Tuesday, November 15, 2016


I personally don't believe that members of the clergy, be they cardinals or bishops should call out politicians by name to deride them. Any communication that is of major concern should be done in private. If the politician is in grave error and is subject to the bishop, I believe an excommunication is justified after a lengthy private dialogue.

This is Cardinal-designate Cupich's concern:

We always spoke about principles and the issues, but we never used the opportunity of addressing issues related to the campaign by actually naming and criticizing individual politicians by name. Unfortunately, that is a new development which we have seen happen in the last couple of years, and I think that’s a very disturbing departure from the way we have done things in the past. I am convinced that in the long run this tactic does not suit us well, and it really is not what we should be doing as bishops. I hope we have a chance to talk about this when we meet in November; otherwise our voice will be even further marginalized in the public square.

And then there is this:

New cardinal: ‘Perhaps we have emphasized rules and regulations to excess…’

- See more at:
New cardinal: ‘Perhaps we have emphasized rules and regulations to excess…’

November 15, 2016
An interview with cardinal-designate Kevin J. Farrell, prefect of the new Vatican office for laity, family and life, from CNS:

Cardinal-designate Kevin J. Farrell believes the U.S. bishops as a whole should have discussed pastoral guidelines for implementing Pope Francis’ exhortation on the family before individual bishops began issuing guidelines for their own dioceses.

Implementing the pope’s exhortation, “Amoris Laetitia,” he said, “has to be done in communion with our bishops. I think that it would have been wiser to wait for the gathering of the conference of bishops where all the bishops of the United States or all the bishops of a country would sit down and discuss these things.”

A conference-wide discussion, he told Catholic News Service Nov. 15, would ensure “an approach that would not cause as much division among bishops and dioceses, and misunderstandings.”

The cardinal-designate was asked specifically about pastoral guidelines issued for the Archdiocese of Philadelphia by Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, who also is head of a U.S. bishops’ ad hoc committee for implementing “Amoris Laetitia. ” Among other things, the Philadelphia guidelines state that while divorced and civilly remarried couples should be welcome in parishes and accompanied by priests, they may not receive Communion unless they live as brother and sister.

Cardinal-designate Farrell was bishop of Dallas and a member of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops until September when he became prefect of the new Vatican Dicastery for Laity, the Family and Life.

“I don’t share the view of what Archbishop Chaput did, no,” the cardinal-designate said. “I think there are all kinds of different circumstances and situations that we have to look at — each case as it is presented to us.”

Read the rest and check out the video interview below.


Julie said...

Today I heard the most beautiful Wedding Music I have ever in my life experienced.
It was so full of love and we especially need love after this post election week.
I would like the opinion of the posters on this untraditional wedding music.
You can find Fr. Ray Kelly on You Tube. "Singing Priests Hallelujah wows wedding guests"
What do our Priests here think?

Anonymous said...

How arrogant! The Church needs to be more like Jesus! What does that mean! Did Jesus excuse sin? Did Jesus tell the woman caught in adultery, oh that's ok, you just keep doing that. Or did He say stop that and sin no more.allowing people to keep committing sins which will condem then to Hell isn't pastoral or merciful it is truly truly evil. What we are seeing from this pope and his henchmen, and they are henchmen, is exactly what happened at the beginning in the garden of Eden......the Devil making sin look like something good. The ultimate deception. Wake up and see with clear eyes what this pope is doing.

Anonymous said...

Did Jesus say, "You can't receive communion because of your sins!" to anyone?

Rood Screen said...


What does Holy Communion do for an unrepentant sinner?

TJM said...

Unfortunately Archbishop Cupich is a lefty and is doing nothing positive in Chicago. We need more priests, like this 30 something who told his congregation this in advance of the election:

“Election Day is Tuesday. Some people have come to us and asked who they should vote for. We can’t tell you who to vote for. But I can tell you this: as a Catholic, you cannot vote for someone who is pro-abortion. You cannot support them killing your fellow citizens. If you vote for such a person, you commit a mortal sin. And you cannot receive Communion until you have full repentance and reconciliation. Enjoy the rest of your day.”

Fr. Allan J. McDonald said...

TJM, there is no dogma or doctrine about who an American must vote for, only guidelines. I would say that if a Catholic votes for a candidate who is in favor of abortion to the 9th month, and that is the only reason they are voting for that person, then yes, they are participating in a grave immoral and evil act. For this to be a mortal sin, the Catholic must know that this is an immoral act and they do it with reflection and full consent of the will.

