’s who wanted to deny the vote to everyone except white, Protestant, native-born, “pure” Americans; the American Protective Association of the 1880’s and 1890’s who were scared of the arrival of immigrants from Italy, Poland, and Germany; the Ku Klux Klan of the 1920’s who spewed hate against blacks, Jews, Catholics, and “forn-ers”; the “eugenics movement” of the 1920’s and 1930’s who worried that racial purity was being compromised by the immigrant and non-Anglo Saxon blood lines; and the Protestants and Other Americans United of the 1950’s who were apprehensive about Catholic immigrants and their grandkids upsetting the religious and cultural concord of America.

And, here we go again!  Arizona is so scared, apparently, and so convinced that the #1 threat to society today is the immigrant that it has passed a mean-spirited bill of doubtful constitutionality that has as its intention the expulsion of the immigrant.

What history teaches us, of course, is that not only are such narrow-minded moves unfair and usually unconstitutional, but they are counterproductive and harmful.

Because the anti-immigrant strain in our American heritage, however strong, is not dominant.  Thank God, there’s another sentiment in our national soul, and that’s one of welcome and embrace to the immigrant.
That’s the ethos we New Yorkers are most at home with, as we look out at the Statue of Liberty, whose torch of welcome has caused tears of joy in the eyes of millions of our grandparents as they arrive exhausted and nearly desperate, and as we today live next door to Latino, Haitian, Asian and mid-eastern neighbors.

That’s the ethos most especially a part of the Catholic — the word means everybody — culture, which has been a spiritual mother to immigrants to America, who were and are mostly Catholic, who have found a home in parishes and schools which helped get them moved-in and settled in America.

From even a purely business point of view, a warm welcome to immigrants is known to be good for the economy and beneficial for a society.

To welcome the immigrant, to work hard for their legalization and citizenship, to help them feel at home, to treat them as neighbors and allies in the greatest project of human rights and ethnic and religious harmony in history — the United States of America — flows from the bright, noble side of our American character.

To blame them, stalk them, outlaw them, harass them, and consider them outsiders is unbiblical, inhumane, and un-American.

Yes, every society has the duty to protect its borders and thoughtfully monitor its population.  The call is to do this justly, sanely, and civilly.
My brother bishops in Arizona worry this is not the case there.  They have been joined by Cardinal Roger Mahony, Jewish, other Christians, and various civic and human rights groups.

I’m on their side.

I want history to repeat itself — but the “Statue of Liberty side,” not the Nativist side.

P.S. I thought you might be interested in a presentation on immigration reform that will be given at Fordham University on Monday, May 3. Cardinal Mahony will speak on “Our Heritage & Our Future: Why Enacting Comprehensive Immigration Reform Is a Moral Imperative.”  Click here to view details on his presentation.
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36 Responses to “Immigration Reform”

  1. Irene says:
    Will the USCCB be issuing a statement condemning the Arizona law? That would be helpful to Catholics everywhere, especially those in Arizona and in states contemplating similar legislation.
  2. The folks of Arizona are scared of illegal immigrants. My family came to this country legally. We cannot divide those two realities. Compassion for those families being killed by the illegal immigrant populations coming to kill in the name of drugs, that is fear. If our government will not defend our borders, the states must.
  3. Janelle says:
    While I do appreciate your words I will agree to disagree. This bill is not mean spirited, nor is it an attempt to persecute the poor immigrants. There are laws in this country and while they are not perfect (they could never be), God does not call for us to break the law because we don’t agree with it or the time frame is too long. There are legal ways to come into this country and they should be used. Not everyone will gain access, life is not fair – we were not promised that it would be. No one is advocating for the mistreatment of illegal immigrants, human rights are a basic right that we should afford everyone. Civil rights are reserved for the people of this country, it is obvious that if you are willing to break the law from the onset that you will have no problem doing so again. Arizona has had MANY problems that result from illegal immigrants and they have a right to protect their people (legal residents of all races) as the Federal government has not been doing their job.
  4. Greg Lamatrice says:
    I will not disagree with the Archbishop. I would only point out, as the great-grandson of immigrants – that in all of the great immigration events that he mentions, the immigrants in question came in through government points/ports of entry, were registered, screened for health issues, etc. I have no issue with immigrants, but there should be an established set of rules by which America welcomes the immigrant but also rules by which the immigrant abides. Is the issue one of immigration per se or is it legal vs. illegal and the state, and thereby its taxpayers, are being inundated/forced to provide benefits to persons not paying into the system?
  5. Jason says:
    I encourage the Archdiocese to reach out to national TV media outlets (especially those obsessed with the demonization of the Church via the sex abuse scandals) and offer Archbishop Dolan as a guest willing to speak on the immigration issue.
