Archive for the ‘Call to Action’ Category

Thank to everyone who has written to the Massachusetts bishops and Holy See via our latest FedUp campaign, “Take Action on Tainted Search for New Mass Catholic Conference Head.” We have gotten some feedback from the bishop’s staff and other channels that we want to share with you as the campaign continues, and we have more on committee member, Sr. Annette McDermott, SSJ that may leave some of you even more FedUp!

Feedback from Diocese of Fall River

A Bryan Hehir Exposed reader forwarded this response they got from the Diocese of Fall River’s Communications department:

At the outset of their decision to form a search committee for the selection of an Executive Director of the Massachusetts Catholic Conference, the bishops of the four dioceses in the state agreed that each would appoint one person from his diocese to make up membership of that committee. Bishop Coleman agreed to chair it. Bishop Coleman then appointed as his delegate on the committee Father Michael McManus, who is chancellor here in the Fall River Diocese. The other members on the committee were appointed to it by his/her respective bishop, not Bishop Coleman.

In other words, we are told that Bishop Coleman just took whomever the other bishops put forward and did not feel as “Chairman” of the committee that leadership role called for any review of the background of the people before he went on the record saying, “I look forward to working with such a respected group to advise the bishops in selecting the next Executive Director for MCC.”  Thanks a lot, Bishop Coleman, for the value-added, er, leadership on this one, making sure the group you publicly said you respected you really did respect.

More on the Committee Members

We told you before that in view of the mission of the Catholic Alliance for the Common Good (giving air-cover to pro-abortion Democratic Catholic politicians) and their funding from George Soros, Sr. Annette McDermott’s membership in CACD should flat-out disqualify her from serving on the search committee for a faithful Catholic MCC leader.  But this is not the only reason we are calling for her removal from the committee.

We did not have time or space in the earlier posts to mention that in 2005 Sr. Annette wrote about contemplative prayer (or centering prayer a la Thomas Keating) as a grounding force in her life. Here’s a link to the piece, called “In the Quiet of the Morning.” She says she was inspired as a teen by a book by Antony Padovano, and her “search for a deeper relationship with God has also been strengthened by the wisdom figures that have graced my religious experience.”

I feel so privileged to have had the blessing of opportunity to experience and know of the works and lives of Mary Luke Tobin, Joan Chittister, Christina Vladimiroff, Teresa Kane, Mary Daniels, Helen Wright, Maria Reilly, Sandra Schneider, Elizabeth Johnson, Elisabeth Schussler-Firorenza.

She also names Pierre Theilard de Chardin.  A 10-minute session with Google gets you the following:

  • Anthony Padovano: banned from speaking in the Archdiocese of Detroit by Cardinal Maida, for theological views “clearly in opposition to the authoritative teaching of the church” including advocacy for the ordination of women and his view that the celebration of the Eucharist need not be limited to ordained ministry
  • Mary Luke Tobin: a former head of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious and advisor to the Womens Ordination Conference
  • Joan Chittister: A supporter of Call to Action who promotes women priests. The Vatican asked her not to attend the 2000 Womens Ordination Conference but she went anyway.
  • Christina Vladimiroff: who received the Call to Action Leadership award in 2002 and defied a request from the Vatican to prohibit Sr. Joan Chittister from attending a dissident women’s ordination conference in Dublin
  • Elisabeth Schussler-Firorenza: feminist theologian and Call to Action national conference speaker.  Was on a panel with Fr. Bryan Hehir at Harvard where she complained about people who criticized Catholics that voted for pro-abortion politicians
  • Teresa Kane: best known for her 1979 speech to Pope John Paul II in which she asked for women priests.   The Holy Father responded negatively.  In 2009, she criticized the Vatican for their visitations to women’s religious communities saying: “Regarding the present interrogation, I think the male hierarchy is truly impotent, incapable of equality, co-responsibility in adult behavior…In the church today, we are experiencing a dictatorial mindset and spiritual violence.”
  • Pierre Theilard de Chardin: From Wikipedia, we see that he abandoned traditional interpretations of creation in the Book of Genesis in favor of a less strict interpretation. This displeased certain officials in the Roman Curia and in his own order who thought that it undermined the doctrine of original sin developed by Saint Augustine. Teilhard’s position was opposed by his Church superiors, and some of his work was denied publication during his lifetime by the Roman Holy Office

