Cleansing Fire

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It JUST Won’t Go Away

January 7th, 2012, Promulgated by Hopefull

The homosexual activist issue won’t go away because it is one of the most virulent issues facing the Church today, its people, its pastors and its hierarchy.   It is worth taking a long look at Cardinal George’s words and at his recent apology, and asking what does it all mean?  As gleaned from the secular media (subject to change based on learning new information) it looks like the gay pride parade scheduled for next summer was  to be routed past a Catholic Church in the Chicago Diocese at 10AM on a Sunday, instead of at the traditional noon starting time.  It is reported that shortly before Christmas, the starting time was changed back to noon, not to occur during Mass.  

Cardinal George was interviewed by Fox News; his remarks aired on Christmas Day, and he is reported to have said:

“You know, you don’t want the gay liberation movement to morph into something like the Ku Klux Klan, demonstrating in the streets against Catholicism. So I think if that’s what’s happening, and I don’t know that it is, but I would respect the local pastor’s, you know, position on that.”

On December 28, it was reported in the Chicago Tribune that Cardinal George further defended his position, saying:

“Organizers (of the pride parade) invited an obvious comparison to other groups who have historically attempted to stifle the religious freedom of the Catholic Church….  One such organization is the Ku Klux Klan which, well into the 1940s, paraded through American cities not only to interfere with Catholic worship but also to demonstrate that Catholics stand outside of the American consensus. It is not a precedent anyone should want to emulate.”

I’m not going to give voice to Cardinal George’s critics by reiterating their comments (except for one, below), which can be found at the links shown, but obviously the gay activists called for the Cardinal’s resignation.  (Timely call, as he is turning 75 and about to submit his resignation any way; then it will be likely touted as a rainbow success.)

Yesterday, the Chicago Tribune carried the headline: “Cardinal George apologizes for linking Pride Parade to KKK”  which I would find to be a disappointment if he actually did so.  It seems to take so long for Cardinals and Bishops to get up the nerve to speak out, that anything which seems like retreat can be demoralizing to all those trying to uphold Catholic faith and principals.  But what the Cardinal seems to have said, and which has been taken as an apology, is:

“I am truly sorry for the hurt my remarks have caused,” George said in an interview with the Tribune. “Particularly because we all have friends or family members who are gay and lesbian. This has evidently wounded a good number of people. I have family members myself who are gay and lesbian, so it’s part of our lives. So I’m sorry for the hurt.”

I am pleased to see that Cardinal George’s apparent apology (again pending correction on seeing a full text) is an apology for the hurt, not for speaking out about the dangers of gay activism to the rights of the Church to speak out, not for the teachings of the church, and not for being faithful.  What I am disappointed about is that 100 bishops didn’t put out statements of a supportive nature, even if they couldn’t agree with his exact wording.  They could reaffirm Church Teaching.  They could express pastoral care for souls caught in the gay web.  They could express concern about erosion of the rights of the Church and of the faithful by intimidating words and actions, bullying actually, by some in the gay pride movement.  But, no, it seems that the hierarchy left Cardinal George to swing in the gay secular wind for doing exactly what a successor of the Apostles should be doing.  If every soldier went to war one at a time, there would be a lot of defeated soldiers.  The Church Militant can’t afford to do battle that way.  I searched the USCCB site and also could find no support troops for Cardinal George’s battle engagement, although Pope Benedict and the USCCB have apparently expressed concern about the erosion of rights of conscience in the US.  Where is the support or even acknowledgement when a bishop or cardinal does step out in his beliefs, in his (expected) well-formed conscience?  Is there some litmus test of genteel wordiness that is first needed so nobody really knows what is being said?  I found nothing on Zenit either, although in fairness they have been shut down a lot over the Christmas holidays.

