Thursday, May 14, 2009

Randall Terry And Muting The Catholic Moral Voice

Randall Terry, another one of the ubiquitous Evangelical 'converts' to Catholicism

Randall Terry as pro-life face
by Michael Sean Winters on May. 14, 2009

A majority of the bishops in the United States have made no public statement about the University of Notre Dame’s decision to invite President Barack Obama to give the commencement address on Sunday. Many, I suspect, simply feel it is not their place to comment on such an event happening outside their diocese. Others may view such protests, correctly I think, as making the church look like an adjunct of the Republican Party. But, here is something all bishops should be prepared to speak about.

Randall Terry is already flying a plane over the campus with the picture of an aborted fetus, evidently not recognizing that turning the dead child into a prop falls short of what the church teaches about human dignity. Alas, Terry will exploit anyone and anything in his crude crusade. Sunday, like it or not, he will be the face of the pro-life movement in the media. The students who are graduating after four years of effort will see their big day turned into a circus.

The bishops, at least the leadership of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, should send out one of their own to say, “We regret the protests that disrupted Notre Dame’s graduation. We believe that respect for life demands respect for those with whom we disagree.” It would be nice, but perhaps expecting too much, to have the bishops also acknowledge that by coming to Notre Dame the president was not courting controversy but was, instead, honoring a distinguished Catholic institution, and to thank him for the honor.

The church thinks in centuries, but media coverage fits within a 24-hour news cycle. The bishops need to have a statement ready to go. Otherwise, Terry will be the face of the pro-life movement and the bishops will have no one but themselves to blame for that fact.


Personally, I can't wait for this Sunday to come and go. True, I am somewhat tired of the whole thing, but it really angers me that in the excessive intensive coverage of Notre Dame, the American Catholic world has seemingly missed out on Benedict's trip to the Holy Land. He said some truly important things. I'll have my own take on this after Benedict meets with Benjamin Netanyahu. I would love to be a fly on the wall for that meeting.

In the meantime, Michael Sean Winters brings up an important point. Should the bishops allow Randall Terry to be the face of the pro life movement, they have effectively conceded the abortion debate to immature emotionalism rather than reason. They will have in effect stated we have no believable rational argument for the position that a full human person exists from the moment of conception. Mindlessly and repetitively bashing Obama and Notre Dame, pushing red painted dolls in baby carriages, and flying banners of dead fetuses are not appeals to reason.

On his flight back to Rome, Archbishop Burke, gave an interview to National Review on line. When asked about Catholics who voted for Obama he had this to say:

The archbishop responded that if a Catholic "knowingly and deliberately" votes for a person who is in favor of "the most grievous violations of the natural moral law," then he has "formally cooperated in a grave evil and must confess his serious sin.

"Since President Obama clearly announced, during the election campaign, his anti-life and anti-family agenda, a Catholic who knew his agenda regarding, for example, procured abortion, embryonic-stem-cell research, and same-sex marriage, could not have voted for him with a clear conscience."

There is no doubt any longer, in Archbishop Burke's view it was a mortal sin to vote for President Obama. Burke believes the more moral Catholic choice was to vote for McCain/Palin, who number amongst their prime supporters people whose goal is to over throw Catholicism because they see it as the whore of Babylon. They also know it's social justice teachings directly oppose their agenda of saving the world for Jesus and running it themselves.
This particular group had a very vested interest in muting anything having to do with the Pope's message in the Holy Land--especially his call for a Palestinian homeland. In their eschatology, Israel must not cede any land to the Palestinians as it is in direct conflict with their understanding of the End Times.

These 'cultural warriors' have very effectively used abortion, gay marriage, and the ordination of women to split and mute the social justice voice of the Episcopalian, Presbyterian, Lutheran, and Methodist churches. All four of these denominations are thoroughly engaged in internal navel gazing. The only mainstream religion which stands in the way is Catholicism. Any Catholic who truly thinks the culture wars are about abortion and gay marriage has been thoroughly duped. The culture wars are about silencing religious voices who speak to social justice issues, especially voices who talk about equitable wealth distribution and the importance of the feminine perspective in global affairs.

