The Deacon's Bench

The Deacon's Bench


Pelosi on prayer

posted by jmcgee

“Do you think frequently of your father, Thomas D’Alesandro Jr., the former mayor of Baltimore?

My father died the year I was elected to Congress, 1987. I think about my parents all the time, especially on Sunday when I’m at Mass. My mother always said: “We do not pray to win elections. We pray for people’s health, we pray that God’s will be done, we pray that we do our best. But we do not pray to win elections.”

Are you saying you have never prayed for an electoral victory?
Never. I only pray that I do my very best.”

– Nancy Pelosi, in an interview with the New York Times Magazine.



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Tom

posted November 21, 2010 at 9:21 pm


As a politician who supposedly thinks that she’s fulfilling God’s will to the best of her ability, it would make all the more sense to pray for an election victory. In her district it’s pretty much a foregone conclusion that she’ll win, so she probably doesn’t feel the need to pray for victory. Still, I hope all of the godly politicians pray for a docile spirit, that they may more accurately discern & fulfill God’s will in office, listening to that ever tranquil voice that permeates our innermost being.



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Dcn Scott

posted November 21, 2010 at 10:17 pm


Thanks for this, Greg. It is nice to be reminded of what really matters, which is certainly not politics and the concomitant demonization that too often goes with it.



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foxfan6

posted November 22, 2010 at 1:28 am


What? Nancy Pelosi claims to be a Catholic? Nonsense! There’s no way she can be even a Christian, let alone a Catholic; given her stand on abortion, let alone all the other life issues.
I didn’t realize she was supposedly Catholic until I saw the article about the interview in New York Times magazine where she states that she goes to Sunday Mass; and I’m assuming that it is a Roman Catholic Mass.
What nerve this woman has. On lifesitenews.com, she tries to tell us,” “Catholic” Speaker Pelosi Denies that Catholicism Condemns Abortion.” Also on that same site, dated February 18, 2009, it was stated “Pelosi got in hot water with Catholic Church officials and laity after she told Tom Brokaw of Meet the Press last August that “the doctors of the Church haven’t been able to make that definition” on whether life begins at conception.” Good grief, the Catholic Church has made it very clear that its stand on the subject is that life begins at conception. Another “stupid” comment she makes on that same site, dated August 25, 2008 is thus “Pelosi then said that in her view the question of when life begins is a non-issue in the debate on abortion.” Not only is this not a “non-issue”, it is the “essence” of the issue.
She should really be excommunicated for her statements. Why do I say this? Very simply because she is a very visible person in the U.S., as well as the world. People listen to what she has to say (unfortunately) and value her statements and opinions. This puts her in a position to scandalize and she does a very good job of that.
If she were to show up for Mass at my parish at my church, I would not hesitate to ask her to leave and to take satan with her.



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Donald Johnson

posted November 22, 2010 at 2:02 am


There is no such thing as a “godly politician”. If we read the bible, it never makes mention of politicians. We assume that politicians and leaders are the same thing – I would contend that they are not. With the time of the internet here, we are exposing the corruption of these politicians more & more quickly.



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Taro

posted November 22, 2010 at 3:23 am


Pelosi is a Catholic in the same way that my dog is a cat. He eats the cat’s food, but he still leaves an awful mess in the yard while my cat dutifully buries it under the rose bushes.
Pelosi has been leaving a mess in the yard for far too long. I question the priest who allows her to receive holy communion, my own shortcomings notwithstanding. She is an offense to the faith and is willingly so.



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Jan

posted November 22, 2010 at 6:01 am


Didn’t Jesus tell all you people not to judge each other until you had the log out of your own eye???
I can never understand this: Catholics are against (1) abortion, (2) gay marriage, (3) capital punishment, and (4) war.
Nancy Pelosi doesn’t believe in capital punishment or war.
The rest of you don’t believe in abortion or gay marriage.
Looks like it’s pretty even here in the sin department.
[Jan...all sins are not created equal, and some are more serious than others. In the teaching of the church, abortion and gay sex are always grave sins. War and capital punishment aren't. Dcn. G.]



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Jan

posted November 22, 2010 at 8:53 am


All sins are not “created” equal???
LOL!



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SS

posted November 22, 2010 at 9:34 am


The punishment for all sin is death. Nobody can enter heaven without the Grace of Jesus who died in our place to pay for our sins. That includes all sins.
Human nature may cause us to think one sin is worse than another (mostly because of current and traditional customs). But, that does not matter because the punishment for all sin is death.



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Klaire

posted November 22, 2010 at 9:59 am


Ss the punishment for all sin may be death, but war and capital punishment aren’t always, and often are not, “sins”, and never, unlike abortion and gay sex, are they intrinsic evils.
Jan before you die laughing, might want to check your on Kool-aid!