The reason for the headline “It JUST Won’t Go Away” is that the issue pits moral teaching against sinfulness.  There is much absurd, disgusting and sick that can be said or done in this secular world, but the most reviled of all actions is speaking the truth and calling “sin” what it truly is.  Failure of the church hierarchy to have taken strong and clear enough positions on contraception, abortion, euthanasia, homosexual activism AND on its own obligation to work, no matter what, for the salvation of souls is what leads to the tip-toeing volley of speak / apologize / speak / apologize.  Cardinal George seems to have apologized for “hurt;” yes, sinners feel “hurt” when they are confronted.  But the careful crafting of the “apology” seems to have been either misunderstood by those who need to hear the truth, or manipulated to serve their agenda and intimidate hierarchy further, or both. 

The misunderstanding is so great among those being morally corrected, that it behooves the hierarchy to speak with clarity and stand their ground.  One example of the deep misunderstanding is clear in the words of one protester:  “It’s schizoid,” M_____ said. “You can’t say on one hand that you love people and on the other hand condemn them for who they are.”   This comment does illustrate the basic problem, that the church hierarchy has failed to explain their duty to souls.  True love is all about saving souls.  Condemning the action isn’t the same as condemning the person.  It needs to be explained much better.  Each of these outbursts is another teaching moment; set aside by the failure of others of stature to join in, and with too much unspoken.  To let those moments pass by will inevitably bring the day closer when condemnation of sin, from the pulpit or individually, will become illegal.

Here are the links to read more.  What do YOU think?

FOX News: http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2011-12-22/business/chi-cardinal-under-fire-for-comparing-gay-rights-movement-to-klan-20111222_1_gay-rights-annual-gay-pride-parade-rights-and-civil-unions

Defense: http://www.suntimes.com/news/metro/9687870-418/cardinal-george-defends-comment-linking-gay-rights-activists-to-kkk.html

“Apology”: http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2012-01-06/news/chi-cardinal-george-apologizes-for-linking-pride-parade-to-kkk-20120106_1_pride-parade-equality-illinois-lesbian

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34 Responses to “It JUST Won’t Go Away”

  1. avatar Bruce says:

    Cardinal George also added this questionable gem:

    “The question is, ‘Does respect mean that we have to change our teaching?’ That’s an ongoing discussion, of course. … I still go back to the fact that these are people we know and love and are part of our families. That’s the most important point right now.”

    If he is implying that the Church will throw out the 6th Commandment and disregard all extra-marital sexual activity as not sinful, then he is a heretic.

  2. avatar Bruce says:

    Homosexual activity can never be condoned. If the Cardinal disagrees, he is a heretic.

  3. avatar Richard Thomas says:

    Brothers and Sisters,

    This is the BIG battle facing the Church in the 21st century. Homosexuals are embedded in the church and many bishops, priests, cardinals and nuns are afflicted with Same Sex Attraction Disorder. They obviously have chosen, not only to stay in their lifestyle, but also to promote it in anyway they can.

    I have been told that there are many well connected individuals in many dioceses who know the “Dirt” on priests and bishops in their dioceses and who threaten to disclose this information if any “Good Standing” bishop who dares to proclaim the true teachings of the church on this issue.

    If a cleric is an ally of the homosexual movement, or is weak and faithful, the true teachings will never be taught. How often have we heard a homily on the Church teaching? And thus, generations of Catholics, especially the young, grow up with little knowledge of Church teaching and instead, are swamped 24/7 with the propaganda from the media, advocating homosexual rights. And we can apply this analogy to birth control, pornography and premarital sex as well as abortion.

    Could Gay Marriage ever pass in our country without grassroot support, as demonstrated in our Church. Our country is going in the toilet and it’s the attitude of our prelates that has brought us to the cliff, we are in process of going over.

    Christ wins but our Church will have to be cleansed from this scourage. Pray for our religious leaders. When you pray for vocations, pray that solid, manly men answer the call, and that after they ansewr CHrist, will be protected from all the homosexual influences, present in our seminaries, parishes and dioceses.

  4. avatar Richard Thomas says:

    I am sorry but such an apology does cave into this radical movement. And where is the apology from Gay organizations for harassment of even elderly people who simply exercised their right of free expression and demonstrated against the Gay marriage amendment in California.

    Where is the apology for the intimidation of anyone or any group who dares to confront this problem.

