Cleansing Fire

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Local Priests Support Anti-Catholic Organization Fortunate Families

July 7th, 2011, Promulgated by Ben Anderson

On June 16th, 2011, I mailed out letters to 14 local priests asking for clarification of their support of the anti-Catholic organization Fortunate Families. The following names appeared on Fortunate Families’ 2010 Annual Report.

Fr. Paul Brennan
Fr. Bill Donnelly
Fr. Robert Kennedy (helping out with the new missal preparations)
Fr. Michael Bausch
Fr. Thomas Mull
Fr. Ed Palumbos
Msgr. William Shannon
Fr. William Michatek
Fr. Otto Vogt
Fr. Bob Werth

The following names appeared on the Open Letter to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops from Catholic Families and Friends of Gays and Lesbians from Fortunate Families
Fr. Michael Bausch
Fr. Robert Kennedy
Fr. Charles Manning
Fr. Kevin Murphy
Fr. Dennis Shaw
Fr. Gary Tyman

I sent the following letter to everyone on these lists except for Fr. Manning (couldn’t find address) and Fr. Shaw (currently suspended).

Dear Rev. X,

First and foremost, I wish to thank you for your priestly ministry. It is with great humility that I write to a man such as you willing to offer his life in response to God’s call to serve His Church.

Either:
The purpose of this letter is to request a response in regards to the Open Letter to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops from Catholic Families and Friends of Gays and Lesbians from Fortunate Families you signed in April 2007.
or:
The purpose of this letter is to request a response in regards to appearance of your name as a benefactor on the Fortunate Families 2010 Annual Report.

In case you are not aware, this organization is quite at odds with Church teaching. Evidence of this is provided in 1) excerpts from newsletters from the first half of 2011 and 2) the full newsletter from June 2010 – both of which are included with this letter. While the desire to assist and counsel individuals (and their families) who suffer from same sex attraction is good, such counseling must be done in accord with the teachings of the Church. The reason I am requesting a response is that I am a contributor to a local blog (CleansingFireDOR.com) which seeks to defend truth and tradition in the Diocese of Rochester. We have been breaking the Fortunate Families story and pointing out the many troubling connections between the Diocese of Rochester and this organization. Many people have felt scandalized by it and are losing faith in the local hierarchy. It is my hope that either Fortunate Families was in error in listing you as a benefactor or that you were not fully aware of the unorthodox nature of this organization. It is my intent to post the names of priests who would like to go on record as taking one of the following positions:

  1. Fortunate Families incorrectly reported that I made a financial contribution to their organization.
  2. I did make a contribution to Fortunate Families not knowing of their unorthodox positions. I will not be making any future donations.
  3. I made my contribution to Fortunate Families knowing what they stand for and I support this organization.

If you wish to go on record taking one of these positions (or another of your choosing), please contact me within 2 weeks in whatever way is most convenient for you.

Again, thank you kindly for your priestly ministry and know that you are in my prayers.

Ben Anderson

As stated, in addition to the letter, I included evidence of the anti-Catholic nature of Fortunate Families. I also included the entire June 2011 newsletter.

It’s been over 3 weeks since these letters were sent out. So far I have received 4 responses.  2 priests explained that they had given minuscule sums of money in the hopes of being able to reach this community with an authentic Catholic message. They both regretted their contributions and clearly stated that they stand with the Church and in no way endorse Fortunate Families. I have excluded those priests’ names from the above lists. The other 2 priests to contact me were Fr. Michael Bausch and Fr. Otto Vogt. Both of these priests made it abundantly clear that they do in fact fully endorse Fortunate Families knowing full well their mission and purpose.

Today Archbishop Dolan posted an article on his blog entitled “Some Afterthoughts” about the SSM legislation in New York State.  I have the utmost respect for Archbishop Dolan, but pose some questions and comments for him inline below.

My brother bishops of New York were particularly prophetic.  When I arrived here a little over two-years ago, they told me realistically that we faced a looming battle over the defense of marriage.  They advised me that the odds were not in our favor, and that some experts were even suggesting that we give-in and not put up a fight.

But they were also resolute in their conviction that such would have been a dereliction of duty. [resolute?  really?]

the Church neither has nor wants political “clout.” [Then why have parishioners been guilted into signing petitions AFTER MASS for room-for-legitimate-diversity-of-opinion legislation like SCHIP and the New START?] As Cardinal John O’Connor commented, “The only ‘clout’ the Church really has is God’s Truth, the assurance of His grace, and the simple yet sincere conviction of our people.”  Blessed John Paul II again reminds us that “The Church never imposes, she onlyproposes.” [If this is true, then how do you explain the signatures to the above document?]

