Archbishop Chaput: ‘We are Catholics before we are Americans’

REUTERS Anti-abortion demonstrators take part in the “March for Life” in Washington on Jan. 23, 2012. Nearly 100,000 protesters marched … Continued

REUTERS

Anti-abortion demonstrators take part in the “March for Life” in Washington on Jan. 23, 2012. Nearly 100,000 protesters marched to the U.S. Supreme Court to mark the 39th anniversary of the Court’s landmark Roe v. Wade decision on abortion.

Archbishop Charles J. Chaput of Philadelphia urged the faithful to put their faith ahead of politics, according to an interview with Catholic News Service within two weeks of the presidential election.

The Catholic leader clarified the duty of Catholics as he discussed the politics of abortion. He emphasized a need to honor God above country, of “Catholic identity taking precedence over everything.”

“We’re Catholics before we’re Democrats. We’re Catholics before we’re Republicans. We’re even Catholics before we’re Americans because we know that God has a demand on us prior to any government demand on us,” he said in a new interview with the wire service. “And this has been the story of the martyrs through the centuries,” Chaput said.

“[Abortion] is a very serious issue that requires absolute adherence on the part of Catholics,” said the Philadelphia archbishop, “and if we don’t stand united on this issue we’re bound to failure—not only in the area of protecting unborn human life but in maintaining our religious freedom.”

Leaders of the Pennsylvania Catholics’ Network, a grassroots lay organization, said Wednesday they endorsed Chaput’s stance.

“That Archbishop Chaput would give an interview with the official news outlet of the USCCB two weeks before the election attests once again to both his courage and his determination to clarify the teaching of the church regarding the priority of the settled issues, such as life and marriage, to Catholic voters,” said PCN President Deal Hudson in a statement. “The PCN commends his courage and implores all Catholics to cling to Chaput’s teaching to put God ahead of politics as they make their election-day decisions.”

“As Catholics, we believe in the dignity and worth of each human person,” said PCN Executive Director Ted Meehan in a statement. “This recognition leads to both democracy and free enterprise. These are the blessings which have brought freedom and greatness to America. America’s greatness comes from the virtue of its people, not from dependence upon its government.”

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  • amelia45

    As a Catholic, I have to tell you that there is much in Catholic theology and teaching that tells us that our own conscience must ultimately be followed.

    We can be both Catholics and citizens of a democracy but it does require that we be thoughtful about maintaining clarity on what goes in secular law and what belongs in Church teachings. And sometimes the two are not the same.

    The Church has always had an uneasy truce with democracy and is searching for a new way for faith and democracy to co-exist. This attempt to require Catholics to vote a certain way is not going to cut it.

  • happyCatholic

    amelia45,
    As a Catholic, you should be well aware that it is a well formed conscience you must follow. Check the Catechism. It explains what must be believed by one who would call him- or herself Catholic. As I posted in another box, you can be a Catholic and a patriotic citizen. Numerous Catholics have given their lives in service of the military of this country; there is even an Archdiocese of Military Service. So please don’t promote that being a good American requires us to renounce our Faith; it doesn’t.

  • happyCatholic

    But being a Catholic does mean listening to the bishops’ when they properly address areas of morality, such as abortion, euthansia, contraception, and embryonic stem cell research, because these are intrinsic evils and assaults on life. Now, no one is going to force you to be Catholic, but if you want to be, you have to take these teachings into account when you vote.

  • happyCatholic

    *bishops

  • DavidJ9

    So, like so many of America’s bishops, Chaput is a representative of a foreign nation that hates this country. He has shown us his treachery. He has shown us that he has no use for women. He has shown us that he rejects democracy. He needs to leave the country. Let the Vatican take these treasonous people into their little nation. Our country has no need to put up with them.

  • DavidJ9

    Chaput is a smug, self-righteous, self-absorbed old man who doesn’t care about this country. His Catholicism is oppressive and evil. The laity needs to fire the bishops. The bishops are harming Catholicism in the United States. They cannot be trusted.

  • ONE OF MANY, USA CITIZEN

    This bishop should know that the supreme law of our country is the Constitution which is for WE THE PEOPLE. All Americans have the right to pratice or not to pratic a religion. No one can take a right from a American. Was this bishop born in the U.S.A.? He should know very well that RCs do not view their RC religion all the same. Just take America RCs view on birth control. Ask the U.S.A. citizen RCs or look at their family size. This bishop is ultra conservative which most western world RCs are not. He should bear in mind not in any way tell any American how to vote. What is his game plan?

  • ONE OF MANY, USA CITIZEN

    happy catholic, Your religious views are yours. Have you ever thought for your self or ask questions? Most RCs in the USA do not think like you.

