January 10, 2004
vol 15, no. 10

Miters without Muscle

    No matter how much rhetoric may come from every diocese or archdiocese, the fact remains that until these bishops "officially excommunicate" unrepentant Catholics who insist on promoting the mortal sin of abortion - especially the influential politicians - their words will remain as cheap as their sincerity and the scandal will only mount. Sadly, the question asked is: why should Obey obey when the shepherds of souls don't? What a sad commentary on today's bishops.
   It's that time again. Within a few weeks the pro-life forces will gather in Washington D.C. for the annual March for Life marking the 31st anniversary of the nefarious Roe vs. Wade decision by the Supreme Court - human judges who will be judged by the Supreme Almighty Judge. During this time, inevitably, more media coverage will be given to the smaller gathering of pro-abort protesters. It's a given. Also a given is the fact that at this March for Life venue various bishops will support it in person, even speaking and encouraging those gathered that abortion must stop. But talk is cheap. Unless they walk the walk, their words are like hollow timbres. I have said until I'm blue in the face, if you will, that abortions will end in the United States when the bishops are ready. They hold the key.

   I have read many stories that certain bishops say that pro-abortion Catholic politicians should not receive Holy Communion, BUT, this is the first time, that I know of, that a bishop has ORDERED that pro-abortion Catholic politicians NOT be offered Communion. But has Bishop Raymond Burke gone far enough?

   So far, talk has been cheap, but now, is it possible we can see a little light at the end of the tunnel. Is it possible that maybe the rest of the bishops will finally wake up? We all know that so far, their efforts to save the least among us, has been downright pitiful. Look what Bishop Wiegand said about Gray Davis and then let it be, no follow-up when Davis deliberately disobeyed. And what about the new Governor Arnold Schwarzzenegger. Though a Republican, he's Catholic in name and definitely a pro-abort. What has Wiegand said to the Governator? Nothing that I know of. Yes, talk is cheap.

   But we can always pray and hope. Is it possible that the bishops of Senators Kennedy, Kerry, Durbin, Harkin, Dodd, Reed, Mikulski, Collins, Murray, Daschle, Biden, Leahy and Landrieu will also deny them Holy Communion?

   The first nine even voted NOT to ban partial-birth infanticides and still they traipse up to receive communion when it is expedient to them.

   If signing the death warrants is not a mortal sin, then there are no mortal sins.

   Actually, they should all be publicly excommunicated as they have broken with Catholic Doctrine and therefore are heretics, but for now, denying communion is a step in the right direction.

   A good shepherd would cut the diseased sheep from the rest of the herd, otherwise the entire flock will continue to be contaminated. Because of lukewarm bishops, the percentage of Catholic women having their unborn child killed is greater than Evangelical women and the percentage of Catholics voting for pro-abortion candidates is also greater than the Evangelicals.

   This is a national disgrace and gives the Catholic Church a further black eye, already greatly smudged over the past 40 years for it failure to adhere to Catholic doctrine in every way.

   Think about it -- The South is referred to, as the "Bible Belt." The percentage of Catholics in the South is minimal. The South overwhelmingly voted for George W. Bush while the heavily populated Catholic state in the Northeast voted for pro-abort Al Gore, as did the Cental Northern states and the West Coast.

   How does one account for this? Simple, it's the weak shepherds. Until now, they refused to protect the flock. We shall see where this leads. If the bishops of the above mentioned senators do the same, it will make the headlines: I can see it now: KENNEDY AND KERRY REFUSED HOLY COMMUNION.

   Do you realize what a great boon this would be in saving the lives of God's precious unborn children? Catholics need direction. Maybe now, Catholics will not continue to vote for members of the "Party of Death." Maybe now, the American Holocaust will end.

   By the way, and most of you already know this - 12 OF THE 13 senators mentioned above are in the Democratic party -- hence the title, "The Party of Death." Susan Collins is the lone Republican, and from her voting track record you could hardly call her a Republican. These Catholic senators know they are wrong in condoning this evil, but their party comes first and their Catholic Faith be damned, as well as the Commandment, "Thou Shalt Not Kill." The following appeared in World Net Daily yesterday. Does it offer hope or more of the same ol'?

    Pro-abortion pols barred from communion Catholic bishop issues decree addressing 'manifestly grave sin'

    Posted: January 9, 2004
    1:00 a.m. Eastern

    2004 WorldNetDaily.com

       A Roman Catholic bishop issued a formal decree barring any Catholic lawmaker in his diocese who favors abortion from participating in the church's Holy Communion sacrament.

