Sunday, February 05, 2012

Mass Chat: Reading the letters of bishops from the pulpit.

Grave and serious issues.

Much has been discussed on blogs and in the news praising those U.S. Catholic Bishops (150+) uniting in response to the unprecedented threat to religious freedom stemming from the unjust "preventative services" mandate issued by Obama's HHS, which requires all private health care plans to provide coverage for all FDA-approved prescription contraceptives, sterilization procedures, and related "patient education and counseling for all women with reproductive capacity."

This weekend the letters of Archbishop Nienstedt and the statement of Archbishop Timothy Dolan were included in the weekly bulletin, and the pastor at my parish addressed both letters and the issue from the pulpit.  Included in the bulletin BTW, was the first ever appearance of Archbishop Nienstedt's letter supporting the marriage amendment to the Minnesota State Constitution - in defense of marriage.  (Up until this weekend, nothing has been said at my parish regarding the issue.)

The sense of urgency and gravity of these notices reminded me of the letter of the Dutch bishops read at all of the Masses during the Nazi occupation of WWII, specifically the pastoral letter of the Archbishop of Utrecht in the summer of 1942, protesting the Nazi persecution of Jews.  The action resulted in an increased, more brutal persecution against Jews and Catholics.  One may also recall how the Church in Germany publicly condemned the so-called "mercy killings" of physically and mentally disabled Germans in the 1930's by the Nazis.  They stopped it - but only for a time, and only after the bishops spoke out.  As we know, the policies were resumed and led to the Holocaust.

Pray for the bishops and the defeat of these policies, but keep in mind, it might just be the beginning of worse things to come.

Photo:  1938, the burning Synagogue of Bielefeld, Germany, during the Pogrom Night. Source


  1. Man! We still haven't seen or heard of the letters in our parish and we are in the same diocese as you. I'm starting to feel's not hard to put the copies in the bulletin so what could the hold up be? A battle ground even in the places you hope for perseverance it seems...

  2. KM - I'm surprised too. We still haven't added the Archbishop's prayer - I expected it to be said immediately upon issue at the Sunday Masses. I wonder what the hold up could be?

  3. Terry- I know! Same here regarding the prayer. I've actually been asking about it to the three people who are in charge of placing it...and still have not seen it. It drives me crazy because here is the good Archbishop specifically stating the prayer is meant for use in the Mass and we're not! Also, he is literally the "face" of this issue in our state. On the Strib site, at the very bottom, there is an icon picture to click to read all you want about the issue. His face is the picture. He stands there speaking for us all. We all need to be supporting him- not letting him stand out there alone! And the least we could do is say a prayer in the most efficacious place, the Mass. It's not okay for people to complain about their bishops or the USCCB about not doing enough about something when they themselves haven't lifted a petty finger. Sorry for the rant...but it's been on my mind....

  4. Not a peep at my parish in the heart of Minneapolis. Does someone think we will be offended? It is a heavy DFL district, and likely overwhelmingly supports President Obama.

  5. Terry = bearer of sunshine


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