Saturday, March 24, 2007

Unborn Children Helped By Church Leaders Speaking The Truth

I can’t help it. I just get excited when Church leaders come out and say something TRUE! And twice in one week! [Yes, I’m having just a little fun here.]

You may ask, “Are you saying they don’t normally say things which are true?”

No, I’m not saying that but too often they say little, if anything, on the important subjects and then when they do speak on those crucial issues, many Christian leaders make ambiguous, if not careless, statements.

That explains in large part why our nation is in its current mess. After all, Christians truly are responsible for the moral health of their nation, aren’t they?

So when Denver Archbishop Charles J. Chaput made a bold statement this week entitled We Need to Stop Pornography, Now it was good for all of us. After all, he put his finger on an issue that goes to the very root of our sexual perversions, something which “poisons the human heart, imagination and soul.”
Pornography is never “innocent entertainment,” no matter how private it might seem. It turns human beings into objects. It coarsens our appetites. It darkens our ability to see real human beauty. It creates impossible expectations about sexual intimacy. It kills enduring romance and friendship between the sexes. And ultimately it’s a lie and a cheat. Pornography is a cheap, quick, empty copy of the real thing — the real joy of sexual intimacy shared by a man and woman who have joined their lives in a loving marriage.

The Archbishop did not specifically mention abortion in his column, although it’s relatively easy to see that abortion is the “final solution” to so much dark sexuality. His letter ends with a challenge that needs to be taken seriously:

…we can do a lot about the poison in our homes and local communities. Pornography is poison. It should be controlled like any other toxic waste. And don’t be fooled. This isn’t “censorship.” It’s a matter of public health and common sense.

This was an important and timely reminder from one of the Church’s Pastors. The fact is that society needs this kind of leadership and outspokenness consistently and from ALL spiritual leaders in the Church. If the truth does not ring out clearly and constantly into our ears, then the enemy of our soul will be only too glad to fill the void with lies and death.

The second item of significance was also news from the USA.

The US Conference of Catholic Bishops have announced that two pamphlets circulated by Daniel Maguire, a Marquette University theologian, represent “false teaching” which cannot be reconciled with Catholic doctrine.

This may not sound very newsworthy but consider what Maguire was teaching.

The doctrinal committee, chaired by Bishop William Lori of Bridgeport, Connecticut, addressed two pamphlets circulated last year by Maguire, covering the issues of contraception, abortion, and same-sex marriage. The USCCB concluded that Maguire’s views on those topics, and his understanding of Church teaching authority, “cross the legitimate lines of theological reflection and simply enter into the area of false teaching.”

In the pamphlets, Maguire had argued that “the Roman Catholic position on abortion is pluralistic,” claiming that some Catholics have always endorsed the “pro-choice” stance. He writes that on abortion-- and on other issues such as contraception and same-sex marriage-- there are two opposing Catholic views. “Neither is official,” he says, “and neither is more Catholic than the other.”

These kinds of statements embolden “pro-abortion” forces in our society, particularly pro-abortion Catholics and politicians, who continue to scandalize not only the US but Canada as well. Consider our last “faithful” Catholic Prime Minister who made declarations on national TV in the closing days of the last election, defending his government’s position on a “woman’s right to choose.”

This course of action by the USCCB may not seem very substantial to the reader but I can assure you that this is indeed a rare decision which they have made. I see this therefore as a very significant step. It sends the right message. We ought to strongly commend the Bishops for doing so and encourage them to do this sort of thing much more often.

Although I have been accused of placing far too much importance on the part that must be played by Church leaders in order to end abortion, the worse thing pro-lifers could do is to give up on Church pastors and leaders or minimize their role in the moral re-formation of the nation.


P.S. This posting and another recent one have been rather saturated with [good!] news surrounding Catholic leaders, news which promises to have a positive impact for the protection of unborn children. This is just a note to readers that Vote Life, Canada! highlights good news and reports about Church leaders from all Christian bodies whenever it comes to our attention.