Point six, the Church has always stood-up for marriage — one man and one woman, united in lifelong and faithful love, leading to new life in children – whenever and wherever it was in danger. [If this is true, then how do you explain priests who openly endorse organizations like Fortunate Families, bishops who make issues murky instead of clear, and Church authority turning a deaf ear on both?]

Finally, last point, for us in the Church, not much changes [If this is really so, can we expect the culture to continue declining further as the Church gives lip service to Truth while continuing to confuse the laity by endorsing anti-Catholic positions and organizations].  We continue to hold fast to the God-given definition of marriage, and acknowledge that no unfortunate legislative attempt can alter reality and morality.  Yes, we have a big catechetical challenge, in that we have to admit that quite a few people no longer hold to this timeless moral truth.  (Although I still believe most people do; thus the fear of areferendum on the issue by those who still claim this is a “grassroots movement” sweeping the nation.)  Yes, we do have our work cut out for us, as even some Catholics, and, scandalously, even political leaders [and even more scandalously priests and bishops] who claim to be Catholic, tell us the Church is “out of it,” and has no claim on truth.

So, we try our best to witness to the truth, encouraging our married couples and their kids to be loving, radiant, “lights to the world.”  We acknowledge that, as St. Augustine taught, if something is wrong, even if everybody else is doing it, it’s still wrong; and, if something is right, even if nobody else is doing it anymore, it’s still right.  Like St. Thomas More, we’re willing to take the heat and even lose our head from following a conscience properly formed by God’s revelation and the teaching of His Church, even if it is politically incorrect, and clashes with the King’s demands to re-define marriage. [Read this last paragraph as evidence of the need for CleansingFire.]

 

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44 Responses to “Local Priests Support Anti-Catholic Organization Fortunate Families”

  1. avatar Anonymous says:

    I work with one of the priests on the list. The first day I met him he very testily stated that he would vote for any Democrat no matter who he was or what he stood for and would never vote for a Republican no matter who he was or what he stood for. We weren’t even discussing politics, he just brought it up. Bizarre. Party loyalty above truth, morality, the common good…

  2. The (DoR) Fr. Charles Manning I knew left the priesthood several years ago to get married.

  3. Sorry, made a mistake. I was thinking of Charles Mulligan.

    But I do remember a Fr. Charles Manning. Is he even an active priest these days? He’s not in the DoR directory.

  4. avatar Hopefull says:

    The 2010 Official Catholic Directory lists Charles T. Manning, ROC, ordained 1975, as “Absent on Leave.” p. 1916

  5. avatar Sassy says:

    Ben, thank you for this detailed and, in many ways, tragic post. At one point in my life I lived in a much less orthodox diocese in the South where the priest blessed a couple of SS unions and appointed one of them to be an Extraordinary Minister. It was very easy to fall away from Truth, especially when your spiritual leader was, well, not doing his job as a spiritual leader. I found myself falling away from the Truth. It wasn’t until I moved into a more orthodox diocese that, in retrospect, I realized what was happening in my spiritual life.

    I admire all of you in the DOR and who participate with CF for upholding the Truth in a terribly difficult environment. As always, your intentions are in my prayers.

  6. avatar MichaelL says:

    Ben. Excellent comment on Archbishop Dolan’s blog. It struck just the right tone — respectful, but firm. Catholics at least deserve a response to the question of communion for Cuomo. And Bishop Clark needs to express clearly and consistently the teachings of the Catholic Church on homosexuality.

    Do you think that Bishop Clark will be forced to act against Fortunate Family since they have come out openly in favor of “homosexual marriage” by joining the “Equally Blessed” coalition with New Ways Ministry, Call To Action and DignityUSA? (That was back in October 2010.)

  7. avatar MichaelL says:

    Here is Ben’s comment over at Archbishop Dolan’s blog:
    (I hope you don’t mind my posting it here.)

    Thank you for your in depth analysis Your Excellency and than you for your valiant attempt at stopping this legislation. I have a few questions:

    1) What would be your response to Ed Peters seemingly good argument that Catholic politicians (especially Gov. Cuomo) should be denied communion. Will the Church do something?

