Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Fr. Robert J. Carr
©Catholic Online 2005

There is a new day in our church and even a radical day. People of faith are now invited to make a choice, be followers of Christ or be followers of the world, but do not do both. It is also a day marked by the death of the ideas of Saul Alinsky.

ALINSKY, HARVARD AND THE CARNEGIE FOUNDATION

Who was Saul Alinsky? He was the famous 20th century community organizer who wrote the book Rules for Radicals among others. He was notable for teaching deceptive practices in the interest of helping groups to pursue selfish political interests. the text was used for a Harvard Divinity School course entitled Organizing: People, Power and Change. (HDS 3914) I would be shocked if a divinity school with the Prestige of Harvard would actually approve the use Machiavellian techniques to bring forth selfish agendae, which is, of course, the method of Alinsky's madness. What is more interesting is that the syllabus can be found, as of this writing, on the Carnegie Foundation website, and I am sure that organization has its own reasons for posting that syllabus and that text.

This course, as cited on the Carnegie Foundation website, was taught in the fall of 2001. This was the last semester before the attack on the Church by media, government and universities that began in the Spring of 2002. According to Aimee Carevich of Voice of the Faithful, a teaching fellow for this class, it is this course and its teacher, Marshall Ganz that are behind this attack and this dissident group and its goal to attempt to stage a coup of the Catholic Church. However evidence is now growing that those in that course and other disciples of Alinksy may have just walked into a trap courtesy of their now deceased mentor.

The most famous Alinsky quote in this book cites Lucifer as a great model because he was the first radical. Yes, indeed that is true. He is also the first radical that lost. (Hello!!) Further, the quote cites that at least Lucifer gets his own kingdom. Well that is true, but that is literally like saying to a prisoner on death row, "Well, look at it this way, at least you get your own room and when they publicly execute you, you will be the star of the show."

PAUL AS FIRM LEADER

What is more important is that Alinsky is obsolete. He represents a mode of philosophical thinking out of a model of humanity that is becoming more and more outdated by the second. Other radicals, such as Walter Wink, recognize that the best model for the radical is not the pride filled Lucifer, but the humble St. Paul.

St. Paul saw change as beginning on a personal and spiritual level. He saw that it begins with a relationship with the living God, Jesus, and proceeds on a four-dimensional human level. Here prayer not only provides results, but more importantly it provides insights and direction in the fight for true human freedom and liberation. Of the forces that tried to affect change, history shows that consistently it is Paul and his successors, rooted in Christ who remain the most successful.

Paul also saw that such change had to be rooted not in the selfish means but in Love. "God," Paul taught, "is love." Therefore, it is essential that the warrior for God, is a person of love and like himself one who is passionately committed to the truth.

Alinsky and for that matter Harvard University root themselves in a thinking that rejects that spirituality. Harvard is a Unitarian Universalist school. One of the tenets of Unitarian Universalism is a rejection of the bible and divine revelation and exaltation of anthropocentric thinking. Therefore, the roots of Harvard philosophy do not give St. Paul his due as servant of Christ and strategist for His Kingdom. The best Harvard can do is to put Alinsky and Paul on the same footing, at worst is to put Alinsky higher than Paul because he is more modern than the Saint is.

ALINSKY IS DEAD, GOD IS ALIVE

Yet, that only works if Alinsky's materialistic anthropology is correct. In other words, that only works if indeed God does not exist and life has no meaning. Yet, time and time again, we learn that God is real and, therefore, Alinsky's tactics are obsolete. This is the reason Paul's ideas are more important than Saul Alinsky's and his disciples.

Indeed, Walter Wink demonstrates in his books that Jesus' teachings of how to retaliate by "turning the other cheek" are extremely effective techniques in radical non-violent protest in service to the Kingdom of God. These are techniques that Paul understood and practiced well.

Yet, what are the fruits of these realities? This brings me to my original point. God is sovereign. The bible teaches over and over again that when God wants to call his people to repentance, He uses his enemies to do his work. The Crisis in the Church is actually a call to repentance to God's people. Repentance from what? Centrist Mediocrity.

A CALL TO FOLLOW CHRIST

If there is one point that our detractors and I agree on, it is that the true victims of priest sexual abuse are prophets. This is because their plight is nothing short of the symptoms of mediocre Catholicism. You will also notice that the nature of the crisis itself is the fruit of those decision makers in the Church leadership who violated at least one commandment, the eighth against bearing false witness. This is because some decision-makers paid out settlements without determining guilt or innocence of any particular accused priest. This circumvented the standard of truth by which we determine such guilt or innocence--the trial before a judge and or jury, essentially in some cases bearing false witness by default. This may be civilly legal, but, it is questionable in the moral realm. (cf Romans 8) Lawyers and non-profit organizations began to see the Church as the new pot of gold at the end of the tunnel because of that practice.