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Mike L

posted November 22, 2010 at 10:11 am


I have heard more than one person justify war and capital punishment because it is not always a sin. Funny how those people never seem to find a case where it is a sin.
Mike L



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SS

posted November 22, 2010 at 10:13 am


I don’t disagree Klaire. I was replying to the simple statement that not all sins were created equal, which implies that one sin is worse than another. Any sin will keep one out of heaven (without the Grace of Jesus), therefore ranking one sin worse than another does not matter.



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Tom

posted November 22, 2010 at 12:26 pm


DJ: There is no such thing as a “godly politician”.
I believe corruption is wide spread throughout politics, but it doesn’t mean that godly individuals don’t choose to run for office and instill noble principles in legislation (however rarely this may occur, case in point).
SS: The punishment for all sin is death.
1 John 5:16-17 — If anyone sees his brother commit a sin that does not lead to death, he should pray and God will give him life. I refer to those whose sin does not lead to death. There is a sin that leads to death. I am not saying that he should pray about that. All wrongdoing is sin, and there is sin that does not lead to death.



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SS

posted November 22, 2010 at 1:14 pm


The “death” I refer to is eternal death (an eternity in hell, as compared to eternal life in heaven). The “death” that John refers to in that passage is a physical death.



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nnmns

posted November 22, 2010 at 1:58 pm


I see a lot of hatred here for a good woman who’s serving the public pretty well. I wonder if Greg put this up so these people would show up and take pot shots at her; I hope not because that would be anything but charitable.
And Ms. Pelosi was right; popes of the past have had very different ideas of when life begins. Remember “quickening”?
And to claim one can’t work to allow women and families who need abortions to get them are not Christian is clearly false since it’s fairly easy (at least for many people) to be a Christian. Can you be Catholic? If not, the RCC should refund a lot of contributions from such people they took under false pretenses. Oh, wait, the RCC is pretty well tapped out from paying, belatedly, for some of the child abuse cases they hid. It’s funny Catholics would be lecturing the rest of us on morality!



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RomCath

posted November 22, 2010 at 2:29 pm


“And Ms. Pelosi was right; popes of the past have had very different ideas of when life begins.”
No one can read JPII’s Evangelium Vitae or Benedict’s writings and have any confusion where the Church stands on when life begins. Ms. Pelosi can’t be that stupid. She is a fraud when it’s comes to things Catholics. She is a pathetic leader and one wonders how she could be reelected by her party to a leadership role. I guess they want to lose in 2012.
And NMMS try to use a new argument, the sex abuse and
payouts is really old now.
I wonder what Jesus would say to a pregant woman who “needs an abortion”? Bizarre.



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HMS

posted November 22, 2010 at 3:34 pm


Deacon Greg:
Re:
“If she were to show up for Mass at my parish at my church, I would not hesitate to ask her to leave and to take satan with her.” (and other like postings.)
Surely you must have anticipated such posts. So I ask what is its purpose? It was a small part of an interview that I personally did not find to be very informative. It obviously brings out the Pelosi haters and those who like demonize her, hardly a Christian attitude or one that contributes to civilized dialogue.
I suppose that you have no control over the Google ad after your post, Pelosi is a fruitcake
New funny video, because nobody wants a fruitcake.
Putting my rant aside, may I indulge in some sarcasm?
Are you, Deacon Greg, and other posters from the Archdiocese of New York allowed to read the New York Times?



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nnmns

posted November 22, 2010 at 3:56 pm


RomCath you and a lot of other Catholics would profit from some history of the Church, not just what they want you to think.
Maybe from here. Or from here we read

The absolute ban on abortion is relatively new in Catholic history. Prior to 1869, when demographic alarms were raised, the Church accepted abortion until “quickening,” or prior to “ensoulment.” Abortion in early pregnancy was not regarded murder. Jesuit scholar John Connery (who takes the most conservative position on abortion) wrote: “If anyone expects to find an explicit condemnation of abortion in the New Testament, he will be disappointed. The silence of the New Testament regarding abortion surpasses even that of the Old Testament.” Most Biblical scholars agree with Baptist theologian Paul D. Simmons that there is no clear biblical prohibition against abortion, though abortion was common when the Jewish and Christian scriptures were written.

No doubt the pope and bishops don’t want you to know the truth about the Church’s changing positions on when human life begins, but they have changed.
Sorry about that, but your “rock” is sort of plastic.



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foxfan6

posted November 22, 2010 at 4:29 pm


Just another quick comment on Pelosi:
As un-Catholic as Pelosi seems now, it is not necessarily over for her yet. She could still redeem herself if she were to denounce her rationalizations and dissention against Catholic Church doctrine on the life issues and then prove her reformation by voting against abortion and voting for all the life issues the next time around. That is what is so great about the Catholic Church; it is so forgiving. If she were to suddenly gain back her conscience; which has obviously dulled from lack of use; grow some brains and maturity, she could be welcomed back into the fold, so to speak. Of course, in doing so, she would no-doubt lose her liberal friends and possibly be voted out of office the next time around, by them; but hey, she would gain back so much more.



