Another Kennedy in the Deep Waters
Thomas A. Droleskey
Old revolutionaries never die. They just keep reaffirming themselves in how successful they have been in making war upon the past.
Ecclesiastical revolutionaries pride themselves on their unrelenting warfare against the authentic patrimony of the Catholic Church, attempting to fashion her according to their own warped desires that have nothing to do with the salvation of souls and everything to do in reaffirming themselves in the grand revolutionary designs that they have conjured up over the years and/or reaffirming themselves in lives of unrepentant sin. These ecclesiastical revolutionaries go to their graves defending the schemes that have emptied the pews of Catholic churches around the world and helped to establish a network of perversion (doctrinal, liturgical, moral) that is now firmly established in the bedrock of the conciliar church. Indeed, Fidel Castro's unapologetic support for Marxism-Leninism as he nears death is very similar to the unapologetic support that ecclesiastical revolutionaries give to the programs that have confused and bewildered and scandalized and malformed millions upon millions of souls while blaspheming God and demeaning the truths He has deposited exclusively in the Catholic Church.
As is the case with social revolutionaries, there are gradations and nuances amongst them.
For example, that bitter anti-Catholic pamphleteer who blasphemed the Mother of God, Thomas Paine, a defender of the French Revolution, was almost put to death by the revolutionaries he supported because he would not go along with everything they had done, including the execution of King Louis XVI. It took the efforts of the James Monroe, then the American Ambassador to France, to spare Paine's life from the revolutionaries whose work he defended in The Rights of Man, written to rebut Edmund Burke's Reflections on the French Revolution. A completley French revolutionary, Maximilian Robespierre, the Director of the Reign of Terror, was put to death in 1795 by the very guillotine which he had made such great use of in exterminating human beings who were opposed to the "revealed truth" of the French Revolution.
The Mexican Revolutionaries were always fighting with one another in the century between independence was achieved from Spain and the bloody onslaught against Catholics in the third decade of the Twentieth Century. Maoists in Red China have imprisoned and killed each other for the past fifty-seven years. The same was true in the mother of all Communist dictatorships, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics and its forerunner, the provisional government of Russia under the Mensheviks in 1917.
Alexander Kerensky, the leader of the Mensheviks and the head of the provisional government that ruled Russia from February 1917 to October 1917, was chased out of Russia, ending his days in 1970 as the owner of a delicatessen (and as a teacher of graduate courses now and again at the Hoover Institution at Stamford University in Palo Alto, California) in the heavily Russian Brighton Beach section of the Borough of Brooklyn, New York.
Leon Trotsky--and millions of others under Joseph Stalin, the successor to the murderous Vladimir Lenin, who created the world's first concentration camps in 1917--did not have such a benign end in exile in Mexico City, Mexico, on August 24, 1940, when an agent of Joseph Stalin stabbed him in the head with an ice pick. Not even Trotsky's publicly professed allegiance, expressed at the thirteenth meeting of the Communist Party in Moscow, Russia, in May of 1924, could save him from the scorn of many of his fellow revolutionaries:
None of us desires or is able to dispute the will of the Party. Clearly, the Party is always right.... We can only be right with and by the Party, for history has provided no other way of being in the right. The English have a saying, "My country, right or wrong," whether it is in the right or in the wrong, it is my country. We have much better historical justification in saying whether it is right or wrong in certain individual concrete cases, it is my party.... And if the Party adopts a decision which one or other of us thinks unjust, he will say, just or unjust, it is my party, and I shall support the consequences of the decision to the end.
Ecclesiastical revolutionaries hold to their party lines no matter how much it is demonstrated to them that their schemes have failed and have produced devastating consequences for souls. There are, as noted above, gradations amongst them. Some ecclesiastical revolutionaries in the Catholic Church believe that the conciliar popes (Paul VI, John Paul II, Benedict XVI), although they were part and parcel of the launching of an unprecedented attack upon the authentic patrimony of the Catholic Church, have been too "conservative," veritable Mensheviks who have not pressed the revolution to the fullest extent possible. Thus, the conciliar popes are said to have "hindered" "progress" in the Church by refusing to end clerical celibacy for priests of the Roman Rite, by refusing to ordain women to the priesthood, by refusing to permit the use of contraceptives, and by outdated "norms" concerning what constitutes sins against the Sixth and Ninth Commandments (meaning, of course, the acceptance of sodomite and lesbian behavior as "natural" and "normal" expressions of human "love").
Such is the case with Dr. Eugene Kennedy, a former Maryknoll priest who is married to a former nun. Dr. Kennedy has been in the vanguard of the ecclesiastical revolution for a long time, part of that generation of men born in the 1920s who hate everything to do with the Catholic Faith as it has been handed down to us over the centuries under the infallible direction of the Third Person of the Blessed Trinity, the Holy Ghost. Kennedy is absolutely unapologetic about his support for "optional celibacy" and for the ordination of women to the priesthood and his belief that sodomite and lesbian behavior are not sinful in the slightest. Indeed, he is quite proud of his much published views, which he has presented publicly in any number of conferences around the nation.
Kennedy, a psychologist, is the author of The Now and Future Church: The Psychology of Being an American Catholic, The People are the Church: A Priest-Psychologist Challenges the Church to Meet the Needs of the Modern Christian and
Unhealed Wound: The Church and Human Sexuality,
among scores of other titles, several of which deal with his longtime friend, the late Joseph Cardinal Bernardin, to whose defense he rose when he read an excerpt of Randy Engel's The Rite of Sodomy in a column published by writer Matt C. Abbott on the Renew America website recently.
At first believing that Mr. Abbott had written the material about Bernardin himself, Kennedy wrote a blistering column attacking Mr. Abbott as more "Costello" (meaning, of course, Lou Costello) than "Abbott" (meaning, of course, Bud Abbott). Upon learning that it was Mrs. Engel's book that was merely quoted verbatim in Mr. Abbott's column, the Religious News Service, which was about to run Kennedy's defense of his late friend, had to amend the column to make reference to her book, which Dr Kennedy, who had read the book at the time of his reflexive defense of Bernardin, dismisses as part of an effort to blame homosexuals "for all the ills of society."
Mrs. Engel provides a preface to This is the first version of the beginning of the Kennedy column before it was published:
"On Wednesday, August 30, 2006, RNS ran a commentary by Eugene
Kennedy who lashed out against writer Matt C. Abbott for a column that
appeared on his web sight titled "Remembering" Joseph Cardinal Bernardin
(See column below). The Abbott column highlighted excerpts from The Rite of
Sodomy by Randy Engel. Later that same day, the editor of RNS, a secular
news agency on religion located in Washington, D.C., called Engel to check
to see if the column was indeed based on excerpts from her book. The result
was that a second version of the Kennedy Commentary was issued - this time
with Abbott and Engel sharing Kennedy's wrath along with Msgr. Michael
Higgins and the late Father Charles Fiore. I have asked RNS for an
opportunity for rebuttal. So far no response."
Here is the first version of the Kennedy "defense" of Bernardin:
Abbott More Like Costello in Attacks on Bernardin,
By Eugene Cullen Kennedy
(UNDATED) Joseph Cardinal Bernardin of Chicago has been dead for 10 years.
He is, however, far more alive than many church leaders because of his great
contributions to the Church and society. He is certainly more alive than a
writer named Matt Abbott whose current attacks on Bernardin share the
hilarious illogicality of the late comedian Lou Costello's rattling off his
lines in the classic "Who's on first" routine. The Abbott currently
attacking Cardinal Bernardin joins the motley ranks of Catholic conspiracy
theorists who charge that homosexuals are among the covert groups to blame
for all the ills of society.
(Eugene Cullen Kennedy, a longtime observer of the Roman Catholic Church, is
professor emeritus of psychology at Loyola University in Chicago and author
of "Cardinal Bernardin's Stations of the Cross," published by St. Martin's
Here is the revised version of the Kennedy piece that was distributed by Religious News Service:
Cardinal Joseph Bernardin of Chicago has been dead for almost
10 years. He is, however, far more alive than many church leaders because of
his great contributions to church and society, and for his holiness as he
accepted the suffering from cancer that led to his death.
He is certainly more alive than Matt Abbott and Randy Engel, two writers
whose current attacks on Bernardin are as hilarious and illogical as the
late comedian Lou Costello's lines in the classic "Who's on first" routine.
Engel claims Bernardin was a leader of a gay combine and makes
accusations the way a bad imitator of Julia Child might concoct a souffle.
She stirs her ingredients furiously and ends up with egg on her own face.
These two know that you cannot legally libel the dead, so they feel free
to make fevered allegations that, like all overheated charges, lose their
flavor and their texture as they cool down. Like Abbott with his Costello,
they will end up using the last line of the baseball routine when asked what
the proof is: "I don't know."
