Friday, March 19, 2010

A letter to Pelosi's archbishop

I agree with Patrick Archbold's pithy, one-word response.

Actually, I'd go a bit further. To pose as a Catholic and ask St. Joseph to intercede for the state-funded murder of the unborn isn't just monstrous--it's evil.

Accordingly, I have sent the following letter to Archbishop Niederauer with a copy to the USCCB's pro-life office:
Dear Archbishop Niederauer:

Once again, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is claiming that you can be a good Catholic while working for government funding of abortion. In the outrageous video linked below, Pelosi asks St. Joseph to intercede for the passage of the health care bill, calls this bill, which funds abortions, "life-affirming," and further insinuates that "just about every order" of nuns you can think of has written in support of the bill--a statement which is monstrously untrue and unjust to the many Catholic nuns who are uncompromisingly pro-life.

The video can be seen here:

I am deeply disturbed by Speaker Pelosi's continuing misrepresentation of the Catholic faith and its teachings. She provides political cover to those Catholics who wish to vote for abortion in their political lives but insist on their Catholic identity in their private lives--and trade on that identity for votes from their fellow Catholics. While I deeply respect Your Excellency's efforts to date concerning Speaker Pelosi, at this point I believe it is manifestly true that the Speaker is creating public scandal by her open support for abortion and her willingness to twist her Catholic faith in support of that grave evil.

I, too, ask for the intercession of Saint Joseph on this Solemnity of St. Joseph, Husband of the Virgin Mary. I ask his intercession for the spiritual health of Speaker Pelosi, and for the swift clarification from the appropriate offices, especially yours, Archbishop, that her remarks in favor of an abortion-funding health care plan do not represent the mind of the Church in this matter.

Sincerely and respectfully yours,

Erin Manning
If you would like to send a similar email, the address for the archdiocese of San Francisco is . I don't know if there's a better way to contact the archbishop directly, but I imagine enough emails sent to that address may catch some attention.


Blackrep said...

Are you serious? Nancy visited the Pope himself and came away unscathed and unexcommunicated. The bishop will toss your letters in the circular file. Your congressman and senator are more pliable, because they stand to lose their jobs if people are unsatisfied with their behavior. In Rome, when was the last time somebody lost a job for being pro-abortion? They can barely rid themselves of child molesters!

Red Cardigan said...

Sure, I'm serious. My job as a Catholic lay person is merely to point out such things to a proper authority. If the archbishop chooses not to do something about it, he's the one who will answer to God for it someday. On the other hand, if he is right and I am wrong, I have at least acted in good faith and with respect for his office--which, again, is my job as a Catholic lay person.

freddy said...

Done & sent. St. Joseph, pray for us!

Siarlys Jenkins said...

Your firm but modest statement of your responsibilities is impeccable -- and that's from a Protestant. I'm also disturbed to hear Nancy Pelosi discussing, in the performance of her public duties, what the Fathers of the Church may or may not have said which may or may not justify her actions with regard to abortion. In my seldom humble opinion, the proper response to any effort by the bishops to influence her conduct in office is, 'I wasn't elected to represent the Catholic Church, I was elected to represent the people of my district.' It does not inspire respect either for herself as a woman of faith or for the Constitution of the United States for her to pontificate (pun intended) on spiritual matters.

As a footnote, it is entirely proper for a candidate for public office to promise voters "As a Catholic, I would feel duty bound to vote X way on Y issue," in which case, if that's not what voters want, they can vote for someone else. But if they have made a commitment to voters, and been elected, they should not abandon that commitment because a bishop told them to.

SherryTex said...

It is one thing for her to say she must represent the whole of her district and not simply her own opinion, it is another for the Speaker to put on the cloak of Catholicism and then misrepresent it as a means towards her political ends.

She should be reprimanded for her deliberate misrepresentation of her Catholic faith that she perpetually calls us to witness.

John said...

Done! I sent an e-mail as well. Terrible! This is all so terrible.

John Thayer Jensen said...

Siarlys said:

"As a footnote, it is entirely proper for a candidate for public office to promise voters "As a Catholic, I would feel duty bound to vote X way on Y issue," in which case, if that's not what voters want, they can vote for someone else. But if they have made a commitment to voters, and been elected, they should not abandon that commitment because a bishop told them to."

Siarlys, I don't think this can possibly be right. If I have made a commitment to do something evil, then I should not have made that commitment - but certainly I cannot keep it. Your statement seems to me to apply only if what I have committed myself to do is good, and there is no higher good that I am obliged to obey - possibly one that I could not have foreseen when I made the commitment.

Apparently Nancy Pelosi does not think that all abortion is evil - and I understand that you do not, either - but the idea that a commitment can excuse one from doing something one knows to be evil is surely wrong.


Magister Christianus said...

Great letter, Red, and a great statement about our responsibilities as individual Christians. If church leaders do not fulfill their own responsibilities, you are right, it is they who will answer to God.

On the other hand, why wouldn't Speaker Pelosi invoke Joseph for this bill? He did encourage his fiancee who mystically became pregnant to abort, didn't? Oh, wait, no, he submitted himself to all kinds of ridicule for marrying a pregnant girl and he stuck by her through every trial that followed.

Siarlys Jenkins said...

Good for Joseph. Even if the child wasn't divine, I admire a man who understands that if he loves the woman, he still marries her, and if they raise the child together, that is his child.

John, aside from the fact that people (not the Catholic Church, but people in general) have differences as to what is and is not evil in this matter, there remains the fact that Pelosi is a representative, not running her own private consulting firm. I suppose to intertwine your statement and mine, she might announced "After extensive discussion with my parish priest, I have concluded that the promise I made to the voters was wrong. Therefore, I will be running for re-election, promising to vote the other way in the future. If you don't like that, then run someone against me in the primary and vote me out."

On the other hand, if I lived in Rep. Stupak's district, I might well vote for him, depending on what else he stands for. Pro-choice is not a litmus test for me, especially as long as the authority of congress in the matter is constitutionally limited.

Sherry is absolutely correct though. Pelosi should not be up on a political platform trying to represent what the position of the Catholic church is. There are people authorized to speak for the church. The Speaker of the House is not one of them. She might well say, "My duty is to have no abortion, and I have had none, I have given birth to five healthy children. I cannot join in supporting the political program the bishops have advocated as to the laws of the United States."