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foxfan6

posted November 22, 2010 at 5:18 pm


Right back at you mmnnsn:
“History of the church”, will some of you people never stop slamming us Catholics over ancient history? What happened in the 19th century is past history. Forget about it. We know a lot more now than we did then.
Coming up shortly is the feast of the Immaculate Conception. With this feast we celebrate Mary’s (mother of Jesus) conception without original sin. In layman’s terms, this means that Mary was conceived without sin; not born without it, but conceived without it; the key word here being “conceived;” or at least that is what we Catholics believe. Mary was the only human being ever to be conceived in this way.
Now the reason I bring this whole thing up is that Mary was a human just like the rest of us, but her conception was immaculate, unlike the rest of us. The rest of us were conceived with original sin. In order for us to be conceived with original sin, it is necessary for us to have a soul in place for the sin to adhere to. Therefore, the soul has to be present at conception in order for the sin to have a place to dwell. Therefore the soul enters the fertilized egg at the point of conception and life begins. At least that is what we Catholics believe. And that is why we Catholics believe that abortion is so wrong; because it is the killing of an innocent life; an innocent life which has already begun at conception.
Oh, and, by the way; this whole thing about abortion isn’t just Church law, it is God’s law. It is one of the Ten Commandments: “THOU SHALT NOT KILL”



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Tom

posted November 22, 2010 at 5:24 pm


Nnms, you’ve obviously chosen to take these sources at their bare word when a little research would reveal glaring contradictions. I will only list a couple for the sake of brevity.
From thepolitics.com link:

The historic Catholic theory of “ensoulment,” traceable to the Middle Ages, also reinforced women’s subordinate status, holding that a male fetus attained human form, and therefore a soul, about forty days after conception, in half the time of a female fetus.

This is actually Aristotle’s view on ensoulment (see ensoulment on wikipedia) not the Church’s. Aquinas actually states (Article 2: reply to objection 2):

Some say that the vital functions observed in the embryo are not from its soul, but from the soul of the mother; or from the formative power of the semen. Both of these explanations are false; for vital functions such as feeling, nourishment, and growth cannot be from an extrinsic principle. Consequently it must be said that the soul is in the embryo; the nutritive soul from the beginning, then the sensitive, lastly the intellectual soul.

“Ensoulment” actually pertains to when a “rational soul” is in place, not any form of human soul.
From the Catholic University of America link:

St. Augustine (354-430) condemned abortion because it breaks the connection between sex and procreation. 1 However, in the Enchiridion, he says, “But who is not rather disposed to think that unformed fetuses perish like seeds which have not fructified” — clearly seeing hominization as beginning or occurring at some point after the fetus has begun to grow. He held that abortion was not an act of homicide. Most theologians of his era agreed with him.

From Augustine’s De nuptiis et concupiscentia (book 1: Ch 17):

… or else, if unsuccessful in this, to destroy the conceived seed by some means previous to birth, preferring that its offspring should rather perish than receive vitality; or if it was advancing to life within the womb, should be slain before it was born.

… and so it is painfully obvious from these excerpts that Augustine believed abortion to be murderous. Bear in mind that this was back in the day when surgeons lacked the precision to perform abortions at 5 or 6 weeks gestation (when the embryo would be roughly the size of a dime & no ultrasounds were available).



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nnmns

posted November 22, 2010 at 6:09 pm


From the Wikipedia article on “Ensoulment”:
——-
“Mediaeval declarations by Popes and theologians on ensoulment were based on the then prevailing [quasi-]scientific hypothesis, which, as stated by Aristotle, held that individual human life began only after 40 days for males or 90 for females, the stage at which, it was held, movement is first felt within the womb and pregnancy was certain.[3][4]
Aristotle’s view of successive life principles (“souls”) in a developing human embryo—first a vegetative and then a sensitive or animal soul, and finally an intellective or human soul, with the higher levels able to carry out the functions also of the lower levels[5]—was rejected by, for example, the 13th-century Thomas Aquinas, who wrote:
We conclude therefore that the intellectual soul is created by God at the end of human generation (generationis humanae), and this soul is at the same time sensitive and nutritive, the pre-existing forms [today known to be the sperm and egg] being corrupted.[6]
The 1312 Council of Vienne declared that the substance of the rational or intellectual soul is of itself and essentially the form of the human body.[7] Some outside the Church accepted the view, contrary to that of Thomas Aquinas in his above-quoted passage, of “delayed hominization;” they thought the human embryo was not considered to have a rational or intellectual soul immediately.[8]
In 1588 Pope Sixtus V issued the Bull Effraenatam which subjected those that carried out abortions at any stage of gestation with excommunication and the punishment by civil authorities applied to murderers.[9] In 1591 Gregory XIV modified this law so that the penalty did not apply until the fetus became animated.[10]”
——-
Aristotle’s view was not as silly as the language might make it seem, since clearly the zygote-blastocyst-embryo-fetus develops and at first it has no more sensing/reasoning capability than a vegetable, then one of the lower animals roughly, then it develops into a baby. But the main point is that papal declarations have changed, as Pelosi indicated.
Foxfan I have no doubt Catholics are supposed to believe souls exist from conception, though what they actually believe is a more open question. But that should govern what they do, not what law requires the rest of us to do or not do.
And I don’t know what your “19th century” comment refers to.