    2) While Bishops like His Excellency Mathew Clark give lip service to the Church’s defense of SSM, the teaching of the Church is very cloudy here in Rochester. Our bishop and many of our priests are very ambiguous as to whether homosexuality is a sin. I have heard many speak directly to me, from the pulpit, in writing, etc that the Church must change her position on homosexuality. I have much evidence to back this up. How can Church officials outside of Rochester pretend to ignore this? The Catholic Church in NYS has actually fostered an environment where Catholic politicians can stand up and say, “I’m Catholic BUT…” knowing that so many lay-catholics, priests, and bishops actually support what they’re about to say. Are you going to address any of these issues or are men w/in the hierarchy going to continue to work against the larger mission of the Church without a challenged?

  8. avatar Louis E. says:

    I note that I posted a comment on Archbishop Dolan’s blog this afternoon that apparently has yet to clear moderation (nor has any later post).Essentially,I concurred that those with same-sex attraction deserve genuine love,but took issue with there being any appropriate “message to the gay community”,per se,other than “disband”.Those gathering under that banner are best addressed in terms of separating them from it rather than validating it.

    Meanwhile,the most expedient way of repealing SSM may be of interest…the Assembly minority is talking up a State Constitutional Convention by 2017 and Cuomo apparently supports it in principle.A referendum is needed to convene the CC,three delegates would be elected from each State Senate district,and it can then rewrite the whole document or propose amendments which would each face a later referendum vote.An amendment striking SSM would be a great idea if the right delegates can be elected!
    (There is a provision for a referendum on holding a CC every twenty years and 2017 is the next date,but it can be brought forward).

  9. avatar Sassy says:

    Michael, in answer to your FF question, Bishop Clark and FF have a long-standing and favorable relationship. Numerous calls by me to the DOR offices got me nowhere. Plus, the DOR lists FF as a resource under its ministries to SSA Catholics.

  10. Ben, thank you for this post. While our diocese heavily promotes lay-run parishes and such, I’m sure they are less than thrilled with an informed and catechized laity that actually adheres to Church teaching, and expects Church leaders to do so also. 🙂

  11. avatar anonymousII says:

    What I love about this blog is the “spirit of Vatican” in it whereby the laity have the right and duty to speak up concerning clerical issues and the use of power by the clergy in the Church. It promotes more of a democratic frame of mind where all will be heard!! Bless all of you!!

  12. avatar anonymousII says:

    Vatican II that is!!

  13. avatar Anonymous says:

    Including this article, there have been at least 32 separate articles on thus blog just since June 31 on homosexuality. Aren’t there other things to write about or focus our attention?

  14. avatar Anonymous says:

    I meant June 1

  15. avatar Anonymous says:

    Anon 136185: Like what?

  16. avatar Anonymous II says:

    Anonymous 133196:
    Well to begin with: abortion, dioceses going broke, poor preaching, demoralized clergy, the death rattle of the DOR, Father Corapi, unjust war where the pope told president GWB that going into Iraq was unjustified but he did it anyways, apathy of the laity, apathy of the clergy, apathy of the hierarchy, lack of concrete resistance on the part of the laity on current immoral situations, reproductive issues, promotion of local (NYS)issues on candidates for sainthood, lack of parish retreats,lack of parish centered devotions, Mary Ann Binsack being joined at the hip with Bishop Clark, Bishop Clark favoring certain parishes at Confirmation by going to them in their parish churches instead of requiring them to come to the Cathedral, lack of adult education at the parish level, lack of people getting right in the face of Clark over the cra— going on in this diocese, why the Vatican does not respond, why SBI has no library, why we are “importing” seminarians, why religious orders such as the CFR are not invited to work with our youth, why lace is considered liturgical dress, why some clergy put so much emphasis on vestment design like they were liturgical designers, cosmetologists, and fashion consultants.

    When you get here, let me know and I will begin adding more.

    Finally, where there is smoke, there is usually fire. Come out and say what the fire is!!!

  17. avatar Anonymous says:

    Is that all you have?

  18. avatar MichaelL says:

    I was kind of baffled by Archbishop Dolan’s statement when I first read it. I just watched the interview of Bishop DiMarzio on Raymond Arroyo’s “World Over Live” news program on EWTN. Now I think I understand what is going on.

    I think Dolan realized that he couldn’t remain silent while DiMarzio was speaking out. So he rushed out a statement to indicate that he is still engaged in “dialogue” on the issue of “homosexual marriage”. That explains why his statement is so rambling, pointless and basically incoherent.

