by Bishop Robert W. Finn
Dialogue was the big theme of the Notre Dame commencement. Is it possible for the Church to dialogue on abortion?
The President also spoke against reducing those with differing views to caricature. Is that what these bishops have done with regard to the President’s actions on life? (Maybe not so much the bishops, but certainly a whole lot of other pro lifers.)
L'Osservatore Romano Needs a New Editor
by Deal W. Hudson 5/20/09
Something is seriously wrong at L'Osservatore Romano, the Vatican newspaper. When it wrote glowingly of President Obama's first 100 days in office, everyone scratched their heads and wondered "What's going on?" (Not everybody Deal, just conservatives.)
And then this:
The damage will be done by the Associated Press
What OR publishes should not be considered the official position of the Vatican unless it is published under the name of the appropriate Vatican archbishop or cardinal. However, it is certainly natural for the public to view anything published in the "Vatican" newspaper as having the blessing of the Curia and the Holy Father himself.
It looks like Bishop Finn is a little upset his prophecy about Fr. Jenkins losing his job at Notre Dame will not come to fruition, as most of his observations are directed at Fr. Jenkins rather than President Obama. I also thought it was kind of juicy that he parsed Fr. Jenkins words in the exact same manner a lot of his speech to the Kansas pro life groups was parsed by progressive bloggers. I guess that proves that some messages are being heard by some bishops.
Deal Hudson on the other hand, goes after bigger fish, the editor of OR. Now the Vatican will be subjected to the Notre Dame treatment, with probably as much success. I suspect their sympathy for Fr. Jenkins and Notre Dame will go up another notch.
Here's a little shout out to conservatives about the Vatican position. Pope Benedict is about ready to offer his encyclical on social justice. I suspect it will have a lot more in it than abortion, stem cell research, and gay marriage. I suspect it will have a great deal to say which is in opposition to greed infested unregulated Capitalism and notions of 'pull yourself up by your bootstraps" individualism so favored by American conservatives. It might even acknowledge that one way to reduce actual abortions is to spread the wealth around and seriously make a commitment to take care of the least of us. Those least are always women and children.
Pope Benedict might actually believe the one leader who really understands these issues, because he lived through them, is Barack Obama. Perhaps Pope Benedict thinks it's a good idea to encourage Barack Obama to actually follow through on his rhetoric about these social justice issues because Obama's positions are pretty close to actual Catholic teaching. Maybe Benedict remembers that Obama was formed in his social activism by Catholic social justice teachers like Cardinal Bernardin.
Maybe the Vatican is beginning to believe the solution to abortion can not be found in criminalization, but precisely in the social justice teachings of Roman Catholicism. The light might be coming on in the Vatican. Maybe Benedict wonders if it's true that a hand held out will have more of an impact on the actual number of abortions than hands cuffed. What if the Vatican, knowing the legal battle is lost in the US, just wants to give President Obama a chance to test this social justice theory. What a novel and Christian concept and one that won't go down well with American Catholic conservatives.