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Romcath

posted November 22, 2010 at 6:34 pm


Nmms
First, how does Paul Simmons know how common abortions were in the time when the Scriptures were written? Was Paul there?
Second, the fact that there is no Biblical condemnation of abortion argues from silence. There are plenty of immoral things not mentioned in the Bible.
Third, if Christians believe in an incarnate God, Jesus, who was born like us, no Christian can validly hold that life does not begin at conception or they are denying that Jesus wasn’t Jesus from the moment of Mary’s yes to God. He only became Jesus later on. Ridiculous. Heresy.
Fourth, whatever Aristotle of Aquinas thought or said means nothing in regard to what Catholics MUST hold about life beginning at conception.
Fifth, if Pelosi or anyone has ever seen a sonogram they know that it is a human life. They didn’t have them in the 19th century. If they kill what they see they are killing a human person.



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pagansister

posted November 22, 2010 at 7:11 pm


Interesting comments about Ms. Pelosi from those that seem to know about her personal beliefs. Condemning her for not being what they consider to be “proper Catholic”. She doesn’t have to answer to anyone but her God.



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nnmns

posted November 22, 2010 at 7:36 pm


Don’t worry Romcath, “Jesus” never was the Jesus you believe in. That’s a myth cobbled together from other myths of the age and the claims of the Jewish bible and who knows what else.
And if abortion is as important as y’all claim, it’s surely worth mentioning in the Bible. I understand Jesus is supposed to have spoken against various things, but not to bother to speak about one of the very greatest sins of all? C’mon! That’s not credible (if you take your religion seriously).



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SS

posted November 22, 2010 at 8:21 pm


nnmns-
Abortion is absolutely mentioned in the bible. As stated in an earlier post, it is even in the Ten Commandments from God. “Thou shalt not kill”



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pagansister

posted November 22, 2010 at 8:56 pm


SS, think that referred to born human beings. One commandment that gets broken all the time, considering what some people do to other people all the time—war being one example.



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Mareczku

posted November 22, 2010 at 9:05 pm


Deacon Greg, I think abortion is taking the life of an innocent human being and thus a grave sin. However, I would see war and capital punishment as much graver matters than gay sex. Actually, using that expression trivializes it (sex) in my opinion because that is a broad term that covers a lot of things.



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BobRN

posted November 22, 2010 at 10:00 pm


It has long been a strategy of the pro-abortionists to distort Catholic history for the purpose of supporting their agenda of death. What is offered here is nothing new. Quoting Catholics for A Free Choice for an objective perspective on the Catholic Church and abortion is like quoting the KKK for an objective perspective on the contributions of African Americans to science, civil rights, or Western literature. No Catholic in his or her right mind would take them seriously because they’ve proven themselves untrustworthy. There were Jews who fought for Hitler. Frances Kissling is their kin.
In point of fact, the Fathers of the Church did condemn abortion, and in no uncertain terms. As long ago as the second century, the Didache (also called “The Teaching of the Apostles”) condemned abortion. There is no early document of the Church, or document from any age of the Church, that justifies abortion. Abortion is consistently condemned. St. Augustine of Hippo condemned abortion. St. Thomas Aquinas condemned abortion. The idea that the Church once allowed for abortion, or justified it under certain circumstances at some time in her history is a fiction. There’s no point in arguing otherwise. It is a fiction. If one is going to justify abortion, you’ll have to look otherwheres than the history of the Catholic Church. You won’t find it there.
The idea that all sins are equal is absurd, from a biblical perspective and from just common sense. There are any number of lists of actions that are condemned in the OT and NT as especially grievous. 1 John 5:16-17 is not talking about physical death. There is no way that interpretation can be justified in the context of the epistle. John is talking about spiritual death. As well, common sense tells us that stealing one dime from Bill Gates is not the same thing as stealing every last dime of an elderly widow’s savings. An eleven year old boy is told by his mother he can’t play ball with his friends. He sneaks off and plays anyway, totally disobeying his mom. You’re telling me that’s an equal sin to rape or premeditated murder? Please!
In any case, the Church is the final interpreter of Scripture, and the Church has always recognized the difference between venial and mortal sin. Mortal means death, as in “sin that leads to death”.



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SS

posted November 22, 2010 at 10:35 pm


pagansister-
I wasn’t aware of the asterisk on the tablets that told us that the commandment only referred to “born” human beings.
And, I don’t disagree that the commandment gets broken often.



