"The real scandal at Notre Dame today is not that the president of the United States is speaking at commencement," McGuire said. "The real scandal is the misappropriation of sacred teachings for political ends. The real scandal is the spectacle of ostensibly Catholic mobs camping out at Notre Dame for the specific purpose of disrupting the commencement address of the nation's first African American president. This ugly spectacle is an embarrassment to all Catholics. The face that Catholicism shows to our new president should be one marked with the sign of peace, not distorted in the snarl of hatred."This goes along with another rebuke, delivered by a Jesuit as an op-ed in the Post a week or two ago:
McGuire continued, "The religious vigilantism apparent in the Notre Dame controversy arises from organizations that have no official standing with the church, but who are successful in gaining media coverage as if they were speaking for Catholicism. . . . They have established themselves as uber-guardians of a belief system we can hardly recognize. Theirs is a narrow faith devoted almost exclusively to one issue. They defend the rights of the unborn but have no charity toward the living. They mock social justice as a liberal mythology."
I think part of the problem is that the bishops stopped listening and teaching and started ordering and condemning. With an educated laity it no longer works to simply say, "it is the teaching of the church." This is the equivalent of a parent shouting, "Because I said so."As we commented earlier, the conservative Catholics are even getting out of step with the Vatican. Could it be that the silent majority of Catholics are finally saying they've had enough?
The bishops must persuade and convince with arguments not by turning up the volume. When they resort to commanding and threatening punishments, people are turned off. Banning speakers, denying Communion, silencing theologians is a sign of weakness not strength. Censorship and violations of academic freedom come across as admissions that their arguments are not convincing and therefore the opposition must be silenced.
The Vatican said Monday that President Barack Obama was clearly looking for some common ground with his speech at the University of Notre Dame about abortion.....The article didn't mention the protest by dozens of U.S. Catholic bishops who denounced Notre Dame for honoring Obama because his abortion rights record clashes with fundamental church teaching. Instead, it simply quoted Obama as inviting all Americans to work together to reduce the number of abortions and unwanted pregnancies, and concluded he was searching for common ground on the "delicate question of abortion."I think the Vatican is pushing back against the abusive politics as well. Good for them!