  6. Thomas says:
    Bless the Good News. God saves!
  7. Christopher says:
    I am really undecided on how I feel about this whole issue. On one hand, I respect the fact that we are all sons and daughters of immigrants, with the exception of the American Indians, and so there is a sense that we need to be sensitive to those who are in search of a better life and brighter future in the United States.
    On the other hand, I’m not sure that I would necessarily consider this bill in Arizona to be “mean spirited.” There are the residents of Arizona whose safety we certainly need to be concerned about; I don’t hear that mentioned often in the discussion. It is their safety the state (and federal) government needs to be concerned with, along with their property, crops, livestock, etc. Additionally, 60%of the drugs that enter the US come in through Arizona which is huge national problem. So perhaps it is with good cause that the people of Arizona are “scared” and believe this is a priority.
    I’m not sure why the focus is almost exclusively directed at protecting the “rights” of those who have entered the country illegally. Stemming the violence, the crime, the drug trafficking is the responsibility of elected officials and law enforcement. Additionally, the state bill states that it is “to be implemented in a manner consistent with federal laws regulating immigration, protecting the civil rights of all persons and respecting the privileges and immunities of U.S. citizens.” It is not as if Arizona’s governor is just acting on a whim. All this legislation did was make it a state crime to be in the country illegally; it is already a federal crime (8 U.S.C. § 1325). Why isn’t anyone calling that a racist? I think it is because the federal government has been so impotent in dealing with the issue that no one views the federal government as doing anything serious about it; therefore, they get a pass. Additionally, the state bill “requires the person’s immigration status to be verified with the federal government pursuant to federal law.” So it is not as if some backwater sheriff is the sole authority on someone’s immigration status; it is still the federal government that determines a person’s eligibility.
    I just really don’t feel either side of the argument is doing a good job of presenting an accurate justification for their position; however, my initial feeling is that if the governor of Arizona did a better job of stating her state’s position (i.e. crime statistics, financial data related to immigration, etc) then I would be more inclined to their position.
  8. Gary J Sibio says:
    The archbishops comments are based on the media reports of this bill which have been misleading at best. The bill does not discriminate against anyone. It only allows the police to investigate the legal status of someone they are investigating for another reason. Illegal aliens have no right to be in this country in the first place so their rights are not being infringed upon.
    Before you condemn any political entity for wanting to get the illegal alien problem under control, maybe you should take a look at what illegal aliens are doing to this country.
    I’m all for immigration as long as they enter the country legally. We have to know who is entering the country. We need to make sure they are healthy and have no criminal record.
    I work in a parish which has a large number of legal and illegal Mexican immigrants. I’ve talked about this issue with some of those who are here legally. They want tighter controls on illegals also. They would like to get their relatives into the country, but the illegals are making that more difficult.
  9. Marla says:
    I would like to respectfully point out that legal immigration and illegal immigration are not the same thing. Perhaps we should do something to reform our immigration laws, and perhaps I do not understand the Arizona law well enough, but it does not seem to me that the citizens of Arizona are being unfair.
  10. Claudia says:
    Why are we Catholics supposed to be more concerned for the villians than the victims when it comes to illegal immigrants? Why are we being pushed to support those who break the laws of our nation all in the name of corporal works of mercy? With all due respect to the archbishop and every other Catholic leader who advocates support for those who come to this country illegally—I am not going to pretend the laws of this nation do not matter and I will not pretend those who are here ILLEGALLY are simply victims of \mean spirited\ laws.
    If we start disreguarding the laws which we find inconvenient, how then do we teach our children to obey the laws of our Catholic faith which we find inconvenient or may not fully support or understand?
    I am deeply saddened that the leaders of my faith seem to be aligning themselves with human smugglers, drug dealers, and vile criminals …all in the name of \social justice\
    All support for the illegal aliens will accomplish is MORE illegal aliens, and every illegal person who comes to this country via Mexico comes through a coyote—to pretend otherwise is foolish.
  11. With all due respect Archbishop, while Mexico may be unsafe, unstable and undesirable, I’m not sure the best place for a Latina is necessarily in Arizona. Where healthcare reform has ushered in a new age for “reproductive freedom” paid for by the American taxpayer we will welcome across our borders new Mexican families and shuttle them to Planned Parenthood facilities to rob them of their hard-earned money , kill their mexican babies and place them on Depo Provera. Because we failed to elect a president and legislators that would have prevented this travesty, because we failed to live up to our baptismal calling to follow our conscience on such matters, the blood-letting expands now to all immigrants –especially the hispanic population– because our minds have not changed on this since the eugenics movement began. Yes, we have a problem that needs to be solved with immigration. Yes, the Jan Brewer bill seems to be a response to the killing, drug proliferation and ridiculousness of our current system to protect our borders from those who are not citizens here. But what, when, where, how will someone come up with real solutions rather than offer their criticisms? We may be sheep, but we are not dupes. We need life-affirming laws that actually do something. Prudentially speaking, what is wrong with enacting the laws that protect US borders? Ah yes..come to America where we can offer you coupons to Planned Parenthood.