I'm talking here about Abbott's column -- circulated around the Internet
and posted on Alan Keyes' www.renewamerica.us Web site -- that is based on
Engel's book "The Rite of Sodomy: Homosexuality and the Roman Catholic
Church." Abbott's column is in fact an excerpt from chapter 15 of Engel's
book, titled "The Special Case of Joseph Cardinal Bernardin."
Keyes, a Catholic, should be embarrassed for playing host to such
fantasies, and Monsignor Michael Higgins should consider doing public
penance for reprinting them under the auspices of his Justice for Priests
In attacking Bernardin, Engel joins the motley ranks of Catholic
conspiracy theorists who charge that homosexuals are among the covert groups
to blame for all the ills of society. Engel also scapegoats homosexuals as
the covert agents who have partied their way to power in the church, taking
occasional breaks from bizarre rituals to water down its teachings.
Engel's set piece is the accusation that Bernardin, along with several
other bishops, attended a late-night ceremony at a Minnesota seminary in
1995 that involved " and satanic" rituals. The records, which Engel
could have checked out with a few phone calls, show that Bernardin returned
to Chicago immediately after the evening's official function and celebrated
Mass the next morning in Chicago. I know; I've seen the records myself.
You would not want your lifeline to be made of the frayed thread with
which Engel tries to knit her accusations together like someone wearing
hockey gloves. This is evident in her attempt to link Bernardin in some way
to the 1984 murder of a church organist in Chicago and her charge of his
alleged involvement in a "Boys Club" of priests in the archdiocese.
What she does not know, or has not bothered to find out, is that the
Cook County State's Attorney investigated these charges thoroughly and found
no evidence to support them.
Engel also tries to pump air into the balloon punctured long ago that
the Archdiocese of Chicago paid off Steven Cook, who accused Bernardin of
sexual abuse in 1993; the allegations were later deemed false.
Unfortunately, facts are to the conspiracy theorist what sunrise is for a
vampire -- the end of a wild journey in the dark.
The alleged source for all of this is the late Father Charles Fiore, who
ran his family's business in splendid exile from a $600,000 home near
Madison, Wis. He was fighting his own battle against accusations of
misbehavior regarding his relationships with students. Fiore feigned heart
problems when he was challenged to make his charges regarding Bernardin
under oath. Perhaps he did not want to put his hand on a Bible because he
was fighting expulsion from the Dominicans at the time.
Bernardin's goodness and greatness will survive these vicious attacks.
It is, in fact, a tribute to his extraordinary leadership in the church in
the last quarter of the 20th century that he draws sniper's fire from a
strange array of critics. Bernardin will be remembered as a farsighted
leader long after the blindness of his attackers becomes obvious to
Mrs. Engel is preparing her own response to alleged "refutations" of the documentation she provides so amply throughout The Rite of Sodomy, including how the Homosexual Collective has indeed infiltrated itself into every aspect of society, including the uppermost echelons of the institutional structures of the Catholic Church, both before and after the Second Vatican Council. As will become clearer in a short while, Eugene Cullen Kennedy does not believe that each homosexual or lesbian act is a Mortal Sin and representative of a perverse disorder. He, the modern psychologist, you understand, knows more than God Himself, who destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah because of the pestilence of sodomite and lesbian behavior:
And the men of Sodom were very wicked, and sinners before the face of the Lord, beyond measure. And the Lord said to Abram, after Lot was separated from him: Lift up thy eyes, and look from the place wherein thou now art, to the north and to the south, to the east and to the west. All the land which thou seest, I will give to thee, and to thy seed for ever. (Gen. 13: 13-15)
And the Lord rained upon Sodom and Gomorrha brimstone and fire from the Lord out of heaven. And he destroyed these cities, and all the country about, all the inhabitants of the cities, and all things that spring from the earth.
And his wife looking behind her, was turned into a statue of salt. And Abraham got up early in the morning and in the place where he had stood before with the Lord, He looked towards Sodom and Gomorrha, and the whole land of that country: and he saw the ashes rise up from the earth as the smoke of a furnace. Now when God destroyed the cities of that country, remembering Abraham, he delivered Lot out of the destruction of the cities wherein he had dwelt. And Lot went up out of Segor, and abode in the mountain, and his two daughters with him, (for he was afraid to stay in Segor,) and he dwelt in a cave, he and his two daughters with him. (Gen. 19: 24-26)
Dr. Kennedy knows better than all of this. He knows better than Saint Paul, who, writing under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost, said that those steeped in the vice of unnatural perversion bring upon themselves their own ruin:
Because that, when they knew God, they have not glorified him as God, or given thanks; but became vain in their thoughts, and their foolish heart was darkened. For professing themselves to be wise, they became fools. And they changed the glory of the incorruptible God into the likeness of the image of a corruptible man, and of birds, and of fourfooted beasts, and of creeping things. Wherefore God gave them up to the desires of their heart, unto uncleanness, to dishonour their own bodies among themselves. Who changed the truth of God into a lie; and worshipped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.
For this cause God delivered them up to shameful affections. For their women have changed the natural use into that use which is against nature. And, in like manner, the men also, leaving the natural use of the women, have burned in their lusts one towards another, men with men working that which is filthy, and receiving in themselves the recompense which was due to their error. And as they liked not to have God in their knowledge, God delivered them up to a reprobate sense, to do those things which are not convenient;Being filled with all iniquity, malice, fornication, avarice, wickedness, full of envy, murder, contention, deceit, malignity, whisperers, Detractors, hateful to God, contumelious, proud, haughty, inventors of evil things, disobedient to parents,
foolish, dissolute, without affection, without fidelity, without mercy. Who, having known the justice of God, did not understand that they who do such things, are worthy of death; and not only they that do them, but they also that consent to them that do them. (Rom. 1: 26-32)
Dr. Kennedy, the "enlightened" psychologist knows more than Saint Augustine, a Father and Doctor of the Church, who wrote a commentary on this precise passage from Saint Paul's Epistle to the Romans:
"Still thou dost punish these sins which men commit against themselves because, even when they sin against thee, they are also committing impiety against their own souls. Iniquity gives itself the lie, either by corrupting or by perverting that nature which thou hast made and ordained. And they do this by an immoderate use of lawful things; or by the lustful desire for things forbidden, as 'against nature'; or when they are guilty of sin by raging with heart and voice against thee, rebelling against thee, 'kicking against the pricks'; or when they cast aside respect for human society and take audacious delight in conspiracies and feuds according to their private likes and dislikes."
No, Dr. Kennedy will not be convinced by the massive evidence that Mrs. Engel has amassed not only about the late Joseph Cardinal Bernardin but about the nature of the modus operandi of the Homosexual Collective. Without even having seen the evidence she presents, you see, the former Maryknoll priest must write a superficial column, put together initially without even having realized that Matt C. Abbott had stated clearly that he was presenting Mrs. Engel's work from The Rite of Sodomy without any commentary of his own, in which he attacks Mrs. Engel's scholarship and the veracity of the late, courageous Father Charles Fiore, O.P., who was fighting expulsion from the Dominicans because he had brought to public light the infestation of the sodomite problem in that order (in the same manner that the late Father Vincent Miceli was exclaustrated by the Society of Jesus for his criticism of the Jesuits in his 1981 book, The Antichrist).