    Don’t you think that EWTN’s Arroyo would have extended an invitation to Archbishop Dolan before inviting Bishop DiMarzio? The implication is that Dolan refused to go on EWTN to discuss the topic of “homosexual marriage”. It may seem like I am conjecturing, but it’s just plain logic.

    And don’t you think that if Archbishop Dolan would initiate a request to go on EWTN, that the network would oblige him? Ergo Dolan has not reached out to EWTN.

    Arroyo continually pressed Bishop DiMarzio to respond to the statement by Canon lawyer Ed Peters that Gov. Cuomo should be denied communion. The Bishop did not totally reject the idea, but suggested that the situation was “complicated”.

    I haven’t always been a fan of Arroyo. But I admire the work he has done to raise the issue of the scandal caused by Gov. Cuomo’s rejection of Church teachings.

    The bishops of New York are hoping that this storm will just blow over. We shouldn’t allow that to happen.

    No amount of “catechesis” can undo the message that Catholics get when they see Governor Cuomo openly defy the Church without retribution. He must suffer the consequences of his actions. Our God is a god of mercy and justice. The Church does not demonstrate true mercy when it forsakes justice.

    [article to follow on my PublicVigil blog]

  19. avatar Scott W, says:

    Including this article, there have been at least 32 separate articles on thus blog just since June 31 on homosexuality. Aren’t there other things to write about or focus our attention?

    AnonII covered it well. The fact that SSM legislation was coming up in June in NY, the home state of contributers to this blog, it makes perfect sense that it got more ASCII than usual. Even if there wasn’t legislation coming up, it still deserves much attention because we are witnessing an unprecedented onslaught against the virtue of chastity in the cultural attempts to normalize homosexuality and there are too many Catholics abysmally ignorant of the truth and/or have drunk the blue poison of secular-progressivist hoo-haw. In short, If there is ever a Thieve’s Pride Parade, I’m sure Cleansing Fire will give alot more attention to the wrongness of stealing.

  20. avatar Mike says:

    Anonymous II,

    Please remember that some of the CF staff members have day jobs and all of us have family and other responsibilities. That said, most (all?) of your topics have been covered in the past and, I’m sure, will be revisited in the future by various staffers as need, interest and/or opportunity arise.

    In the meantime, should there be a particular topic you believe needs immediate attention, please feel free to start a new thread on our Discussion Board.

  21. avatar Scott W, says:

    Mike, I think you meant Anon133196. I took anonII’s list to be one of entries CF has covered in addition to SSM unless I’m reading wrong.

  22. avatar Raymond Rice says:

    A couple of weeks ago we talked about Clark’s inadequate response to the reporter from channel 10 about same sex marriage. I mentioned that Clark was blind sided and it was unfair. Someone else (DR.K ?)responded that he should have been well prepared to state his reaction because it was a current and critical issue.

    Is Dolan in the same boat with his response???

  23. avatar Louis E. says:

    The Dolan blog obviously rejected my earlier comment.

  24. I listened to Raymond Arroyo’s interview also and was dismayed by Bishop DiMarzio’s comments regarding a proper response to the public scandal of our NY politicians in general, and Gov. Cuomo in particular. He went on for a bit about how one could never judge what is going on in a person’s conscience. It seemed as if he was saying that the bishops and priests should not refuse anyone communion, ever, based on the idea that if a person’s conscience is impelling them to support SSM then one should not judge them. If that is what he was implying, I assume the same could be said for abortion, and all other public and private sins.

    I will say that Bishop DiMarzio seems genuinely upset that SSM passed in NY. He also seemed very uncomfortable during the interview, as if he was being constrained from speaking his heart on the matter.

    He also spoke about not having the hearts and minds of the laity, particularly those who do not attend Mass or are ‘nominally Catholic.’ He said that the Church needs to do a better job of teaching the faithful what is right and wrong, but that withholding communion would not necessarily accomplish that goal.

    I have heard statistics that state up to 50% of priests may be homosexual. I wonder if this, along with admittedly poor catechesis, is presenting a Gordian Knot to the bishops.