       Bishop Raymond Burke of La Crosse, Wis., will be installed later this month as archbishop of St. Louis.

       The American Life League, a Virginia-based group that has encourage bishops to take such action in accordance with church law, hailed Burke's decree as "a historic step forward."

       "We have diligently brought to the attention of America's bishops the pro-abortion public comments of Catholic elected officials in each of their dioceses, and the church's remedy for this disparity," said American Life League's president, Judie Brown.

       In his notification, Burke said, "A Catholic legislator who supports procured abortion or euthanasia, after knowing the teaching of the church, commits a manifestly grave sin which is a cause of most serious scandal to others. Therefore, universal church law provides that such persons are not to be admitted to Holy Communion."

       The decree orders priests to withhold communion from such lawmakers until they "publicly renounce" their support of abortion rights.

       American Life League publishes the names of public officials who "claim the Catholic faith yet ignore the church's clear teachings on the sanctity of human life." The group says it has identified more than 500 state and federal officials.

       The group noted the Vatican reinforced those teachings a year ago when it issued a "Doctrinal Note on some questions regarding the participation of Catholics in political life."

       The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops recently established a task force to address the issue.

       "We will continue to encourage the task force and all American bishops to defend the truth and send a loud, clear message to all Catholic public officials: You cannot be pro-abortion and Catholic," Brown said.

       A Democratic lawmaker in Burke's diocese, U.S. Rep. David Obey, said he respects the bishop's effort to attempt to influence him through advocacy and reason, the Associated Press reported.

       "The votes I cast are driven by my own independent judgment and conscience, not by a set of marching orders given by any church hierarchy, prelate or associated lobby group," Obey said, according to the AP.

   We all know this is a lot of double-speak. Obey in no way "respects the bishop's effort to attempt to influence him through advocacy and reason," or he would heed his Catholic Faith completely and cease and desist from any agenda which contradicts Catholic teaching. But he's not interested in his Faith. Why not? Maybe because his bishop Raymond Burke and the rest haven't been interested, at least until now, in adhering to the strict absolutes of the Faith either.

   I know people will say but "Bishop Burke reprimanded these lawmakers." Yes, he did, but words are cheap, action proves the mettle of these men in miters. I know it has taken at least three years for Burke to do anything. Why did he have to wait until he was appointed Archbishop of St. Louis to do anything? Good question. Why is it Burke is just cleaning things up now that he is leaving La Crosse for more ambitious climes of a very Catholic area> Like many politicians such as Gore, could it be he is changing his tune to suit his constituents? Do you realize that three years ago The Daily Catholic ran a thorough series on exposing these pro-abort 'Catholic' politicians in its series HEROD'S HEROES and not only identified the responsible bishops, but published their addresses and phone numbers, and e-mail when available, to contact them and remind them?

   What was their reaction? Nothing. No matter how many Catholics called, and I know first hand for I have attempted to call virtually every diocese, they couldn't care less...both the bishops and the front people they have placed in power to protect them, from the receptionist to the "spokespersons" who truly haven't got a clue what the Catholic Church truly teaches. I remind the reader to review any of my columns from the past few years and you'll see proof of this.

   Let me remind you what was written about Congressman Obey in a most loving, but firm manner in the series Herod's Heroes:

    David R. Obey, the Democratic Representative for the 7th District of Wisconsin which covers the vast central and northwest central part of the state covering the largest district in Wisconsin stretching from the Central Sands country through the Wisconsin River Valley to the Minnesota border to Superior and the mighty Lake bordering his district on the north - Lake Superior, including the Apostle Islands on the largest of the Great Lakes. His area covers 19 counties and 16, 723 square miles. This is not a political statement on Obey, but rather a moral statement; one he and his bishops should take very, very seriously.

        Born in Okmulgee, Oklahoma in 1938, he was raised in Wausau, Wisconsin where the majority of his ancestors worked the rich farmland of the central part of the state. Both he and his future wife Joan attended St. James Catholic school in Wausau during the time when the Faith taught were absolutes. They both graduated together from Wausau East High and continued their education and romance at the University of Wisconsin in Madison. Dave was one of those rare politicians who got into it because he wanted to contribute something. Having worked in his dad's floor covering firm for many years, he came in contact with a lot of asbestos materials and felt something had to be done to protect people from the harmful, even cancerous effects of this. He was elected in 1969, well before Roe vs. Wade. He has been on Capitol Hill ever since, being one of the senior members of the House. He is now in his seventeenth term representing Wisconsin's 7th District.