According to the Alinsky based "Voice of the Faithful" its target for membership is not the Catholic on either end of the spectrum, but those in the middle. They are neither deeply committed, nor completely uncommitted. Voice of the Faithful wants to fill its membership with the middle ground, the centrist Catholic, the medium Catholic, in other words, The mediocre Catholic lay and clergy.

MONEY POORLY SPENT

The funny part is that Voice of the Faithful has worked hard to recruit these Catholics and even invested a lot of money to do so. More so as I stated on CNN, MSNBC and NECN they are upper part of the upper middle-class. Yet, strangely, they always belonged to Voice of the Faithful even before the group planned to exist. This is because Jesus rejects the mediocre, centrist, middle ground disciple. Let's go to the word of God.

Revelations 3:15 "I know your deeds, I know that you are neither hot nor cold! How I wish you were one or the other--Hot or Cold! But because you are lukewarm, neither hot nor cold, I spew you out of my mouth." (Rev. 3:15-16)

Do not miss those to whom he is speaking. The passage continues

"You keep saying, 'I am so rich and secure I want for nothing.' Little do you realize how wretched you are, how pitiable and poor, how blind and naked. Buy from me gold refined from fire if you would be truly rich. Buy white garments in which to be clothed. If the shame of your nakedness is to be covered. Buy ointment to smear on your eyes if you would see once more. Whoever is dear to me I reprove and chastise. Be earnest about it, therefore, Repent!"

It is exactly the centrist Catholic that Jesus turns over to the rebels rooted in Lucifer because they do not stand for anything. He cannot count on them to be his disciples. Here in this passage he is calling on such Catholics to choose for Him or be rejected totally by him.

Pope Benedict XVI prior to his election predicted that our Church will be stronger, but smaller. That is true. Those who heed the call of repentance from mediocrity are preparing themselves to live the powerful life to which Christ has called us. Those who choose to be mediocre and centrist Catholics are those who do not have the strength of commitment to follow Christ in the first place, neither will they be able to be loyal to the successors of Alinsky. Something that Alinsky did know, but apparently his successors did not build that into their plans. If we choose to be disciples of Christ, then we need to repent of our mediocrity and seek Him. If we choose to be Alinskyites, then we need do nothing more than attend meetings and complain that Jesus is not the accommodating God we want him to be.

Either way, the choice is now ours which radical we will follow, the one who gets his own room until he becomes the star of the show, or the one who runs the universe.

COMING UP: STRATEGY AND ACTION FOR THE NEW ERA OF CATHOLICISM

Contact

Catholicism Anew
http://livenotbylies.catholicismanew.org MA, US
Fr. Robert J. Carr - parochial vicar, 617 625-0029

Email

frbobcarr@catholicismanew.org

Keywords

Alinksky, Ganz, Harvard, Radical, community organizing

More Catholic PRWire

Showing 1 - 250 of 4,718

A Recession Antidote
Randy Hain

Monaco & The Vatican: Monaco's Grace Kelly Exhibit to Rome--A Review of Monegasque-Holy See Diplomatic History
Dna. Maria St. Catherine Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.

The Why of Jesus' Death: A Pauline Perspective
Jerom Paul

A Royal Betrayal: Catholic Monaco Liberalizes Abortion
Dna. Maria St.Catherine De Grace Sharpe, t.o.s.m., T.O.SS.T.

Embrace every moment as sacred time
Mary Regina Morrell

My Dad
JoMarie Grinkiewicz

Letting go is simple wisdom with divine potential
Mary Regina Morrell

Father Lombardi's Address on Catholic Media
Catholic Online

Pope's Words to Pontifical Latin American College
Catholic Online

Prelate: Genetics Needs a Conscience
Catholic Online

State Aid for Catholic Schools: Help or Hindrance?
Catholic Online

Scorsese Planning Movie on Japanese Martyrs
Catholic Online

2 Nuns Kidnapped in Kenya Set Free
Catholic Online

Holy See-Israel Negotiation Moves Forward
Catholic Online

Franchising to Evangelize
Catholic Online

Catholics Decry Anti-Christianity in Israel
Catholic Online

Pope and Gordon Brown Meet About Development Aid
Catholic Online

Pontiff Backs Latin America's Continental Mission
Catholic Online

Cardinal Warns Against Anti-Catholic Education
Catholic Online

Full Circle
Robert Gieb

Three words to a deeper faith
Paul Sposite

Relections for Lent 2009
chris anthony

Wisdom lies beyond the surface of life
Mary Regina Morrell

World Food Program Director on Lent
Catholic Online

Moral Clarity
DAN SHEA

Pope's Lenten Message for 2009
Catholic Online

A Prayer for Monaco: Remembering the Faith Legacy of Prince Rainier III & Princess Grace and Contemplating the Moral Challenges of Prince Albert II
Dna. Maria St. Catherine Sharpe