So, what we have is Sr. Annette saying that most of the people who represent “wisdom figures” for her are pretty much objectively “off the reservation” in terms of their public adherence to Church teachings.  Sr. Annette is on-the-record as being inspired by these people, of course along with being involved in the Catholic Alliance for the Common Good and the ACORN-funding Catholic Campaign for Human Development.  We are not criticizing Sr. Annette as a person–she may be very nice. But, should someone like her who feels these people are “wisdom figures” and who felt OK being involved in the CACG for whatever period of time she was a member really be on the search committee for a faithful Catholic leader of the public policy voice of the Massachusetts bishops? Can’t the Diocese of Springfield do better and find someone less controversial to serve on the committee?

We are updating our campaign letter to mention this. In the meantime, try dropping a dime to Bishop McConnell’s office in Springfield at 413 732-3175.  Tell them you think Sr. Annette should be removed from the MCC search process because she was a part of a committee that pushed for Catholics to vote for pro-abortion Catholic politicians–and because she’s on the record as viewing as “wisdom figures” some of the Catholic Church’s most prominent dissenters from the teachings of the Church.  Ask them what Bishop McConnell is doing about this problem.

Check back later today for the updated FedUp buttons this evening.

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For everyone following the “Boston Catholic Tea Party”
protest against the dissident Catholic speakers slotted for the Boston Archdiocese’s Social Justice Conference this Saturday, we are in the homestretch and need you all to help keep the pressure up today.

As of 8:30am Friday, we will have updated our letter to the Holy Father, Papal Nuncio, Cardinal O’Malley, and others, and are asking everyone who is FedUp with the Archdiocese of Boston to click the FedUp button now and send the new letter. (If you signed it once before, please go ahead and sign the new one again!).

Two priests speaking at Saturday’s conference, Fr. James Massaro, SJ and Fr. Bryan Hehir, have records that include supporting pro-abortion politicians, supporting those who advance the gay agenda, or spreading false teachings in ways that can lead people from salvation and harm unity in Christ.

Why is this important for those in other parts of the country as well as Boston?  Because as Boston, MA goes, so goes the country.

It’s been happening since they first dumped the tea.  Now in the 21st Century, it’s continuing but it’s a mirror image – as the angels of darkness pretend to be angels of light. Boston’s a hub for higher education, with the Marxist/socialist ideas long promoted at Harvard and elsewhere  propagating across the country via Boston-educated leaders who have fanned out into government/politics, education, the Catholic Church, and business. 

Massachusetts gave the country gay “marriage.” A federal judge in Massachusetts ruled that the Defense of Marriage Act is unconstitutional.  Boston’s Catholic Charities caved into the gay agenda, and now Boston Catholic schools have as well.   As this blog has documented, Fr. Bryan Hehir is a linchpin in Saturday’s conference, and  more importantly in propagation of a brand of “Kennedy Catholicism” and so-called “Catholic social justice” that’s often at odds with the teachings handed down by the Magisterium. 

For the sake of the unborn that are killed every day and for the sake of the Body of Christ, we can’t let this continue!

To summarize the case against them and this conference, here are our Top 10 Reasons to Protest Boston’s Social Justice Conference.