    Karen Williams
    Phoenix, AZ
  12. Chris Lynch says:
    It is unfortunate that the AZ law is perceived as something new, because it is not.
    I live 35 miles from the California/Mexico border. EVERY WEEK you can see in the media that the federal authorities (used to be INS, now ICE) conduct sweeps of areas known to harbor illegal immigrants, put them on buses, and process them for deportation. Dept of Homeland Security – Customs and Border Protection does the same thing near my SoCal neighborhood, with its network of ships, airplanes, jeeps, cameras, microphones, etc. The same thing happens in Arizona.
    These people are put on buses to Mexico or airplanes to Guatemala, Honduras, Costa Rica, or wherever. This has been going on every day for DECADES. So there’s #1–nothing new.
    #2: I have not heard any of the critics mention any country in the world where immigrants are not required to carry papers. Wanna go Mexico? Be sure to bring papers. How about the UK, or Ireland, Australia, or New Zealand? Bring those papers, you’ll need ‘em if you don’t want to be deported.
  13. William says:
    First of all, if this law can stop the illegal drug trafficking that is occurring so frequently across the bordering countries, then Arizona’s governor can’t have had purely mean intentions. This drug war is killing people on all sides of the fence.
    I do hope for some kind of immigration reform, but those who entered this country illegally have made it unfair for those who follow the procedures necessary to enter the country. To support this illegal activity is kind of like applauding someone for cutting in line when the people who got in line first have been waiting for hours.
    On top of it all, after entering illegally, these people who came seeking for a better life often get the worst working conditions, unfair pay, etc. And from my understanding, they do pay certain taxes (deducted before it gets into their paychecks), but are too scared to redeem many benefits for fear of being deported.
    This law, however, has way too much potential for abuse by authority figures and I do not see it lasting. Some reform is needed.
  14. Thank you for your words on this subject Archbishop Dolan. It strikes me that most Catholics, who do either agree or feel ambivalent about the Arizona law, might not really fully comprehend the heft of anti-Catholic protest that you present here. Legal or not, Catholics were reviled and hated. And it was in that very cauldron that our faith thrived in this land. There is a lesson there, but that is another story for another day!
    A few points about the draconian nature of the bill…
    One is that there are numerous Arizonans who are “brown skinned” (the use of that language causes me to shudder) and are of Mexican heritage. Their families have been in Arizona long before it was Arizona. Now they have to produce “proof” of who they are? I personally find that, as an American and as a Catholic, appalling. And I say this as a Catholic who had a Jewish father. I do not have to scratch the surface very far to think of my own relatives who had to carry and produce identification that ultimately lead to their own suffering and untimely deaths.
    To those who wish to say it is different, it is not. The good people of that time had many of the same “justifications” that I see here and elsewhere.
    Another point is that this burdens numerous already over-burdened law enforcement agencies in Arizona. Imagine that the NYC police would have to take this on… Think on that for a moment and imagine its implications.
    Who is speaking of the “rights” of those who have entered illegally? I don’t know about anyone else, but I think that this issue and Archbishop Dolan’s post are an invitation into a greater understanding of basic human dignity. We live in such perilous and punitive times; God have mercy on us all.
    My final point would be that we must all approach the topics that are most visceral for us and the things that make us uncomfortable with great curiosity and not just steadfastness. If we do so with our faith and the enormity of our great Catholic tradition, we might all be astounded as to where we are led. I remind myself of this as well as there are numerous issues that my faith challenges me to see with new eyes. Such is the process of our faith.
  15. Will Haun says:
    With great respect to the Archbishop, I think he steps beyond his competence here to his own embarrassment. Calling the Arizona bill “mean spirited” without actually demonstrating how it is so (especially when, in nearly every respect) it mirrors federal law is troubling – unless he’s prepared to argue that current federal law is also “mean … See Morespirited.” Even so, it would be worth pointing out what actually is “mean” about the bill.
    Additionally, arguing this bill is of “questionable constitutionality,” also without any additional citation is a bit much for me. I and others have read the bill a few times looking for sound constitutional arguments against it, and I’m hard pressed to find any winners at this point.
