Saturday, January 07, 2012

Cardinal George apologized...



And so must I.

My post "Are gay activists the new neo-Nazis?" was equally offensive (as cardinal george's remarks) to my personal friends and those who read my blog.  It is a struggle to not become engaged in hyperbole when one confronts controversial subjects - especially the conflict between the Catholic Church and the gay equal rights movement.  My post did not purpose or intend to accuse gay activists of actually being Nazis, much less a new manifestation of the KKK - I just happened to pick up on the term Mark Shea uses in reference to a range of tactics used by some of the more vociferous gay activists - he calls them gay brownshirts.  (The origins of the real Nazi brownshirts can be found here.  There was a gay element within the group - hence the adaptation.  My apologies.) 

Although I did not go into great detail in that post, my point was that it may not be so radical an idea, when one seriously considers some of the tactics employed by Act Up against the Church in the'80's, as well as the harassment and black listing of contributors in support of  California's Proposition 8 which eliminated the right of same sex couples to marry.  Not to mention the 'outing' of otherwise conservative politicians, priests and religious who reject unwanted same sex attraction.  I have also had friends who have been gay activists, whose tactics, and or plan, was to adopt the tactics of groups such as the Red Brigades in Italy.  Then there is the Rainbow Sash people who like to disrupt Communion distribution on Pentecost.  So there are radical elements within the gay political movement.  Yet, whatever source their tactics may be reminiscent of, be it Fascist, Marxist, or American Republican/Democratic campaign strategy, resulting in political intimidation and coercion - there exists a perceived threat to religious liberty, no matter how one labels it. 

The Cardinal said he mis-spoke out of fear.  Thus, on some level, the threats and the outcry against what he said, how he said it, and what he stands for, obviously worked.  Many seem to be appeased by his apology.   Feelings were hurt and the apologies appear to be accepted.
I am personally distressed that what I said has been taken to mean that I believe all gays and lesbians are like members of the Klan. I do not believe that; it is obviously not true. Many people have friends and family members who are gay or lesbian, as have I. We love them; they are part of our lives, part of who we are. I am deeply sorry for the hurt that my remarks have brought to the hearts of gays and lesbians and their families.

I can only say that my remarks were motivated by fear for the Church's liberty. This is a larger topic that cannot be explored in this expression of personal sorrow and sympathy for those who were wounded by what I said. - Source

I too apologize if feelings were hurt.  As the Archbishop of Minneapolis and St. Paul cautioned his priests when promulgating Church teaching in defense of marriage stated: 
In doing so, we must never vilify or caricaturize those who argue otherwise. Indeed, we must acknowledge that all men and women are God’s sons and daughters. But it is this very truth and the fact that the truth is one and bears no contradiction that the Church and her ministers must witness here and now. - Archbishop Nienstedt
I believe that is very good advice and advice I hope to adhere to in future posts on the subject.  Although I must say, I believe I have been very hospitable on this blog, speaking from my own experience regarding a life long struggle.  Yet I have to be clear and to the point, especially since I know how easy it is to be dissuaded from authentic Catholic doctrine and to compromise moral teaching simply because the alternative seems too hard, too narrow a road to travel.  I know how easily one can be seduced by romantic notions and Modern Family scenarios of domestic bliss.  The world and popular culture has a tremendous impact upon even the most committed person...  That said, I think Church people better buck up, playing at the heart strings of one another is sentimentalism and leads to misplaced charity - which is worse than any sort of liturgical abuse.

With all due respect for any differences of opinion on this subject, I am sorry if I offended individuals who are my friends and read this blog.  Please keep in mind that I am not a spokesperson for the Roman Catholic Church.  It's just me here - writing all by myself. 

That said, it seems to me that neither is Cardinal George speaking for the Roman Catholic Church, especially when he says things like this:
George said although church teaching does not judge same-sex relationships as morally acceptable, it does encourage the faithful to "respect everyone."

"The question is, 'Does respect mean that we have to change our teaching?' That's an ongoing discussion, of course. … I still go back to the fact that these are people we know and love and are part of our families. That's the most important point right now."
- Source
I am not aware of any discussion to change Church teaching.

Photo:  Cardinal George.

10 comments:

  1. You and the good Bishop need to stop apologizing to evil for exposing it for all its filth and meaness.

    Yes by the way, the Nazis were homosexual (those in high authority) and were chosen by the Third Reich for their meanness and villainy.

    Hitler did not do everything.

    Its kinda like Roe from Roe v. Wade now comes on TV to state she never had an abortion, and in fact, had three kids.

    The Serpent was punished by God for lending its nature that Satan may work through it.

    Hitler and Roe just allowed evil to work through them.

    12 "You have not believed"... The fault of Moses and Aaron, on this occasion, was a certain diffidence and weakness of faith; not doubting of God's power or veracity; but apprehending the unworthiness of that rebellious and incredulous people, and therefore speaking with some ambiguity.

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  2. God bless the Cardinal. I may follow his lead and apologize - but I can not compromise Church teaching to win friends and influence people.

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  3. Some of the greatest growth in my life has come by way of having my feelings hurt. That hurt was the result of the Truth being spoken to me, which I was not ready to hear or able to accept. But over time, in prayer and reflection and with the guidance of wise counselors (elder family members, friennds, priests, etc), denial gave way to understanding and acceptance. Pain gave way healing. Some times the remedy for what ails us hurts more than that which inflicted the wound in the first place.
    Terry, keep speaking the truth in charity. I'm so thankful for you and your blog.

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  4. wonderful post as usual

    I recently added you to my list of Liebster Awards

    God Bless!

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  5. Thanks for this post, Terry. Thanks for your example of humility. It seems to be a fine line between loving the people we know for who they are and speaking the truth in love. I struggle with this a lot. I know that when I wasn't living a good life, the people who hurt me the most were faithful Catholics who see the person as sin, instead of a human person who sins.
    May God watch over the words of my mouth and the intentions of my heart.
    Peace

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  6. "God bless the Cardinal. I may follow his lead and apologize - but I can not compromise Church teaching to win friends and influence people."
    It takes humility with [a kind of holy] boldness to live thus way. In the years I've read your blog I think you do it better than many. I admit sometimes I find you harsh (your words not you belief which is, clearly that of the Church) or your intended meaning behind some of the humour confusing but your heart and example as a Catholic and as a blog writer and especially as you respond to those who challenge the moral teachings of the Church are admirable and much braver than I have been.

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  7. Sorry for the stupid type-os above. I'm doing this on a smartipants phone thing

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  8. Thanks Owen - you are absolutely right - I have been sometimes rather harsh - I always regret it. Thanks for your kind words.

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  9. "...Some of the greatest growth in my life has come by way of having my feelings hurt..."

    Blessed is he who sheppards those who walk in the Valley of the Shadow of Death.

    Truth never evolves, or changes.

    I will say some Hail Marys for those good Christians that helped you.

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  10. "Apologies for having a personal opinion based upon experience and past mistakes and misguidance from prelates and priests"

    hmm.

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Please comment with charity and avoid ad hominem attacks. I exercise the right to delete comments I find inappropriate. Be sure and double check if your comment posted after you do the verification deal - sometimes it doesn't print if you made an error.