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nnmns

posted November 22, 2010 at 10:48 pm


First, I never claimed, nor did the pages I referred, that the Church ever condoned abortion. The claim, clearly true, is that at times it did not consider early abortions murder. I point out that it made more sense in those days since clearly a zygote or blastocyst or in fact for part of its existence at least, an embryo is not a person. It’s not a baby. It’s a stage in the process of becoming a human. That’s common sense that y’all have been brainwashed to not see.
Second, a lot of people don’t consider abortion murder so if “God” wanted to make the point he’d have added “and thou shalt not abort”. But it’s not there. And Jesus had another chance to make the point and he didn’t say anything either. Either “God” doesn’t care or “he” doesn’t exist. Either way y’all are on thin ice.



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BobRN

posted November 23, 2010 at 3:15 am


nnmns,
Your post included the quote:
“Prior to 1869, when demographic alarms were raised, the Church accepted abortion until “quickening” or prior to “ensoulment.”
That statement is not true. If you’re saying that’s not the same as the Church condoning abortion, I think you’re playing semantics, and there’s no reason to continue to attempt an intelligent conversation between us.
The Church’s understanding of human development in the womb has progressed with our scientific understanding. Regardless of whether the Church condemned abortion because it destroyed a human life or because it destroyed a potential human life, the act was condemned because it was correctly understood as an attack on human life. As our understanding of human development in the womb progressed to the point where it is clear that a human life is created at the moment of conception, the Church now rightly condemns abortion on the grounds that it destroys an innocent human life. It’s no scandal that Church teaching progresses with our increasing knowledge of ourselves and the world around us. Why shouldn’t it?
Your assertion that zygote, blastocyst and embryo are stages in becoming human are scientifically wrong and philosophically irrational. A human conceptus is the creation of two humans. It can be no other kind of creature than human. Furthermore, it is alive, possessing all the characteristics of life appropriate to each progressive stage. So, by necessity, abortion is the taking of a human life. Most people, even pro-aborts, accept this, largely because our greater knowledge of human development in the womb forces them to do so. That’s why the pro-aborts have shifted their arguments to the notion that it doesn’t matter if the one in the womb is a human life and to the question of whether or not the one in the womb ought to be recognized as a legal person. In fact, this is where Roe v Wade came down. The Supremes in 1973 denied legal personhood to the one in the womb. The danger in that, of course, is the precedent is creates. If the Supremes can declare that the one in the womb is not a legal person, from whom else might our courts deny legal personhood?
Finally, God did say “thou shalt not abort”. The Scriptures clearly identify the Church as “the pillar and foundation of truth,” as “the Body of Christ”. The Church is the instrument of God’s revelation. Do you think the Scriptures fell to us from the sky? From her earliest days, the Church has condemned abortion as an attack on the sanctity of human life. How else might you expect God to reveal this truth? In any case, it’s pretty presumptuous to demand that, if God were going to reveal something, He needs to do so on your terms. Just because you don’t like the Catholic Church doesn’t change her identity as God’s instrument of revelation, anymore than your dislike for the math teacher changes the fact that 2+2=4, anymore than your denying the existence of God causes His non-existence.



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SS

posted November 23, 2010 at 8:05 am


nnmns-
“…a lot of people don’t consider abortion murder so if “God” wanted to make the point he’d have added “and thou shalt not abort”.”
Really??
God has to follow your logic?
Really??
The Ten Commandments say “thou shalt not kill.” Abortion kills an unborn human baby.
No matter what any number of people want to consider it, that is what it is, and is a sin.



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nnmns

posted November 23, 2010 at 10:08 am


“appropriate to each progressive stage”
precisely, and at earlier stages there’s little there. No or little chance of suffering, no chance of fear of death, etc. The “life” at that stage has hypothetical importance to you because of your particular hypothesis about “God” and so forth. To most people, unless they’ve been trained to react like that, it’s of much less importance. Particularly at earlier stages.
“Do you think the Scriptures fell to us from the sky?”
Absolutely not. They were written by men, men who had their own political, financial and religious agendas. And there’s nothing holy about them. Nor about your Church, as revealed by the moral depravity of some of your priests and so many of your bishops, archbishops and popes. Putting children in their care at risk to preserve the reputation of the Church and their posh living standards is as immoral as it gets. Clean up your own house before you try to tell the rest of us how to behave. And that includes getting everyone out of the hierarchy who was involved in the cover-ups. Which of course means starting at the top.



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BobRN

posted November 23, 2010 at 12:15 pm


Just lost my post. Let’s see if this one works.