However, if a Catholic votes for a pro-choice, pro-abortion candidate, such as HRC, but not because of her stance on abortion but choosing between lesser evils of the candidates that are running, there is no mortal or venial sin in that vote!

TJM, you are not the pope or a bishop. I presume you are a lay person. You cannot pontificate on the Catholicism of anyone or call anyone a heretic--it is not within the realm of Catholic Canon Law for you to do so. Unfortunately when you do it, it tells me you are a coloring book Catholic and as a lay person you wish to be clericalized and substituent you authority which you in no way possess in Catholic teaching for the legitimate authority of bishops.

By the way, following your logic about voting for a pro abortion candidate even is the one voting is very pro-life but does so out of having to choose between two flawed candidates (one of whom by the way is willing to use the nuclear option which will kill the innocent and guilty, born and unborn alike) then you are just as guilty of mortal sin for having cable TV that shows explicit hardcore porn, both gay and straight as well as having a computer where you can access all kinds of filth both legal and illegal.

Anonymous said...

"But I can tell you this: as a Catholic, you cannot vote for someone who is pro-abortion."

This statement has been shown to be false.

What follows, "If you vote for such a person, you commit a mortal sin. And you cannot receive Communion until you have full repentance and reconciliation." is equally false.

TJM said...

Father McDonald,

I have the greatest respect for you and your work, but your response makes no sense.

The Democratic Party promotes and demands obesience to such intrinsic evils as abortiona and gay marriage, the Republican Party does not. When you vote for a Democrat, you are voting for a continunation and promotion of those evils.If a Catholic does not know this, I say shame on the "Catholic" bishops and clergy for their ignorance. There are clergy that vote Democratic, notwithstanding this, and they are committing mortal sin, because they know it to be evil, they have reflected upon it, and have done it anyway. And what for? The "mimumum wage?" I have never called them heretics, but they are apostates. There is no proporationality argument here, which you appear desperate to make.

I am not a coloring book Catholic. I have a better grasp of Church history, doctrine, praxis, and liturgy than many Catholic priests. Like Pope Francis you are lashing out at a faithful Catholic, one who would support you in your work. Your last sentence is illogical and a total non sequitur.

I am grateful that this brave young priest acknowledges what his elders refuse to do.

Rood Screen said...

If Trump, whom I abhor, would simply stop federal prosecutors from charging pro-life protesters with racketeering, then we could grab the abortion bull by the horns again. Bring back Operation Rescue!

Anonymous said...

"There are clergy that vote Democratic, notwithstanding this, and they are committing mortal sin,..."

This is a FALSE statement and has been shown to be such.

However, we suspect that TJM will never acknowledge that he is factually wrong, so the best course of action is not posting his false statements.

Gene said...

The fallen world and our own concupiscence make every moral choice a choice between the lesser of two or more evils. Theologically, the only true moral choice is to "repent and believe on Him who was sent" and reject the ways of the world. This is difficult or nearly impossible for most of us, so we live sort of between the lines. The Church and the Mass should be the one place where, for a short time, we are lifted out of the world's faux moral choices and given a glimpse of the Truth and a moment of participation in our real future.

I am reminded, once again, of Jesus with Satan in the wilderness...when Satan offered Christ "all the Kingdoms of the world" (political power, earthly rule), Christ never question Satan's ownership or his right to offer them. This should tell us all something about the political illusions we pursue. I suppose the only truly consistent position would be never to vote at all but, even though theologically God does not care who is in the White House, He expects us to care.

Anonymous said...

"The fallen world and our own concupiscence make every moral choice a choice between the lesser of two or more evils."

This is not correct.

If a person has the opportunity to choose to steal an apple (not because he/she is hungry, but simply due to intemperate desire), or not to steal an apple, there is no moral evil in the choice not to steal.

The choice not to steal is not "the lesser of two moral evils." It is the good, moral choice.

Human, operating under God's grace, can make truly holy, moral choices.

TJM said...

Anonymous at 5:02, it is not false, and only lefties who no longer believe in the Faith would suggest it is false. I suspect you are experiencing deep seated guilt over your apostasy

Gene said...

Anonymous, You may not have stolen the apple but you were tempted to. My point was to be seen in the larger theological context of concupiscence and the world of sin. When you say "operating under God's grace," you make my point. It is only by God's grace that we do not live like animals.

Anonymous said...

TJM - I am not "suggesting" it is false. It IS false. Cardinal Ratzinger is my accurate source.