    And where is the apology from those within the Church, like Bishop Clark, who suppresses any group who simply states the position of the Majesterium on this subject.

    Unfortunately, in this debate, apologies are ALWAYS from one side. Such apologies make Christ’s Church appear weak and dilutes and mocks true teachings.

  5. avatar Richard Thomas says:

    Just one more item. Can you ever imagine JP II the Great or Cardinal Wyszinski ever capitulating like this to the Communists before and during the Solidarity movement. These were men who bowed to no one except God. No whimps here. Courageous and rightous. Our Church in America needs a few if not many good men like these and not some of the whimps we already have.

  6. avatar Dr. K says:

    Q: What do Cardinal George and Bishop Clark have in common?

    A: They both submit their resignations this year.

  7. avatar Sassy says:

    God bless Archbishop Nienstedt for speaking the truth and holding his priests to Catholic doctrine. When I read the story, the first thing I thought was, sadly, this would never happen in Rochester.

  8. avatar Raymond F. Rice says:

    Richard Thomas

    I do not think the gay issue is the biggest issue of the 21st century although it may be for you for your own reasons. I think two men kissing in a bar or at a party or even pledging fidelity to each other at City Hall or two old ladies living in a “Boston marriage” DOES NOT take precedence as a problem over the issue of abortion where over 80 MILLION little souls have been slaughtered/murdered in this world over the past 20 years!! 80 MILLION!!!!!!!

    Given our limited time and energy as “militants”, I would opt first towards dealing with the murder problem.

    What amazes me is how JPII could have picked all of these potential and spineless heretics to be bishops. He has selected a majority of the Catholics bishops who are shepherding today.

  9. avatar Raymond F. Rice says:

    Richard Thomas;

    You may have heard of the now defunct animal act in Las Vegas which was run by longtime life partners, Sigfried and Roy. They met Pope John Paul II in 1989 in a private audience, and received holy water to bless their new stage at The Mirage Casino in Las Vegas and their animals. Evidently the holy water might have been defective because one of the tigers later on almost killed one of them and the act was discontinued.

  10. avatar jbrom2 says:

    Bruce – Please note the ellipsis in the “gem” you quoted. I’d say the likelihood of the paper omitting something his eminence said to the effect of, “no, we can’t change that,” is pretty high. Especially considering his initial remarks, the idea that the cardinal is open to changing this teaching seems to be more than a bit of a stretch.

  11. avatar Sassy says:

    I would have to agree with Richard that SSA and it’s impact is the biggest issue at least for the Catholic Church. Finally, the winds of change seem to be blowing against abortion with the recent clinic closings across the US, murder indictments against doctors, etc. However, SSA equality and normalization is picking up steam, especially as more states endorse “gay marriage”. And the issue will explode as more states seek to introduce the normalization of SSA into school curriculum.

  12. avatar Richard Thomas says:

    And just wait until laws are enacted, like in Canada, that make preaching against homosexual acts a hate crime. Then it’s going to be a real mess. But the way our current priests and bishops act, there will be very few if any episodes of “hate crimes” committed in Catholic Churches! They will all cow-tow to the culture, like they are doing today!

  13. avatar rspears says:

    Your comments and the entire site are anti the leadership of the Church. The Church is part of the social fabric of America and they do not want to offend any group, moreover, there is no homosexual media agenda, that is paranoia. The Bishop Clark countdown makes this entire group heretics. He is the Spritual Leader of Rochester, shame on all of you.
    By the way, the Bible does not mention anywhere that Jesus hated homosexuals.

  14. avatar Richard Thomas says:

    Rspers,

    Hate the sin of homosexualactions. Love the homosexual.

    Bishop Clark may be the spiritual leader but if he is in error, he needs correction, not only for his sake but also for the sake and defence of his sheep.

    Just because someone is bishop does not give him licence to act in ways contrary to church teaching and certainly does not allow him to promote anything that is sinful.