Kennedy's smear against Father Fiore, who was seriously ill with complications, including heart problems, from diabetes in the final years of his life is just part of his own longstanding method of dealing with those who criticize Joseph Bernardin. Indeed, a lengthy treatise published only on the internet, Odd Man Out: A Modern Morality Play, written by one Ingrid Shafer (a Professor of Religion at the University of Science and the Arts of Oklahoma, no wonder I didn't get a job there when I applied a few months ago for an advertised opening) demonstrates this point
Dr. Shafer's essay, which is published on her website (Ingrid H. Shafer's Home Page) is part of
"Andrew Greeley's biography on which I have been working sporadically for about eight years. It is also a response to Eugene Kennedy's book Cardinal Bernardin (1989) which is as much of an assault on Andrew Greeley as it is an accolade to Joseph Cardinal Bernardin." Dr. Shafer, who is not, shall we way, a Traditional Catholic, wrote about thecomplicated relationship among Joseph Bernardin, Father Andrew Greeley and Eugene Cullen Kennedy, each of whom shared a common perspective about the necessity of Church "reforms" in the 1960s but differed with each other now and again on the details. Dr. Shafer goes to great length to describe the method that the former priest turned psychologist, Kennedy, uses when defending Bernardin. Although the material below relates to Andrew Greeley (who is not, shall we say, to be mistaken for the Cure of Ars in his outlook on the Church or his "writing") and Eugene Kennedy's attacks upon him, it is relevant to Kennedy's efforts to disparage a book, The Rite of Sodomy, that he has not read and whose contents are very well-documented:
Quite often, Kennedy twists his stiletto by quoting others--both accurately and inaccurately, but generally out of context and always with the clear agenda of skewering Greeley. Thus he writes that while he "was comforted by many who enjoyed his work, Greeley was disturbed by analyses of his fiction such as that that appeared in Forum, a magazine of the Penthouse empire of Bob Guccione. In an article titled 'The Phallic Priest,' he was described as 'the Harold Robbins of the Catholic Church' who had undergone 'a literary sex change.' Attacking Greeley's frequent comparison of himself to the writers of the bible who told similar stories of human problems, the Forum writer offered examples of what he considered the 'whacko art' of the priest's 'violent pornography.'" How did Kennedy come by the Penthouse Forum piece? Somehow, the publication does not seem his kind of literary journal. But there is a connecting trail. In May 1981 Philip Nobile had published an admiring interview with Kennedy (who had just published Father's Day) in the National Catholic Reporter, and a particularly nasty review of Greeley's Cardinal Sins. After going on to the Forum, Nobile wrote yet another attack on Greeley in 1985 under the pseudonym Defoggia--the piece Kennedy gleefully (and utterly gratuitously) cites in Cardinal Bernardin. Kennedy writes that late publisher Dan Herr "remonstrated with Greeley, urging him to give up what Herr judged to be excessive and, at times, even distorted criticism [of Cardinal Cody]" (134-35). He quotes Herr as stating that "the only way the bishops can shut Andrew up is by making him a bishop, by making him part of their club. The he couldn't criticize them" (172), and writes that Herr refused to be interviewed by James Winters, "telling friends that no good could come of such a project because Greeley would want to control it from start to finish and that the priest would be furious with anybody who did not give him unqualified praise for everything he did" (190). In May 1990, I asked Herr on the phone about the various comments Kennedy attributed to him. Herr emphatically denied having said any of those things, adding that he had written Greeley a letter to that effect. As far as he was concerned, he chuckled, there was only one way to deal with Eugene Kennedy, "he does not exist." After Herr's death I obtained a copy of Herr's letter to Greeley. The note reads in part: "Several months ago when I was first informed of Kennedy's infamous book and the three quotations attributed to me, I wrote him a vehement letter. But after due consideration I decided not to send it--the book was sure to be a dud and the worst revenge against a publicity-hound is to ignore him. Because of our very long friendship I was not concerned that you would take his charges seriously, particularly because you would know better than anyone how distorted his portrait of you was. . . . Now, at your request, I do so deny their veracity for the archives" (Personal Letter 24 Oct. 1989).
As I already indicated, Kennedy puts much of his speculation concerning Greeley into Sherwood's mouth: "Sherwood would later claim that not only did Greeley want a public scandal, as he had spoken of three years before, but he wanted it to take place when his novel The Cardinal Sins was in the book-stores. That way, according to Sherwood's recreation of Greeley's motivation, the priest would realize his long term goals in one season: Cody would be so embarrassed that he might be forced out of office, Greeley's sex and church scandal book would receive enormous additional publicity, and he would get the credit for slaying the dragon-like Cody as well as for making the way clear for the appointment of Joseph L. Bernardin as archbishop of Chicago." Sherwood insists that most if not all the quotations attributed to him by Kennedy on the subject of Greeley (and Bernardin) are false. Sherwood is understandably miffed that Kennedy made no attempts to confirm the account of events before publication. It would have been easy for him to do so since during that period Sherwood left repeated messages on Kennedy's answering machine. Sherwood fumed on the phone to me, "Gene was obviously working on this book at the time, so it wasn't just a matter of, 'Gee, I lost your phone number' or 'we have to talk, I couldn't find you.' He could have reached me easily; in fact I tried to reach him." No wonder Sherwood concluded "I would never, frankly, trust him on another thing that he wrote."
Ironically, at the time when he was presumably writing Cardinal Bernardin, Kennedy went out of his way to blast the editor of the Journal of the American Medical Association, George Lundberg, M.D., for not making an effort "to corroborate, or to verify independently, the existential truth" of a first-person account of mercy killing he published. In a Chicago Tribune guest editorial (10 February 1988) Kennedy goes on to pontificate, "That author who does not speak the truth cannot have authority, cannot enlarge our lives." (Ingrid Shafer, "Odd Man Out: A Modern Morality Play.")
"That author who does not speak the truth cannot have authority, cannot enlarge our lives." Indeed, Dr. Kennedy. Indeed. You presume to conclude that Father Charles Fiore feigned heart problems. You presume to contradict the consistent teaching of the Catholic Church on the matters of morality relating to the Sixth and Ninth Commandments, thereby blaspheming the Holy Ghost under Whose infallible direction the true Church has safeguarded and explicated the binding precepts of the Divine positive law and the natural law. You presume to construct a paradigm for a "future church" that contradicts the very hierarchical nature of God Himself. That Eugene Kennedy has remained a Catholic "good standing" for lo these many years as he has given aid and comfort to those who dissent from the Deposit of Faith that Our Lord has entrusted to the Catholic Church speaks volumes about the bankruptcy of the men who control the conciliar structures.
At War with God Himself
Some might believe that this is a case of "shooting the messenger," Eugene Cullen Kennedy. It is not. This is an effort to let readers know who Dr. Kennedy is and what he believes. After all, Kennedy left out in his "rebuttal" of Mrs. Randy Engel's chapter on Joseph Cardinal Bernardin in The Rite of Sodomy the fact that the late prelate specifically put into his will that the Windy City Gay Men's Chorus was to sing at his wake. Joseph Bernardin was indeed a friend of the Homosexual Collective in the church and in the world. Kennedy would have no problem with this. However, he does not inform his readers that Joseph Bernardin believed that men who were are war with God by means of their unrepentant sins were to be selected for the privilege of singing at his wake. Although Kennedy would justify such a reprehensible action as demonstrating the late cardinal's "compassion" and his desire for "inclusion," the truth of the matter is that authentic compassion, while understanding the weakness of the sinner, exhorts the sinner to quit his sins by cooperating with the graces won for us by Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ on the wood of the Holy Cross by the shedding of every single drop of His Most Precious Blood. Joseph Bernardin did no such thing.
Indeed, Joseph Bernardin was as much as a blasphemer against the Holy Ghost as his biographer, Eugene Cullen Kennedy, has shown himself to be in supporting the work of New Ways Ministry and speaking at their conferences and at ones sponsored by FutureChurch, an organization that believes pressure must be applied in order to secure women's ordination. It must be remembered that Joseph Bernardin gave an address, "Antisemitism: The Historical Legacy and the Continuing Challenge for Christians," Hebrew University in Jerusalem on March 23, 1995, in which he blasphemed Saint John the Evangelist--and the Holy Ghost under Whose inspiration he wrote his Gospel and his three epistles and The Book of the Apocalypse--by saying that his Gospel was a source of antisemitism:
In the interim, as we await a scholarly resolution of the question of antisemitism in the New Testament, I would strongly urge that the Church adopt a pastoral approach. Father Raymond Brown, a renowned Catholic scholar on the Gospel of St. John, has suggested that the basis of a pastoral approach, at least with with respect to the Fourth Gospel, which is generally considered among the most problematic of all New Testament books in its outlook towards Jews and Judaism. In commenting on John's use of the term, "the Jews," Brown expresses his conviction that, by deliberately using this generic term (where other gospel writers refer to the Jewish authorities or the various Sacred Temple Jewish parties), John meant to extend to the synagogue of his own day blame that an earlier tradition had attributed to the Jewish authorities. Although John was not the first to engage in such extension, he is the most insistent New Testament author in this regard. Brown attributes this process in John to the persecution that Christians were experiencing during that time at the hands of the synagogue authorities. Jews who professed Jesus to be the Messiah had been officially expelled from Judaism, thus making them vulnerable to Roman investigation and punishment. Jews were tolerated by Rome, but who were these Christians whom the Jews disclaimed?
Father Brown maintains that this This is a key pastoral point. Christians today must come to see that such teaching, which an acknowledged part of their biblical heritage, can no longer be regarded as definitive teaching in light of our improved understanding of developments in the relationship between early Christianity and the Jewish community of the time. As Brown says in his book, The Community of the Beloved Disciple, "It would be incredible for a twentieth-century Christian to share or justify the Johannine contention that 'the Jews' are the children of the Devil, an affirmation which is placed on the lips of Jesus (John 8: 44)."
