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Catholics can vote for Kerry (Andrew Greeley)
New York Daily News ^ | 10/10/04 | Andrew Greeley

Posted on 08/10/2004 8:29:06 AM PDT by madprof98

John Kerry's stance on abortion - he opposes it personally but would do nothing to roll back the Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court decision that legalized it - has brought him under attack from some American bishops. That raises a question for many Catholics about what to do in November.

The answer is that Catholics can vote for Kerry. They don't have to, but it would not be a sin to do so, according to a distinguished theologian:

"A Catholic would be guilty of formal cooperation in evil, and so unworthy to present himself for Holy Communion, if he were to deliberately vote for a candidate precisely because of the candidate's permissive stand on abortion and/or euthanasia. When a Catholic does not share a candidate's stand in favor of abortion and/or euthanasia, but votes for that candidate for other reasons, it is considered remote material cooperation, which can be permitted in the presence of proportionate reasons."

That was not written by some radical liberal Catholic theologian. It comes from the cardinal prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (once the Holy Office of the Inquisition), Joseph Ratzinger.

It is as close to an official statement on the subject as one is likely to get. It says that Catholics are not obliged to vote on one issue, no matter how important the issue might be. They may vote for Kerry "for other reasons" so long as they are not supporting him merely for his pro-choice stance.

That ought to settle the matter. Catholics who have been confused by the insistence of a few bishops, some priests and some pro-life laity that they must vote against Kerry now know that they are free to make their choice balancing all issues - just as they always have been.

The theory of "indirect material cooperation" is traditional Catholic moral teaching. Apparently, the few bishops who threaten to exclude Catholics from Communion if they vote for Kerry don't know much traditional moral theology, which shows what the qualifications are for the bishopric these days.

U.S. bishops actually quoted the paragraph from Ratzinger in their recent statement on the subject.

Moreover, in response to the question "whether the denial of Holy Communion to some Catholics in political life is necessary because of their public support for abortion on demand," the bishops did not endorse the policy of the small group of their members who wanted such denial.

Catholic leaders have found themselves in a dilemma since Roe vs. Wade. They believe, as they must, that a constitutional right to abortion is bad law. But they know that most American women - including most Catholics - believe it is a right they should have, even if they do not intend to exercise it.

Therefore, bishops are cast in the role of those who would take away the rights of women by the exercise of political clout. This is not a good position to be in when you affirm, as they do, the need to "persuade" and to "dialogue." But how do those who disagree with the church dialogue with leaders who believe they are absolutely right and that others are absolutely wrong?

I can think of only one way that bishops might earn a hearing for their teaching. While insisting on their convictions, they should refrain from questioning the integrity and good faith of those who disagree.

Then they should become beacons of light on all issues concerning human life, the rights of women and the rights of the poor and the oppressed.

Originally published on August 10, 2004


TOPICS: Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: andrewgreeley; catholicvote; kerry
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If Kerry is elected, I think it will be just a short time before orthodox Christianity of any sort is openly persecuted. There will be no shortage of people willing to do the job, and some of them will be Catholic priests.
1 posted on 08/10/2004 8:29:08 AM PDT by madprof98
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To: madprof98

bs article. Most catholic do not supportabortion.


2 posted on 08/10/2004 8:31:19 AM PDT by fooman (Get real with Kim Jung Mentally Ill about proliferation)
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To: madprof98
Then they should become beacons of light on all issues concerning human life, the rights of women and the rights of the poor and the oppressed.

And vote for republicans for it is they who oppose the killing of the unborn, the state supported destruction of the urban family, equal rights for all and genocide committed by lunatic dictators.

3 posted on 08/10/2004 8:32:19 AM PDT by jwalsh07 (Donate to the Swifties, once again serving the nation selflessly)
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To: madprof98
I'm surprised Greely didn't re-dact this part of Ratzinger's comment...

which can be permitted in the presence of proportionate reasons."

I think one would be hard-pressed to prove that welfare, the death penalty (permissible by Catholicism), or bigger government even come close to the moral abyss of killing the innocent.

4 posted on 08/10/2004 8:33:20 AM PDT by Rutles4Ever
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To: madprof98

Sure - a new york newspaper has the "IN" to Christian beliefs. And I am the Pope too!


Yes, dear people - Catholics ARE Christians! - just as Baptist, and a FEW others are also.

Christianity is losing to the - here's the slam words - satanists. That is all you can call them. If you beleive in Christianity, you MUST also believe in satan.


5 posted on 08/10/2004 8:33:27 AM PDT by steplock ( www.spadata.com)
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To: fooman

This Catholic supports neither abortion, stem cell research or Kerry.

I have ordered my Catholics Against Kerry bumper stickers.


6 posted on 08/10/2004 8:34:35 AM PDT by Jaded ((Clothes make the man. Naked people have little or no influence on society. - Mark Twain))
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To: madprof98

There is no good reason to be voting for johnfkerry.......as a practicing Catholic, I cannot in good conscience vote for any dem candidaite, least of all kerry. If a candidaite cannot stand up for the unborn, he won't be standing up for me.


7 posted on 08/10/2004 8:34:57 AM PDT by tioga (Flush the johns in '04!)
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To: fooman; jwalsh07; madprof98

As left-wing Greeley is, he has a point. Ratzinger has some explaining to do. Archbishop Burke and Bishop Sheridan seem to be taking stances contrary to Ratzinger's.