Keeping a Lid on Permissiveness
Sally Connolly

Glimpse of Me
Sarah Reinhard

The 3 stages of life
Michele Szekely

Sex and the Married Woman
Cheryl Dickow

A Catholic Woman Returns to the Church
Cheryl Dickow

Modernity & Morality
Dan Shea

Just a Minute
Sarah Reinhard

Catholic identity ... triumphant reemergence!
Hugh McNichol

Edging God Out
Paul Sposite

Burying a St. Joseph Statue
Cheryl Dickow

George Bush Speaks on Papal Visit
Catholic Online

Sometimes moving forward means moving the canoe
Mary Regina Morrell

Action Changes Things: Teaching our Kids about Community Service
Lisa Hendey

Easter... A Way of Life
Paul Spoisite

Papal initiative...peace and harmony!
Hugh McNichol

Proclaim the mysteries of the Resurrection!
Hugh McNichol

Jerusalem Patriarch's Easter Message
Catholic Online

Good Friday Sermon of Father Cantalamessa
Catholic Online

Papal Address at the End of the Way of the Cross
Catholic Online

Cardinal Zen's Meditations for Via Crucis
Catholic Online

Interview With Vatican Aide on Jewish-Catholic Relations
Catholic Online

Pope Benedict XVI On the Easter Triduum
Catholic Online

Holy Saturday...anticipation!
Hugh McNichol

Priestly Identity: Crisis and Renewal (Part 1)
Catholic Online

Al Qaeda...afraid of Benedict's message!
Hugh McNichol

Benedict XVI...calling all to hope...
Hugh McNichol

Perfect Women
Cheryl Dickow

Papal Palm Sunday Address - 'Enough With the Bloodshed'
Catholic Online

Spotlight on China
Catholic Online

Papal Homily for Palm Sunday
Catholic Online

Holy Week...Holy Time!
Hugh McNichol

Mary and Motherhood
Cheryl Dickow

The Void
Paul Sposite

Islamic violence wounds the global community!
Hugh McNichol

The Seven New Deadly Sins!
Hugh McNichol

Catholic benefits include Catholic principles!
Hugh McNichol

Remembering Father Alfred Kunz
Matt C. Abbott

David vs Goliath
Theresa Lisiecki

Happy Lent!
Paul Sposite

Diplomacy...Vatican style!
Hugh McNichol

Sub umbra Petri! (Under the Shadow of Saint Peter)
Hugh McNichol

Cuba...a neonascent Church!
Hugh McNichol

Kids in Conflict
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On the Writings of St. Augustine
Catholic Online