"A Catholic would be guilty of formal cooperation in evil, and so unworthy to present himself for Holy Communion, if he were to deliberately vote for a candidate precisely because of the candidate’s permissive stand on abortion and/or euthanasia. When a Catholic does not share a candidate’s stand in favour of abortion and/or euthanasia, but votes for that candidate for other reasons, it is considered remote material cooperation, which can be permitted in the presence of proportionate reasons."

Your stated: " a Catholic, you cannot vote for someone who is pro-abortion."

Card Ratzinger made it abundantly clear that a Catholic CAN vote for a candidate who is in favor of abortion if there are proportionate reasons.

While you disagree that there are proportionate reasons, the fact remains that a Catholic can vote for a candidate who is in favor of abortion.

All your bluster about "lefties" and "apostasy" means nothing. The facts show you to be wrong.

TJM said...

Anonymous, there is no proportionate reason, unless you consider the "minimum wage" or "transgender bathrooms" more important than the lives of the innocent unborn.

Faithful Catholic said...

The enormous qualifier in then Cardinal Ratzinger's instruction is "proportionate reasons". What "proportionate reasons" could exist when two (or all, if more than two) candidates differ fundamentally on the issue, where say one is in favor of the procedure with no restrictiont? Also to be considered is the use of tax dollars to pay for abortions. We can include issues such as embryonic stem cell use in scientific research, and public funding for it, as an important criteria for consideration also.

Proportionate reasons come into play when both (or all if more than two) candidates equally favor abortion in every way. In other words, there are practically and philosophically, no differences between them on the issue. This is a circumstance where a Catholic could consider other issues and vote for a candidate who is pro abortion.

TJM said...

Anonymous, uses Pope Benedict's words in a highly deceptive way and entirely out of context. Here is an explanation from Bishop Gracida, as to how to interpret His Holiness' words correctly


Anonymous said...

TJM - I posted the words in their entirety, in their context. The only deception going on here is your insistence, in spite of Ratzinger's words, that, " a Catholic, you cannot vote for someone who is pro-abortion."

As long as we have Ratzinger's words we will know you are wrong.

You won't, but anyone who can read will.

John Nolan said...

Julie (first comment on the thread, as yet unanswered):

The sight of a priest, in Mass vestments and standing at the altar, crooning a sentimental pop ditty into a microphone was not particularly edifying. Could he not have serenaded the bride and groom at the reception afterwards?

The same priest, who seems to have acquired a measure of celebrity in Ireland (although not in the rest of the British Isles) was on RTE at Christmas crooning the Johnny Mathis song 'When a Child is Born'. This saccharine little number was released at Christmas some forty years ago, and people assume it's about the Christ-child. It's not, as the lyrics make pretty clear if you actually listen to them.

I hope he doesn't regale his congregation with it in his (admittedly beautiful) church, but I won't hold my breath.

There is a distinction between sentiment and sentimentality, and it has to be admitted that 'traditional' Catholicism can veer towards sentimentality and kitsch - 'O Mother I could weep for mirth' is not one of Fr Faber's better efforts - but modern popular culture is mired in it.

GenXBen said...

Bishop Farrell used to be my Bishop. The proper key to interpreting his remarks are this sentence. "I think that it would have been wiser to wait for the gathering of the conference of bishops where all the bishops of the United States or all the bishops of a country would sit down and discuss these things." I very seriously doubt that Bishop Farrell has ever done anything unilaterally. He's definitely a follower and will happily go along with what his peers do. That may be the USCCB, the statewide Bishops conference, or just his neighboring Bishop in Fort Worth. When B16 was pope, he was all about orthodoxy. Now that Francis is pope, he's all about being pastoral. When the next pope comes along he'll go along with his program as well, as soon as he figures out what it is.

Some may say he's a yes-man, but he probably sees it as listening to the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit gave us Benedict XVI, so we should all be mini-Benedict XVI's and then the Holy Spirit gave us Francis so we should all be mini-Francis's.

I've read more of the interview and it just looks like he's trying to talk out of both sides of his mouth and out the top of his miter at the same time. It's not in his nature to come out and do something bold. He's not a Chaput, but he's not a Cupich either. It is noteworthy, however, that he was interviewed by National catholic Reporter, not National Catholic Register.

He's not malicious. He's a likeable guy no matter who you are. He's just a follower. He'll get along fine in the Vatican.

TJM said...

Bernard Fischer, sad to hear Cardinal-designate Farrell is a follower and not a leader. The Church is in desperate need of leaders.