“Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” and The Obama Administration

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 \PM\.\Wed\.

I would like to think that I rarely, if ever, use my privileges here to get on a “soapbox” or as a means to be politically partisan and issue an attack on any person or group. Similarly I hope the subject that I am undertaking reflects my commitment. I would like to admit in regard to the subject that I am terribly biased and I don’t think I am wrong about the matter. I am no source of infallibility, obviously; everyone is free to contradict me. I will passionately disagree, but will respect everyone’s right to intellectual freedom presupposing the same respect.

My self-identification as a Democrat is no secret. After President Obama was elected last November, I was hopeful, that despite his horrific position on life issues, a Democratic Administration and Congress would be able to go, in what I deem, a positive direction on many issues. One of these issues, I hoped, would be repealing “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”

President Obama on the campaign trail reiterated how he supported “equality” for gay and lesbian Americans. While his definition of “equality” is incompatible with my Catholic faith, I find the matter of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” one in which good Catholics may disagree on and it is one I thought the President and I agreed. Let me clarify: I do not march in GLBT parades or belong to any of their advocacy groups.

Just yesterday I learned that allegedly, 619 individuals were discharged last year from the military under the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” policy. I won’t address those 619 discharges because I do not know any of the details to cast any sensible judgments.

However, it so happens that just yesterday a White House official indicated that there were no plans in the foreseeable future to repeal “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.” (cf. Barack Obama campaign promises).

So, why does this bother me so much?

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Can Women Be Deacons?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 \PM\.\Wed\.

The Ordination of Women, Pt. II

Just recently, I came across a well-written entitled Catholic Women Deacons seeking to make a case for the restoration of the female diaconate. The author, a professor of Religious Studies, makes her case by drawing largely upon the historical evidence of deaconesses in the early Church and during the Patristic era.

The presence of a female diaconate in the church is a matter of historical fact. While it is clear that the role of deaconesses in previous times differs drastically from the role of deacons today, the question remains about the nature and status of their position—whether it was an ordained ministry or a celebrated and respected non-ordained position in Christian communities.

From my knowledge of church history, sacramental theology, and ecclesiology, particularly as it relates to the Latin and Greek traditions of the Church, the author is inquiring within the boundaries of Christian orthodoxy. The position, in favor of a female diaconate, as far as I know, is legitimately an orthodox position; this does not mean, Catholics of good faith, cannot contradict this position. Admittedly, I do not fully embrace her view.

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Res & Explicatio for A.D. 5-20-2009

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 \AM\.\Wed\.

Salvete AC readers!

Here are today’s Top Picks in the Catholic world:

1. In sharp contrast to having the most pro-abortion president in the history of our great nation, my favorite prelate Francis Cardinal Arinze delivered an electrifying speech at Thomas More College which is located in Merrimack, New Hampshire.  His Eminence touched on the importance of a Catholic university shaping and forming solid Christian citizens.  Some highlights include the following [emphasis mine]:

“A Catholic college or university educates students to appreciate that moral rules of right and wrong apply also to science, technology, politics, trade and commerce, and indeed to all human endeavors.”

But what does it profit us if a student is an intellectual giant but a moral baby… if he or she can shoot out mathematical or historical facts like a computer but is unfortunately a problem for the parents, corrosive acid among companions in the College, a drug addict and sexual pervert, a disgrace to the school, a waste-pipe in the place of work and Case number 23 for the Criminal Police? It is clear that intellectual development is not enough.”

Cardinal Arinze doesn’t play the cowardly intellectual game of “nuance”.  That is why I love this man.  He speaks the truth without inhibition and with charity.

For the article click here.

2. In a recent Knights of Columbus-Marist College survey, Pope Benedict XVI is receiving a 59% approval rating from Americans.  The number jumps up to 76% when polling only American Catholics.  One interesting fact from this poll is that Americans want to hear our German shepherd speak out about abortion, embryonic stem cell research, and marriage by a margin of 2 to 1 or more!

Very impressive numbers considering the negative light the mainstream media has put his papacy.  It goes to show that Pope Benedict XVI’s communication skills are highly effective and have found a receptive audience in America.  The constant barrage of moral relativism and biased reporting from the likes such as CNN and the New York Times hasn’t been able to cloud the message of love that our Pope constantly sends out.

This is wonderful news combined with the fact that more Americans identify themselves as pro-life than pro-abortion/pro-choice for the first time since the passage of Roe v. Wade, we are making strides.

For the poll click here.

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Jesuitical 3: Of Jesuits and Donatists

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 \AM\.\Wed\.

Father Drew Christiansen, SJ-Current Editor in Chief of America

Part three of my ongoing series on the Jesuits.  The magazine America, the Jesuit journal which has tirelessly defended, with honorable exceptions such as the late Avery Cardinal Dulles, SJ, the magisterium of the New York Times for decades, has an editorial here in which they compare Catholics who protested Notre Dame honoring the most pro-abortion President in our nation’s history to the Donatist schismatics.  You might well wonder what relationship exists between schismatics from Fourth Century North Africa  and orthodox Catholics upholding the teaching of the Church on abortion.  Why none of course.  This is merely a smear employed by the Jesuit scribes at America to run interference for Obama and the Catholics who support him.

I was going to write a lengthy post on this subject but Dale Price, at Dyspeptic Mutterings, beat me to the punch in his brilliant post Seinfeldian Catholicism. Dale is one of my favorite Catholic bloggers.  He is one of those rare freaks of nature:  a lawyer who writes well.  I stop by his blog every day in hopes of reading one of his fine posts, he does not post every day,  and steal—-er, that is, borrow blogging ideas.  Seinfeldian Catholicism is, in my opinion, his finest effort and should not be missed.


The Real Scandal at Notre Dame

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 \AM\.\Wed\.

Patricia McGuire, President of Trinity

Now you may be under the mistaken belief that the scandal at Notre Dame on Sunday was the homage received by the most pro-abortion president in our nation’s history.   Silly you!  According to the President of another Catholic college, Patricia McGuire of Trinity, the real scandal was caused by those protesting Obama Day.

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Women Priests in the Catholic Church?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009 \AM\.\Wed\.

On the Ordination of Women, Pt. I

The Catholic Church in the modern world has faced numerous petitions to alter her doctrine in regard to several theological and moral matters. The ordination of women is amongst such petitions, particularly after the Second Vatican Council. Several Protestant religious traditions have authorized women ministers and preachers. Many churches in the Anglican Communion already permit women to serve at the altar. The Catholic Church is virtually alone, with the sole exception of the Eastern Orthodox, in her commitment to an exclusively male priesthood. Despite these realities, the late Holy Father, Pope John Paul II solemnly declared in his apostolic letter Ordinatio Sacerdotalis “…the Church has no authority whatsoever to confer priestly ordination on women and that this judgment is to be definitively held by all the Church’s faithful.” Despite the Holy Father’s attempt to reaffirm the Church’s tradition of male-only priests, the question, at least in debate, still remains. Despite the sincerity of advocates for conferring the sacrament of ministerial priesthood on women, theologically and doctrinally it is impossible. Cardinal Ratzinger (Pope Benedict XVI) too has reiterated that the church teaching regarding women’s ordination is “founded on the written Word of God, and from the beginning constantly preserved and applied in the Tradition of the Church, it has been set forth infallibly by the ordinary and universal Magisterium.”

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