  • happyCatholic

    Huh. I have answered this twice but the response is not appearing. I will answer you, One of Many, on your post at the top of the page.

  • happyCatholic

    Won’t let me answer. Weird.

  • happyCatholic

    Ah, I think I have it — I think it is not accepting the latin phrase that means “with highest honors.” So, I have a BA, graduated with a 3.975 and was admitted to four law schools, including Washington University.So yes, I can “think for myself.” But, you could already tell that from my syntax and grammar; let’s be honest here.

  • happyCatholic

    Good! Now, the second part. As to not all Catholics thinking like me: I don’t know how they think and don’t care. This is what I do know, though: Catholics must follow the teachings of the Catechsim of the Catholic Church to be good Catholics. Period. And by the way, if you have never read the Cathechism, is it a thoughtful read and worth the time. You may not agree with it, but it is reasonable and explicates exactly what the Church does teach, including lots of footnotes and cross-references. In other words, it is serious, credible reading for serious, truth-seeking people of good wiill.

  • happyCatholic

    DavidJ9,
    What is your evidence that the Archbishop has no use for women? I listened to the interview an ddi not hear those words. When, specifically, did he say that?

  • happyCatholic

    DavidJ9,
    Furthermore, the Archbishop is a citizen of the United States. Are you saying he does not have the right to free speech as any citizen does? Free speech was especially enshrined in the Bill of Rights to protect political speech.

  • happyCatholic

    Where did the Archbishop say he is for taking away the right of an American to practice his religion?

  • SODDI

    Last I looked the catholic church did not have a Bill of Rights. If you a “catholic first” then the rules of the catholic church supercede the laws and protections of the U.S. Constitution. The archbishop is not entitled to those same rights.

  • SODDI

    Like someone said before, if an American moslem leader said such a thing, “We are moslems before we are Americans”, you people would be screaming to have him deported. If not assassinated.

    Hypocrites.

  • happyCatholic

    Wow. And your authority for deciding who is a citizen and who not is what? Your assertion is a dangerous and slippery slope. He is an American and is subsequently governed by the Bill of Rights, and as such the Archbishop is entitle to freedom of speech, especially speech considered political. just as you are. Period.

  • will2012

    The Archbishop said that Catholics must put God ahead of country. What’s the fuss? Anyone who says otherwise would be an idiot. If you believe in the God of the Bible it is impossible to do otherwise.

  • happyCatholic

    *entitled

  • happyCatholic

    You people? Who is that?
    And I expect that practicing Moslems do say that. In fact, their ideal is to have sharia law as the law of the land. And if I am traveling in a Moslem country, I would expect that. However, America is a country founded by Christians — again, look at the monuments in DC, look at the image of Moses and the Ten Commandments in the Supreme Court building, read the writings of the founders — it is indisputable that the founders of this country perceived this to be a nation of religious, specifically Christian, people.
    And how slanderous of you! No reputable Catholic has called for the assassination of anyone. Shame on you for even suggesting it.

  • Catken1

    Then go found a theocracy if you cannot tolerate a nation where others are free not to follow your faith.

  • Catken1

    But the founders also gave us the freedom NOT to be Christian, even NOT to be religious, and their own religious beliefs do not justify you imposing your faith’s rules on those who choose not to follow them, not in America.

  • Catken1

    Well, he’s for taking away the right of an American who believes that a woman was given human status by God, human status that does not disappear when she conceives a child, to treat her as a person rather than a piece of her fetus’s property, to be used as a thing and discarded as trash should she break in such use.
    And he’s for taking away the right of gay Americans who believe God wants them to enter into marriage to do so.

  • Secular1

    Yes go all of you, who want to put your fairy tale god ahead of rest of the Americans, to vatican and cram yourselves there. We don’t need you here, if you cannot stand the fact that you cannot shove your fairy tales down our throats

  • Secular1

    “again, look at the monuments in DC, look at the image of Moses and the Ten Commandments in the Supreme Court building,” Hey HC SCOTUS building also has images of Hamurabi, Manu and several other law givers from the past, just as a historical thing. The founders neither endorsed any of them nor all of them. Coming to your ethnic cleanser par excellence and that sorry excuse for a human being moses, his law regressed from even Hamurabi. His laws are steeped in out-group hostility and in-group nepotism. Is that what you want in the is 21st century. You should get an inkling that the founders did not endorse that human pond scum, owing to the fact that hardly any of his ten commandments is law of the land. the ten commandments were rejected by the founders as any basis for our secular law.

  • Secular1

    HC you can wow all you want it is a fact that it is your buddy chaput or caput was the one who said he was catholic. Not only that if the accident of your birth should make a catholic by birth, then you have no choice but to follow this scum bag. Which apparently you too endorse, so by your own free will (you and that scum bag) chosen not to be US citizens.