  25. In regard to no lessons on morality taught from the pulpit: Many years ago, when i was young, I heard a great homily on morality from a priest at Our Lady of Victory Church. He relayed that a role model is someone who others look up to and try to pattern their life after them. He talked of the role models that the youth had “today”-the actors, actresses, and pop stars who have wealth and fame, whose lives are flashy and exciting. He said the majority of these role models live lives of promiscuity and abuse alcohol and drugs. He went on at length to describe their lives. He then said there were role models which had gone out of popularity- the saints. He relayed there would be less troubles among “today’s” youth if they had the saints to look up to as role models. He expounded on the moral virtues of the saints.

  26. avatar Anonymous says:

    To Scott W. – with a divorce rate that has been at high levels for nearly three decades, with one fourth of American children being born to single mothers, with over 90% of American high school students admitting to having sex before 12 th grade, the onslaught against the virtue of charity has been around alot longer than the issue of SSM. Where are the multiple articles on the divorce rate, teen sex, cohabitation, etc.? Where are the calls for people who engage in pre or extra-marital sex or masturbation to refrain from communion? Where is the call to refuse communion to those who cohabitate? SSM comes up as an issue and Catholics are in moral outrage. I find the outrage and demands for priests and bishops to speak out strongly a tad hypocritical and focused on one segment of society while remaining rather quiet regarding the virtuous practices of the majority of the population, since there are far more heterosexuals than homosexuals.

    And funny how the call to refrain from communion if using artificial contraception which most Catholic couples do according to most sources, is nearly nothing.

  27. avatar Mike says:

    Scott W. (and Anon. II),

    Sorry about that. As I was writing that comment I was also trying to deal with one of those family responsibilities I mentioned. I guess I just don’t multitask as well as I used to.

  28. avatar Scott W, says:

    To Scott W. – with a divorce rate that has been at high levels for nearly three decades, with one fourth of American children being born to single mothers, with over 90% of American high school students admitting to having sex before 12 th grade, the onslaught against the virtue of charity has been around alot longer than the issue of SSM.

    I don’t dispute that there are plenty of previous offenses against chastity prior to this. But this is unprecedented in that it is an attempt to destroy the very reality of marriage itself.

    Where are the multiple articles on the divorce rate, teen sex, cohabitation, etc.? Where are the calls for people who engage in pre or extra-marital sex or masturbation to refrain from communion? Where is the call to refuse communion to those who cohabitate? SSM comes up as an issue and Catholics are in moral outrage.

    The difference here is that we are talking about manifest public offenses. There is no benefit of the doubt to be granted in a same-sex “marriage”. The state has publically passed an illegitimate and immoral law, and those who supported it are undeniably, publically formally cooperating with evil. It’s the public part that at the very least puts the witholding of communion on the table for consideration, and as canon lawyer Ed Peters has shown, the case for it is pretty strong.

    And funny how the call to refrain from communion if using artificial contraception which most Catholic couples do according to most sources, is nearly nothing.

    I happen to think priest ought to preach more on the immorality of contraception. And also ought to put it point blank: If you are using contraception stop and go to confession. If you will not, then please do not come up for commuinion. Same for divorces and remarriages without a proper annulment. Of course much of reception of communion is under the honor system in a manner of speaking. And that’s the way it ought to be. But the moment one of these contracepting comes out and publically declares to a wide, listening audience that they contracept and have no intention of repenting, then yes, the shepherd should step in and refuse communion. Frankly, this day and age it is so hard to find a priest or bishop willing to do the hard thing and dig his heels in, that we ought to encourage it wherever it is found.

  29. avatar MichaelL says:

    Gretchen. I echo your sentiments. I am cutting Bishop DiMarzio considerable slack, because I think he is “constrained”, as you say.

    I have the impression that the Bishop is instinctively a fighter, but that he has his hands tied. He’s the only one of the New York bishops that has taken any action, and that should tell you something. I interpret his action as saying he is pushing the issue as far as he can and that he can’t go any further at this time. He says he “got the attention” of others and that was his goal. His diocese of Brooklyn is home to over 1.5 million Catholics so I think that gives him more freedom to speak out than other bishops.

    I wrote an article on Bishop DiMarzio immediately after he released his statement condemning the vote on “homosexual marriage”. I embedded video of an interview that DiMarzio did where he speaks more openly about his feelings regarding this. I think its worth watching:
    Bishop DiMarzio speaks out against homosexual “marriage”

  30. avatar Anonymous says:

    Priests better man up to these violations of sexual ethics, no matter what the cause: contraception, birth control, premarital sex, etc.

    We are in a huge mess due to their negligence. The downward spirial won’t stop until they preach more definitively.