Negative passages such as these must be re-evaluated in light of the Second Vatican Council's strong affirmation in its Declaration on the Relation of the Church to Non-Christian Relations (Nostra Aetate) that Jews remain a covenanted people, revered by God. The teaching of recent Popes has also emphasized this. Pope John Paul II, in particular, has often highlighted the intimate bond that exists between Jews and Christians who are united in one ongoing covenant.
One "ongoing" covenant? No pope and no pastoral council has any authority to contradict the dogmatic teaching of the Catholic Church. The Old Covenant ended when the curtain in the Temple was torn in two from top to bottom at the moment Our Lord breathed his last atop Mount Calvary on the wood of the Holy Cross. Contrary to the "teachings" of the conciliar popes, including Benedict XVI, the Mosaic Covenant has the power to save no one, which is why Saint Peter and the other apostles sought to convert the Jews and why others through the centuries, including Saint Vincent Ferrer, preached to the Jews (and to the Mohammedans) that they would be lost in Hell for all eternity if they did not convert to the true Faith. This has been dogmatically defined by the Papal Bull Cantate Domino, issued by Pope Eugene IV during the Council of Florence, 1441:
The Holy Roman Church firmly believes, professes and teaches that the matter pertaining to the law of the Old Testament, of the Mosaic Law, which are divided into ceremonies, sacred rites, sacrifices, and sacraments, because they were established to signify something in the future, although they were suited to divine worship at that time, after our Lord's coming had been signified by them, ceased, and the sacraments of the New Testament began; and that whoever, even after the passion, placed hope in these matters of the law and submitted himself to them as necessary for salvation, as if faith in Christ could not save without them, sinned mortally. Yet it does not deny that after the passion of Christ up to the promulgation of the Gospel they could have been observed until they were believed to be in no way necessary for salvation; but after the promulgation of the Gospel it asserts that they cannot be observed without the loss of eternal salvation. All, therefore, who after that time (the promulgation of the Gospel) observe circumcision and the Sabbath and the other requirements of the law, it declares alien to the Christian faith and not in the least fit to participate in eternal salvation, unless someday they recover from these errors. . .
It firmly believes, professes, and proclaims that those not living within the Catholic Church, not only pagans, but also Jews and heretics and schismatics cannot become participants in eternal life, but will depart "into everlasting fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels" [Matt. 25:41], unless before the end of life the same have been added to the flock; and that the unity of the ecclesiastical body is so strong that only to those remaining in it are the sacraments of the Church of benefit for salvation, and do fastings, almsgiving, and other functions of piety and exercises of Christian service produce eternal reward, and that no one, whatever almsgiving he has practiced, even if he has shed blood for the name of Christ, can be saved, unless he has remained in the bosom and unity of the Catholic Church.
Must a Catholic believe this dogmatic pronouncement? Is a Catholic free to ignore or to reject it because it has "outlived" its usefulness or, worse yet, was never even truly valid? Has the Second Vatican Council's Nostra Aetate repealed this? Can the opinion of Modernist theologians and prelates do away with this firm statement of truth, which beings by stating that the "Holy roman Church firmly believes, professes and teaches. . ."?
Yes, I know that this did not matter to Joseph Bernardin. I know that it does not matter to conciliarists such as the former Joseph Ratzinger. It does not matter to those, such as Eugene Kennedy, who believes that men such as Benedict XVI are too "conservative." However, it happens to matter very much to God, Who is the Author of all truth, which is, like Himself, immutable. Eugene Kennedy is in the same sort of deep waters as another man named Kennedy was in July of 1969 by insisting that dogmatically defined truths do not bind all men at all times in all circumstances until Our Lord's Second Coming in Glory on the Last Day at the General Judgment of the Living and the Dead.
Joseph Bernardin did separate himself from other conciliarists, including John Paul II, when he dared to cite the notorious Father Raymond Brown's beliefs that the Gospel of Saint John's "teaching of John about the Jews, which resulted from the historical conflict between Church and synagogue in the latter part of the first century, C.E., can no longer be taught as authentic doctrine or used as catechesis by contemporary Christianity." (N.B: Cardinal Bernardin, who was ashamed of Christ before men, used the "politically correct" C.E.--Common Era--abbreviation rather than the "offensive A.D.--Anno Domini). This is blasphemy against the Holy Ghost, God, the Third Person of the Blessed Trinity, under Whose inspiration Saint John wrote every single word of his Gospel and his epistles and The Book of the Apocalypse.
Obviously, Joseph Bernardin did not believe he had any mission to seek the conversion of the Jews. That prejudicial notion of Catholic fundamentalist simpletons was as "outdated" as the Gospel of Saint John itself. After all, whom did he call to his bedside as he died in 1996? The completely pro-abortion, pro-sodomite Ann Landers, and it wasn't to convert her. It was to pour out his "heart" to her. Joseph Bernardin was as much an enemy of souls as any other conciliarist, content to let people persist in false religions to the point of their--and his--dying breaths, all in the name of "compassion" and "diversity" and "inclusion," slogans that come from the devil and lead souls to Hell for all eternity.
Dr. James Hitchcock wrote about Cardinal Bernardin's strange affinity for those who were at war with God and His truths:
One of the most astonishing revelations following his death was an article by Ann Landers, in which the columnist who has made her fortune by giving advice to the lovelorn revealed that she had been summoned late one night to come to the deathbed of :my friend Joe," with whom she had long enjoyed the warmest of personal relations. The revelation was astounding because Landers has perhaps had more influence than any other single person in making abortion socially acceptable, for years using her syndicated newspaper column to promote abortion and to denigrate pro-lifers. Landers has also effectively endorsed the sexual revolution, actually going so far as to ridicule her own earlier belief that people should remain chaste until marriage. (She also illustrates the pattern whereby those who admire Bernardin as a bishop often denigrate other prelates proportionately. Last year she claimed that John Paul II does not understand women because he is a "Polack" with a narrow cultural outlook.)
After Bernardin's death an abortionist in Indiana announced that, inspired by the cardinal, he was giving up performing abortions. It was an edifying episode which, if repeated enough times, would validate Bernardin's approach to the issue. However, the abortionist in question had no personal contact with the late cardinal. There is no evidence that Bernardin ever tried to persuade Ann Landers or anyone else that her views on abortion were in error. Indeed he seemed to thrive on warm friendships with people like Landers, while remaining aloof from people active in, for example, pro-life work. As one secular journalist put it, "We didn't talk about religion, only about the things that unite people."
"Shortly before his death, referring to the slanders once directed at himself, Bernardin expressed the wish that "unfair attacks" on Hilary Clinton, the president's wife, would cease, so that she would be allowed to employ her talents for the good of the country. Altogether it was as blatantly partisan a statement as any bishop in America has ever made, given the fact that Hilary Clinton was involved in a number of questionable financial transactions and that several of her associates are now under criminal indictment. In addition, abortion has been precisely one of her major causes, and she has used the power of the White House to promote it in every way possible. But if the cardinal was friendly in his statements regarding the Clintons, the White House returned that friendly attention. Shortly before the prelate's death President Clinton bestowed on Bernardin the Medal of Freedom, indicating that he saw the cardinal as exactly the kind of religious leader the nation needs.
But even more astonishing than Ann Landers's revelation that she was the cardinal's close friend was the report by Tom Fox, editor of the National Catholic Reporter (NCR), that Bernardin over the years had occasionally telephoned him to encourage his journalistic work, urging him to "keep the flame lit"--the "flame" being the causes the NCR champions, and calling the newspaper "a candle in the night."
Over its more than thirty years of publication, almost the sole purpose of the NCR's existence has been to mount increasingly bitter assaults on almost every aspect of official Catholic teaching, especially sexual morality, and against every member of the hierarchy who gives visible support to those teachings. It is a journal where, for example, it is almost routine for Vatican officials to be referred to as Nazis and to be accused of suffering from various kinds of psychological disorders. It is also the journal where Tim Unsworth has for years celebrated the rebelliousness of the Chicago clergy, and where the same writer attacked Mother Teresa.
The revelation that for years Bernardin was offering encouragement to the editors of that paper confirmed conservative Catholics' worst suspicions--that, while crafting for himself the image of a "moderate," Bernardin had always been firmly in the liberal camp. While he was occasionally criticized by people on the left for not going far enough, he was a consummate realist who understood that the methods he used were far more successful than direct assaults would be. Under the rubric of "reaching out" he was able to create an environment of maximum tolerance for dissent.