  • Secular1

    HC you boast of being accepted in four law school, as badge of honor. So let me ask you as a soon to be lawyer, will you try your cases on evidentiary basis or will you quite from that book of fairy tales to make your point. I will go out on the limb and give you the benefit of the doubt, and say that you will prosecute your clients cases on evidentiary basis. So, tell me what evidence can you muster to support any of the fairy tales that are on teh face of it nothing but horse manure as to their truth claims. Lets see what evidence do you have that in any species that depends on sexual reproduction paradigm, that there are instances of asexual reproduction. I am talking about any instance among any species that were exceptions. Not only that JC was so born, but also his brother and a sister. So this wonderful Mary was a unstoppable reproduction machine, without the benefit of being laid by Joseph. Isn’t that amazing not only that she also creates the “Y” chromosomes out of the thin air, doesn’t she? Now you want us to buy into this utter bull scat that it happened again and again. In fact there is ample evidence of such stupid truth claims throughout history, including Alexander, Mithras, Romulus & Remus, Chengiz khan. If your mythical JC was born virgin, is just a perpetuation of horse manure that is with all the above claim

  • ONE OF MANY, USA CITIZEN

    Bishop Chaput , are you a American citizen by birth or immigration and or of what country? Please read these words of Thomas Jefferson……………………….Almighty God hath created the mind free. All attempts to influence it by temporal punishments or burthens…are a departure from the plan of the holy author of our religion…no man shall be compelled to frequent or support any religious worship or ministry or shall otherwise suffer on account of his religious opinions or belief, but all men shall be free to profess and by argument to maintain, their opinions in matters of religion. I know but one code of morality for men whether acting singly or collectively.”………………Bear in mind that not all RCs think as you Bishop Chaput.

  • happyCatholic

    catken,

    The Archbishop is not saying others can’t practice their faith. But likwise, he is saying Cahtolics have the right to practice ours, guaranteed in the Bill of Rights.

  • happyCatholic

    Secular1,
    Hardly any of the 10 Commandments are the law of the land? Really?
    Let’s see:
    You shalt not murder. Yes.
    You shall not steal. Yes.
    You shall not give false testimony. Yes — perjury is against the law.
    Remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy. This one, not so much anymore, but historically, many businesses were closed on Sundays out of respect for this commandment, and to this day most offices are still closed and many retail outlets have more restricted hours. You may not agree with the closing, but it is a fact of history that stores and offices were closed. So, yes, even here laws (blue laws) or customs reflected this commandment.
    Honor your father and mother. Yes. Elder abuse is a crime.
    You shall not covet. Well, sadly, you might be right on this one. Far too many people are coveting what others have, and there is no secular law against that. Actually, many politicians encourage violating this commandment.

    And, actually, I hope you would be honest enough to acknowledge that these being laws have made society a better place for everyone to live in, whatever their faith or non-faith.

  • happyCatholic

    areyousaying,

    Any abuse or coverup of the abuse of children falls under the Lord’s admonition: it would be better for a millstone to be tied around his or her neck than to hurt one of Hs little ones. Period. Whatever culpability an individual has will be his before the judgment seat of God. So, no one is going to defend indefensible behavior. Victims are deserving of the sympathy, prayers, support and love.
    However, the crimes of a few do not abrograte the rights of the rest of the group. If a Democrat commits a crime, does that mean no Democrat is ever allowed to speak in public again and all Democrats lose their Constitutional protection? Of course not. And neither does the Archbishop nor other Catholics.

  • happyCatholic

    Um, One of Many,
    Unless you are native American yourself, the good Archbishop pre-dates your ancestors coming to this country. He is a member of the Prairie Band Potawatomi Tribe.
    And even if he weren’t, your challenging his citizenship whether it had been by birth or legal immigration, simply because you do not like his views, is quite intolerant and distasteful.

  • happyCatholic

    Catken1,
    He is for the right of a baby, who is a separate human being from the mother (otherwise, how could a female carry a male child? obviously they are separate beings) to have his or life protected, just like every other person in this country. And if you think stripping the pre-born of his or her right ot life has improved the culture of life in this country, you have not been paying attention. All our lives are more at risk now because of the unleashing of the horror of abortion in this land.
    As to your second point, “gays’ are just as free to marry as anyone else — they are just as free as anyone to marry a person of the oppisite sex, which is what marriage is. Likewise, heterosexuals are restricted from marrying people of the same sex, just like gays. Equal rights all the way around.