    Jesus never withheld his gospel for fear of offending anyone. Never keep a bushel under your lamp. How many countless martyrs died for their faith because they “offended” the authorities. Homosexual actions are not only sinful but unhealthy. Proclaiming this teaching not only saves souls but also helps in preventing the transmission of sexually transmitted disease.

  15. avatar Bruce says:

    rspears: Is sexual activity outside of marriage sinful?

  16. avatar rspears says:

    First of all Richard Thomas, when were you ordained, I take it you are not, thus you are not qualified to determine if the Bishop has strayed. You are uneducated as to what the Church really means and stands for. I suggest taking a trip to U of R and enrolling in Theology 101 for startes, your lack of knowledge makes you a dangerous man.

    To Bruce, the Bible makes no mention of sex outside of marriage being a sin. In terms of homosexuality, the Bible makes more references to gluttony as sinful than homosexuality, thus are the number of Americans now obese living in sin? Read your bible a little more closely and take a few classes on proper interpretation, you come off as ignorant.

    And yes, this site is for heretics, the lay are questioning the authority of the Church and the Bishop of Rochester, I have 1/2 a mind to contact the Vatican and speak to a Cannon Lawyer as the whole lot of you should be excommunicated. None of you are real Catholics, to think as lay members of the Church community you have the authority or knowledge to question the church hierarchy is sinful.

    May God have mercy on your souls, I pray for all of you to see the error of your ways, if you don’t you will have an opportunity to be a dissident Catholic and discuss these matters and your so called critiques of the Church at length in hell.

  17. avatar brother of penance says:

    To rspears:
    Frankly I do not agree with every opinion expressed in the comment section of cleansingfiredor. Sometimes I roll my eyes at comments. Other times I am quite blessed by the humility of the expertise shared on line. So while I do not agree with every statement you have made, I do understand the passionate feelings you have been expressing.

    The discussion about homosexuality, our Diocese’s “gay friendly” attitude and the influence of the “gay rights” movement in society and church are troubling; especially as society and elements in the Church move away from natural law and the concept of the common good.

    All of the chatter about homosexuality reminds me of something I read once.
    50 YEARS AGO HOMOSEXUALITY WAS THE LOVE ASHAMED TO TALK OF ITSELF, NOW IT WON’T SHUT UP.
    I repeat that statement not to hurt anyone’s feelings but to admit, I am becoming weary of the subject.

    So, rather than comment now on the Church’s teaching on this subject, may I refer you to anyone of my former comments about it posted in the recent past on cleansingfiredor or any of the other staff posts and various comments. This site has been attentive to the same-sex phenomenon. Not all of it has been based on ignorance and hate.

    rspears, I invite you to ask Mr. Ben Anderson, one of the cleansingfiredor staff, for my personal contact information. I give Ben permission to share with you who I am and how to contact me.

    If you so choose to accept my invitation, I would be happy to meet you and speak with you.
    Layman that I am, I would try to share with you official Church teaching on the subjects that you raise in your comments and any others of interest to you. It would be a pleasure to make your acquaintance, listen to you and share ideas.

    Until then, rspears, I am your brother of penance.

  18. avatar Dr. K says:

    “I suggest taking a trip to U of R and enrolling in Theology 101″

    I would be bitter and uninformed too if I were to sit on a sofa every week in the Susan B. Anthony lounge while Fr. Cool makes a mockery of the Holy Mass.

    “To Bruce, the Bible makes no mention of sex outside of marriage being a sin. “

    That’s because the Bible uses the word “fornication.” Do look up the meaning. A cursory glance of the Bible for the words “sex outside of marriage” will obviously produce little fruit.

  19. avatar Ben Anderson says:

    heretics? really?
    http://www.vatican.va/archive/ENG1104/__P2H.HTM

    Can. 751 Heresy is the obstinate denial or obstinate doubt after the reception of baptism of some truth which is to be believed by divine and Catholic faith; apostasy is the total repudiation of the Christian faith; schism is the refusal of submission to the Supreme Pontiff or of communion with the members of the Church subject to him.

    what the Catholic Church teaches on homosexuality (for a Catholic, it doesn’t matter what the UofR teaches)
    http://www.scborromeo.org/ccc/p3s2c2a6.htm

    Chastity and homosexuality

    2357 Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction toward persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity,141 tradition has always declared that “homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.”142 They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved.