That he admired and supported the angrily abusive NCR also shed light on Bernardin's claim that he merely wanted to bring peace and harmony to a Church torn by bitter disagreements. On the contrary, it turned out that he was quite willing to encourage such bitterness, so long as it served the appropriate causes. (James Hitchcock, "Cardinal Bernardin's Legacy," found at www.Catholic.net)
Leaving aside the matter of the legitimacy of the conciliar sacraments, Cardinal Bernardin, who supposedly believed in their legitimacy, was so "pastoral" that he preferred to offend God by distributing Holy Communion to people he knew to be invalidly married (divorced and remarried Catholics who lacked a decree of nullity) than "embarrassing" people who were living under the "stigma" of the Church's opprobrium. Admitting that he "might" talk to such people afterwards, this is what he told an author, Peter Wilkes, for an article that appeared in The New York Times Magazine on December 11, 1994, that assessed the chances of possible successors to John Paul II, who was then seventy-four years of age and would live for another ten years and nearly four months:
When I asked Cardinal Bernardin to assess the achievements of John Paul's papacy, his response was the one I'd heard so frequently from others: he had "personalized" the papacy, influenced the demise of Communism in Eastern Europe and had supported the thrust of Vatican II reforms, meanwhile reining in those he felt had gone beyond Vatican II's intent.
Wasn't it true that along that line -- the one marking the reach of Vatican II -- the most painful conflicts in the church were being battled out?
Bernardin replied carefully, rather evasively, and what seemed to me unenthusiastically. "I have taken an oath to be loyal to the church and to uphold her teachings," he said, "and I will do that. But, over these years -- actually I find myself, with 12 years as a Cardinal, pretty well up there in seniority -- I am not overawed by Rome and the workings of the Vatican any more. I haven't changed. I don't have to put on an act. I can be who I am here, say what I think."
Our conversation moved to a more specific implementation of papal thinking: the document forbidding divorced and remarried Catholics from receiving the holy eucharist. I asked the Cardinal if he would deny such a divorced person the eucharist. "Oh, no," he said, closing his eyes and slowing shaking his head, "that would be totally inappropriate to embarrass someone like that. I might try to find an opportunity to talk to the person afterwards, but no, never, I could never do that."
Our lengthy and wide-ranging conversation moved along easily; there was only one time that Cardinal Bernardin hesitated in his response, saying "Let me think about that." The question was about work not getting done in today's Catholic Church.
"We are a church polarized and we have to bring it back together," he said, finally. "The pro-choice people don't feel they are in the same church with the pro-life people. We need a greater sense of humility for our own failings, a greater sense of reconciliation, reaching out for what joins us rather than looking for what can divide us. And a number of my priests, my pastors" -- he paused with the thought -- "they don't feel the church is taking their experiences into account. They tell me over and over again the teaching and discipline of the church is not as flexible as it should be. And they feel they don't have enough input to the decision-making process of the church -- yet they are the ones who have to implement those decisions.
"No one could have expected the changes of Vatican II to have come about in an orderly way; we can't give up on them just because they are so difficult."
All right. "The pro-choice people don't feel they are in the same church with the pro-life people." Well, you see, it is like this: anyone who supports abortion under any circumstances ceases to be a member of the Catholic Church in good standing. Not so to the man of the "Consistent Ethic of Life," which helped to reaffirm pro-abortion Catholics that they could vote for their fellow pro-abortion Catholics with perfect impunity.
Thus, you see, it is no accident that a man who is at war with God, Eugene Kennedy, by means of his rejection of the hierarchical nature of the Church and the immutability of the truths entrusted to her by God Himself, would try to come to the rescue of a man, Joseph Bernardin, demonstrated himself to be an enemy of the salvation souls. For, as I noted in A New Theology for a New Religion, no one who refuses to seek the conversion of souls to the true Faith is a friend of God or of the souls for whom He shed His Most Precious Blood on Good Friday. Indeed, such people are the friends of the devil, whether or not they realize it.
Dr. Kennedy's own warfare with God is well-documented. A few brief excerpts will be sufficient to point out that his defense of Cardinal Bernardin is simply part and parcel of a lifelong effort to turn the Catholic Faith into something it has never been and something it can never be, a vehicle for novelties that contravene the authentic teaching of the Church and a vehicle for the affirmation of human beings in lives of unrepenant sin.
Eugene Kennedy was one of several speakers to speak at a New Ways Ministry (an organization that reaffirms Catholics in lives of unrepentant sins) conference in Louisville, Kentucky, in 2002, after then Archbishop Tarcisio Bertone of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith had instructed Archbishop Thomas Kelly, O.P., the Archbishop of Louisville not to let the Novus Ordo Missae be offered at the conference. Kelly, who along with the now-retired Bishop Walter Sullivan of Richmond, Virginia, reaffirmed Mrs. Hugh Finn's decision to starve her brain-damaged husband to death back in 1998, simply invited the attendees of the conference to go to Mass in his cathedral, looking the other way as the Novus Ordo was indeed offered at the conference.
Allyson Smith of WorldNetDaily.com posted the following report on March 17, 2002, about the New Ways Ministry conference:
As priest molestation scandals explode throughout the U.S. Catholic Church – most notably in Boston, where the archdiocese recently settled over 80 civil suits against a single priest for up to $30 million – a "gay-positive" Catholic ministry has called for further promotion of homosexuality in Catholic institutions, including schools, parishes and seminaries.
Pro-gay Catholic speakers and workshop leaders, including two U.S. bishops, offered ideas for creating a more homosexual-inclusive Church at the New Ways Ministry Fifth National Symposium, titled "Out of Silence God Has Called Us," March 8-10 at the Galt House Hotel in Louisville, Ky.
New Ways Ministry was founded in 1977 by Sister Jeannine Gramick and Rev. Robert Nugent. It was the subject of a 20-year Vatican investigation until 1999, when the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith permanently banned Gramick and Nugent from "any pastoral work involving homosexual persons." However, New Ways claims that the censure does not apply to the ministry itself.
Nugent is now doing parish and adult education work. Sister Gramick transferred to the Sisters of Loretto and continues to speak and write about homosexuality and church reform. She attended the Louisville conference but did not speak or conduct any workshops.
During his Friday night opening plenary speech, Eugene Kennedy, a former Maryknoll priest and professor emeritus of psychology at Loyola University in Chicago, blamed the problem of priest molestation on an abusive Church hierarchy that prevents religious from developing a mature sexuality.
"In the sexual abuse of the children, we observe a pattern that is identical to that with which the organizational Church has used and still uses in relating to its people," said Kennedy. "Many of these priests who victimized the young were themselves victims when young. Many, perhaps most of them, were neither heterosexual or homosexual, but rather asexual – that is, immature in their human development – children themselves who live ... in seminaries and novitiates that have kept them underdeveloped through programs in which the divided model of personality is efficiently and rigorously enforced."
Kennedy added, "We might say that the sexual abuse of children is a symptom of the human abuse of adults refined and practiced by ecclesiastical bureaucrats over the centuries."
Creating homosexual-friendly Catholic schools
During a focus session titled "Catholic Schools and Gay/Lesbian Youth," Lou Ann Tighe, a gay-straight alliance moderator at Creighton-Derham Hall High School in St. Paul, Minn., asserted, "We have a crisis today among students who are gay and lesbian – and I'm going to say bisexual and transgendered too – in our Catholic schools. This crisis is not based on confusion or ignorance about Roman Catholic teaching on homosexuality. I believe we teach it clearly, and the students understand it very well," but "with so much attention on the regulation of homosexual behavior, too little attention has been given to listening to the pain in their hearts."
Tighe gave the following suggestions for creating homosexual-welcoming Catholic classrooms:
Listen to (gay and lesbian) students "unconditionally."
"Have cues in your environment that suggest inclusion," such as posters and symbols.
Establish student groups that educate students, faculty and other groups.
Don't use labels such as "gay" or "lesbian." However, said Tighe, "If the kids 'self-label,' then we need to be very solicitous and protecting of them."
Encourage teachers to select books that have gay and lesbian characters in them.
Eliminating 'heterosexist' parishes
At a session on "Challenging Heterosexism in Parishes," professor Helen Deines of Spalding University in Kentucky asked participants to name signs of heterosexism in parishes. Among the examples given were Mother's Day and Father's Day celebrations, the absence of gay and lesbian members and the sacrament of Baptism.
Deines offered several tips for increasing the visibility of homosexuals within Catholic churches, including:
Build safe spaces.
Craft a "principled consensus statement of inclusion."
Increase personal contact with lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered persons by bringing in speakers such as an "out gay priest," "a PFLAG (Parents and Friends of Lesbians and Gays) mom" and homosexual partners in committed relationships.
Challenging 'stereotypes' about 'lesbian sisters'
In a focus session titled "Lesbian Women in Religious Life," Janet Rozzano, a Sister of Mercy from Oakland, Calif., spoke about the need for religious communities to challenge "harmful stereotypes and misconceptions" about lesbian nuns, such as:
Lesbians are always sexually active.