  • happyCatholic

    Catken,

    I would like to add that people with same sex attractions may very well bear a special burden because of it, but to redefine marriage is metaphysically impossible.

  • TrueCatholic

    Yes I agree with him 100%. We are Catholic Americans and Yes we are Catholics before we are Americans. If we cannot be both then we will be Catholics. One hundred years from now many of us will not be Americans but will be Catholics in heaven

  • TrueCatholic

    If Washington post had cared to inform the ignorant people here that the ArchBishop was talking to Catholics we wouldnt have to experience the pathetic comments here. He is not imposing His faith to any person of any faith. He is just teaching authentic doctrine to his flock. Those who want to dissents are free to do so and become protestants. That is how protestantism was born. Get over it We practicing Catholics are Catholics before we are Americans

  • ONE OF MANY, USA CITIZEN

    happy catholic, I am not challenging his or any other person’s citizenship but what to more of his background account of his position. Your claims are intolerant and distasteful to me for asking a simple quistion. Many RCs in the USA do not fully agree ( 100% ) of the RCC teachings. Happy catholic, you should read Thomas Jefferson’s words as well.

  • ONE OF MANY, USA CITIZEN

    Happy catholic, Please do not read things into my commit for I said , ” NO ONE CAN TAKE A RIGHT FROM A AMERICAN” and ” THAT A AMERICAN HAS THE RIGHT TO PRATICE OR NOT TO PRATICE A RELIGION.” Please read what I wrote.

  • Secular1

    TC you are very welcome to what you practice, no one is asking you or HC, or this moron chaput or caput . All we oppose vehemently is when you want to put what you practice into law, secular law forcing us all to practice under threat of law.

  • ONE OF MANY, USA CITIZEN

    Abortion. In March,2009 in Brazil there was a case of abortion that received world press coverage, A girl of age nine of eighty pounds was pregnant in her forth month with twins by the rape of her step father. The girl’s mother took her to the hospital account the girl was in real pain. Two doctors preformed a emergency abortion which is allowed on Brazil law rape or a medical emergency. The bishop excommunicated the mother of the little girl and the two doctors. The president of Brazil spoke out against the bishops’s actions. The Vatican went one way then the other way.Canon 1323 and 1325 need adjustment to age limits. Also plese note Canon 1398. Now on this given case, where does Bishop Chaput stand? What you you do as a mother of your daughter in this case? What would the majority of USA RCs do? Abortion cases are not all cut and dry.

  • nkri401

    Do we really want to start we were Baptist, LDS, etc before we are Americans?

    This is what happens when the national motto was changed to “In God we trust” from e pluribus unum.

  • Secular1

    “You shalt not murder. Yes.
    You shall not steal. Yes. ”
    These predate that human pond scum and ethnic cleanser par excellence Moses.

    “You shall not give false testimony. Yes — perjury is against the law.” Please why don’t you state that commandment fully – it goes as below:

    “”Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor.” Here the most important and operative word is neighbor. Which in the context of the OT is your fellow tribesman, not the expansive meaning we have come to associate in 21st century. The last three words are reduce that beautiful admonishment to shambles. With those three words raises 4 possibilities, which are false testimony 1) against neighbor, 2) for your neighbor, 3) against your non-neighbor, 4) for your non-neighbor. The whole thing becomes shambles because it only prohibits only one of the four. As i always said teh scripture only promotes in-group nepotism, and out-group hostility. This is a prime example of that. The secular law is way superior to this commandment. It covers all the four possibilities.

    “Honor your father and mother. Yes. Elder abuse is a crime.” Come on HC I did not think you are so gullible again you must read the whole commandment, which goes as below:

    “Honor thy father and thy mother: that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee.” This is not admonishment against elder abuse (actually just parents). It is plain bribery to induce child to behave properly. This is atrocious that your sky daddy pollutes it by resorting to crass bribery, what would generally be unconditional love between the parents and children. Besides the modern day elder abuse laws have no genesis in that filthy scripture of yours, but its motivations are purel human zeitgeist.

    “You shall not covet. Well, sadly, you might be right on this one. Far too many people are coveting what others have, and there is no secular law against that. Actually, many politicians encourage violating this commandment.”

  • nkri401

    Time to time the Church shows how evil it is… May be this will get worse before it gets better. Inquisition anyone?

  • nancydancer

    happy – marriage is a religious institution – and members of a religion are certainly free to live by their beliefs and not perform a ceremony if they believe it to be wrong – by the same token they are not free to impose their beliefs upon others who may not share their beliefs – there are many, many secular aspects to marriage – as we all know by now – taxes, hospital visitation rights etc – just because you do not consider such a marriage to be legitimate – please stop telling other folks what they can and cannot do based on your religion

  • happyCatholic

    Secular1, All law is based on someone’s morality, as I answered you below. So, which laws based on the 10 Commandments would you like to repeal? You would prefer to be lied to, stolen from, perjured against., or murdered, for instance?