The Relevance of Lourdes at 150
Catholic Online

Hillary...what would Saint Norbert say!
Hugh McNichol

Lent...questions, answers and involvement!
Hugh McNichol

Mary, Mother of all Humanity, Hic et Nunc!
Hugh McNichol

Catholics...WAKE UP!
Hugh McNichol

Catholic Brotherhood with the People of the Covenant
Hugh McNichol

Have mercy on us O Lord! - Ash Wednesday
Hugh McNichol

Vote early, vote Catholic!
Hugh McNichol

Christ, our global Alpha and Omega!
Hugh McNichol

Being Catholic means...total affirmation of being Catholic!
Hugh McNichol

Seeing the World through New Eyes
Sarah Reinhard

Emulating the Angelic Doctor!
Hugh McNichol

Priests defend, commend Archbishop Raymond Burke
Matt C. Abbott

Saint Paul...a continued example of radical conversion!
Hugh McNichol

A renaissance of faith, reason and global cooperation....
Hugh McNichol

Cardinal Rigali's Homily at Life Vigil
Catholic Online

Angelus: On Christian Unity
Catholic Online

Silencing the Pope
Catholic Online

Papal Homily on Feast of Christ's Baptism
Catholic Online

Education and Gender
Catholic Online

The ignominy of Roe vs. Wade
Hugh McNichol

Papal Message for World Day of the Sick
Catholic Online

Angelus: On Christian Unity
Catholic Online

Benedict XVI's Planned Lecture at La Sapienza
Catholic Online

Pope's Letter to Jesuits' 35th General Congregation
Catholic Online

Fr. Cantalamessa - Behold, the Lamb of God!
Catholic Online

That We May Be One, and Never Lose Heart
Catholic Online

Sowing Hope in Sierra Leone
Catholic Online

God-incidences are the gift of kairos moments
Mary Regina Morrell

St. Augustine's Last Days
Catholic Online

Liturgy: When There's a Medical Emergency
Catholic Online

Marriage and Celibacy: Love's Link
Catholic Online

Developing a Global Catholic Awareness
Hugh McNichol

Rooms in My Father's House
Cheryl Dickow

Resolutions for New Year 2008
Chris Anthony

Keep teaching Holy Father!!!
Hugh McNichol

Dangers of anti-Catholic academic extremism....
Hugh McNichol

The liturgy war
Matt C. Abbott

Some Answers to a Few Common Questions about Vocations
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

Developing a Global Catholic Awareness
Hugh McNichol

Christmas reflections
Chris Anthony

The Lasting Contribution of The Servant of God Pope John Paul II
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

No more bobble-head Jesus'!
Hugh McNichol

Pope's Address to Baptist World Alliance
Catholic Online

The Virgin Without Sin
Catholic Online

Cardinal Vingt-Trois on His New Mission
Catholic Online

Archbishop Forte on Religion & Freedom: Part 1
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On St. Chromatius of Aquileia, Pope, Benedict
Catholic Online

Pope's Address for Consistory of Cardinals
Catholic Online

Trafficking in Lives
Catholic Online

Pope Benedict - On Hope
Catholic Online

The Hidden Costs of Gambling
Catholic Online

A Vital, Life-Giving Message
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

Christianity's Contribution
Catholic Online

Youth and Fashion's Modest Twist
Catholic Online

Papal Homily at the Consistory
Catholic Online

Love, Marriage and Happy Kids
Catholic Online

The Virtue of Obedience: Our Duty, Our Crown
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

Vere dignum et justum est!
Hugh McNichol

Pope's Address to Bishops of Kenya
Catholic Online

Democracy in Danger in Venezuela
Catholic Online

The Life-Sapping Human Virus
Catholic Online

'You Alone Are The Lord': A Brief Summary of Catholic Teaching
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

Sacred Time...Come Lord Jesus!
Hugh McNichol

How Christ-like are we in our lives?
Chris Anthony

A Retreat for Today's Christian Woman
Cheryl Dickow

Pope Benedict - On Trust in God
Catholic Online

God and Caesar Seen From Down Under
Catholic Online

Praying the Luminous Mysteries for our Clergy
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

Culture's Pressure on Our Girls
Donna-Marie Cooper O'Boyle

Papal Message on the Common Good
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - St. Jerome on the Bible
Catholic Online

What Every Parent Should Know About 'The Golden Compass'
Catholic Online

Cardinal Poupard on 'Populorum Progressio'
Catholic Online

A Richer Liturgical Translation: Interview With Bishop Roche
Catholic Online

U.S. Bishops' Statement on War in Iraq
Catholic Online

The 'Golden Compass' is no treasure for children
Mary Regina Morrell

Bishop Skylstad's Address to U.S. Bishops' Fall Meeting
Catholic Online

Rewarding Failure
Catholic Online

On St. Martin of Tours
Catholic Online

Undermining Parents
Catholic Online

God...our theological E.F.Hutton!
Hugh McNichol

The Secular Vs. Religion?
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On St. Jerome
Catholic Online

The Scourge of Poverty
Catholic Online

Sons and Daughters of God...EQUALLY!
Hugh McNichol

On Zacchaeus the Tax Collector
Catholic Online

Why Dads Matter
Catholic Online

Archbishop Chaput on Citizenship and Evangelization
Catholic Online

God Created Man for Life, Not Death
Catholic Online

Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for November
Catholic Online

Imposing 'Tolerance'
Catholic Online

Evangelizing a Digital World
Catholic Online

A Turn to the Fathers: Interview With Father Robert Dodaro
Catholic Online

Aborting Viable Lives
Catholic Online

Women Religious on Human Trafficking
Catholic Online

Chicago law firm fights for civil rights, against death culture
Matt C. Abbott

Fr. Cantalamessa - The Pharisee and the Publican
Catholic Online

Media Benefits and Dangers
Catholic Online

On the Call to Martyrdom
Catholic Online

'You Alone Are The Lord': A Brief Summary of Catholic Teaching
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

John Crosby on Von Hildebrand's Understanding of the Person
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On St. Ambrose of Milan
Catholic Online