    Finally, I think the Archbishop’s comments, probably unintentionally, runs afoul of Rerum Nevarum and the dignity of the human person in a sense. Here he says “[f]rom even a purely business point of view, a warm welcome to immigrants is known to be good for the economy and beneficial for a society.” He’s right, “from…a purely business point of view,” it most certainly is – because illegal aliens (a distinction the Archbishop does not make in his post, to the point of conflation with legal immigrant) are seen as purely cheap labor by big business – an “economic unit” as Teddy Roosevelt warned against. This kind of mentality is not what the Catholic Church’s teachings should be condoning by using it as a secondary argument for amnesty, and the further erosion of national citizenship.
  16. David West says:
    I respectfully disagree with the Archbishop.There is a drug war going on in Mexico at this time perhaps the Archbishop would factor that into his decision making process regarding this issue. Arizona being on the very border of Mexico has to supply security and order for her citizens.Certainly the lives of people lost to the drug trade either when at war when bodies line the streets or when they are at peace with one another only to sell drugs to families are not advantageous or preferable to the Church. This is not a high brow political issue in regards to a European Enlightenment issue exclusively, there are base financial and egoistic demands that are met out by these groups which hold the average human life in the greatest contempt towards the accomplishment of those ends.
    I hope that the Archbishop may revisit this issue with this in mind.
  17. Sue Widemark says:
    Dear Archbishop Dolan, this OP is simply wonderful!!!!!! Not only are you an excellent writer but I truly feel you are so speaking from the Holy Spirit!! And you are courageous to publish this article and I, for one, really appreciate your courage! I have admired you for some time, but now I admire you even more and I have shared this article with all of my friends, mailing lists etc! I don’t know what it is which makes us so afraid of “the other” but you are so right…we are so forgetting things like the Statue of Liberty and the words…”give me your tired, your poor…” and our constitution! Well, you said it all! One visitor to our home said that “when we needed those undocumented immigrants, we ignored them here except to work them hard and pay them little and now that we think we don’t need them, we “suddenly” get “worried” about the law!”… and to think that most folks in the USA who are so upset about “illegals” “breaking the law” have gone over the speed limit, driven “under the influence”, pirated software and lied on their income tax forms! hmmmm I think Our Lord did address that issue when He spoke of “Whited Sepulchers”! Thank you so much for this wonderful article and for being you – you are such a blessing to all of us!
  18. Bev says:
    It has always been about the vote. Most of the democrates spin the story for power and do not intend to fix any problem. Drugs,murders and kidnappings require an honest look at the reality. It is much to simple to choose the “easy” side and do the politically correct thing. That is why planned parenthood and our tax dollars are being used to murder babies with the presidents’wink. It is time for the church to stop pleasing everyone and teach truth. Do not pick a side-teach honesty. It is unfortunate that this article spins one side and wants to simply make the problem go away by demeaning those who have the courage to face reality.
  19. Mary says:
    Immigration politics will be the death of us as a country and further divide the American Church. Immigration politics is a tool of the culture of death who deceive with language I am very unhappy that the Church is deceived into taking the side of Caesar.
    Recall the concept of “Newspeak” in 1984 — if you control the language, you control the way people express things, and therefore, ultimately, how they look at things.
    The Catholic Church is already characterized as anti-science. Our political culture got hold of the language during the stem cell wars and cleverly moved the language away (with considerable help from the like-minded media) from distinguishing between embryo and adult stem cells. Consequently, though we are only opposed to anti-life embryo destruction, we are portrayed as opposed to “stem cell research” in the public square.
    Pro-choice. Anti-choice. Not abortion. Not life. Get the language and control the argument.
    The Church is on course to do the same with immigration unless we carefully distinguish between illegal and legal immigration. The Arizona bill is about illegal immigration and the problems of border enforcement, crime, public safety and God knows what else in that state. Illegal immigrants. Not all immigrants. It is not about whether we are for immigrants or against them.
    Those of us not in conformity with the bishops on this issue should not be characterized as anti-immigrant, even in a subtle way. This is not the America that my immigrant grandmother and father raised their families in. It is a left-leaning, progressive, pro-death America getting worse by the day. It does not reflect Catholic values. It does not have God anywhere is the narrative. How long will it be before the immigrant unborn will be tossed on the altar of Planned Parenthood abortuaries in the name of progress towards the American dream? I will never agree to cooperate with the present political culture.
  20. Dwight Spivey says:
    Archbishop Dolan, you have been and still remain a hero of mine in our Church. However, I must respectfully state my extreme disappointment with this article. What is it about the term “illegal” that some people just don’t seem to understand? I welcome with open arms anyone who wants to immigrate legally, but I’m not so welcoming to those who don’t respect the laws of this country. If they don’t respect the immigration laws, who’s to say they will respect the remainder of federal, state, and local laws? Please explain to the faithful how you can reckon your opinion with Church doctrine and the laws of this country.