  • happyCatholic

    Really? The Church is evil? I missed the part of the story where the church raped the girl. Get a grip.
    Again, as I posted below, I cannot believe how Catholics are being villified simply for proclaiming the value of every human life — yours, mine, the nine year old’s and the babies in her womb. My goodness! Are you all eugenicists? Do you all want to play God and decide who lives, who dies, and whose life is acceptable? Because that is a slippery slope, and sooner or later you will find it is your life some bureacrat somewhere thinks is not worth sustaining.

  • happyCatholic

    Ok, One of many, you say you are not challenging his citizenship, but I can read, and your first sentence is as follows: “Bishop (sic) Chaput, are you an American by birth or immigration, etc.” This is not the only comment in which you have asked such a question. It IS intolerant and distasteful of you to keep questioning his citizenship simply because you do not like what he said, as if only someone who wasn’t a citizen could speak like he does.
    And I did read TJ’s words and have read other words of his; his position is not as cut and dry as you imply, and many other of the founding fathers have more explicity referenced postively the role of religion in our nation, especially John Adams who declared: “Our Constituion was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate for any other.” For all our sakes, we should be supporting the role of Catholicism in public life. Again, I remind you that one in six patients receive health care in a Catholic hospital. Millions of children are educated in the parochial, private and Catholic university systems. It is the Catholic Church who raises her voice in defense of the downtrodden: Blessed Mother Teresa’s Missionaries of Charity were caring for AIDS patients when they were considered pariahs in the rest of society. It is easy to tear down foundations of civil society, but it is very, very hard to rebuild them. Tread carefully.

  • happyCatholic

    So far, secular, you are the only one spewing vulgarities. I have not. I do not speak or write that way. Actually, it is not necessary in trying to have a dialogue, anyway.

  • happyCatholic

    It is counter-productive and quite frankly, unnecessarily distasteful.

  • happyCatholic

    Please cite the paritcular law or section of the Constitution that says Catholics cannot be citizens? And, as soon as you do, it makes it possible to strip the citizenship of any group at the whim of some other.

  • happyCatholic

    Oh, now I saw your reply below. I see you are a fan of coveting. I think perhaps you misunderstand what it means.

  • happyCatholic

    Actually, One, I apologize. Scrolling back through the comments, I realize that you were not the one before who brought up citizenship before; it was a different poster. I knew I had addressed it before; I was wrong that you were the one I was addressing.

  • happyCatholic

    Coveting does not bring social or economic progress, because it does not inspire a person to excel so as to have certain things, but it is a perversion that wishes to have spefically what already belongs to another.

  • happyCatholic

    A final thought: I am both happy and humbled to be blessed to be both a Catholic and an American. I love my Church and my country, and the two are in no way mutually exclusive. Good Catholics make good citizens of this nation. We in America have been given opportunities the rest of history could only dream of, and I am grateful for that. My Faith gives me a vision of a country and world where the less fortunate are cared for, and the system of government is the best that flawed human beings can achieve.

    But most importantly, my Catholic faith promotes a culture of life that recognizes the value of every human life –every life, no matter what stage it is in, from fertilization to natural death, which is what the Archbishop was addressing –and it is shocking to me that the posters here are irate over that. Again I say, Catholics have spilled their blood in defense of this country, dispropotionately in greater numbers at that. We are good citizens. As readers of one of the nation’s premier papers, the posters here have generally shown a depth of intolerance and an embarrassing lack of acknowledgement of all the good the Church has done to build the fabric of society in this country , such in establishing schools, hospitals (one is six patients in this country is treated in a Catholic hospital), soup kitchens, food pantries, crisis pregnancy centers, maternity homes etc.. –all, by the way, which serve anyone of any faith or no faith. Furthermore, Catholics spend our personal assests and treasures to help all, not just members of our own Church.

    So, to challenge the very right of citizenship of your fellow Americans as some of you have done is just the essence of bigotry.

  • ONE OF MANY, USA CITIZEN

    happy catholic, you wrote ” I MISSED THE PART OF THE STORY WHERE THE CHURCH RAPED THE GIRL. GET A GRIP. ” As I told you before happy catholic to read what I wrote. To begin with that what I wrote is not a story but fact that you can look up. I also stated that the little girl”s step father raped her. By the way, he was arrested as the media printed. Please do not commit on your thoughts that you think are what another has written when it is not what is in print of the writter. Happy catholic, please look up the word SLANDER.