A lesbian sister always has sex on her mind and is likely to try to proposition other sisters; therefore, they are not well-suited to religious life.
It is sinful to be a lesbian.
We don't want or need [lesbians] in our community.
Women who are friends with lesbians are probably lesbian themselves.
If lesbian sisters are more open, people will think all [sisters] are lesbians.
On Saturday night, approximately 50 nuns met to discuss New Ways' "Womanjourney Weavings at the Millennium" project, the purpose of which is to help "religious communities of women understand and integrate their lesbian members more fully."
One of the discussion leaders was Sandra Yost, a Sister of Saint Joseph and associate professor at the University of Detroit, Mercy. Yost and the university came under fire last month from the American Family Association of Michigan for sponsoring a screening of the X-rated film "Eyes of Desire" as part of a discussion series on "Feminist Pornography."
At a Friday pre-symposium conference for parents of homosexual children and pastoral ministers, Detroit Bishop Thomas Gumbleton told parents, "The first thing that I think needs to be said that's very, very important if we're going to love our children is simply to recognize that homosexual people are not disordered people. They are psychologically healthy people. ... Homosexuals are as healthy as anyone else."
Gumbleton added, "Homosexuals are able to function and grow at least as well as heterosexuals. They are able to be creative, put in a hard day's work, act as citizens, help their neighbor. Somewhat surprisingly, they make love more humanely, largely because they are better able empathetically to feel what their partner is feeling."
The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches: "The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. They do not choose their homosexual condition; for most of them it is a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion and sensitivity."
However, the Catechism also states: "Homosexual acts [are] acts of grave depravity," and "homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered. 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."
The future of Catholic homosexual activism
At a closing plenary session on Sunday morning, New Ways Ministry presented a 12-point statement on "Lesbian/Gay Ministry in the Catholic Church: A Vision for the Future" to be read at the annual meeting of U.S. bishops this fall in Washington, D.C.
The statement calls upon "Church leaders at all levels to pledge to find new ways to communicate the truth of Christ to lesbian/gay people," including:
Developing educational programs "that reflect accurate images of gay/lesbian people."
Fostering "a climate among young people that is knowledgeable and respectful of lesbian/gay reality."
Providing "supportive work atmospheres so that lesbian/gay Church personnel – clergy, lay, religious – can disclose their sexual orientations to colleagues and constituents, if they so choose."
Providing "educational and personal/spiritual development programs for gay/lesbian priests, religious, seminarians, and candidates."
Asking that "all Catholics and people of good will respect and celebrate the diversity of people with which God has blessed us."
Conference organizers disobey Vatican
In January, Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith secretary Archbishop Tarcisio Bertone wrote to Archbishop Thomas Kelly of Louisville requesting that he forbid Mass to be celebrated as part of the Fifth National Symposium.
"New Ways Ministry does not promote the authentic teaching of the Catholic Church," wrote Bertone, citing "the confusion and scandal which will inevitably arise from this event." As an alternative, Kelly invited participants to attend one of the regularly scheduled Masses at the nearby archdiocesan Cathedral of the Assumption.
New Ways Ministry issued a statement that it would go ahead with the Mass as planned, citing canon law and the Vatican II document "Lumen Gentium" as justification. The statement said that conference endorsers "were deeply angered and disturbed that the CDF would use the Eucharist as a weapon or reward." On Saturday evening, retired Bishop Leroy Matthiesen of Amarillo, Texas, celebrated Mass wearing a rainbow stole on a ballroom stage decorated with rainbow banners. The rainbow has become a universal symbol of the homosexual advocacy movement.
Several conference attendees were overheard denouncing remarks made in a March 3 New York Times interview by Pope John Paul II's spokesman, Dr. Joaquin Navarro-Valls, who questioned whether ordinations of homosexuals were even valid.
"People with these inclinations just cannot be ordained," said Navarro-Valls. "That does not imply a final judgment on people with homosexuality. But you cannot be in this field."
Michael S. Rose, author of "Goodbye! Good Men: How Catholic Seminaries Turned Away Two Generations of Vocations From the Priesthood," told WorldNetDaily, "Considering that a gay subculture has dominated many U.S. seminaries for the past three decades, it seems rather bold – even while illogical – for gay pressure groups to press for more 'acceptance' of the gay agenda inside the places where Catholic priests are supposed to be formed according to Christ.
"The fact is that homosexual promiscuity and homosexual harassment are rampant in many seminaries," said Rose. "This in itself, not to mention other factors, drives many good, holy, orthodox men away from the seminaries and their vocations to the priesthood. The results, as recent news reports and court documents evidence, are now obvious."
For Eugene Kennedy, you see, the Church has caused the problem of the scandals involving the perverted priests by "repressing" them over the centuries. The problem is not perversion, it is repression. A man with such a view cannot begin to comprehend the damage that is done to the souls of those who are steeped, objectively, in unrepentant Mortal Sins, especially one that the Church has taught from time immemorial cries out to Heaven for vengeance.
Dr. Kennedy's warfare against God and the nature of His Holy Church was on full display in a lecture he gave to a FutureChurch conference in October of 2002. What is FutureChurch? Glad you asked. This is how they describe themselves on their website:
FutureChurch is a national coalition of parish-centered Catholics who seek the full participation of all baptized Catholics in the life of the Church.
FutureChurch, inspired by Vatican II, recognizes that Eucharistic Celebration (the Mass) is the core of Roman Catholic worship and sacramental life. We advocate that this celebration be available universally and at least weekly to all baptized Catholics.
FutureChurch respects the tradition of the Roman Catholic Church and its current position on ordination and advocates widespread discussion of the need to open ordination to all baptized Catholics who are called to priestly ministry by God and the people of God.
FutureChurch seeks to participate in formulating and expressing the Sensus Fidelium (the Spirit inspired beliefs of the faithful) through open, prayerful and enlightened dialogue with other Catholics locally and globally.
"Spirit inspired beliefs of the faithful"? In other words, the people determine what is true in "prayerful and enlightened dialogue" with other Catholics, not God as He has revealed His immutable truths through the Catholic Church.
Here is a list of the links provided on the FutureChurch website (descriptions provided by FutureChurch):
The African Experience of God Through the Eyes of an Akan Woman By Mercy Amba Oduyoye, an African woman theologian
Association for the Rights of Catholics in the Church National association of lay, religious and ordained Catholics who are working to change the governance structure of the church to reflect Vatican II. Also maintains a referral service of canon lawyers to help with due process issues
Call to Action Organized after US Bishops sponsored the original "Call to Action" gathering in 1976 in Detriot, this organization of over 18,000 has been advocating for justice in the church society for over twenty years. A "cousin" of FutureChurch, and co-sponsor of our national dialogue efforts
Canon Law Society of America Great resources for current pastoral ministry issues
Catholic Network for Women's Equality Canadian group which is designed to enable women to name their giftedness and from that awareness to effect structural change in the Church that reflects the mutuality and coresponsibility of women and men within that church.
Catholics Speak Out A movement for justice, equality and democracy in the Roman Catholic Church
Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate Best link for U.S. and worldwide statistics about the priest shortage
Christian + Feminist A collection of articles, reviews, bibliographies, directories and historical sources, dedicated to the proposition that faith and feminism are not mutually exclusive
CORPUS National association for an inclusive priesthood which, rooted in a strong eucharistic commitment, promotes an expanded and renewed priesthood of married and single men and women in the Catholic Church
Culture of Conversation Leaders (women, men, lay, religious, clergy) of diverse Catholic organizations who are calling for a Culture of Conversation to transform the culture of silence that prevails in our Church
Dictionary of Feminist Theologies Contributions from many feminist theologians
Dignity/USA Organization of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender Catholics
Good Tidings was founded in 1983 to give support to women and priests who were involved in romantic relationships. The mandatory nature of celibacy for the Roman Catholic priesthood is an essential element of this issue.
International Movement for We Are Church Worldwide movement calling for a more loving, democratic and generous Church
Iona Press A progressive Catholic bookstore with a focus on feminist books and music. Most books 21-30% off list price. Your internet home for spirituality/social justice resources
Mary's Pence A Catholic organization that provides an opportunity for men and women to direct a church donation to women's ministries
National Association of Church Personnel Administrators Resources for conflict resolution and determining a just wage
National Association for Lay Ministry Professional organization that supports, educates and advocates for lay ministers and promotes the development of lay ministers in the Catholic Church
National Catholic Reporter The only independent, lay-owned national Catholic newspaper. Provides progressive perspectives on current church issues
National Conference of Catholic Bishops, Secretariat for Family, Laity, Women and Youth Good resource for current issues and for establishing women's commissions in your diocese
One Catholic Voice for Action As ONE CATHOLIC VOICE, we proclaim and commit to form loving, welcoming, inclusive, nurturing, empowering, supportive, sustainable, and life-giving faith communities, respectful of all persons, guided by the Holy Spirit, where our individual and collective voices are encouraged and heard.
