This is how Wikipedia describes Chick:
Chick tracts are short evangelical tracts created and published by American publisher Jack T. Chick.
Although many of Chick's tracts express views that are generally accepted within Christian theology, such as the Incarnation of Christ, several tracts express controversial viewpoints. Most notably, Chick is known for his strong anti-Catholic views, which are expressed in 20 of his tracts (along with several full-length comic books).
Often Chick Publications uses former Catholic priests and laity to spread their anti-Catholic diatribes similar to what the Macon Telegraph does as it allows Dr. Bill Cummings to do time and time again in his editorials. The odd thing is that Dr. Cummings' editorials are suppose to be on business practices, not religion, but his anti-Catholic streak is so deep that something anti-Catholic always seems to appear in his editorials.
What puzzles me about the Macon Telegraph allowing the anti-Catholic Dr. Bill Cummings to continue to write his hateful editorials about the Catholic Church is that the reader of the Telegraph which continue to dwindle are less than 1% or so Catholic. I suspect most readers of the Telegraph could care less about anything Dr. Cummings has to write, religious or not.
The following is the editorial from Dr. Cummings that appeared in this past Sunday's Telegraph, just one more of his many anti-Catholic swipes against the Catholic Church. Below it is a letter to the editor that I wrote which I am not sure will make it into the Telegraph:
Is Christianity dying in America? No, but it is declining, that’s for sure. In 1892, our Supreme Court declared: “This is a Christian nation.” In 2009, Barack Obama, said: “We don’t consider ourselves a Christian nation.” He could say that because 26.2 percent of Americans are atheist, agnostics, secularists, Muslim, Jewish or Hindu; the greatest decline of Christians (34 percent) is among those born after 1980, so the trend looks irreversible.
Example: for every one person who joins the Catholic Church, six leave. There are 3 million less Catholics in America since 2007, and 5 million less mainline Protestants.
All sorts of reasons are given. Pat Buchanan blames the Supreme Court for purging Christ from the public schools, and he condemns our media and movies for continuing the counter-culture of the ‘60s. Father Allan McDonald, the pastor of St. Joseph Catholic Church in Macon, wrote in his blog that he blames his parish decline on 500 funerals in 11 years, the white flight out of Bibb County and the lack of new industry.
Whatever the real reasons, more and more Christians find fishing on Sunday morning or just relaxing with the family more fulfilling than going to church. And that’s a fact. So, why go to church?
Well, both Catholics and Protestants have two fantastic things to brag about. One is “community” and the second is called “outreach.” It’s like going to Rotary every week with your friends and joining a committee to distribute food to the hungry. Churches are like clubs. They bring together people with the same backgrounds and interests and provide them a forum for charitable action. So how do we explain the fact that we still have so much segregation in our churches but not in our clubs? Blacks and whites can’t seem to get it together — for God’s sake.
The mainline Protestant churches (Baptist, Methodist, Presbyterian, Lutheran and Episcopal) have two more distinct things to offer. One is Sunday School. These are small vibrant groups who meet an hour before the church service and discuss biblical or current issues of interest without the help or hindrance of the pastor. The second is the emphasis on good preaching. Pastors can’t all be Joel Osteens or Billy Grahams, but if the pastor can’t preach, he or she is gone.
The Catholic Church has one distinctly different offering. It’s called the Eucharist. For Catholics, when Jesus said “This is my body,” he meant it literally. It was not a metaphor like “the lamb of God.” It was a magical miracle, and every priest performs this exact same miracle every Sunday morning. You can see how the 33 percent decline in American priests causes a terrible problem. Without the priest, there is no Eucharist. Without the Eucharist, there is no Catholic Church. Based on these statistics, Ireland could become non-Catholic in 20 years.
But there is one thing about going to the Catholic Church that Protestants don’t have to worry about. If Protestants go to church, it’s because they want to. If Catholics go to church, it’s because they have to. Really. If a Catholic rolls over when the alarm goes off and says, “the hell with it,” that’s exactly what he’s going to get. You see, deliberately missing Mass on Sunday is a mortal sin for a Catholic. That means if he dies before he confesses this sin to a priest, he goes straight to hell. That’s a pretty big incentive.
It was unreasonable incentives like this that created Protestantism in the first place. You remember the Rev. Father Martin Luther, a Catholic priest and monk, who, on Oct. 31, 1517 posted 95 “protests” on the door of his Catholic church in Wittenberg, Germany, and began the Protestant Reformation. Luther protested against church doctrines like indulgences, usury, confession, purgatory, papal arrogance and infallibility,
Maybe we need more Father Martins today, priests and pastors willing to question things like segregation, gay bashers, global warming, birth control, divorced Catholics and discrimination of all kinds. Maybe if our churches produced more questioners like Martin Luther and Pope Francis, instead of men who hide behind the infallible comfort of their black cassocks and robes, more people would go to church and be willing to stand up and say: “Now Sunday is worthwhile.”
Dr. Bill Cummings is the CEO of Cummings Consolidated Corporation and Cummings Management Consultants. His website is www.billcummings.org.
My Letter to the editor yet to be published:
Dr. Bill Cummings a former priest and non-practicing Catholic is the poster child for Catholics who choose to leave the Church and become “nones”. Some in Dr. Cummings' generation, he is almost 84 years old, are divided between two major camps, those who saw Vatican II in the early 1960’s in continuity with the Church’s 2000 year tradition and those who viewed Vatican II as a rupture in that tradition and produced a completely different church. The first group is correct and Dr. Cummings' group is dead wrong. Liberalism in Catholicism and Protestantism accounts for the majority of departures from the Church. It is deadly!
The confusion and damage inflicted on the Catholic Church by some in Dr. Cummings' generation is incalculable and in part accounts for some of the Church's loss of membership.
While growth in the population of the Church is a laudable goal, fidelity to the truths of the Church are more laudable even if this means a smaller, but purer Church. Mustard seeds, the smallest of shrubs grow into the largest of bushes. Catholic history is cyclical and there is nothing new as it concerns today’s death and tomorrow’s resurrection!
Dr. Cummings is correct in asking people to question things. I recommend questioning Dr. Cummings who not only denigrates practicing Catholics but all orthodox Christians. He arrogantly pontificates; but he's no Pontiff!
Fr. Allan J. McDonald
St. Joseph Catholic Church
My final comment: The Telegraph is owned by the McClatchy Corporation rather than by a local owner. Thus its editorial policy, much to its detriment which may explain in part its dwindling readership, is far from the opinions held by the majority of Macon's residents. Macon is a relatively conservative town and very religious and conservatively so. The Telegraph continues to ignore this reality in its editorial policies but to their detriment.