        You would hope and pray that being Catholic and especially being educated in the absolutes of the Faith before Vatican II, that he would have gone against the grain of his party and seek to do what is right. But other than voting for the ban and agreeing it should be a federal crime for a non-parent to take a girl across state lines for an abortion, he has done little else. Because of his party affiliation he was even more willing to turn his back on God than his fellow Democrats. And here was a man who came into the Party when it stood for right, for dignity, for God. He has been tainted by those who came after him. Evidently he was not strong enough to stand up for his convictions. What price politics?!

        As a congressman he could do so much good, yet there have been no fruits because, through his action and record, he has sadly shown a disdain for the teachings of the Catholic Church and her mandate of upholding life in all stages. His 74% pro-abort voting record proves a horrendous consistency in voting for and legislating pro-abortion measures that empower the culture of death. He will have to answer to God for these transgressions against Christ's innocent ones as Jesus says in Matthew 25: 45, "'Amen I say to you, as long as you did not do it for one of these least ones, you did not do it for Me.' And these will go into everlasting punishment, but the just into everlasting life."

        We ask him to repent of his ways, help turn the Democratic Party away from the culture of death and the immoral organization it became under the evil leadership of the Clinton administration. We ask him to help bring the Party back to the glory days when the Party stood for decency and right. Today the Party he is so proud of is so far Left that its members, who continue to promote abortion - murder in the womb, could very well be left out at the Heavenly gates when their time comes.

        Is Congressman Obey truly aware of that? We call on all to help him see the grave error of his ways and we call on his bishop in La Crosse as well as the cardinal in Washington D.C. to take firm, responsible action to assure that if he continues to persist in the sin, he will be banished from the Church for remaining a Catholic while carrying on the sin with no sign of repentance. It is truly a slap in God's and His Church's face. As we wrote in our Ash Wednesday OPEN LETTER TO THE BISHOPS OF AMERICA and a week later in It's up to you. Left or Right? and Monday in our Open Letter to the Bishops III: "Defer no time, delays have dangerous ends" we respectfully, but strongly remind you time is of the essence. We are now in the second half, if you will, Eastertide - not a lot of time for the bishops to extend the warning - a time of Mercy - for these wayward 'Catholics' who promote abortion to repent of their ways. We have set this date because after this special day of enlightenment there can be NO MORE EXCUSES either from the polticians or the bishops! If the politicians stubbornly refuse, then after Pentecost Sunday it's time to take action and dismiss them as apostates. Do you really want that, Congressman Obey?

        You can e-mail David Obey and, in love, ask him yourself. Beg him to repent of his ways. Remind him what Jesus asserts in Matthew 16: 26-27, "For what does it profit a man, if he gain the whole world, but suffer the loss of his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? For the Son of Man is to come with His angels in the glory of His Father, and then He will render to everyone according to his conduct." Is his political career more important than the welfare of his soul? Ask him. His e-mail is wi07@legislators.com

        We call on the Bishop of LaCrosse, whose jurisdiction governs Obey's area of residence in Wausau and his constituency, Bishop Raymond L. Burke along with Obey's governing prelate in the nation's capitol Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, Archbishop of Washington D.C., to jointly issue a mandate to Congressman Obey that if he persists after Pentecost Sunday he will be EXCOMMUNICATED.

        These bishops must realize that they have a duty before God, a duty to their flocks to extend mercy through the grace-period of this past Lent and now the Easter Season leading up to Pentecost. If no action is taken or if there is and Congressman Obey refuses to heed even the Church, then let him be an anathema.

        Like the prodigal son - we will gladly welcome him back and be proud to number him as a loyal Catholic - as a Paul who once was Saul. Does David Obey really want his legacy in eternity to be that he was one of "Herod's Heroes?" With all the good that he has sought to accomplish, why have it blotted out by the evil that he has done? We pray his heart will be touched and he will return to the fold. We ask him to seek out Father Daniel Coughlin, House Chaplain, and discuss it with him. But if he refuses, or chooses not to cooperate with the Church, if he ignores God's commands, then so be it. He has sold his soul to the devil and Christ has made it very clear in Matthew 19: 15-18 of how to treat one who turns his back on His teachings.

        Our bishops MUST follow Our Lord's teachings, they MUST stand up for Christ and His Church. They MUST not only speak out without reservation, but they MUST issue the ultimatum to these pro-abort politicians who bring so much scandal to the Church by continuing to call themselves 'Catholic.' If, by Pentecost Sunday, Congressman Obey refuses to repent, then he must be notified that he has interdicted himself by his actions, incurred automatic suspension (latae sententiae), and thus has been EXCOMMUNICATED! (cf. Canon Law 1329, 2; 1397 and 1398).

