Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Deal W. Hudson

6/21/2014 (5 months ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

A wise and good shepherd, in the end, will find his sheep, especially the one who has strayed far away.

As Catholics of the United States, we have arrived at a moment in our history when the articulated defense, or even explanation, of the sacrament of marriage is called a hate crime by the House Minority Leader and a former Speaker of the House of Representatives, one of the nation's most prominent "Catholic" politicians.

Deal W. Hudson is president of the Morley Institute of Church and Culture, Senior Editor and Movie Critic at Catholic Online, and former publisher and editor of Crisis Magazine.

Deal W. Hudson is president of the Morley Institute of Church and Culture, Senior Editor and Movie Critic at Catholic Online, and former publisher and editor of Crisis Magazine.

Highlights

By Deal W. Hudson

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

6/21/2014 (5 months ago)

Published in U.S.

Keywords: Deal W. Hudson, Nancy Pelosi, marriage, dissent, Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone, National Organization for Marriage


WASHINGTON,DC (Catholic Online) - On Thursday, Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone of San Francisco spoke publicly in defense of marriage in Washington, DC in spite of a letter from Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi asking him not to. She wrote her archbishop asking him not to show "disdain and hate towards LGBT persons" by speaking at a National Organization for Marriage march to the Supreme Court.

As Catholics of the United States, we have arrived at a moment in our history when the articulated defense, or even explanation, of the sacrament of marriage is called a hate crime by the House Minority Leader and a former Speaker of the House of Representatives, one of the nation's most prominent "Catholic" politicians.

Even those who have followed the sad devolution of the Catholic presence in the US Congress into hardened dissent over the past 25 years, were momentarily surprised by the foolishness of Pelosi in calling out her own archbishop.  Did she really think her ordinary would buckle? No, she knew better - priests and bishops such as Archbishop Cordileone may have an easy smile, a courteous manner, and a gentle touch, but they do not cave in under public pressure, no matter how vitriolic, or dangerous, it may become.  

The mention of danger is not, I believe, melodramatic, given the issue and the deep passions it invokes.  Anger towards Cordileone has also been stoked by a letter he received the week before Pelosi's, co-signed by San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee and Lt. Gov Gavin Newsom, asking the archbishop not to attend the NOM event. In addition, over 20,000 signatures were quickly gathered by an online petition sending Cordileone the same message. None of these public figures - Pelosi, Lee, or Newsom - we can presume, wishes any harm come to the Archbishop of San Francisco, but they surely must know first-hand the unintended consequences they are risking.

Given that Pelosi wrote her letter knowing she would not persuade her archbishop to stay home, why did she write it?  No doubt the activists in the LGBT community asked her for some sort of public protest. Prior to the arrival of Archbishop Cordileone, the leadership in the Archdiocese of San Francisco, though firmly holding the line on the issue of marriage, has avoided gestures that would incite the powerful gay and lesbian community to action.  The simplest explanation may be that Pelosi rebuked her archbishop for getting out of step with his predecessors by giving the Catholic teaching of marriage a higher profile.

Pelosi, of course, doesn't mind that her letter will insure that the substantial political support and donations she, and her political party, receives from gays and lesbians will continue.  She also doesn't mind restocking her capital on the Catholic left either, because Pelosi firmly believes the Church will one day "come around" on the marriage issue, along with abortion and contraception as well. Pelosi and her like do not see themselves as dissenters but as purveyors of what the future Catholic Church will be like. In her prophetic role, Pelosi views Archbishop Cordileone as simply another of those - mostly men - who have not seen the inevitability of the Church bowing to the culture.

If this is a reasonable account of Pelosi's actual reasons for writing a letter to her bishop and making it public, what then does Archbishop Cordileone do, beyond the letter he wrote in response to Pelosi. His letter denies the March is "anti-LGBT" and that to affirm the Catholic view of marriage does not imply an animus towards anyone or any group. "Rest assured that if the point of this event were to single out a group of individuals and target them for hatred, I most certainly would not be there."

Anyone who knows anything about the archbishop would not doubt his words for a moment, including, I am confident, Pelosi herself.

There are always calls for ex-communication when Catholic politicians express their dissent, which is entirely reasonable given Canon 915 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church:

"Those who have been excommunicated or interdicted after the imposition or declaration of the penalty and others obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to holy communion."

The list of Catholic members of Congress who are "obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin" is long, though few are as flamboyantly manifest as Pelosi. Whatever course is taken by Archbishop Cordileone, I'm sure he's concerned more for the salvation of her soul than pursuing a public chastisement that would only further exacerbate the situation in San Francisco, both with Pelosi herself, and the LGBT community that supports her.  The pure foolishness of Pelosi's action must give the archbishop pause before making any further response.

Yet, it is also up to the archbishop to clear the air for those who are unable to see Pelosi's action for what it was. A wise and good shepherd, in the end, will find his sheep, especially the one who has strayed far away.