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BobRN

posted November 23, 2010 at 12:30 pm


Okay, let’s try again.
nnmns,
“No or little chance of suffering, no chance of fear of death, etc.”
You realize that this statement applies just as well to a neonate just out of the womb, to any number of patients I care for at Children’s Hospital and, for that matter, to the young woman to whose head Ted Bundy took a bat as she slept peacefully.
This is the black logic of abortion. Where does the justification of killing stop? When is the magic moment when lightening strikes and society is obliged to recognize the personhood of this one? Surely, you aren’t naive or unaware of the history of man’s inhumanity to man, all of it largely justified by the argument that these ones are sufficiently different from us that we can do what we want with them? Explain to me how your argument for abortion differs from those justifying slavery, the Indian Wars or the Holocaust?
My house is being cleaned as we speak. The reforms initiated by the bishops have resulted in remarkable progress. Annual new cases of abuse have decreased from hundreds in the sixties to an average of less than two a year over the last decade. The Church in Europe will soon be adopted the reforms of the U. S. But, I’m sure you’re aware of that, since it’s been so widely reported in the press. Happily, the accusations against the pope have been shown unfounded by serious investigations and the attempt by the NY Times to hang the Holy Father has been exposed as the hatchet job it was always intended to be. He’s innocent. Sorry if that ruins your dinner.
How’s your house coming? I refer, of course, to the public schools, supported by your tax dollars. Yes, the priests who abuse children are my abusers. But, the public school teachers who abuse and the system that shunts them from one school or district to another are your abusers. Last year, there were six new cases of priests abusing children in the Catholic Church in the U. S. In the public schools, there were tens of thousands. Tens of thousands. Tens of thousands. Your tax dollars at work.
In any case, my answer is a resounding “NO!” I’ll not be silent about abortion because a handful of judas priests and their criminal bishops who exploited their postions of sacred trust to committed heinous acts of homosexual rape. Killing innocent people is murder, whether inside the womb or outside. That you don’t see that your arguements justify both is no time for those who see clearly to be silent.



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nnmns

posted November 23, 2010 at 2:25 pm


“When is the magic moment when lightening strikes and society is obliged to recognize the personhood of this one?”
The time when there’s zero chance of legally putting anyone else’s needs before “this one” is when this one is born. But with Roe v. Wade (with which I agree) the state can provide the developing bzef with more and more protection as it comes closer and closer to being a person. Well, I was wrong in a sense. “This one” may well be born without medical care if the Republicans so many Christians supported have their way, and that would be so no well-off person need be taxed to provide health care for a poorer person. And since it’s no longer an “innocent unborn child” a lot of you won’t be concerned about that.
“Yes, the priests who abuse children are my abusers.”
As are the bishops who moved them to new parishes where they weren’t known and the popes who hid all this for decades. Centuries?
Now about “tens of thousands”. I take it that’s a figure bandied about in right wing Catholic circles and you take it on faith. I am not concerned you’ll be able to provide documentation. But I’m curious what you mean by “abuse the system”. Do you even know?
And do you seriously think six is all there were?



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foxfan6

posted November 23, 2010 at 2:28 pm


Pagansister states:
“She (Pelosi) doesn’t have to answer to anyone but her God.” Well sis, that’s not true. She also has to answer to her church, the Roman Catholic Church, and all of its members. The Church cannot have some of its more “visible” and “prominent” so-called members spouting rationalizations and total falsehoods about church doctrine to justify their personal agenda that they feel needs to be in place in order to be elected or re-elected to their desired political office.
The Roman Catholic Church needs to protect its members from all people spouting false doctrine, but especially those who hold prominent and authoritative positions in our society for obvious reasons, because of the potential to scandalize. For example: “if Nancy Pelosi says so, it must be true; after all she is a Catholic and she should know.”
Having stated that, it is a mystery to me why one of our higher members (bishops, archbishops, cardinals) hasn’t already addressed this problem and tossed her out until she sees the gravity of her situation and reforms herself. Maybe our college of Bishops or whatever they call themselves, as a body, or as individuals are being overly politically correct or just plain gutless.



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RomCath

posted November 23, 2010 at 4:23 pm


DcnGreg,
How long is this anti-Catholic bigotry (Nmms etc) to be tolerated?
[Just saw that comment. It's gone.]



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nnmns

posted November 23, 2010 at 4:35 pm


Apparently some folks here can’t stand an honest conversation.
[Honesty is one thing. Bigotry is something else. Dcn. G.]



