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NYC's Anti-Gay Cardinal Dolan Says Pope Francis is 'Daring, Fresh, Innovative, Batting a Thousand' — VIDEO


Yesterday, an interview of Pope Francis was published by America magazine in which he advised the Catholic church to end its small-minded obsession with same-sex marriage and abortion, and said that the church cannot "interfere spiritually in the life of a person."

FrancisThe Pope's comments appeared to be directed at folks like NYC's Cardinal Dolan, who in recent years has been utterly obsessed with just those issues.

As our reporter Sean Mandell wrote a few months ago, "Dolan, who claims to not be "anti-anybody", has equated same-sex marriage to incest, denied LGBT Catholics entry to mass, and insisted LGBT individuals are entitled to friendship, not marriage.  Last year he vehemently opposed same-sex marriage legislation in New York state, calling it a "communist threat" and has since complained that he felt burned by lawmakers."

In May Dolan issued a memo to LGBT Catholics urging them to "pray, fast, and sacrifice" over the Supreme Court's upcoming decisions on marriage. Can it be argued that this man is not obsessed with "interfering spiritually" in the lives of gay people?

Yet Dolan was a bucket of smiles in a pre-dawn interview with CBS New York about the Pope's statements yesterday.

Said Dolan: “This man is batting a thousand. We wanted a man who had a heart, we wanted a man who could teach like Jesus, we wanted a man who could get us back to the essentials of the church. He’s a good teacher, he wants to shake us up. He’s daring, he’s fresh, he’s innovative.”

Dolan appears to be throwing up a smoke screen because he doesn't want people to realize the Pope is actually directing his comments at anti-gay bigots like him.

Watch the interview, AFTER THE JUMP...

Michelangelo Signorile was spot on in a piece yesterday when he wrote:

And in saying "I have never been a right-winger" in the same interview in which he's criticizing the church for being too "obsessed" with gay marriage and abortion, Francis is hitting at those Catholic leaders who use gay rights and abortion to wield political power, putting them on notice. Again, his comments don't change the church's doctrine, but they do a lot to change its focus. That can only be seen as a huge shift.

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  1. I am absolutely, continually stunned by Dolan's stupidity. Must every word out of his mouth include a baseball reference? Who the f*** is his audience -- just overprivileged white people who only relate to religious figures if they're Derek Jeter fans?

    Posted by: RomanHans | Sep 20, 2013 10:31:07 AM

  2. Every time I think the new Pope is refreshing, I read further in the interview, and notice he's still unbudgeable about women in the Catholic Church. Ridiculous!

    Posted by: keating | Sep 20, 2013 10:38:11 AM

  3. And yet in an interview I saw as I was leaving for work, Dolan said what the Pope REALLY means is that the church needs to continue talking about those things but in a different way.

    Posted by: gerry | Sep 20, 2013 10:38:29 AM

  4. Dolan's beliefs don't run deep, but I don't believe he was ever comfortable saying the anit-gay crap he's been saying for the past several years.
    He's the quintessential company man who says what he believes his bosses want him to say. He says those things loudly with that full-of-baloney smile, so the Vatican loves to use him as a spokesman.
    But now that the man at the top has made his feelings on a variety of issues much more clear, Dolan has changed his public tune.
    This is significant, as Dolan remains the head of the U.S. bishops and there should be a trickle-down effect.
    This pope is a good person who is slowly but surely shaking off Benedict and JP2's mean-spirited legacy.

    Posted by: woody | Sep 20, 2013 10:43:58 AM

  5. till the pope changes the Catechism = official Law and Doctrine of the church

    it is all just words upon the wind & sexually active gays are committing a mortal sin = damnable

    Call me when he changes the Catechism

    Posted by: Moz's | Sep 20, 2013 10:51:57 AM

  6. Dolan still campaigning to become pope. He will say anything do anything that will get him that title. Maybe he can serve from jail after he is prosecuted.

    Posted by: robertL | Sep 20, 2013 10:53:46 AM

  7. This has been so predictable that I'm bored $h1tless.

    The Pope is a Jesuit.
    Jesuits are educated to appear the reasonable intellectual caring pastors of the church.
    The doctrine telling us that we are "intrinsically defective" remains the same, but we shouldn't tak about that too much and instead speak of the redemptive power of Jesus.
    Women should have a more active role in the church but let's not talk about them having equality of esteem, let's not talk about women priests.
    It is the mercy of Jesus we should talk about.

    Is anyone seriously falling for this Jesuitical obfuscation ?
    Is this not what we expected ?
    @ Moz :
    Yes, change the Catechism, tell us we are not defective, tell women they are just as equal as the males in the Church......then your words will be more than weasel words......but not until then.

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | Sep 20, 2013 11:09:22 AM

  8. the catechism of the catholic church is against loads of things. but the church has chosen to mouth off about gay people and abortion. it isn't on a tirade against divorce.
    what important about this pope is that he's saying: stop obsessing about gay rights and singling out gay people for public abuse; stop going out of your way to give bigots cover.
    and they are fuming about it.
    they keep falling back on the fact that the catechism hasn't changed and they have that on their side. so, why are the callers to all the catholic right-wing radio shows so upset? because they know this pope doesn't care about their hot-button issues. he's saying live and let live and will treat gay rights the way the catholic church has long treated divorce: they've been relatively quiet about it.