  21. David Cruz-Uribe, SFO says:
    My blessings go out to the Archbishop for taking such a forthright stand grounded in both charity and justice. I am continually saddened by the nature of the criticisms, since they are grounded in fear and half-truths.
    First, it is worth pointing out to many of the people who are justifying themselves as a child/grandchild/great-grandchild of immigrants: if you shake your family tree, something uncomfortable may fall out. My father immigrated to the U.S. in 1939; it was only after he died and we went through his papers that we discovered he was an illegal immigrant who got his status regularized some years after the fact. My wife discovered that her grandfather was an illegal immigrant who never got things sorted out.
    Third, in practice the Arizona law will be used to target Hispanics, and many of them will be US Citizens. I really doubt that an illegal immigrant from Ireland or Poland (among the largest groups of illegal immigrants here in CT) will be stopped or questioned about their citizenship if they are stopped. However, when this was tried back in the past, Mexican-Americans in LA were routinely stopped and asked for their papers. Cheech Marin ridicules this in his movie “Born in East LA”: the hero, who can barely speak Spanish, is deported because he can’t prove he is an American.
    Second, disabuse yourselves of the notion that illegal immigrants are here to rob, steal and murder. Most of them want jobs. As Barbara Ehrenreich said, you can only compare illegal immigrants to people breaking into your house if the people breaking in clean your bathroom and wash your dishes.
  22. Jim says:
    Your Excellency- please explain how the bill is –
    similar to the “KKK”
    “To blame them,
    stalk them,
    outlaw them,
    harass them,
    and consider them outsiders”
    Also, in New York there are not 500,000 ILLIEGAL Latino, Haitian, Asian and mid-eastern neighbors, they mostly came according to the law..I am sure there are a few illegals.
    The bill wants to enforce legislation against ILLEGAL immigrants. We are all for LEGAL immigration.
    “Do you imagine that a State can subsist and not be overthrown, in which the decisions of law have no power”~ Plato
  23. annmarie says:
    Dear Archbishop Dolan,
    I believe that you say what you do out of belief that it is the right thing.
    However, so do I. I live on the border. My great-grandparents were in Mexico in the 1800s and came to the United States in 1910, during the Mexican revolution. I look white though and because of that have an understanding of both sides of the issue.
    These facts have forced me to study the Church’s teachings on immigration. I know for a fact that I can, with the full authority of the Magisterial Church, disagree with you on this issue. And I do in spades.
    You need to be here to be able to fit the facts of the situation to the template of Church teaching.
    I will not go into it all. I would have to write a thesis. But if you give amnesty or if you allow these people to stay in the United States you will be doing the following:
    Imbedding the drug lords and the smugglers into this society permanently because every illegal and legal Mexican is related to them by blood, marriage or transaction and live in fear of them. That fear makes it impossible to turn them in, to fail to cooperate with them and to fail to pay them protection money for the family left in Mexico.
    Go beyond decimating Mexico. There are 12 to 20 or more million illegals in the U. S.
    If they get amnesty and each bring in two people pursuant to family reunification, that means 36 to 60 million people here from Mexico out of a population of 100 million. My Mexican relatives down there speak about the need for Mexico to wake up and quit sending their children out of the country thereby destroying the Mexican family.
    Failing to distinguish between refugees, asylum seekers and just plain illegal immigrants. The former deserve our hospitality to the extent we are able. The oridindary illegal alien does not.
    Failing as a Shepherd of all the people, including legal American residents, to support justice for all, such as the legal who has lost their identity or their job.
    Failing to speak out against the exploitive corporations who use these poor people for slaves and the pandering politicians who want them for votes.
    Failing to speak out on the whole of the Church’s teaching which says the first solution is to help the sending countries fix their own social problems (JPII and B16)
    We cannot afford this. Neither can the sending countries.
    Please rethink this issue and encourage your brother bishops to do the same. And please quit spending Catholic money on a negotiable social issue. Save it for the non-negotiables like abortion etc.
    Thank you.
  24. Rose Kehoe says:
    Great disappointment in Archbishop of New York Timothy Dolan. Without the rule of law, there is NO social justice for anyone.
    It is so dishonest to speak of injustices against immigrants of the past who came legally and those illegally entering the country today, as though they were comparable situations.
    What about the civil rights of U.S. citizens being harmed and even murdered on their own property by illegals?
    The Archbishop makes it hard to have respect for him with such a dishonest statement.
  25. Jim Simon says:
    I am torn on this one, right to my core. Please help me to understand. Where does the rule of law begin and and where does it end, especially with respect to people illegally in this country? Is not the rule of law shattered the moment a person breaks the law by coming across the border without permission?