    In that same piece that appeared in The Daily Catholic on April 26,2001, were the addresses and phone numbers not only of Obey, Burke and McCarrick, but also Archbishop Gabriel Montalvo, the Apostolic Pro Nuncio to the United States, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, Prefect of the Sacred Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and Cardinal Giovanni Baptista Re the Prefect for the Sacred Congregation of Bishops. Three years ago and nothing.

    One doesn't need to be a Rhodes Scholar to realize that if Ratzinger and Re weren't going to do anything, then Montalvo sure wouldn't. And if Montalvo wouldn't, then you know McCarrick sure wouldn't. If McCarrick wasn't concerned, then why should Burke be concerned. And that brings us to David Obey. Why should he place his Catholic Faith above his political agenda when it wasn't that important to the shepherds of his very constituents?

    Herein is the very reason the Democratic Party has been able to be marshaled by the forces of satan and become the 'Party of Death.' Why so many Catholics have voted consistently for pro-abort politicians and now are beginning to lean toward pro-sodomite lawmakers. Did you know that the dangerous, erratic, mean-spirited Howard Dean was born a Catholic? That's right. But since then he's changed his stripes so many times that no one knows what religion he has grasped onto this week. Whenever he attempts to speak about religion or God it's apparent the man has no clue as to Faith.

    Is it not a sad-coincidence that it is in the very Catholic state of Massachusetts where the sacred institution of Matrimony is being challenged by the crass, unnatural agenda of sodomite unions? It is not tragic that it was in the very, very Catholic city of Boston where the greatest scandal occurred and Cardinal Bernard Law had to resign in disgrace? You'll note he did not resign because the Pope demanded it, or his peers of the cloth, but the secular media. Ah, there's the rub.

    While the secular media is definitely anti-Catholic, perhaps they are doing the Faith a great service by exposing the unCatholic actions of the bishops: Shame them into returning to their Catholic roots. God works in strange and mysterious ways. Despite many cardinals' criminalizing the secular press for stirring up a hornets' nest with accusations of pedophilia, the fact is, as former Oklahoma Governor Frank Keating emphasized, the Bishops are no better than the Mafia. In fact, they are the Modern Mafia with such 'Godfathers' as Cardinal Roger Mahoney who, of course, not only immediately denied the claim and degradated the staunch pro-life Catholic Keating, but continued his Mafia-like cover-up. In fact, it has been revealed just recently that many high-up priests in the Los Angeles Archdiocese have been protected by Mahoney as evidenced by briefs filed here in California. I'm not surprised. I live here. It is definitely no longer Catholic.

    So what are we to do, you and I? We can, of course, continue to pray, and we can continue to write the hierarchy letters and complain. But the only action that seems to get these bishops off their haunches is to embarass them by exposing their agenda to the secular press. So if you see something or know of a priest or bishop that is not adhering to Catholic doctrine, then by all means tell him, but also, as long as you have proof, let the media know. Sad as it is, that's the only way the bishops will respond. That has been proven.

    It all began with John Fitzgerald Kennedy divorcing his faith from his politics and it must end with his little (not so little size-wise or influence-wise) brother Edward who has so apostasized his Faith. Cardinal Sean O'Malley can no longer hide behind the fact that he doesn't know or can't judge. Yes, he must. If he doesn't want the same fate to befall him that leveled Law, then he must publicly EXCOMMUNICATE Kennedy, Kerry and the rest of the ilk that so scandalize America.

    In the same vein, Archbishop-elect Raymond Burke must keep a keen eye-out, indeed spies if need be, to see that if Obey or any of the other politicians he has formally warned dare to approach the communion line, that he -or his successor - follow-up with a firm, no-nonsense PUBLIC EXCOMMUNICATION. Then, and only then will others sit up and notice. If he doesn't do that, then he is abandoning Christ and the Mystical Body of Christ - His Church.

    Either the bishops do that or the Cardinals, Bishops, et al should realize that they, by their inactions to uphold Catholic doctrine, have excommunicated themselves - latae sententiae. It's their choice. They have brought great shame on the name of Catholicism by their scandals over these past 40 years. Isn't it time they right the wrongs? If not, then it's a sure sign they have no muscle and the real clout, sad though it is, in fact is the secular press. That means, as Sacred Scripture bears out, that our bishops have abdicated their authority to mammon.

Dr. Frank Joseph

For past columns by Dr. Frank Joseph, see PRO LIFE PRESCRIPTION ARCHIVES

    January 10, 2004
    vol 15, no. 10