Cardinal Dolan Will Fight For Freedom of Religion

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“Don’t impose your teaching upon us and make us do as a church what we find unconscionable to do!” 

“The Health and Human Services fight is a freedom-of-religion battle. It is not about contraception. It is not about women’s health.”

~ Cardinal Timothy Dolan

Cardinal Dolan has drawn the line in the sand. He will fight for freedom of religion! The audacious President Obama told the Catholic leaders there will be no more accommodations and that they should face enlightenment. Obama’s spokespersons have also encouraged church leaders to rebel against the church teachings! Obama hopes to divide the Catholic Church against itself. That should tell us something about the President.

This is not solely a fight for freedom of religion, it is a fight for freedom. Once Obamacare mandates can order religious people to violate their conscience, what can’t it do?

Timothy Cardinal Dolan spoke at Holy Trinity Diocesan High Sschool in Hicksville, LI, yesterday –

“[it is not about contraception]..No, we are talking about an unwarranted, unprecedented, radical intrusion into the interior life of, integrity of a church’s ability to teach, serve and sanctify on its own.”

Cardinal Dolan made clear with both a blistering attack and humor that he will work against the enemies of free religion.

“President Johnson said, as an American, I look to the church — I look to religion as a beehive. If you leave them alone, they’re going to give you tons of their honey. But if you stick your head in there, you’re going to get stung bad.”

…“I’d recommend starting voter-registration drives at our parishes. Not only is it going to help churches, it is going to help our American republic. More voters the better.”

And he said he’s confident he’s not alone in the fight.

“We look up and see people who share our values and our vision,” he said.

Washington softened its stance on the contraception issue last month, saying insurers would foot the bill — not the church’s schools, hospitals or clinics directly. [Obama failed to address self-insured Catholic facilities and he fails to understand that an indirect violation of conscience is a tacit agreement to violate conscience.]

Cardinal Dolan continued…“I thought there’s a vocation, a call to marriage, responsible entry into marriage. I don’t recall a right to marriage. Now we hear there is a right to sterilization, abortion and chemical contraception.”

He continued, “I suppose we could say there might be some doctor who would say to a man who is suffering some sort of sexual dysfunction, ‘You ought to start visiting a prostitute to help you, and I will write you a prescription, and I hope the government will pay for it.’

“We live in an era that seems to discover new rights every day and then expects government and culture and society to pay for it. The church emphasizes responsibility more than rights.”…Read here: NY Post

Cardinal Dolan has revealed that President Obama’s staff have advised U.S. bishops to follow the lead of dissenting Catholics, such as the Jesuit run America magazine who published an editorial supporting Obama mandating the provision of contraception:

‘…a recent meeting between staff of the bishops’ conference and the White House staff ended with the President’s people informing us that the broader concerns of religious freedom — that is, revisiting the straight-jacketing mandates, or broadening the maligned exemption—are all off the table.  Instead,they advised the bishops’ conference that we should listen to the “enlightened” voices of accommodation,such as the recent hardly-surprising but terribly unfortunate editorial in America. The White House seems to think we bishops are hopelessly out of touch with our people,and with those whom the White House now has nominated as official Catholic teachers.’

Cardinal Dolan made clear his thinking about what is at stake for the US Church in his March 2nd letter to the bishops –

Nor is this a “Catholic” fight alone.  As a nurse from Harrison emailed me,“Cardinal, I’m not so much mad about all this as a Catholic, but as an American.”  It was a Baptist minister,Governor Mike Huckabee,who observed, “In this matter, we’re all Catholics.”

And it is not just about sterilization ,abortifacients, and chemical contraception.  Pure and simple, it’s about religious freedom,the sacred right, protected by our constitution, of any Church to define its own teaching and ministry.

….we’re still as worried as ever.  For one,there was not even a nod to the deeper concerns about trespassing upon religious freedom, or of modifying the HHS’ attempt to define the how and who of our ministry through the suffocating mandates.

…we’ll continue to seek a rescinding of the suffocating mandates that require us to violate our moral convictions — or at least a wider latitude to the exemptions so that churches can be free — and of the rigidly narrow definition of church,minister,and ministry that would prevent us from helping those in need, educating children, and healing the sick who are not Catholic.

As is clear from the current debate in the senate, our opponents are marketing this as a “woman’s health issue.”  Of course, it cannot be reduced to that.  It’s about religious freedom. (By the way,the Church hardly needs to be lectured about health care for women.  Thanks mostly to our Sisters,the Church is the largest private provider of health care for women and their babies in the country.  Here in New York State, Fidelis,the Medicare/Medicaid insurance provider,owned by the Church,consistently receives top ratings for its quality of service to women and children.)

Protect the Pope comment: This last hour stand by the US bishops, led by Cardinal Dolan, is admirable and obviously deserves our support and prayers. However,this doesn’t absolve us from honestly facing up to the fact that the failure of bishops, priests, deacons and people to publicly and consistently defend Humanae Vitae and the Church’s sexual ethics is the reason why the Obama administration sees us as a house divided.

Obama has been able to nominate others apart from the bishops as the official Catholic teachers, represented by America magazine,because the bishops have failed to act against those publicly and defiantly advocating dissent. The US Church is tragically reaping what she has sown.

And as we know to our cost over here in the UK that this problem is not limited to the US bishops. When Bishop Patrick O’Donoghue wrote in Fit for Mission? Church that adherence to Humanae Vitae was the litmus test of obedience for this generation of Catholics,not only was there a resounding silence from the rest of the bishops, but Bishop Kieran Conry publicly ridiculed Bishop O’Donoghue saying that he doubted Catholic couples in the UK had even heard of Humane Vitae. Well whose fault is that Bishop Conry?

One of the reasons why we’re losing our religious freedoms now is because for the past 40 years clergy and laity have not lived by fundamental doctrines of the Faith, so when we now protest against the erosion of our right to live as Catholics it’s hardly convincing…Read the entire letter here…

 

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