Southeastern Pennsylvania Women's Ordination Conference
Sisters of St. Joseph of LaGrange Features artwork and greeting cards produced by the Sisters of St. Joseph of LaGrange
Sistersite A cyberplace for women religious and their friends
Spirited Lay Action Movement We are a lay-based 501 (c)(3) Not-for-Profit Corporation that is dedicated to gaining full disclosure, accountability and transparency in all financial, liturgical and spiritual programs involving the Archdiocese of Miami.
The Tablet A Roman Catholic weekly newspaper reporting on news from within the U.K. and around the world
Witness An ecumenical organization working to bring women into fuller
leadership in the church
Women-Related Religion/Spirituality Discussion Lists Various discussion lists
Women's Ordination Conference Official site of U.S. Women's Ordination
www.womenpriests.org Very comprehensive site containing all church
documents on women's ordination, women in the diaconate as well as counter
arguments from theologians and scholars. Available in five languages
Apart from listing a veritable witches' brew of groups who are at war with God, FutureChurch does not get its facts straight with respect to its assertion that National Catholic Reporter is the only lay-owned, independent national Catholic newspaper. Looks like they missed a few things on this one. There is a newspaper called The Wanderer, for which I wrote for eight years, that was founded in 1867, and is the nation's oldest weekly national Catholic newspaper. There is also a newspaper called The Remnant, for which I wrote for a little over three years, that is published bi-weekly and owned independently. I guess the worldview of FutureChurch does not extend beyond its own incestuous network of dissenting organizations.
This is a report, written by Barbara Grants and published in the Winter 2003 issue of Focus on FutureChurch, of Dr. Kennedy's October, 2002, address to FutureChurch:
Sacramenta Propter Homines means that the sacraments are for men and women—to be poured into their laps, full measure, to nourish them, to sustain them. This beautiful vision of our faith, older than Vatican II, formed the centerpiece of Dr. Eugene Kennedy’s presentation to nearly 500 people who attended the FutureChurch annual dinner last October.
He believes that this vision has been taken over by a bookkeeper mentality in the hierarchy and that the hierarchical mind and a true sense of sacramentality are not compatible. Out of hierarchical ordering found nowhere in the Gospel or in the basic Christian tradition, human beings have been found guilty on all counts of being human, often condemned as grave sinners for their thoughts and feelings. This, he suggested, is the real crisis of our age, not that of the clerical sexual abuse scandal, which is but a symptom of this larger crisis. True sacramentality involves the belief that all reality, both animate and inanimate is potentially the bearer of God’s presence and the instrument of God’s saving activity on humanity’s behalf. Lacking an understanding of this Catholic sacramental sense, religious leaders for centuries have made people feel uneasy, even guilty, about being human.
The misperception of the human person, dividing the personality into good and bad, flesh and spirit, also expresses itself in unhealthy models of church, creating an unhealthy culture that mistakes the inhuman for the divine. Dr. Kennedy asked why we are surprised that these unhealthy views would show up in the church’s personnel.
Seeking to control every thought and feeling and to control and contain a clerical way of life, the hierarchical church lost control of itself. He suggested that the dynamics of seduction of a child and those of corrupting the sacramental system are exactly the same. They are both exercises of power by men over people, the children and adults, in their care. Men who engage us not to nourish us so that we may grow but to control us by demeaning and debasing us, using us to satisfy their own unhealthy needs for power and control.
Using the example of the wedding feast at Cana, he suggested that Jesus produced wine not to show his control over nature, but for the purely human reason of sparing the wedding couple embarrassment. An act of pure generosity. Dr. Kennedy poetically suggested that a
similar mystery of revelation—the attack on the World Trade Center—has made us all into mystics by showing the goodness of ordinary people. We now know what people do when they know that they are going to die. They do something very human. They tell somebody that they love them.
He asked how we could miss the immense sacramental revelation of the wonder and goodness, the passion of these ordinary people, suggesting that we can see them as God sees them and sees all of us on judgment day, as good, stripped of all the distinctions so laboriously made by those who do not understand the sacramentality of the world.
The revelation of those who died is that human beings are whole and pure of heart. Dr. Kennedy challenged us to bring this wholeness and goodness, the sacramental sign par excellence, into the hierarchy of the church, which has never needed it more. The health and wholeness of ordinary human beings will say “let these dead bury the dead,” and bring life, and life to the full to us, the people of God who are the church.
Dr. Eugene Cullen Kennedy clearly does not accept the simple fact that each and every thought act against the Sixth and Ninth Commandments, whether natural or unnatural, is prohibited. He is a dissenter from the binding precepts of the Divine positive law and the natural law and has made it his business to make war quite publicly on those who adhere to the "fundamentalist," "bigoted" views of the "past" that have "caused" so much harm to so many "ordinary" people. Like the man he admires so much, Joseph Bernardin, Kennedy is unafraid to turn Scripture on its head to suit his own purposes, disparaging the truth that Our Lord did indeed change wine into water to show forth His power over nature and as a foreshadowing of the Eucharist itself. (Better not let Father Raniero Cantalamessa get hold of this interpretation of Our Lord's first public miracle.)
This warfare against the Catholic Faith is further demonstrated by a review, written by Father Lou Trivison, of Kennedy's The Unhealed Wound, posted on the FutureChurch website and indicative of Kennedy's obsession with denouncing God's own laws as they have been explicated infallibly by His true Church:
Eugene Kennedy has written a scathing denunciation of “The Unhealed Wound” of the Catholic Church, which he calls its teachings on sexuality that have caused so much grief, guilt and self-hatred in its members down through the centuries.
He summarizes the effects of its teaching by describing how it leads to “good people thinking themselves bad, healthy people thinking themselves sick, and ordinary human beings with more than enough other troubles, uncomfortable with their own humanity.”
Lost in the struggle to meet the Church’s conditions for leading a chaste life were the uplifting and beautiful teachings on the holiness and sacramentality of sexual love in marriage and the reflection of the love of the Trinity made visible and present in the love of husband and wife.
The three current “wounds” that he focuses on are compulsory priestly celibacy, the Church’s teaching on birth control and its insistence on the non-ordination of women.
Throughout the book Kennedy uses the legend and myth of the Grail Kings and the stories of their sexual wounds to parallel the attempts of the institutional Church to ignore or stifle well-meaning efforts to heal the Church’s sexual wounds. At times the analogy seems far-fetched. But the picture he draws of the pain caused by Church teaching on sexuality, especially in the 20th century, is all too true and sadly depressing.
He distinguishes the Church as Institution and the Church as Mystery and shows how the Institution attacks creativity in its members by its authoritarian rejection of new ideas and its silencing of those who propose them. This abuse of power only serves to deepen the wounds that fester in the members of the Body of Christ.
The refusal of Pope Paul VI to accept the proposals of the Birth Control Commission set up by Pope John XXIII led to the encyclical Humanae Vitae (1968) and its disastrous results among the world’s theologians and disillusioned laity. Kennedy maintains that its virtual non-reception by so many theologians and a large percentage of the laity are sound indications that the teaching is deeply flawed. To impose it on the grounds of authority alone is no longer theologically valid and only serves to undermine the credibility of the Magisterium.
Kennedy points to a similar lack of reception of the Church’s position on the ordination of women: “It has not been received by a substantial number of Catholics and a great many historians and theologians” (p. 108). The weak arguments against women’s ordination cannot stand the test of biblical scholarship where there is no evidence that Christ thought about his followers, male or female, as priests. “From the New Testament it is apparent that the clear conceptualization of the Christian priesthood came only after the destruction of the Jerusalem Temple in 70 AD” (Raymond Brown).
Kennedy shows how both Paul VI and John Paul II have fought to keep mandatory celibacy the norm for the Latin Rite. Apart from the scandals of sexual abuse by clerics that have surfaced for the past twenty-five years, the refusal to make celibacy optional and open the priesthood to married men has resulted in the greatest evil of all, according to Kennedy, namely, denying the sacraments to Catholics. Canon Law specifies that “the bishop is to strive constantly that Christ’s faithful entrusted to his care may grow in grace through the celebration of the sacraments…” (Canon 387).
Half the parishes in the world do not have priests, yet the Institutional Church refuses to make celibacy optional as it was for the first l200 years of Christianity. By failing to open the priesthood to all the baptized, men and women, the Church chooses to starve the faith of its members to death by denying them the life-giving gift of the Eucharist. This is treason at the highest level possible.