    My nephew is a border guard in southern California. The stories he tells are gut wrenching. He will tell you that a good number of the people are desperately trying to make a new life in America – some die on their way across, and many are within an inch of death and would die were it not for border guards finding them and hydrating them and being good Samaritans. But he will also tell you that a substantial number of people are seasoned, hardened criminals, drug traffickers and human kidnappers who, among many other heinous things, have killed his partner.
    If it is true that, \every society has the duty to protect its borders and thoughtfully monitor its population,\ then how can it also be true that those who seek to uphold the law are only doing so, \To blame them, stalk them, outlaw them, harass them, and consider them outsiders…\ After all, are illegal immigrants not \outsiders?\ Are they not \outlaws?\ No – blaming, stalking and harassing them is not the answer. But should they be allowed to stay? And what of the hardened illegal alien criminals conducting drug war operations in the streets of Phoenix? Allow them to stay as well? God is not only all merciful but He is all just as well, no?
    What of the millions who are legal immigrants (like the ones you herald in your letter and from which I derive my lineage — Irish and Lebanese)? Is it justice for them that an illegal alien is doing a job they should be doing? Is it justice for all of the thousands of \outsiders\ who are patiently and legally waiting to come to America that illegals are allowed to willy-nilly \jump the line?\
    I really am torn, and I really would love a world without borders. But then I remember that even Jesus wanted some things that he ultimately did not get: a repentant Judas, a converted bad thief, a merciful Pilate. In my heart, I really am torn between justice and mercy on this one your eminence, and your essay left me even more unsettled.
    I deeply admire your defense of innocent human life from the womb to the tomb and I completely respect your authority as teacher of the faith.
    Most Respectfully, in Christ,
    Jim Simon
  26. Irene Mehlos says:
    Dear Archbishop Dolan, Thank you for your leadership on this important issue. Just recently my local interfaith peace study group and the Holy Cross Sisters (their US Provincial here in North Central Wisconsin) hosted Sr. Barbara Pfarr from Milwaukee to help dispel some of the myths about immigration reform. The information she presented at a Catholic parish up here was described as “eye-opening and jaw dropping” by the parish leaders. They had no idea what was going on. Our immigration laws are antiquated. Many of the previous comments referred to undocumented immigrants as “illegals” and “criminals” for seeking the right to work to provide for their families survival. The solution to come in through the “proper channels” is not so simple, and for the most, impossible. You have to have a lot of money in the bank just to apply. The US State Department Visa Bulletin in Feb 2010 indicated that work visas applied for in 1992 were first being processed this year (an 18 year wait). Family visas applied for in 1986 during a special program offered for a few applicants in Florida have just now been approved, 24 years after applying. Some of the family members, parents of the works have since died. The majority of immigrants in our town are not criminals, but instead hard working people with strong faith and family values who have left desperate situations. Many immigrants have been recruited to work in jobs not desirable to American citizens-like certain restaurant jobs and agricultural jobs. They are often exploited. I’ve met folks here who receive $150/week pay for full time work or longer. That’s $3.75/hr, or less! Yet in Nicaragua I saw average folks who made less than that for a full day. In many cases our trade agreements have driven them off their farms or otherwise destroyed their ability to make a living. Crimes are committed against undocumented workers here in the US, but they have no recourse to justice. Comprehensive immigration reform is desperately needed now. Legalizing current unauthorized immigrants and creating flexible legal limits on future immigration would raise the “wage floor” and assure full labor rights that would benefit both American workers, immigrants and the US economy. As Catholics and Christians, we are called to act justly.
  27. Miguel Bamberger says:
    There’s a difference between LEGAL and ILLEGAL immigration. I came in LEGALLY. I had to wait in line. Is the church encouraging bypassing the legal system that so many others have followed? Is it because the Catholic Church is afraid that without the influx of ILLEGAL immigrants it won’t be able to pay its debts?
  28. Does the Bishop oppose obedience to public immigration laws? Has he missed Romans 13:5 and 1st Peter 2:13-14? All Arizona is asking is that if a person comes to Arizona from another country, then they come through legal channels and have their paperwork in order. Is this unjust? Is it unjust to arrest someone that has broken the law when the law itself is NOT unjust? What does CCC 1897 through 1899 say?
    1897 “Human society can be neither well-ordered nor prosperous unless it has some people invested with legitimate authority to preserve its institutions and to devote themselves as far as is necessary to work and care for the good of all.”
    By “authority” one means the quality by virtue of which persons or institutions make laws and give orders to men and expect obedience from them.
    1898 Every human community needs an authority to govern it. The foundation of such authority lies in human nature. It is necessary for the unity of the state. Its role is to ensure as far as possible the common good of the society.