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BobRN

posted November 23, 2010 at 8:56 pm


“The time when there’s zero chance of legally putting anyone else’s needs before ‘this one’”.
Sorry, but that’s not at birth. That’s never. When is there ever a zero chance of legally putting anyone else’s needs before anyone else? The whole system of law is based on the need to resolve conflicting needs. Never mind wants. And how do such parameters account for partial birth abortion and denying health care to those who survive abortion, both of which are “rights” on which the pro-aborts insist?
Stop trying to couch this conversation in terms of right wing versus left wing. It doesn’t apply and contributes nothing. Children aren’t right or left wing. Neither is life.
As for the six new cases being all, you’ll have to bring that up with the John Jay College of Law. They’re the ones who published the report for 2008-2009.
As for “Tens of thousands”, I don’t hang in right wing Catholic circles. I’m not even sure what that means. The number comes from research done by Carol Shakeshaft of Hofstra University, who estimates that 29,000 children are abused in the public schools every year around the country. The AP ran a three part series about five years ago on abuse by public school employees. But, surely you’re aware of this, since it’s been so widely reported in th … Oh, wait. No, it hasn’t. In any case, does the abuse of children in public schools matter to you? Is the progress achieved by the Church’s reforms not good news? Do you really care about the children abused, or only about the handy weapon you can use to beat the Church and intimidate others into silence on abortion?
This is all a distraction. All the sins of all the priests in all the world don’t justify abortion. Their sins don’t release me, the bishops, Nancy Pelosi or anyone else from speaking the truth that abortion is the willful destruction of innocent human life. Nothing you’ve offered contradicts that, except your own belief that the one in the womb doesn’t matter. My conclusion that life in the womb merits respect is based on science, philosophy and religion. Your conclusion that it doesn’t is based on faith, and maybe politics. The only reason you offer that life in the womb doesn’t matter is that it is sufficiently different from us that we can do whatever we want with it. Again, how is that different from the Holocaust?



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pagansister

posted November 23, 2010 at 9:36 pm


foxfan6: I disagree with you that Ms. Pelosi has to answer to her church—IMO, I think she has to answer only to the God she worships, who, I think, is the untimate judge, not anyone here on this mortal coil. Also in this country there is freedom of speech, and she is allowed to express what she believes. The church needs to “protect” it members from all people (prominent and perhaps not so prominent) spouting false doctrine? “Protect”? Can’t a Catholic person think for themselves, look up something they might have heard a prominent Catholic say, if they think it is inconsistant with church teaching? Or perhaps ask their priest? Are Catholic’s supposed to be robots, never questioning what the church teaches? Just wondered. My experience with Catholics is that they are not robots. Sometimes they disagree with the church, using their own minds, thinking for themselves.



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BobRN

posted November 24, 2010 at 12:20 am


pagansister,
Being Catholic isn’t about conforming yourself to your personal opinion. It’s about being transformed by grace according to the revelation of God given to us through the instrument of His Church. It’s a process, to be sure, but the process doesn’t include making up your own truths. Pelosi, or anyone else, saying that she is a devout Catholic but she certainly wouldn’t deny anyone the right to kill their unborn children makes as much sense as a person saying she’s an atheist but she certainly doesn’t deny the existence of God.
I presume by your moniker that you’re a pagan. Does being a pagan mean anything? Can someone be a pagan and practice strip mining, hunting for sport and leaving the carcass to whither in the woods, selling meth to five year olds? Can you be a good pagan and a pimp?
For Catholics, one’s relationship with the Church is one’s relationship with Christ, because the Church is the Body of Christ.



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nnmns

posted November 24, 2010 at 10:22 am


Bob I didn’t see that series and I don’t know what they meant by “abused”. But I’m always against child abuse. I know for a fact there’s not a national or international organization moving child abusers of any kind from one public school to another.
And I notice that you try to channel the discussion toward the sins of priests, as do many here. But the big deal (since priests are just people, and some are bad) is the concerted effort by bishops, archbishops, up through popes to cover those things up. That’s what y’all should be worried about, since those same people almost without exception are still in power. And they have actually lost any moral standing they might have had (not saying they did have any), as has the RCC since those higher ups have not been kicked out.



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BobRN

posted November 24, 2010 at 2:16 pm


nnmns,
You didn’t see the series because it was largely ignored by the press across the country. Only five major markets picked it up and, if I recall, about ninety smaller ones. Don’t you find that odd, considering the numbers of children who attend public schools? Why wouldn’t the press pounce on this?
One of the revelations was the transfer of teachers accused from one district to another without informing the new district of the accusations against the teacher. Teacher administrators call it “passing the trash.” International organization or not, the effect is the same, and it takes place on a level several orders of magnitude more than anything that took place in the Catholic Church. What’s more, while the Church has reformed, the schools haven’t, so it still goes on.
You obviously hold to the standard stereotype of the Church that every decision, even those at the parish or diocesan level, are coordinated by Rome. Serious investigations have shown that Benedict XVI was not involved in any cover-up. I’m not aware of anyone who accused John Paul II of cover-up. In fact, many of the higher ups have been kicked out, most by resigning, and those who didn’t have long since retired. I know the way the press has been reporting it makes it sound as if the abuse is still going on in large numbers. In fact, the reforms of the seminaries initiated by JPII in the late seventies and of the dioceses by the bishops in the 90s have worked. The lion’s share of the abuse occured from the mid-60s to the mid-80s. What I find curious is that this progress is largely ignored by the press and other organizations. If such progress had been made by any other organization, everyone would be knocking their door down to find out what they did to achieve such progress. Which makes me wonder if this is really about protecting the children.
Again, this is all a distraction. I’m still curious if you have any other stronger arguments justifying abortion other than that you don’t believe their lives matter because they are sufficiently different from us.