    2358 The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God’s will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord’s Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.

    2359 Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection.

    The Church’s teaching on homosexuality is infallible. To deny it is to remove yourself from full communion with the Catholic Church:
    http://www.ewtn.com/library/curia/cdfadtu.htm

    My response is rather blunt because it’s playoffs. I’ll echo bop’s offer to meet and talk with you in person. Thanks for coming to CF. Unfortunately your beef isn’t with us, but with Catholicism. It’s a battle you’re not going to win. Have a blessed Feast of the Epiphany!

  20. avatar rspears says:

    no one needs to sit me down, you all need a sit down and as far as fornication, put the Bible in perspective, at the time, most children died during child birth and the bible was a book authored and changed over the centuries, can you read Latin or Greek, if not you are reading a book that has been translated and have no idea what the original book said.
    Keep it up and God will punish you for not having the critical thinking skills to put things into perspective. You are all heretics who should repent at once, God is watching you and I am sending these posts to the Vatican and urging an investigation of all of you

  21. avatar Ben Anderson says:

    you might also be interested in knowing that Bishop Clark gave us his blessing:
    http://cleansingfiredor.com/2011/09/bishop-clark-to-cf-may-each-of-you-be-blessed/

    and the bishop countdown is discussed and defended here:
    http://cleansingfiredor.com/2011/03/help-in-need-of-good-referencesresources/

  22. avatar Ben Anderson says:

    God is watching you and I am sending these posts to the Vatican and urging an investigation of all of you

    I’m shaking in my boots.

  23. avatar brother of penance says:

    rspears, I did not intend to sit you down. My invitation was rooted in the virtue of charity. I was trying to be hospitable.

    You must have missed the sincere offer to meet and share without judgment.

    Catholic teaching is true.

    Catholics have a solemn obligation and privilege to herald Christ Jesus and the teachings of his Catholic Church. Anything less is unloving.

    Brother Ben has done you a service by providing links, references and excerpts.

    Who knows, perhaps your future correspondence with the Vatican will result in what many of us have hoped in this Diocese for years.

    Best regards to you and yours.

  24. avatar Sassy says:

    Rspears, I think the good peole of Rochester would be thrilled if you sent notes from Cleansing Fire to the Vatican. The information will certainly support the fact that Bishop Clark has been anything but a strong leader when it comes to his preachings and actions in regards to SSA. How can you expect the faithful to follow a spiritual leader who will not bear witness to the faith when it comes to dissident, in-name-only organizations (Fortunate Families and Spiritus Christi) that spring up in his own backyard? Both have flourished under his watch.

  25. avatar militia says:

    Dear rspears, Perhaps you do need to sit down with someone at least for basic information regarding the bible.

    1) you say that the bible was written in Latin or Greek, but that is not true. It was written in Hebrew (OT) and in Greek (NT), not in Latin.
    2) You say that the bible is a book “authored and changed over the centuries.” That also is untrue. For example, there is amazing correlation between the Old Testament and the Dead Sea Scrolls. And the Bible scholarship between Catholics and Protestants has resulted in nearly unanimous agreement on the basic Greek text from the early centuries.
    3) You make the surprising, unsubstantiated claim that most children died in childbirth. It is quite surprising, then, the dearth of such mention in the OT. The 12 sons of Jacob seem to have made it quite well into adulthood. Rachel died, but Benjamin survived. David’s first child with Uriah’s wife died as punishment for their sin, but after birth. The women begging for children (Sarah, Hannah, Elizabeth) make no mention of the death of other children; only that they could not conceive. Where in the world do you get the information on which your claim is based? Why would Pharaoh try to murder the babies of the Jews if so many were dying? Why such an effort to save Moses?

    You are correct that no one needs to sit you down, but you do need to sit down yourself with a spiritual advisor, in my opinion, as your anger which pervades your post is palpable. What is it about our speaking out against homosexual lifestyle that causes this reaction? It might be well to explore. The offer from Brother of Penance was sincere and kind and solicitous; in my opinion, entirely undeserving of your response.

