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Bishops Declare 'Fortnight For Freedom'

ExtWe are now two days deep in the "Fortnight for Freedom" -- a two week exercise in "prayer, study, catechis, and public action" ordained by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, devoted to ceasing the alleged erosion of religious freedom in the USA.

Already, the Archbishop of Baltimore, William E. Lori, has delivered a special "Fortnight for Freedom" homily, a tearful lament of the terrible indignities suffered by the Church, which somehow never quite gets around to explaining what Catholic freedoms are most under threat. Joseph Amodeo, the gay Catholic researcher who resigned in protest from Executive Committee of the Junior Board of Catholic Charities in April, does a much better job at HuffPo:

... In an April 2012 statement the bishops outlined what they viewed as "concrete examples" of religious liberty being "placed in jeopardy," including the federal government's mandate regarding the coverage of contraception, and state-level adoption laws permitting same-sex couples to adopt children. In addition, Church leaders, including Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York, have cited civil marriage equality for loving and committed gay and lesbian couples as being among these "infringements" on religious freedom. As a response to these issues, the bishops have asked parishes and dioceses throughout the country to use Fortnight for Freedom as a means for mobilizing Catholics to defend religious freedom. In light of this, some parishes and dioceses have launched a series of events associated with the effort, while others have quietly refused to participate.

Amid this call to action, sitting in the pew of my parish a few weeks ago, I listened to my pastor proclaim during a homily, "Uniformity is not unity, and conformity is not community." Sadly, with the Fortnight for Freedom and other recent actions, the bishops appear to be working toward a Church that is defined by unquestionable adherence to proclamations from Church leaders that lack moral and ethical clarity. In Dogma and Preaching, Pope Benedict XVI writes that the Church is called "to be in reality the milieu or 'living space' and not the 'dying space' of the Word." In order to truly be the living Church and honestly embrace the living God, the Church must witness the presence of the Spirit that is evident in our world today.

As bishops argue that their religious freedom is "at risk" because of a federal government working to be just, I'm left wondering why the religious principles of a single faith tradition's leaders should define public policy for an entire nation. If the Church argues that the word lives today through the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, and that such inspiration is manifested through the spoken and written word of men and women, then why would such a Spirit stop at the doors of Congress and countless legislative halls throughout the country? In short, I don't think the Spirit has stopped; instead it seems rather evident that men and women who have been chosen to lead and govern America are discerning great questions of our time and are deliberating in a way that calls to mind the great debates of the Second Vatican Council.

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  1. Do we expect anything more from a group of people who believe in man made fairy tales? Who can't grasp science but only grasp fake, trite, silly fairy tale called the Bible. Stupid is all they know.

    Posted by: Steve-ATL | Jun 23, 2012 10:11:37 PM

  2. Religion = Gangs

    Christian, Judiasm, Catholicism equals different gangs where the members (aka gang members) go around creating violence and killing innocent people, while pinning everyone against each other, with no purpose behind their insanity and ego.

    Posted by: NYNiceDude | Jun 23, 2012 10:14:54 PM

  3. @NYNicedude Not to mention the gang wars they get into with each other, with countless innocents caught in the crossfire.

    Posted by: Sarm | Jun 23, 2012 10:23:57 PM

  4. My first thought-- RATZINGER: DIE YESTERDAY
    But then I decided that he should hang on, until that church looks so bad that catholics rise up and insist on not supporting hate and discrimination

    Posted by: Bob | Jun 24, 2012 2:49:18 AM

  5. the catholic church has no heart , no humility no compassion, no brain... All it has is the hunger to remain relevant in the 21st century .. The church is a parasite on humanity . It needs to be killed ,,, yet they are doing a fine job of it themselves

    Posted by: MarkBoston | Jun 24, 2012 3:35:04 AM

  6. Catholic leadership wants to have their cake and eat it too. They want to open a public business (ie: hospital, bank, just pick one) and run it according to their own religious beliefs. They chose to get into the hospital business, nobody forced them. However, being a public business, the hospital must be open to the public and it is to be run according to the law. Adhering to the law in no way interferes with their practice of religion or their religious beliefs and if they really disagree, then nothing is stopping them from getting out of the hospital business. They can do that. Catholics must decide if they want to practice religion or run a business. I thought a church didn't need to run a business.

    Posted by: Bill Michael | Jun 24, 2012 5:34:25 AM

  7. Well, I'm going to "say a little prayer against them" :)

    Seriously, I don't think they have a clue about what the term "religious freedom" means.

    Posted by: rayy | Jun 25, 2012 9:08:20 AM

  8. Some ridiculous comments against the Catholic Church:

    Monsignor Wm. Lynn is a pedophile --Anthony.
    (Has nothing to do with the story.)

    "There was not one mention--NOT ONE!--of the Catholic Church's violations over decades (centuries?) of the civil rights of secular people and institutions and the Church's brazen abuses of secular power to achieve the Church's goals of temporal authority.

    And, where was the mention of the sexual abuse of children and adolescents?"

    Now WHY WOULD the Church mention these things in such a context? They wouldn't mention it when discussing what people should give up for Lent, either.

    "The Church leaders send Catholic soldiers to kill Muslims and other minorities around the world." --Dave

    After the Muslims armies conquered and killed the Christians while conquering the Holy Land, the Catholics struck back in the Crusades. They also liberated Spain from Muslim conquerors. Is that what you mean?

    "The Catholic Church has Zero credibility in today's world. I for one, cannot understand why any educated person would believe in god to begin with." --Kevin Thor

    If you're an atheist, I guess the Church doesn't have credibility: by definition. Several popular books about science--example "Stephen Hawkings' Universe"--describe a running battle between atheist scientists and believing scientists. The father of the Big Bang was a Jesuit Priest, Fr. George LeMaitre. He defeated Einstein by proving to the Great Man that the theory of relativity predicted an expanding universe beginning in a moment of creation. Einstein admitted defeat. So, it is manifest that educated people can and do believe in God.

    "Religious people DO need to pray...RELIGION is the cause of ALLLLLLLLLLLLLL evil in this world.
    Wish all religious people would get a "calling" to end their own lives. In one mass cultish event. Off themselves."

    I do hope you're not serious. If you are, you need psychological help--big time.

    Posted by: ernstroehm's ghost | Nov 2, 2012 12:01:23 AM

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