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nnmns

posted November 24, 2010 at 4:33 pm


I hope you or the author misrepresented what’s going on. I know public schools are run by the local boards, probably with greatly differing policies about checking credentials of hires. Some may have been sloppy. I’m sure in some states there are laws that mandate a criminal check.
Unlike bishops and priests, there’s not necessarily any feeling of brotherhood (or sisterhood) between administrators and teachers so I don’t imagine any consistent attempt to protect an abusive teacher like the bishops and popes protected the priests. And I absolutely can’t imagine many parents being unwilling to report a teacher to the police like apparently a lot of parents were unwilling to report a priest to the police. I could go on. In short, I do not believe there’s a comparable situation. Bu sexually abusive teachers should be dealt with by the police just like sexually abusive religious workers should.



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foxfan6

posted November 24, 2010 at 5:16 pm


Pagansister:
She does, (need to answer to the church) if she is spreading heresies (I think heresy is the right word here) or falsehoods, and at the very least she needs to go to confession; but even more, she needs to state a reversal of her falsehoods. Who knows how many young high school girls and possibly boys, who look up to her, but are still immature in their thinking, have already been scandalized by what she has stated about Catholic Church teachings and doctrine.
We, as church members, are allowed to ask as many questions as we wish; in fact, I believe it is encouraged; but we are not (encouraged) to defy stated church teachings or doctrines, or in the case of Pelosi, state falsehoods. What is the point of defying stated church doctrine? If you don’t agree with a teaching or doctrine, it is much easier to simply leave the church and find another one more suitable to one’s own belief.



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BobRN

posted November 24, 2010 at 8:08 pm


nnmns,
Some excerpts from the AP story that address the concerns of your last post:
“The AP investigation found efforts to stop individual offenders but, overall, a deeply entrenched resistance toward recognizing and fighting abuse.”
“In case after case the AP examined, accusations of inappropriate behavior were dismissed.”
“Teachers, administrators and even parents frequently don’t, or won’t, recognize the signs that a crime is taking place.”
“‘Too often, problem teachers are allowed to leave quietly. That can mean future abuse for another student and another school district. They might deal with it internally, suspending the person or having the person move on. So their license is never investigated,’ says Carol Shakeshaft, a leading expert in teacher sex abuse who leads the educational leadership department at Virginia Commonwealth University.” (Dr. Shakeshaft is the one who came up with the estimate of 29,000 students abused each year by public school employees across the country, published in her original study commissioned by Hofstra University.)
“It’s a dynamic so common it has its own nicknames – ‘passing the trash’ or the ‘mobile molester’.”
“Laws in several states require even an allegation of sexual misconduct be reported to the state departments that oversee teacher licenses. But there’s no consistent enforcement so laws are easily ignored.”
As a former high school teacher in the public schools, I would have to disagree with the notion that there’s no feeling of brotherhood among teachers and administrators. I don’t know if you would call it brotherhood, but there is professional loyalty and, as the AP story points out, a strong preference to believe the teacher over the student when accusations are made. When you throw the teacher’s unions into the mix, and the potential for lawsuits, the urge to protect the teacher and keep things quiet is pretty strong. Happily for the states, most state legislatures have ridiculously low caps on compensation for abuse, so even if a family sued, the most they could get is pretty low. I mean low teens or low tens of thousands. Not much chance of getting an attorney to sue when he or she knows all she can get is 40% of 25 grand, when they know they can sue private organizations for millions.
Anyway, none of this is secret. The AP story is online. Dr. Shakeshafts research is online. The John Jay College of Law reports are online. Philip Jenkins, professor of Religious Studies at the Univ. of Penn, who left the Catholic Church and became Episcopalian, reports that research on the subject recommends the conclusion that Catholic priests are on the low side of professions when it comes to abuse, behind teachers, doctors, social workers and Protestant ministers. His work is also available online.
There is plenty of information from objective sources (I mean, Hofstra, the AP and John Jay College of Law are hardly wing offices of the Catholic League) that show that the abuse committed by public school employees is of a far greater number than that by Catholic priests. As well, there has been little but intransigent resistance by the public schools toward the idea of implimenting reforms, while an objective assessment of the reforms of the Catholic Church demonstrate remarkable progress in protecting children and dealing effectively with abusers. If you continue, in the face of all of this, to insist that the Catholic problem is a bigger problem, I’m afraid I’ll have to conclude that such in more inspired by anti-Catholic bias than an objective acceptance of the evidence.
Since you’ve ignored my request for better arguments from you on the question of justifyng abortion, I’ll conclude that you have none and that that aspect of our conversation is concluded.



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Glover20Marianne

posted January 17, 2011 at 11:19 pm


Set your life more easy take the loans and all you require.



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