  31. avatar MichaelL says:

    Gretchen. If you have a chance to watch that video, let it continue playing after the Bishop DiMarzio segment. At around the 11 minute mark there is an interview with Michael Long who is Catholic and the Chairman of the Conservative Party of New York State.

    Q: What do you think happened in the last week or two?

    LONG: I may get in trouble for saying this, but if there were more voices like Bishop DiMarzio… I think we could have turned this thing around and stopped this vote. He was a very steadfast, clear voice in opposition to this.

    Translation: Archbishop Dolan was not a “steadfast, clear voice in opposition” to “homosexual marriage”.

    Bishop DiMarzio indicated in the EWTN interview that the answer was not denying politicians communion, but denying politicians a victory at the polls. That dovetails very well with what Long is advocating.

    One last thought. It may be that the Catholic Church is being threatened with the charge of violating the Constitutional separation between Church and State if they refuse Communion to Gov. Cuomo. Maybe that’s what the Bishop was referring to when he said it was “complicated”.

  32. avatar Scott W, says:

    The downward spirial won’t stop until they preach more definitively.

    Exactly. We have to risk Catholics saying, “this is a hard teaching. Who can accept it?” and walking away. I’m going to make a good faith assumption that those who ask, “Well, what about divorce and contraception?” are not intending to sound like what it does sound like to a reader: a counsel of surrender. That because we dropped the ball about wx, and y we can’t do anything about z. Imagine Churchill saying, “Well it’s true the Germans have already taken Warsaw and Paris. But you know what? It’s kind of our fault for not being more vigilante. And some of our citizens are sleeping with the Enemy anyway. Also, our country has a sad history of structural racism from our colonial imperialism. So let’s just lay down arms and let them have London.”

  33. avatar Anonymous says:

    I agree with Scott. Just beccuse we have plunged into the toilet does not mean we stop trying to get out.

    The Culebra cut was an infamous mountain along the route of the Panama Canal. It was notorious for huge landslides and was one of the reasons the French had to quit digging.

    It was dug out many a time by the Americans and just before the canal opened, there was another huge landslide. A frustrated American engineer asked his boss “What do we do now”? The boss answered “Dig the damm thing out again”!

    BYW Did you know the Panama Canal opened on August 15, the feast of the Assumption. Someone has been watching over the good ol USA!

  34. avatar CBD says:

    Thanks to Ben for a superb action to gain some clarity on this issue.

    The focus on homosexuality and SSM, etc. is easy to understand. It’s an error that is so obviously wrong that it offers a simple and concise view into the thinking of its defenders.

    In other words, if you can’t accept the Church’s teaching on homosexuality, there’s no reason to discuss other, more difficult (subtle, complex, etc) matters. You’ve proven yourself to be radically opposed to the Catholic Faith on a fundamental matter. Again, this is not like the procession of the Holy Spirit, but rather a simple moral law that even many atheists can recognize.

  35. In regard to my earlier post: The point I was trying to make was that you just don’t hear priests or deacons taking the time at least on occasion, to extol the attributes of moral character including purity, chastity, and abstinence for those not married. There are so many attributes in this category. You also don’t hear them admonish immorality and immoral character including promiscuity,fornication,and adultery. Again,there are a lot of attributes in this category. The main message should be becoming more like Jesus. There are no guidelines given on the proper conduct of a man toward a woman in dating and in marriage, and there are no guidelines given on the proper conduct of a woman in dating and in marriage.(It all boils down to respect and consideration, and obeying God’s commandments).
    If people are on the right track-great-continue to chose rightly and follow the path of God. If there are problems-“Get Clean with Jesus!, Get Clean with God!” “Turn yourself around and get on the right path.” People need to hear the virtues of a Godly life praised and revered.

  36. MichaelL: I will watch the video. But I need my glass of wine first, it being Friday night!

  37. avatar Bruce says:

    Homosexual behavior will always be disordered and gravely sinful. This will never change. To those who think otherwise, you are delusional.

  38. avatar Ben Anderson says:

    Thanks for all the kind words, everyone. Licking all these envelopes had me up late a few nights. Fortunately an angel from out of state stepped in and helped me out on a few.

    ScottW,
    I wish I could carry you around in my pocket and you could rebut everyone who disagrees w/ me 24/7. Seriously, if I had half your wit… my personal fav:

    If there is ever a Thieve’s Pride Parade, I’m sure Cleansing Fire will give alot more attention to the wrongness of stealing.