On Peace, Missions and Justice
Catholic Online

Address of Holy See on Religious Liberty
Catholic Online

Recovering subtle signs of our Catholic Identity!
Hugh McNichol

Archbishop Diarmuid Martin on 'Populorum Progressio'
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On St. Eusebius of Vercelli
Catholic Online

Christ's Parable About the Need to Pray Always
Catholic Online

Prostitution: Legal Work or Slavery?
Catholic Online

Escaping Poverty: Interview With Archbishop Silvano Tomasi
Catholic Online

Congratulations to His Eminence John Cardinal Foley!
Hugh McNichol

Giving Ourselves Completely to Mary
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

The 'Courage' to go 'Beyond Gay'
Matt C. Abbott

When Bioethics Turned Secular
Catholic Online

Confession Comeback
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On Hilary of Poitiers
Catholic Online

Reemergence of Global Catholic Identity!
Hugh McNichol

Father Cantalamessa on the Leap of Faith
Catholic Online

Month of the Rosary
Catholic Online

Why Technology Needs Ethics
Catholic Online

Cardinal Lozano Barragán on Future of Health Care
Catholic Online

How Can Catholics Understand Mary as Co-Redemprix, Mediatrix of All Graces and Advocate?
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

New Saint Book is Visually Stunning and Filled with Detail
Lisa M. Hendey

Papal Homily in Velletri
Catholic Online

Father Cantalamessa Analyzes Relationship
Catholic Online

Wednesday'a Audience - On St. Cyril of Alexandria
Catholic Online

Holy See Address to U.N. General Assembly
Catholic Online

Homily From Red Mass in Washington
Catholic Online

Pope Remembers Cardinal Van Thuân
Catholic Online

Faith in Politics
Catholic Online

The brave monks of Myanmar
Chris Anthony

On Lazarus and World Hunger
Catholic Online

Fighting the Good Fight: Resisting Temptation
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

Media frenzy buries U.N. goals

Holy See Statement on Climate Change
Catholic Online

China's Seven Sorrows
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On Chrysostom's Social Doctrine
Catholic Online

Vatican Message to Muslims for Ramadan
Catholic Online

Father Cantalamessa on the First World and Lazarus
Catholic Online

Angels, God's Messengers in a world of fragile peace and Broken promises!
Hugh McNichol

Memo to Mrs. Clinton: Why Not Baby Bonds When Life Begins?
Deacon Keith Fournier

Reorienting the Mass
Catholic Online

Report Card on Religious Freedom
Catholic Online

On Wealth and Poverty
Catholic Online

A Response to Hitchens' 'God Is Not Great'
Catholic Online

Vetoing children's health care?

The ideal family
Joseph Sinasac

Who does the judging?
Dennis Heaney

One mistake away

The Big House ban

In praise of the parish

Text of the USCCB statement for Respect Life Sunday 2007

The Outstanding Purity of Our Blessed Mother
Monsignor Charles M. Mangan

Educated flock

Religion and politics

Facing a door to the future
Dennis Heaney

A long debate

Who Are the True Progressives?
Deacon Keith Fournier

Petraeus offers a dose of reality

Insurgence
Robert Storr

Papal Address at Vespers
Catholic Online

Papal Coat of Arms Still Relevant
Catholic Online

Benedict XVI's Address at Heiligenkreuz Abbey
Catholic Online

On Loving Jesus as Mary Did
Catholic Online

Cardinal Castrillón Hoyos on 'Summorum Pontificum'
Catholic Online

Wednesday's Audience - On the Trip to Austria
Catholic Online

Father Cantalamessa on the Joy of Fatherhood
Catholic Online

Commentary on Artificial Hydration and Nutrition
Catholic Online

Vatican on Nutrition to Patients in Vegetative State
Catholic Online

Benedict XVI's Q-and-A Session With Youth in Loreto
Catholic Online

Take a Risk, Follow Your Call: the challenge of a lifetime!
Sisters of Bon Secours

Papal lessons

Family matters

Lessons from a tragedy
Dennis Heaney

Shopping blues
Joseph Sinasac

Marriage Breakdown: Expensive and Divisive
Catholic Online

Her darkness was a warning

Wednesday'a Audience - Gregory of Nyssa on Perfection
Catholic Online

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Corinthians 1:26-31
26 Consider, brothers, how you were called; not many of you are wise by ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 33:12-13, 18-19, 20-21
12 How blessed the nation whose God is Yahweh, the people he has chosen ... Read More

Gospel, Matthew 25:14-30
14 'It is like a man about to go abroad who summoned his servants and ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for August 27th, 2016 Image

St. Monica
August 27: Saint Monica, also known as Monica of Hippo, is ... Read More