    1899 The authority required by the moral order derives from God: “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore he who resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.”
    Now none of us oppose LEGAL immigration. But we DO oppose ILLEGAL immigration. If I went to Mexico without a passport or other appropriate documentation, then I would be arrested and thrown in jail and rightly so.
    This liberal, progressive attitude that has infiltrated the Church has got to be extinguished. No one of us hates or disrespects Hispanics or Arabs or Indians or whatever. BUT each of us MUST follow the LAW. IF you do NOT, THEN you SHOULD get thrown into jail just as Romans 13:1-7 states.
  29. It seems to me that the people of Arizona have a right to expect that the nations laws will be followed. If the Federal government chooses not to protect our borders, the State may choose to follow the law. 70% of the people of Arizona want to live in a safe lawful environment … what is wrong with that. The Church should use its persuasion to correct the injustices in Mexico and elsewhere. Then there would be no reason for the millions to flee to here … against our laws. As they say, “Render unto Ceasar, etc.”
  30. John Cabaniss says:
    Sir: I consider your comments appalling. Nowhere did you even acknowledge that the issue the law is meant to address is illegal immigration. Why did you speak as if the law targeted all immigrants when you know that was not true? You also referred to the bill as mean-spirited. I was unaware that anyone, even archbishops, were able to divine the intentions of others. It would be rash judgment on my part to express such an opinion and I see no reason to believe the judgment is any less rash coming from you.
    Finally, I am most disturbed by what your statement naturally implies: that Catholics have an obligation to agree with it simply because a bishop has spoken. I wonder if you realize the position you bishops put us in. We have a moral obligation to assent to our bishop when he speaks on faith or morals but we have no such obligation when he offers his prudential political opinions. When you continually blur the distinction between the two situations you put us at risk of failing our moral obligation because we misjudge the character of your comments. I believe your statements here are your opinion, with which I respectfully disagree, but if I am wrong then you need to correct me. Am I morally bound to accept your comments? That is a yes or no question.
  31. Brian Mershon says:
    Arcbhishop Dolan. I am a faithful Catholic who tries in earnest to follow ALL of the Church’s teachings.
    This is NOT a matter of faith and morals. This has to do with following the duly constituted laws of our country an enforcing them.
    Certainly, the key principle is unavoidable. I just had a good friend from Colombia who completed all of the requirements of becoming a citizen legally–all of the costs and bureaucratic red tape.
    But you think that people who do not follow our laws–whatever their ethnicity–should be given a pass on our laws–even when it threatens the security of the inhabitants of our country?
    WHY do the U.S. bishops like you and Cardinal Mahony wade into areas of political and economic topics that are WAY outside of your competence? Repeatedly? For 40-plus years?
    Stick to teaching the Faith. There is NOTHING in our Faith about allowing illegal immigrants into our country and allow them to threaten the well being of those who are here legally. That is about as simple as it gets.
    It is not about racism or any other motivations you want to attribute to citizens of this country. It is about national security.
  32. Matt Mack says:
    Let me begin by saying that I’m a huge fan of Archbishop Dolan. I’ve watched him on EWTN and think he is a great Bishop. However I am so disappointed that he chose to issue this opinion on the Arizona Immigration law. There is no balance in his statement. There may be some flaws in this law but there are grave flaws and errors on the other side that led to this law. The law is a desperate act by the local community – the people of AZ – to establish some semblance of law and order in their state.
    How can it be unconstitutional to ask for identification or proof of legal status from someone when they are pulled over?
    Why can’t the Archbishop acknowledge that laws are being broken by illegal immigrants?
    This statement will only add to the fractured nature of this country’s discourse that is increasingly becoming pointless. Can’t we have any conversations anymore without resorting to name calling, labeling, and finger pointing? The Church should be the source of the reasoned, balanced, thoughtful analysis and guidance that comes after several slow, deep breaths.
  33. Sam Wood says:
    Your Excellency:
    I revere you as one who is an Apostle, one who is Jesus to us. What dismays me is that it seems there has been a slight shift in the discussion by the USCCB. The issue is NOT about racism or ethnocentrism, it is about legal vs Illegal status of immigrants. Yes, companies/corporations who use illegals in their work force need to be penalized for the abuse, but THEY promote the illegal immigration flow into this country and it must be stopped. But this is not an anti-immigration issue, it is as Brian says above, an issue of national security. And also, there needs to be enforcement of the current laws, and since our Federal government is not taking the bull by the horns, Arizona is.