Every time the Archbishop Burke's of our Catholic world attack other Catholics, they are effectively working for the New Apostolic Reformation and doing their work of silencing Catholicism. They have very successfully used the Notre Dame controversy to mute the voice of Pope Benedict at a critical time for his Papacy. Burke et al have helped in this process immensely.

It's not that the Vatican hasn't tried to respond. Again this week L'Osservatore Romano reissued their moderate take on President Obama's first hundred days. This is unprecedented. It was reissued right after Archbishop Burke's address to the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast. Do you suppose their was a message there?

In his article in the Washington Post, Anthony Stevens-Arroyo had this to say about our current Episcopal leadership:

I am not alone in thinking that bishops who rule by threat and condemnation erode their pastoral effectiveness. Just as general public has turned off the old Republican Party styles, much of Catholic America isn't listening to the segment of bishops who are following the old playbook. Their stridency lacks a Christ-like message.

It not only lacks a Christ like message, it's gnostic and Apocalyptic and it plays into the goals of the New Apostolic Reformation. Archbishop Burke may think he's defending the rights of the unborn, but what he's really doing is actively participating in the purposeful internal destruction of American Catholicism.

Should our 380 some bishops who have not condemned Notre Dame, not come out with a statement about the Randall Terry's and the Alan Keye's of the pro life movement, they too have ceded their authority to forces who wish to see the destruction of the comprehensive Catholic moral voice in world affairs. It won't be just millions of unborn who decry this, it will be billions of born.

In doing some research for this article I came across a particularly relevant piece concerning Randall Terry and Fr. Pavone, leader of Priests For Life. Those who think I may be slightly off base with the motives of the New Apostolic Reformation may find this information disturbing.
Finally, here is Fr. Jenkin's letter to Notre Dame graduates. Not surprisingly there is no vitriol or condemnation.


  1. Randall Terry symbolizes the culture of death in this statement:

    "Randall Terry and many other Christian Right leaders earnestly believe that someday they will be running this country. What kind of "Christian nation" do Terry and his comrades envision? Well, in referring to doctors who perform abortions, Terry said, "When I, or people like me, are running the country, you'd better flee, because we will find you, we will try you, and we'll execute you. I mean every word of it." He added, "I will make it part of my mission to see to it that they are tried and executed."

    He is for a Culture of Death.

  2. More like a culture or religious tyranny--his religion and his tyranny--and it's not traditional Catholicism.

  3. PS: Randall Terry and his ilk who seek power in this country as leaders in a "Christian nation" will have to go against the US Constitution and topple everything it stands for in order to carry out such executions. If they ever did get into power, which is highly unlikely, no doubt there would be a coup against them and Randall Terry would find himself and his ilk hanging from the gallows for treason.

  4. Irony reigns here. How will they "find" anyone who opposes them except through the "government" which they oppose?

  5. They only oppose the government that they cannot control for their own purposes. Their type of control would be to be the government of their religious ideology. They would be the Christian version of the Taliban.

    These fundamentalist pop up in history and they are an extreme reactionary political force not equipped with a true religious conscience or righteous sword of truth and if people are dumb enough and gullible enough can be swayed to slay their own mother for the sake of their cause.

    Let's pray that people have wisdom enough to not allow religious fanatics from becoming the government. That's not the answer, it is a reaction that symbolizes their own impotence and their real refusal to let go and let God truly be who we put our trust in. They trust in the pathetic interpretations of the end times and that guides their entire spirit. It consumes them and causes them to create such despicable events like Armageddon.

    Jesus didn't come here so that it would end in Armageddon. He gave us some keys and we need to pick up the keys in the Gospels and open the doorway to His heaven and bring it here. His sword is of justice and truth, not suits of armor against our neighbors and executing them.

  6. Colleen, by continuing to let themselves be identified with Randall Terry, the bishops are now identified with this:

    Sick, no?