  • ONE OF MANY, USA CITIZEN

    Happy catholic, I ask only a question. You again turn around what is in print of my question to something else that it is not. Please commit only what is in print.

  • DavidJ9

    It’s good to see that you understand that Archbishop Chaput is wrong in what he said.

  • ONE OF MANY, USA CITIZEN

    Happy catholic, I just counted all your commit entries on this and all I can say is WOW!

  • happyCatholic

    Yeah, One of Many, I know…kind of alot, huh?
    I just feel passionately that our country is moving to isolating Catholics from activity in the public square, and based on the tenor of many of comments, I perceive many of my fellow Americans are far down that road. And, I am confident that will result in a worse society for all of us. So, while I still have a chance to exercise that right to free speech, I will try to use it to implore my fellow citizens to really consider what is at stake here and to really ask themselves if a country where we start stripping free speech rights and freedom of religion and even questioning so-and-so’s citizenship is a healthy course for this nation. And obviously, this is a forum where conservatives like myself are not particularly the target audience, except as maybe in a “bulls-eye” sort of way , so this was a chance to (I hope) present a different way of viewing things and reassure others at the same time that Catholic participation in society, through the defense of life and through the running of other institutions such as schools and hospitals, is something to cherish, not attack.
    I think we sometimes forget these things when we are in our “bubbles” of like-minded folks, which I certainly inhabit on many occasions, too.

  • happyCatholic

    I know what slander is, and I know what you wrote. I was being dramatic for the sake of a point — you are criticizing the Church for following its teachings, seemingly making the Church a villain, when the villain was the rapist.

  • happyCatholic

    One of Many, I know what slander is and I know what you wrote. I was being dramatic to make a point. You are castigating the Church for following its own teachings on the sanctity of life, and painting it a villain for doing so. I was merely redirecting to remind all that the villain in this case who caused all the trauma is the rapist, not the Church’s consistency. Again, I say, the Church’s teachings are the one bulwark against the cheapening of all and any human life.

  • happyCatholic

    Because here is what concerns me, One of Many: religious persecution is crouching at the door (just look at the vitriol of many of the comments here). And I want to know, will you stand and defend Catholics like myself and the Archbishop, or not? My goal has been to present a solid case that you and any other reader should.

  • Secular1

    HC, when you cannot answer my points you retreat into the above two posts. My depiction of your fictional character may hurt your feelings, but the depiction of those characters is no different than the characterizations you attribute to real people who may have done similar things, albeit in much smaller scale. The book you venerate are absolutely abhorrent to me. Nonetheless I am willing to engage you. What is counter productive, it i snot as though I am trying to persuade you to elect me for any office, that I should mince my words. This is open debate come to it with open mind. What if my rhetoric is strong and reflects my considered opinions on the subjects. I do consider that all scripture is poor fiction in more ways than one. Most of the characters in those books are the vilest of the vile per my sense of right and wrong. Am I to limit my rhetorical flourishes to avoid bruising your tender sentiments? Rest of you hardly restrain yourself in calling an abortion, or birth control or homosexuality as abominations and characterizing them in the most vile terms. You wish that we endure them, as you seek refuge that those are not your words but of your vile scripture. Our rhetorical flourishes like wise are not our words they are the logical product of our much cherished gospels of logic, science, mathematics, ethic and morality. If you do not wish to be subjected to sharp blade of our rhetoric, then expunge such hyperbole from your scripture.

    Besides I have learned yours is a classic refrain from the theist side of he debaters, to whine, like tis, when they cannot counter the arguments placed in front of them or when their assertions are not meekly accepted by my ilk.

    If all you care to is whine, bring some cheese too, so we can have at least a “Wine & Cheese Party”!!!!

  • ONE OF MANY, USA CITIZEN

    Happy catholic, most USA RCs do not fully ( 100% ) agree with all the RCC teachings. Man made rules are not God’s rules. The words of the good holy Cardinal Martini will not go away and great change will come to the RCC. Enjoy your life and God bless.

  • nkri401

    happyCatholic,

    Read your Bible – It’s full of rape and murder not to horrendous mention torture by the Church during Inquisition.

    I guess one way to be a happy Catholic is not to read the Bible (only a priest could read the Bible, I wonder why?) or the history of Church.

  • nkri401

    Being asked to comply with the law of the land is not a persecution, religious or otherwise.

    Why do the believers of many kinds think they are above the law? And feels persecuted when everyone else complies with the same law of the land?

  • Catken1

    ” just feel passionately that our country is moving to isolating Catholics from activity in the public square,”

    Are Muslims isolated from activity in the public square because they can’t force non-Muslim women to wear burqas, or forbid anyone to eat pork or drink alcohol?