  34. Marilyn says:
    Archbishop, I am a huge fan of yours and very grateful that your are the archbishop of New York. However, I think your statement on this bill is a little strong on one side without balancing the issues on the other side. There needs to be law and order in the state as well as in the Church for justice to prevail. There has been a failure on the part of the federal government to enforce the immigration laws and the consequence has been a breakdown in civil order in the border states. In Arizona there is a big problem with drug violence, kidnappings and human trafficking that is directly tied into lack of enforcement of our border. While I agree that we should not demonize anyone, the bishops need to come out with some positive advice on how to address this issue, not just say that it is wrong to enforce the law because good people may be harmed. We need to do something. It is also not fair to those who scrimped and saved to come into this country legally and have gone through all of the waiting periods required, that we turn a blind eye toward those who have avoided the legal process. If there is a danger in their home country, we have an amnesty proceeding that can be used.
  35. Kevin says:
    I respectfully disagree with the Archbishop and I am very much dismayed at the level of confusion that is being employed in this discussion by the media and others that are being swayed by their emotions.
    It is very reminiscent of the Stem-Cell discussion where Embryonic and Adult are intertwined to create a perception that being against the intrinsically evil Embryonic Stem Cell research is somehow being against Morally acceptable Adult-Stem Cell research. The same confusion is being sown here.
    We are speaking about illegal immigration not legal immigration. We would not be a country if not for legal immigrants. This is a fact that no intelligent person denies but it is scandalous to attribute this racist view to the supporters of the AZ and existing Federal Law. The people of AZ want their state back.
  36. Jennifer says:
    Your Excellency,
    I greatly admire and appreciate you and the gift that you are to our Church is this present day. I’m also stunned at your words, for I find them grossly unfair and insulting. It is not immigration that people object to but ILLEGAL immigration. If the laws concerning immigration can be broken and ignored, why obey ANY law of the U.S.? You say in passing that our nation has a duty to protect its borders, but how exactly are we permitted to do that? The current laws are not enforced and every attempt to strengthen them is met with charges of racism and inhumanity and accusations of hate and fear.
    The immigrants who came to Ellis Island seemed a very different sort. They came legally, they obeyed the laws, they built businesses, they learned the language, paid taxes and became citizens. They did not abuse and take advantage of the system. Now we have sanctuary cities that protect criminals who are here illegally. We seem to grant more protection under the law to illegal aliens than to our own citizens. When is it fair to say “enough is enough?”
    The Church expects her own laws and traditions to be upheld; why not the laws of our nation?
    How hurtful it is that you compare those who support this reasonable immigration law to the members of the KKK! No one wishes to harm any immigrant or persecute them because of their race or creed. We simply want our nation’s laws to be obeyed!
    I am dismayed that you would say with a mocking tone that Arizona is “so scared” that they passed a “mean-spirited” bill that solely aims to expel the immigrant. Have we already forgotten Robert Krentz, the rancher who was shot to death on his own property by an ILLEGAL immigrant? Of course the state is alarmed! They should be! But it is not mean-spirited to seek greater law enforcement, and it is uncalled for to accuse them of wanting to expel every immigrant. I don’t believe that is their desire, or the desire of anyone else in America.
    You seem to speak as though for the Church, and your words carry great weight and influence. If you oppose this legislation, be specific. Why? What exactly does it allow that is inhumane or mean-spirited? And tell us how exactly our nation is permitted to enforce its laws without violating the call to welcome the immigrant. Is there ANY obligation on the part of the immigrant?
    Please do not be so quick to portray those who support this law as anti-immigration. That is not the case. It’s about ILLEGAL immigration!
    God bless you and keep you.
  37. Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    Of all people, a bishop of the Catholic Church ought to know when he is abusing his authority as a bishop. You have been doing so, by shocking public statements and by your refusal to obey Canon 915. ( Cf. )
    You are not teaching what the Catholic Church teaches; you are parroting the line of the Democrat Party. Not only do you caricature the new law, you caricature the bare, concrete facts of the situation in Arizona, as many previous commenters have ably pointed out. The issue is not immigration, but ILLEGAL immigration. The issue is not “nativism,” “bigotry,” “racism,” or any of the other devil-words pushed by Democrat talking points and other politically partisan bishops.
    The issue is drug trade, kidnapping and human trafficking, home invasions, decapitation and other forms of terror, and murder. Not to mention the overarching agenda of the Democrat Party–to build a permanent, socialist, pro-abortion voting bloc by importing vast numbers of dependent, ill-educated people with no understanding of the U.S. Constitution or American culture.
    Like your recent jaw-dropping statement that the pro-abortion Governor of New York is “a Catholic who takes his Christian faith seriously,” this latest effusion leads me to believe that the magisterium of the Democrat Party needs to grow less, and the Magisterium of the Catholic Church needs to grow greater.

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