  1. Fr. Massaro signed a widely-publicized statement supporting the pro-abortion Gov. Kathleen Sebelius as Health and Human Services Secretary in the Obama administration. (Sebelius had vetoed pro-life legislation multiple times, and Kansas City Archbishop Joseph F. Naumann asked her to not receive Communion until she repudiated her stance on abortion and make a “worthy sacramental confession.”  She refused).
  2. Fr. Massaro is co-chair of the Cambridge Peace Commission that gave annual awards to two gay activists in recent years for their work spreading the GLBT agenda in elementary schools and society
  3. Fr. Hehir spoke at a pro-Communist think-tank in a series “Matthew, Marx, Luke, John” and also accepted an award named after a Chilean communist
  4. Fr. Hehir made “substantive contributions” to a socialist-themed program that corrupted Catholic social doctrine and led to the 1976 “Call to Action” conference
  5. Fr. Hehir was a key architect of the “seamless garment” concept that has downplayed the importance of abortion by the Catholic Church and has given air-cover to pro-abortion “Catholic” politicians such as the Kennedys for decades.  He also was a reviewer of Mario Cuomo’s intellecually mischievous 1984 Notre Dame speech (“I’m personally opposed, but I can’t impose my views on a pluralistic society”), which the Hehir/Bernadin “seamless garment” concept helped validate politically
  6. Fr. Hehir honored the pro-abortion, pro-gay-marriage Mayor of Boston at a Catholic Charities fundraiser
  7. Fr. Hehir was President of Catholic Charities when they were brokering adoptions to gay couples, even though the Vatican said this was doing violence to the child by depriving them of an environment conducive to their full human development.
  8. Fr. Hehir publicly contradicted and criticized Cardinal Ratzinger’s 2004 statement regarding voting for pro-abortion politicians
  9. Fr. Hehir told a Boston College forum this spring he was concerned that Catholic conscience rights for healthcare workers opposed to abortion could harm the woman who “needs” abortion services.
  10. Fr. Hehir praised the “intelligent and courageous leadership” of the Catholic Health Association at their 2010 conference immediately after they helped pass the Obama-backed healthcare legislation that was actively opposed by the U.S.C.C.B. because it allowed funding for abortions. USCCB President, Cardinal George, called the CHA’s actions a “wound to Catholic unity.”

We are frankly FedUp with the Boston Archdiocese and so are thousands of other Catholics.  Among the concerned Catholics who have  written to the Archdiocese, here is one who pleaded,

for the sake of the unborn children who are murdered every day thanks (in part) to the support that abortionists receive from those who call themselves ‘Catholic, ‘please intervene and ask the Cardinal to withdraw the invitation to Fr. Massaro.”

He received no response.

The leadership of the Boston Archdiocese is continuing to thumb their noses at faithful Catholics like you and me.  They seem to be very comfortable protecting and promoting speakers with documented histories of breaking unity with Christ, undermining the faith and leading souls away from salvation with false teachings–rather than halting the dissent and instead making sure those they put on a podium have a history of spreading the saving gospel of Jesus Christ and the true teachings of the Church via all of their words and deeds.  

This affects everyone in the country.  Are you FedUp?

Sign the letter today by hitting the FedUp button to send an email or fax message to the Holy See and Cardinal O’Malley about this ongoing travesty.

After you send the fax, drop a dime to the Papal Nuncio in Washington, DC, His Excellency Pietro Sambi at  (202)333-7121. Tell the woman who answers that you sent a fax and email asking for him to intervene and remove these two speakers from the Boston conference agenda (along with whomever approved those speakers), and also ask her if she can report to you on how specifically His Excellency is handling this situation. 

If you have time to drop a second dime, call Cardinal O’Malley’s office at 617-782-2544 and tell them the same thing.

And please, spread word to at least 5 other friends and family members today, and ask them to do the same. 

The visibility you are helping generate in the Holy See to the Boston problems–which also affect the rest of the country–is unprecedented and will only help build a stronger Catholic Church ahead!

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We’re starting to hear the concept of a Catholic “Tea Party” a lot lately and are thinking we may throw one of our own very shortly to address the ongoing situation with Fr. Bryan Hehir. 

Deal Hudson at InsideCatholic recently said, “the Catholic tea kettle continues to boil, as the patience of many of the lay faithful is running out.”  Michael Voris at Real CatholicTV has a great video on the same topic that we thought you might want to watch.   

Michael talks about the need to “purge our own ranks of traitors”  and when I watched Michael’s video, my jaw nearly dropped at the number of names he mentioned who felt like they popped straight out from the Bryan Hehir chronology:

  • Richard McBrien of Notre Dame, who preached at Fr. Hehir’s first Mass after he was ordained and who cited Hehir in his book, Caesar’s Coin, as being the “the clearest and most faithful interpreter of John Courtney Murray today” and “the Catholic theologian most faithful to Murray’s vision today.”
  • Disgraced homosexual Archbishop Rembert Weakland, who represented the U.S. at the 1987 Synod on the Laity and who played a key role at a secret pre-Synod meeting at St. Mary’s College at Notre Dame where Fr. Hehir helped push the position that America had something to teach the universal Church about sexual liberation.
  • Sr. Joan Chittister, a Call to Action supporter whose worship of the feminine is described by Voris as essentially “pagan Goddess adoration” and who was interviewed and cited along with Fr. Bryan Hehir in the book by dissident Catholic, Kerry Kennedy, “Being Catholic Now: Prominent Americans Talk About Change in the Church and the Quest for Meaning.”
  • Ret. Aux. Bishop Thomas Gumbleton, who, according to Voris, “runs unchecked around the country promoting all things homosexual, peace and justice, blah blah” and who worked closely with Bryan Hehir on the pacificist 1983 Bishops pastoral letter on nuclear disarmament, “The Challenge of Peace.”

It’s as though Voris is describing Boston when he talks about the obstacles to getting the message through to the Catholic hierarchy–people who work for the Church who just want to keep the wheels of bureaucracy grinding it out (maybe the Vicar General in Boston?), people who don’ t want to rock the boat by passing messages on to the bishop (priest-secretaries to the Cardinal?), and the practice of sending important matters to committees (Catholic school education for children of gay parents?). 

We never mentioned this before, but we sent an email to the Cardinal and the Vicar General several weeks ago complaining about Fr. Bryan Hehir and Fr. Massaro speaking at the upcoming social justice conference.  We got no response and are thinking that in addition to starting a Rosary novena for the intention of purification of the Boston Archdiocese, it’s about time for a local “Boston Catholic Tea Party.”  Let us know what you think.

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Before we continue discussing Fr. Bryan Hehir’s “substantive contributions” to the U.S. bishops’ 1976 Bicentennial “Liberty and Justice for All” program and notorious “Call to Action” Conference, we’d like to share this contribution from a reader for your amusement.  He said the picture to the right should be titled, “The Pope Learns about Fr. Bryan Hehir.”

OK, now back to serious stuff.  In our last post we gave some fairly heavy food for thought about Marxism and flawed theology in the discussion book that Fr. Hehir played a key role creating for the U.S. bishops when he was Director of the U.S.C.C’s Division of Justice and Peace.  That discussion program was rolled out across the country as a tool for Catholics to prepare for the U.S. bicentennial in 1776 and provide input back to the U.S. bishops.  Rather than get you bogged down with heavy theology this time, we thought we would just give you a few selected excerpts of the high-level theological, moral, and social drivel you will find in the discussion book.

Note, the first name recognized in the Acknowledgments on page 7 is Fr. Bryan Hehir. “The substantive contribution of Fr. J. Bryan Hehir, Director of the USCC Division of Justice and Peace deserves particular thanks.”  That means he played a significant role in the program.

In the Liberty and Justice for All Introduction by Fr. Hehir (p. 7), he writes

work to transform the world toward a more just Society” has “a place of equal standing with the preaching of the Gospel and the celebration of the sacraments in the Church.”

That’s simply wrong.  The theology is so bad, it is almost painful.

Hehir writes:

Pope Paul VI in his letter, A Call to Action recognized the limitations of social teaching taken by itself.”

He got the name of the apostolic letter wrong–“A Call to Action” was merely the name of the 4th chapter in Pope Paul’s apostolic letter “Octogesima Adveniens, on the eightieth  anniversary of Rerum Novarum

Hehir writes:

The process of forming a community with a conscience is not accomplished by a “top-down”approach to the complex issues which make up the agenda of the bicentennial observance program. While initiative and leadership on the part of the Episcopal magisterium are essential and imperative, the equallyessential role of dialogue between the bishops and the wider Catholic community must be given its necessaryscope and weight.”

So, in forming conscience, dialogue between the bishops and the people is of equal importance to the Episcopal magisterium?!  That is flat out wrong.

Then we get into Part 2, Discussion Series. It was authored by Dr. Dale Olen and Sr. Francis Borgia Rothleubber, O.S.F., but remember, Fr. Hehir made “substantive contributions” to the whole program and he authored the Introduction to the whole guide, which means he would have approved of the entire contents.

They say:

As we know the United States is considered a democratic government and a capitalist economic structure; the Soviet Union is considered a totalitarian state and a socialist economic structure; Chile before the coup in 1973 was considered a democratic government and a socialist economic structure. Assuming that all of these concrete systems as lived out have strengths and weaknesses.