    Are Jews isolated from activity in the public square because they can’t take your boy-children away from you if you don’t have them circumcised?

    Is a Gaian Wiccan isolated from activity in the public square because, if they employ you in a public business, they cannot deny you health coverage for your third and subsequent pregnancy/ies and the resulting child/ren, on the grounds that overpopulation is an offense to Gaia?

    Are anti-Catholic Protestants denied the right to “defend life” by taking the body parts of those they consider less than human (i.e. Catholics) on behalf of those they consider innocent and virtuous, who need those body parts to live?

    You are not being “persecuted” because you can’t force gay people to obey your religion’s laws in choosing a spouse, or make the rest of us pay extra insurance and societal costs so that Catholic employers can pressure their female employees and wives of male employees not to use birth control via differential compensation, or because you can’t declare a woman to be the property of her fetus, a thing to be used rather than a person to be considered, because your religion considers that the appropriate penalty for being female and not a lifelong celibate.

    And yes, I will continue to question the American citizenship of those who believe they cannot follow their religion and still tolerate the rights of other Americans NOT to follow their religion. You can’t be an American without respecting the rights of other Americans to believe and live as they please, even if they don’t obey your preferred doctrine.

  • Catken1

    “Again, as I posted below, I cannot believe how Catholics are being villified simply for proclaiming the value of every human life — yours, mine, the nine year old’s and the babies in her womb”

    The value of your life under Catholicism: don’t know. Depends on your sex.
    Mine: Valuable until I become pregnant.
    That nine-year-old’s: apparently not valuable enough to consider her a human being whose pain mattered, whose ownership of her own body gave her the right to decide who might or might not use it at any given time. Just a thing to be used, and if she died in the process, too bad – her own fault for being raped.
    The fetus’s: certainly more important than its mother’s, and more important than any born human’s life, since after all no born human is ever permitted to use another’s body or body parts without her consent.

    “Do you all want to play God and decide who lives, who dies, and whose life is acceptable? ”

    Well, if someone is inhabiting my body and using my body parts and physical resources, I do have the right to decide whether they may continue to do so.

    And you’re perfectly willing to decide that that nine-year-old should die, or be permanently mutilated, or live in agony, because she was sinful enough to be raped and impregnated, and therefore ought to be punished by being treated as a thing to be used for her rapist’s children’s good.

  • Catken1

    “He is for the right of a baby, who is a separate human being from the mother (otherwise, how could a female carry a male child? obviously they are separate beings) to have his or life protected, just like every other person in this country. ”

    Protected inside another person’s body and using another person’s physical resources, without her consent.

    No other person in this country has the right to use another person’s organs, blood supply, or other body parts without their consent. That is an out-and-out LIE.

    (Oh, sorry. Forgot that Catholics define pregnant women as subhuman things, not people. But the law deems women people, at all times, even while pregnant, and you must live under that law if you wish to be American.)

    “I would like to add that people with same sex attractions may very well bear a special burden because of it, but to redefine marriage is metaphysically impossible.”

    If that were so, you wouldn’t need to whine to government for special privileges for your sort of marriage to “protect” it from the scary “redefined” marriages of gay people.

    But far from being impossible, marriage has been redefined and reshaped many, many times over history and across cultures. It has been radically redefined in our own society across the past hundred years or so (generally for the better – I LIKE not being a non-person under the law, subsumed under my husband’s legal status), in ways that change each and every marriage in this country far more drastically than including a few gay couples will ever do.

    “As to your second point, “gays’ are just as free to marry as anyone else — they are just as free as anyone to marry a person of the oppisite sex, which is what marriage is.”

    Ah, Virginia’s argument in Loving vs. VA – “You can’t marry the person you love, but you could have a sham loveless marriage with someone you don’t particularly care about, and that’s just as good.” Luckily, the Supreme Court decided that that was not a legitimate argument, that the person you actual

  • Catken1

    “Please cite the paritcular law or section of the Constitution that says Catholics cannot be citizens?”

    If you believe that everyone in this country must abide by your religious law for you to be a good Catholic, then you cannot abide by one of the core principles necessary to be a good American citizen, that being respect for others’ religious freedom.

  • elpea123

    I found that I needed to stop being Catholic. I no longer really have
    anything in common with many, many of them. I am pro-life
    and I plan on voting pro-life,,,,however, many many Catholics
    are NOT pro-life and still think that they can call themselves Catholics.

    The Catholic faithful have decaded…the Catholic FAITH, though, has NOT
    decade.

    I can’t walk with these people any more. I need to find a group
    that acts with pro-life beliefs, the same as I have. I need that
    support.