Deal W. Hudson, Ph.D

-----
Deal W. Hudson is president of the Morley Institute of Church and Culture, Senior Editor and Movie Critic at Catholic Online, and former publisher and editor of Crisis Magazine.This column and subsequent contributions are an excerpt from a forthcoming book. Dr. Hudson's new radio show, Church and Culture, is heard on the Ave Maria Radio Network.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


2014 - Distributed by THE NEWS CONSORTIUM

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for November 2014
Lonely people:
That all who suffer loneliness may experience the closeness of God and the support of others.
Mentors of seminarians and religious: That young seminarians and religious may have wise and well-formed mentors.



Comments


More U.S.

Obama declares all out war on Republicans over immigration reform Watch

Image of President Obama is expected to give a speech on November 20, outlining his plans to execute immigration reform via executive action.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Even after warnings from sitting and incoming House and Senate Republicans that unilateral action on immigration reform from President Barack Obama would not be tolerated, the president has gone ahead and outlined a plan to relax the rules and regulations of U.S. ... continue reading


The Marriage Meme of Francis: What Did the Pope Just Say about Marriage and Family? Watch

Image of Pope Francis presiding at a marriage Liturgy at St Peters.

By Deacon Keith A Fournier

Pope Francis embraces the unchangeable truth about marriage as solely between one man and one woman, intended for life, open to life and formative of family as the sole Meme - using the word properly.  That is why you will not read much about the crystal ... continue reading


Another black eye for Democrats: Obamacare architect makes off with $6 million in taxpayer money Watch

Image of New videos released in November show that the architect behind the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare, holds nothing but contempt for the American people.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The architect of the fiasco that has been the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Jonathan Gruber, was paid about $6 million in taxpayer money between 2009 and 2014. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - This is about 24 times what an average, full-time American worker would ... continue reading


See the list of MOST FREE countries in the world, the results will surprise you! Watch

Image of Land of the Free no more, Americans report a significant decline in personal freedom under the Obama administration.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

America is supposed to be the land of the free, so Americans themselves might be surprised to see that the United States actually ranks fairly low on the index of personal freedom when compared to other nations. Instead of occupying the number 1 spot, the USA has ... continue reading


America's foremost monster and madman Charles Manson intends to wed 26-year-old girl Watch

Image of A rare, recent prison photo of Charles Manson without his beard. The swastika on his forehead remains.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

His name alone strikes a chord even today, years after his murderous activities with his "family." Charles Manson's name is synonymous with madness and mayhem. The 80-year-old murderer now intends to marry a 26-year-old girl with a freshly obtained marriage ... continue reading


LOCKED AND LOADED - National Guard called to Ferguson as Missouri governor reacts to broadening crisis Watch

Image of The grand jury has been meeting for about three months to consider evidence on the shooting of 18-year-old Brown by Officer Darren Wilson on August 9.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

National Guard called to Ferguson as Missouri governor reacts to broadening crisisPolice will reportedly 'maintain peace and protect those exercising their right to free speech'Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)A state of emergency has been declared in the state of ... continue reading


What does this say about America? New study finds that child homelessness epidemic has reached a historic high Watch

Image of A new study has shown that 2.5 million children in the U.S. were homeless in 2013.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

After a surge in recent years, a record number of children in the United States are homeless, and could be as high as one out of every 30, a recent report has revealed. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The report, titled "America's Youngest Outcasts," was ... continue reading


Why is Obama allowing foreign-designated terrorist groups to operate within the United States? Watch

Image of Protesters burn an American flag. The nation has many enemies, both within and without.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Two "moderate," mainstream Islamic groups in the United States feel as though they've been tarred and feathered with the same brush. The Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR), which describes itself as "America's largest Muslim civil liberties and advocacy ... continue reading


President Obama honors second man to die of Ebola in U.S. Watch

Image of Martin Salia, a Sierra Leone born surgeon is the second man to die of Ebola in the United States. Salia received a

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Another doctor has died from Ebola, marking the second person to die of the disease in the United States. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Martin Salia, a Sierra Leone native whose family lived in Maryland, was flown to Nebraska Medical Center where he was placed in ... continue reading


Coming to the USA! Pope Francis announces 2015 trip to Philadelphia Watch

Image of Pope Francis will visit the U.S. in 2015, where he will the fourth sitting Pontiff to visit America.

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

The Vatican has announced that Pope Francis will be making his first trip to the United States in September of 2015. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The Pope is going to visit Philadelphia for the World Meeting of the Families, a Catholic public event which ... continue reading


All U.S. News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

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

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Revelation 10:8-11
8 Then I heard the voice I had heard from heaven ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 119:14, 24, 72, 103, 111, 131
14 In the way of your instructions lies my joy, a joy ... Read More

Gospel, Luke 19:45-48
45 Then he went into the Temple and began driving out ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for November 21st, 2014 Image

St. Gelasius
November 21: St. Gelasius I, Pope (Feast day - November 21) Gelasius was born ... Read More

Inform, Inspire & Ignite Logo

Find Catholic Online on Facebook and get updates right in your live feed.

Become a fan of Catholic Online on Facebook


Follow Catholic Online on Twitter and get News and Product updates.

Follow us on Twitter