    Posted by: woody | Sep 20, 2013 11:15:06 AM

  9. @ jackfkntwist

    & let us never forget that Jesuits believe & teach

    say 1 thing and add a mental (unheard)word/words and the talker is not lying or sinning and it is the listeners fault for misunderstanding

    Posted by: Moz's | Sep 20, 2013 11:18:34 AM

  10. @ MOZ :
    Agreed......they also have had no hesitation in seeking to interfere with political decisions and plot and scheme they have done historically ( see Elizabeth I); and of course tis led to their being suppressed/abolished at on stage.

    I would never consider a Jesuit trustworthy.

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | Sep 20, 2013 11:23:39 AM

  11. What would you expect from Dolan? The Pope just called BS on his bigoted butt and he can't lash out, he can only act like he's on board. Hopefully, his head will explode when he's in private and has had time to stew.

    Posted by: Jack M | Sep 20, 2013 11:37:14 AM

  12. Dolan must simply have his mouth permanently sewn closed. Every sound he utters is unbearable. He doesn't need to be heard to do whatever he does, anyway.

    Posted by: Geoff | Sep 20, 2013 11:40:43 AM

  13. Unsurprisingly, Dolan is a sycophant.

    Posted by: Daniel Berry, NYC | Sep 20, 2013 12:37:45 PM

  14. I agree that Dolan is a company man. He'll do what the big boss says. I don't particularly care what his personal feelings are about gays (and from what I've heard, he thinks all gays relationships are "genital-based", which is very weird).

    As long as he starts focusing even a little bit on poverty and peace, that's less time he can spend on gay bashing, and that's a good thing. Perhaps some priests will start catching the tune as well.

    Posted by: Randy | Sep 20, 2013 12:40:49 PM

  15. the catechism, the catechism, the CATECHISM! Believe me, the majority of Roman catholics in this country care about what that bloody document has to say as any non-believer. And you can be sure of this: the Vatican's continuing to mouth off about Roman catholics' gay loved ones has only accelerated the growing indifference.

    Posted by: Daniel Berry, NYC | Sep 20, 2013 12:42:25 PM

  16. This is a terrific blog post Andy Towle. Well done.

    Posted by: sundayboy | Sep 20, 2013 12:43:58 PM

  17. There's no way in the world that Dolan can go against his boss. And what his boss is saying is very canny p.r. The church has LOST on gay marriage as well as gays in general so it has to regroup. Need to any o its positions -- just assume a "kinder, gentler" manner.

    The church can believe whatever it wants -- just stay away from the rest of us. Francis knows that hostility gays has led to a significant loss of "The Faithful"

    Posted by: David Ehrenstein | Sep 20, 2013 1:00:01 PM

  18. Enjoy your Zyklon shower guys! Anyone need an extra towel?

    Posted by: Marc C | Sep 20, 2013 1:04:06 PM

  19. daniel

    The Catechism is REQUIRED to learn the basics of/ attend class to qualify for Confirmation, and if one does not go through Confirmation then you are committing another Mortal Sin = damnable as well as can not be considered Catholic

    no catechism = no confirmation when at or post confirmation age = Not Catholic

    Posted by: Moz's | Sep 20, 2013 1:19:30 PM

  20. Dolan did not get where he is without being a sycophantic toady.

    The empty churches of Italy speak volumes about the future of Roman Catholicism.

    Posted by: Fahd | Sep 20, 2013 2:20:27 PM

  21. This guy is creepy. He is saying one thing while back-stabbing the Pope when no one is watching.

    Posted by: simon | Sep 20, 2013 2:27:45 PM

  22. "Daring, fresh, innovative"?

    Is he talking about the Pope or advertising a new line of douches?

    Posted by: FuryOfFirestorm | Sep 20, 2013 2:53:50 PM

  23. Pope Francis today rebuked abortion and the "throw away culture" we're living in today, in his own words. Pope Francis said that the Catechism, the official Catholic church views on homosexuality, abortion, etc. are still very relevant but that they don't need to be brought up all the time because being against abortion/marriage equality/etc. alone doesn't make one a Catholic or follower of Christ.

    But make NO mistake---at the end of the day, we're still sinners and that message won't change. And if Pope Francis literally within a day is speaking out against abortion after the interview he gave many mentioned as revolutionary, one can expect the same on other issues, including marriage.

    Posted by: Francis #1 | Sep 20, 2013 2:57:19 PM

  24. Katie McDonough's @Salon 'Best Pope Ever: Still Pretty Awful!'

    Posted by: SERIOUSLY | Sep 20, 2013 3:17:32 PM

  25. Dolan is a devil. He guffawed his way thru an interview w/ Charlie Rose this morning as well... never really answering a question & with absolutely no push-back from Charlie.

    We can only hope that Francis' housecleaning includes replacing "his excellency" fat-ass Dolan w/ someone more aligned w/ Xtian teaching.

    Posted by: Pete N SFO | Sep 20, 2013 4:29:47 PM

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