  • happyCatholic

    Catken,

    How cold! “If someone is inhabiting my body, etc etc etc.”
    You are talking about your baby! Your own flesh and blood!
    And your concern for the nine year old is admirable — I have great concern for her too. I said repeatedly the rapist is a villain. So, you, though, would choose her life over the life of the babies? The goal is to safe them all. Again, neither I nor the Church put her in that position — the rapist did. And SHE WAS NOT SINFUL — SHE WAS NINE YEARS OLD, for pity’s sake. She was a victim of a horrendous act. Who wants her to be “used for her rapist’s children’s good?” You are painting a picture that is divorced from reality.

  • happyCatholic

    One of Many,

    In all sincerity, God bless you too. And God bless everyone.

  • Secular1

    Oh cra% i am trying tpost a rebuttal to our favorite HC, and WaPo is preventing me.

  • Secular1

    “I just feel passionately that our country is moving to isolating Catholics from activity in the public square, and based on the tenor of many of comments, I perceive many of my fellow Americans are far down that road. And, I am confident that will result in a worse society for all of us.” Wow HC, you really think Catholic;s are being isolated away from the public square? Five of the nine judges on Scotus are Catholic, the two vice presidential candidates in this year’s election are Catholic, the last and the current speakers are catholic and you still cry out that you are being isolated? With this kind of hyperbole, what are we to think of our ostracism at your hands? You term a free an frank discussion as bigotry what are we the seculars must feel. You are a disgrace to come to this forum with your high minded holier than thou attitude and when countered you claim bigotry!!! You have some gall. Rather than mustering arguments to buttress your POV, you have only whined. You could not walk away from any of the skirmishes on this blog and then complained in every skirmish. Then don’t come to a knife fight and bark invectives. Then don’t cry foul if you get a cut up a bit. If you can’t take it, either don’t come to the fight or don’t at least bark.

    “So, while I still have a chance to exercise that right to free speech, I will try to use it to implore my fellow citizens to really consider what is at stake here and to really ask themselves if a country where we start stripping free speech rights and freedom of religion and even questioning so-and-so’s citizenship is a healthy course for this nation.” oh! hush up don’t be so melodramatic there is no threat to anyone’s 1st amendment rights. As to questioning of yours or that guy chaput’s citizenship was brought upon by yourselves, as I stated before.

  • Americacares

    What Book will Mitt be sworn in on? Not the Bible. As a Catholic, I back the Nuns not the Bishops who seem to have lost they way.

  • itsthedax

    Psst, Cardinal. You’re living in America, and are subject to its laws and protections.

    And if you want to dabble in politics, stop claiming tax exemption.

  • ONE OF MANY, USA CITIZEN

    The religion that wants to speak on political matters in any way should not claim tax exempt.

  • SocialGadfly

    The Catholic bishops of America are being challenged, not by the government, but by their own members. Catholic women have long given up on the legitimacy of bishops who pretend to know more about women’s bodies and sexuality than the women themselves. Catholic parents question the bishop’s sincerity when it seems more important to protect the church than protecting catholic children from predator priests. Catholic families and friends of the LGBT community ask how these bishops can have any true understanding of human sexuality when the bishops themselves piously profess their own lack of experience in human sexuality.

    The model of a centralized, top-down religion where septuagenarian men receive supernatural voices telling others what to believe and how to live their lives is an old model that has passed.

  • reformthesystem

    Most of these princes of the church and bishops were appointed by and hold their jobs at the pleasure of an aged church-organization politician who got his basic indoctrination as a boy from the Hitler Jugend. In the context of Mormonism in US politics, there is little difference between them and the Catholic religious leaders that in 1932-1933 Germany abandoned their faith in Jesus and urged parishioners to vote for Hitler’s ideology, with which the man who later became Pius XII had already made a political deal. Similarl to them, Archbishop Chaput has a reserved seat in Hell.

  • Lover of Wisdom

    I agree that over-centralization is bad everywhere. However, doesn’t anybody, even a leader have the right to express his own personal views? He is not ordering people to vote according to his views. If you do not agree with him leave him alone.

  • Lover of Wisdom

    Does that mean that he does not have the right to express his own personal views? If you read what he is saying, he is expressing his personal views. He is not saying that he is infallible.

  • Lover of Wisdom

    Secular1, if you do not like what a moron is saying, then just do not vote for him. The religious leader is not running for office, he is just expressing his view to his flock. He is not even ordering them to follow his own views. He is just trying to influence them. He is in reality powerless to enforce his view. Are you going to take this freedom away from him? It shows how tolerant you are towards people disagreeing from you! Secularism started as a desire for tolerance when it was a minority. Now that it has become a majority, it is becoming as intolerant as the religious fanatics before them.