Kennedy concludes, “If the official Church could admit its own discomfort with sexuality, as inseparable as the blood from the wound, and could take even a small step toward understanding it, the priest shortage would vanish, the sacramental life of the Church as Mystery would be guaranteed and respect for the authority of the Institutional Church would begin to rise immediately.”
This is an honest and courageous book by someone who loves the Church dearly and has served it as a former Maryknoll priest and as professor of psychology at Loyola University. We are privileged to have Eugene Kennedy as our guest speaker at FutureChurch’s annual dinner October 10, 2002.
To Truly Love the Church
No one "loves" the Church if he makes continuous war against her consistent patrimony, protected in its transmission by the power of the Holy Ghost. Father Trivison evidently agrees wholeheartedly with Eugene Kennedy. How is it that he can remain a priest in good standing while men like Father Stephen Somerville and Father Stephen Zigrang and Father Lawrence C. Smith, among others, must be disciplined for refusing to participate in the novelties of the recent past?
This can "be" because conciliarism itself is a revolution against the Catholic Faith as it has been handed down over the centuries, one that is full of contradictions, one that can pit "conservative" Modernists revolutionaries who hold the line on some matters of faith and morals against the more unbridled Modernists who want all of the "bastions" razed without distinction.
Ah, yes, desiring to "raze the bastions," as Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger wrote in Principles of Catholic Theology in 1982, can involve having your own novel bastions torn down and thrown out just as easily as the older ones (See Paine, Thomas, or Robespierre, Maximilian, or Trotsky, Leon, above). Razing the bastions can indeed be a dangerous business as the various revolutionaries war against each other as warfare is made, sometimes little by little and sometimes in greater increments, by the whole sorry ethos of conciliarism, which will be the subject of the next commentary on this site (dealing with Benedict's new "rules" for inter-religious prayer services).
Dr. Eugene Kennedy has done Mrs. Randy Engel's important The Rite of Sodomy a great service by giving it the sort of exposure in the secular media that has yet to focus on the book and its well-documented and well-presented contents. Kennedy's entire career is proof-positive of how the Homosexual Collective works to get out its propaganda in order to deceive Catholics into distrusting their sensus Catholicus as morally damaging falsehoods are presented as "truths" in the name of "compassion" and "love."
To truly love the Church that Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ founded upon the Rock of Peter, the Pope, we must submit ourselves to her authentic patrimony, being willing to die a physical death than to do or say anything which might in any way make it appear as though God and His truths are immutable. We must pray and fast and do much penance for our own sins and those of the whole world, offering all that we have and do to the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary as her consecrated slaves. That same Immaculate Heart of Mary will triumph over the scions of Modernity in the world and Modernism in the Church, consigning them all to the dustbin of history.
In the meantime, however, conscious of our own need for conversion on a daily basis, getting ourselves to the Sacrament of Penance every week, if possible, spending time on our knees in fervent supplication to Our Lady before her Divine Son's Real Presence, eager to learn more about and then to try to imitate the lives of the saints, we must stand up in defense of those, such as Mrs. Engel, who take the risk to speak the truth no matter what might befall them. No one, least of all a man who is at war with the Received Teaching of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, can in the least cast aspersions on an effort to bring to light those things that the devil himself wants to continue to shroud in silence so that more and more souls can be ruined for all eternity.
May we cling to Our Lady as we she stands--alongside Saint John the Evangelist and all of the other angels and saints--beneath the foot of her Divine Son's Holy Cross in every Mass, knowing that to her Fatima Message belongs the victory of her Immaculate Heart, a victory that we must never despair of and always seek to bring about by our every thought, word, and action, a victory that will restore Tradition in the Church and Christendom in the world.
Our Lady of Fatima, pray for us.
Saint Joseph, pray for us.
Saints Peter and Paul, pray for us.
Saint John the Baptist, pray for us.
Saint Michael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Gabriel the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Raphael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Lawrence Justinian, pray for us.
Saint Rose of Viterbo, pray for us,
Saint John Mary Vianney, pray for us.
Saint Vincent de Paul, pray for us.
Saint Therese Lisieux, pray for us.
Saint Martin of Tours, pray for us.
Saint Margaret Mary Alacoque, pray for us.
Saint Isaac Jogues, pray for us.
Saint Rene Goupil, pray for us.
Saint John Lalonde, pray for us.
Saint Gregory Lalamont, pray for us.
Saint Noel Chabanel, pray for us.
Saint Charles Garnier, pray for us.
Saint Anthony Daniel, pray for us.
Saint John DeBrebeuf, pray for us.
Saint Athanasius, pray for us.
Saint Alphonsus de Liguori, pray for us.
Saint Dominic, pray for us.
Saint Basil, pray for us.
Saint Augustine, pray for us.
Saint Thomas Aquinas, pray for us.
Saint Vincent Ferrer, pray for us.
Saint Sebastian, pray for us.
Saint Tarcisius, pray for us.
Saint Lucy, pray for us.
Saint Agnes, pray for us.
Saint Agatha, pray for us.
Saint Bridget of Sweden, pray for us.
Saint Catherine of Sweden, pray for us.
Saint Philomena, pray for us.
Saint John of the Cross, pray for us.
Saint John Bosco, pray for us.
Saint Teresa of Avila, pray for us.
Saint Bernadette Soubirous, pray for us.
Pope Saint Pius X, pray for us
Pope Saint Pius V, pray for us.
Saint Lawrence Justinian, pray for us.
Blessed Anne Catherine Emmerich, pray for us.
Blessed Pauline Jaricot, pray for us.
Blessed Miguel Augustin Pro, pray for us.
Blessed Francisco, pray for us.
Blessed Jacinta, pray for us.
Sister Lucia, pray for us.
The Longer Version of the Saint Michael the Archangel Prayer, composed by Pope Leo XIII, 1888
O glorious Archangel Saint Michael, Prince of the heavenly host, be our defense in the terrible warfare which we carry on against principalities and powers, against the rulers of this world of darkness, spirits of evil. Come to the aid of man, whom God created immortal, made in His own image and likeness, and redeemed at a great price from the tyranny of the devil. Fight this day the battle of our Lord, together with the holy angels, as already thou hast fought the leader of the proud angels, Lucifer, and his apostate host, who were powerless to resist thee, nor was there place for them any longer in heaven. That cruel, that ancient serpent, who is called the devil or Satan who seduces the whole world, was cast into the abyss with his angels. Behold this primeval enemy and slayer of men has taken courage. Transformed into an angel of light, he wanders about with all the multitude of wicked spirits, invading the earth in order to blot out the Name of God and of His Christ, to seize upon, slay, and cast into eternal perdition, souls destined for the crown of eternal glory. That wicked dragon pours out. as a most impure flood, the venom of his malice on men of depraved mind and corrupt heart, the spirit of lying, of impiety, of blasphemy, and the pestilent breath of impurity, and of every vice and iniquity. These most crafty enemies have filled and inebriated with gall and bitterness the Church, the spouse of the Immaculate Lamb, and have laid impious hands on Her most sacred possessions. In the Holy Place itself, where has been set up the See of the most holy Peter and the Chair of Truth for the light of the world, they have raised the throne of their abominable impiety with the iniquitous design that when the Pastor has been struck the sheep may be scattered. Arise then, O invincible Prince, bring help against the attacks of the lost spirits to the people of God, and give them the victory. They venerate thee as their protector and patron; in thee holy Church glories as her defense against the malicious powers of hell; to thee has God entrusted the souls of men to be established in heavenly beatitude. Oh, pray to the God of peace that He may put Satan under our feet, so far conquered that he may no longer be able to hold men in captivity and harm the Church. Offer our prayers in the sight of the Most High, so that they may quickly conciliate the mercies of the Lord; and beating down the dragon, the ancient serpent, who is the devil and Satan, do thou again make him captive in the abyss, that he may no longer seduce the nations. Amen.
Verse: Behold the Cross of the Lord; be scattered ye hostile powers.
Response: The Lion of the Tribe of Juda has conquered the root of David.
Verse: Let Thy mercies be upon us, O Lord.
Response: As we have hoped in Thee.
Verse: O Lord hear my prayer.
Response: And let my cry come unto Thee.
Verse: Let us pray. O God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, we call upon Thy holy Name, and as suppliants, we implore Thy clemency, that by the intercession of Mary, ever Virgin, immaculate and our Mother, and of the glorious Archangel Saint Michael, Thou wouldst deign to help us against Satan and all other unclean spirits, who wander about the world for the injury of the human race and the ruin of our souls.