  39. avatar Hopefull says:

    There is one point which I’d like to make just a bit more strongly. Although certain priests’ support of Fortunate Families violates the teachings of the Church (since FF repudiates those teachings), and although the lack of correct moral teaching on this issue from the pulpit is a dereliction of duty, we should not ignore that such support of FF is also, in itself, scandalous. It is a stumbling block placed in front of the weaker, poorly catechized. It causes our weaker brothers and sisters to fear speaking up because they have no model for how to speak up, and wonder if it is even right to speak up for moral truth if their pastor doesn’t. Moreover, such failure to speak gives scandal within the wider Christian community, and impairs evangelization efforts. I am sure that JPII did not mean, by the “New Evangelization,” a tip-toeing around truth and righteousness. Remember the words that anyone who scandalizes a little one deserves to be drowned in the depths of the sea. Weak, unsure souls are indeed “little ones” in the faith. We need to pray that those who give such scandal will repent, return to righteousness, and model proper charity toward the souls of others.

  40. avatar Thinkling says:

    When I saw this, I promised myself I would not comment, as the cognitive dissonance at FF’s website is literally painful to behold.

    Nonetheless I have a practical suggestion. Instead of using the link to their site posted here, or anywhere on CF for that matter, I would propose that people make the effort to type it in directly in your browser field, or always use a browser bookmark. That way the webmaster there will not see as much traffic coming from this site.

    Perhaps the admins here know better than me, and can clarify that it really doesn’t matter or that such information is not useful, etc., so in that case, take their advice over mine. I hope they comment one way or another. But I do admit I obsess over stuff like this.

    OK one more. I read the lack of response in the context that the lists of priests are nearly disjoint (not including the two repentant priests omitted). The only overlap I see is Frs. Bausch and Kennedy, and Bausch has succumbed to the Dark Side. I would think a supporter of one of those causes would be all in for the other, so perhaps the many names being only on one list is a sign that they really are not committed to the cause — like the two omitted priests’ names. But my glass is always half full, perhaps I am being naive and credulous.

  41. avatar Anonymous says:

    In Rockville Centre, the bishop send a memo to priests and deacons stating there will be canonical penalties for anyone performing any gay marriages or any kind of blessing or anything that may seem like the Church approves of the relationship.

  42. avatar MichaelL says:

    Gretchen. I posted an article about the EWTN interview of Bishop DiMarzio at my blog. I decided to post my comments from here. I included a comment of yours. I hope you don’t mind. If so I’ll remove it immediately. Here’s a link to the article:
    Bishop DiMarzio on EWTN

  43. No, that’s fine, MichaelL. Good post. Also, your post regarding Fr. Shanley and the ‘rape’ of our culture regarding SSM was searing.

  44. avatar MichaelL says:

    Thanks Gretchen! Here’s a link to the Shanley article for others:
    Public Pedophiles

    I had been wanting to write something similar to the Shanley article for a while — ever since I came to understand how the Kinsey reports were used to destroy and then reconstruct the moral landscape of American culture. His “studies” on American sexuality were used to change the laws and remove penalties for immoral acts. The justification was that the laws were “hypocritical” because according to Kinsey the average American was committing sexual acts in violation of the laws. So the laws needed to be changed to fit the “reality” as portrayed in Kinsey’s reports.

    This led directly to the mainstreaming of pornography through Playboy magazine.

    As all this information began to sink in, I felt as if I (and my generation) had been the victims of a child molester. As adolescents we were introduced to porn through Playboy and told that it was acceptable. How many pornography addictions began this way? And how did this affect the attitudes of countless young men towards women and marriage?

    When I read the story of Shanley’s horrific crimes and how he lured in his victims, I could see exactly how a sexual predator operates. Certainly not a pleasant topic and not one which I enjoyed writing about. (I had to write an article about St. Therese immediately afterwards to get it out of my system.)

    The other element that struck me was how the liberal media tried to disassociate Shanley from the homosexual community after the priest sex abuse scandal was revealed. I was struck from reading some of his letters by how his line of argumentation was identical to the attacks that we see on the Church today with regards to homosexuality. There is a total denial by the press of the depravity associated with homosexuality, even while they stare at “Gay Pride” parades where lewd activity is prevalent. They did the same with Shanley by protecting him from the scandals that were constantly circulating around him. All he had to do was go on the offensive and the press would always back him up.

    Did you notice that Rep. Barney Frank associated with Shanley back in the day?


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