  • What kind of political and economic theories do you feel fit best the principle of liberty and justice for all?
  • Why?

Oh, so Fr. Hehir and his collaborators consider democracy to be on par with a socialist economic structure?

They write:

Every year about 200 billion dollars are spent on military weapons by nations around the world. Most evenings we view nations fighting against nation on television.  Would you yourself support a violent revolution to attain a higher level of freedom or social justice?

  • In light of this discussion, what specific issues would you like the 1976 Bicentennial Conference to consider?

Naturally, I’d like the U.S. Bishops’s Bicentennial Conference and  the Catholic Church to support a violent revolution  to bring about more freedom.  Wouldn’t you  have answered  that way?

They write:

The Catholic Church has spoken out strongly on many concerns, abortion to name one. The Church has even imposed the sanction of excommunication for those participating in an abortion.

  • Do you feel the Church should speak and act as strongly in opposing prejudice and discrimination against ethnic and racial groups?
  • What would be your feelings and response if the Church excommunicated people for their expressed prejudicial and discriminatory actions?

So the authors are using the questions to suggest that prejudice and discrimination against ethnic and racial groups are on equal footing with taking the lives of the unborn.

They write:

Imagine that the term “woman” is the generic term for humanity. Imagine that “man” is obviously included when mention is made of “women.” When we use the word “women” in this imaginary scene we often mean men also. Imagine that everything you have ever read and heard all your life uses female pronouns — she, her — meaning both women and men. You have no men senators in Washington. Women are the leaders of the nation and of its institutions. The man’s place is in the home and the woman’s place is to be the bread winner, provider and protector of the family.

  • How do you feel about this imaginary scene?
  • Do you think the language we use in relation to women and men makes any difference. If so, how?
  • How have traditional roles promoted personal growth for men and women?
  • How have those roles blocked that growth?

I’m imagining it now. Even at the time when the Equal Rights Amendment was a hot topic, it is astonishing that Fr. Hehir and the U.S. bishops would publish this.

They write:

In the last seven years two issues have dominated our thinking about the respect for life movement.They are the Vietnam War and abortion. Many people have supported or opposed both.

  • What are the similarities between these two issues? What are the differences?
  • Are there other issues besides Vietnam and abortion that should be considered part of respect for life? What are they?
  • They were already thinking about “seamless garment” back in 1976.

    They write:

    Given the high cost of health-care today, many people cannot receive the kind of health attention they need.

  • Do you believe that health-care is a right that can be demanded or a service that should be paid for?
  • Education is a right Americans have. For much of it the government pays. Is health as much a right as education? Should the government pay for health as it does for education?
  • Socialized healthcare.  How prophetic.  Now we have Obama-care with federal funds for abortion, backed by the Catholic Health Association whose leadership Fr. Hehir recently praised for their efforts.

    The document was “intended to help the leadership of the Church to listen to the voices of people expressing their ideas about freedom and justice in American life, and to plan an effective response to those voices.”

    Good Lord.  If Bryan Hehir’s document really served that purpose, one can only imagine what kinds of voices would have been listened to?   Actually, those voices were heard in their national input sessions, and they came through loudly and clearly at the 1976 Call to Action Conference asking for 1) Divorced, remarried couples to receive Holy Communion while still living in adulterous unions. 2) Ordained women priests and bishops. 3) Women given the power to preach the Gospel with authority. 4) A reversal on the doctrine of artificial birth control. 5) A mitigation of the doctrine on abortion. 6) A teaching approving Marxism, Socialism and pacifism as doctrinally true and morally good practice. 7) A denial of the right to property and to reasonable profit. 8) The creation of a new Church, democratic, non-hierarchical in structure, a classless church.

    Frankly, many of these themes and voices are still coming through today from Fr. Hehir, as we have documented on this blog. We understand there is a meeting of the Archdiocesan Pastoral Council this coming week with Cardinal O’Malley.  Maybe a few members should print this out, hand it to Cardinal O’Malley and ask him why the person responsible for publishing the drivel above is still his Secretary for Healthcare and Social Services and “highly trusted advisor.”  What more would the Cardinal need to see about Fr. Hehir in order to relieve him of his archdiocesan responsibilities and let him just work full-time at Harvard with the other intellectual elites there?

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