    THe most obvious “changes” regarding the bible have been in biblical interpretation, such as modern heretics claiming that the sin of Sodom and Gomorah was lack of hospitality, rather than intended homosexual rape of the angelic visitors. Or that the miracle of the loaves and fishes was just great oratory that got everyone to open their picnic baskets. Or the modern heretic tries to argue that St. Paul didn’t mean Romans 1. Of course he did, and wasn’t it exposure to homosexual lifestyle in pagan cities which made him write those words? Of course Christ didn’t have to give a discourse against homosexual activity explicitly, nor against abortion as both practices would have been so heinous in that time as to make it seem strange to even make the point. He didn’t speak out against canibalism either, did you note? THe heretics who need to repent are those who are twisting the word of God to justify everything from “gay marriage” to murder of babies.

    I personally hope you do complain to Rome. I would like the Holy Father to know that we are fighting the battle for our faith even when diocesan leaders lack the courage to do so. Perhaps, more than ever, he would then see how desperately we need pastors who will speak the truth from the pulpit, and write sound doctrine in their communications. May God lead them to repentance for the souls they have damaged. Christ knows well all who have been willing to acknowledge him and his teaching.

    When you send these posts to Rome, please be sure to include mine.

  26. avatar Ben Anderson says:

    the bible was a book authored and changed over the centuries

    That is most certainly not Catholic. Sure there are a few genuine disputes here and there as to a couple of passages, but most of what we have is almost certainly what the authors originally laid down. Your perspective is not only not-Catholic, but just plain dumb.

    can you read Latin or Greek, if not you are reading a book that has been translated and have no idea what the original book said.

    sha-right. puhleez.

    You might want to read Dei Verbum and Verbum Domini

    ps – you (and the UofR, and anyone else who holds such a stupid opinion) are not smarter than those who composed those documents. You are also not smarter than Craig Blomberg who will tear your argument to shreds.

  27. avatar Sassy says:

    Rspears, I am offering my evening prayers for you that God may dispel the anger you have. To the faithful of CF, thank you for continuing to fight the good fight. Your reward will be great in Heaven. God bless.

  28. avatar Raymond F. Rice says:

    “God is watching you and I am sending these posts to the Vatican and urging an investigation of all of you. ”

    God is now the “bogey man” and watching us? As far as the Vatican bureaucracy goes in acting on your letter, when you get the response, don’t be surprised if it is dated January 8, 2085!! I heard that just last month they granted Martin Luther a dispensation to get married!! lol

    And Richard: no response to my bear baiting???

  29. avatar Raymond F. Rice says:

    Bleesed Pope John XXIII was once asked if he was going to claim infallibility during his papacy. He supposedly stated that nothing he said was infallible because he would not let any of his teachings or decrees be taken as infallible.

  30. avatar Bruce says:

    It is always amazing how any post on a Catholic website regarding homosexuality is instantly hit with angry comments with opposing opinions.

    It never fails. This is THE issue of the Church and contemporary society today.

  31. avatar Ben Anderson says:

    Bleesed Pope John XXIII was once asked if he was going to claim infallibility during his papacy. He supposedly stated that nothing he said was infallible because he would not let any of his teachings or decrees be taken as infallible.

    not sure what your point is… perhaps you’re referring to my comment above about the Church’s teaching on sexuality being infallible? The statement from PJ23 is in regards to ex cathedra statements which is only one way doctrines are assured infallibility. I’m basing my statement on the universal and ordinal teaching of the Magisterium – there’s really no disputing that. You could also base it in Sacred Scripture, which is also infallible.

  32. avatar Abaccio says:

    He’s trolling (Rspears). Stop engaging him.

  33. avatar Dr. K says:

    If JXXIII didn’t want to proclaim something infallibly, that’s his perrogative and it doesn’t prevent other Popes from doing so.

  34. avatar militia says:

    1 Peter 3:15, Abaccio.

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