8 posted on 08/10/2004 8:34:57 AM PDT by Pyro7480 (Sub tuum praesidium confugimus, sancta Dei Genitrix.... sed a periculis cunctis libera nos semper...)
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To: madprof98
Catholics can vote for Kerry

That’s what confession is for.

9 posted on 08/10/2004 8:35:11 AM PDT by dead (I've got my eye out for Mullah Omar.)
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To: madprof98
Rev. Greeley should stick to writing trash novels instead of pretending to be a decent priest.

And what he neglects to mention is that the "indirect material cooperation" is only permissible if voting for the immoral candidate helps to prevent the election of someone with an even more immoral agenda.

None of Bush's policy stands promote evils worse than the murder of unborn children, so clearly this principle does not apply.

10 posted on 08/10/2004 8:36:21 AM PDT by wideawake (God bless our brave soldiers and their Commander in Chief)
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To: madprof98

Andrew Greeley keeps shifting his place on the Top Ten anti-Catholics in America.


11 posted on 08/10/2004 8:37:00 AM PDT by JohnnyZ
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To: madprof98
Just wait until the Robot Pope hears about this!
12 posted on 08/10/2004 8:37:13 AM PDT by sonofatpatcher2 (Texas, Love & a .45-- What more could you want, campers? };^)
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To: Pyro7480
Ratzinger has some explaining to do.

No he doesn't.

Greely should explain to the Cardinal why he twisted the Cardinal's words.

13 posted on 08/10/2004 8:37:16 AM PDT by wideawake (God bless our brave soldiers and their Commander in Chief)
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To: Pyro7480

I really don't have a problem with Ratzingers statement. Greeleys problem is that a large majority of Catholics vote democrat because they are pro abortion. In any case, only the voter and God know the truth.


14 posted on 08/10/2004 8:37:59 AM PDT by jwalsh07 (Donate to the Swifties, once again serving the nation selflessly)
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To: tioga

spell check works, use it
spell check works, use it
spell check works, use it


15 posted on 08/10/2004 8:38:09 AM PDT by tioga (Flush the johns in '04!)
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To: sinkspur; Askel5; Campion; Arthur McGowan; Aquinasfan; ELS; patent; Romulus; Saundra Duffy; ...

Greeley Alert!


16 posted on 08/10/2004 8:38:21 AM PDT by Incorrigible (immanentizing the eschaton)
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To: madprof98
And Hilter made the trains run on time and created jobs in Germany also. So I guess his other "views" were not as bad also based on the logic of the article.

Evil is evil regardless. I bet I could find another text from Cd. Ratzinger that would contradict the one referenced in the article.

One of the major planks of the democratic party is the support of abortion, the murder of a unborn human being, which is evil.

Anyone that kids themselves into believing it is ok to support Kerry, are the same as the people in Nazi Germany that ignored the ash and smoke from the death camps while going to work and the market.
17 posted on 08/10/2004 8:38:21 AM PDT by BobCNY
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To: madprof98
I've had the same terrible thought. Many see that Kerry is bad, but few, it seems, see that the fundamental root of the hatred of Bush has to do with his faith in God and Kerry's (unspoken but lived) agnosticism.

Their hatred of the unborn and willingness to kill for conveninece easily spills over into hatred of their own contemporaries - except the latter they are forced to acknowledge as human beings. We will find that Kerry and others like him are far more like Hitler than Bush ever was.

18 posted on 08/10/2004 8:39:06 AM PDT by Lexinom
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To: wideawake
"When a Catholic does not share a candidate's stand in favor of abortion and/or euthanasia, but votes for that candidate for other reasons, it is considered remote material cooperation, which can be permitted in the presence of proportionate reasons."

This is pretty much what the Democrats are trying to do. I remember some Democrat saying basically "We agree with the Church on many issues, possibly more than the Republicans do." If Ratzinger says it "can be permitted," what does that tell you?

19 posted on 08/10/2004 8:39:33 AM PDT by Pyro7480 (Sub tuum praesidium confugimus, sancta Dei Genitrix.... sed a periculis cunctis libera nos semper...)
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To: madprof98
That was not written by some radical liberal Catholic theologian. It comes from the cardinal prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (once the Holy Office of the Inquisition), Joseph Ratzinger.

Does RATzinger speak for himself, the church and or the Pope?

Seems to me thae if you vote for someone that is pro abortion then you are voting for an enabler. jmo

20 posted on 08/10/2004 8:41:50 AM PDT by Netizen (Abortion is not a choice -- it's murder. The only 'choice' is which method of birth control to use.)
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To: Jaded

cord and bone marrow stem research we support. They are also the most effective forms of stems cells.

Big media/myth and junk science to promote embrio stems...


21 posted on 08/10/2004 8:42:36 AM PDT by fooman (Get real with Kim Jung Mentally Ill about proliferation)
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To: dead

who could afford the pennance?


22 posted on 08/10/2004 8:43:58 AM PDT by Zavien Doombringer (NO, I wasn't late for a Zot, I did a Stealth Zot...)
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To: Rutles4Ever
That's an excellent point.

Mr. Greeley should explain to his readers what the phrase "proportionate reasons" means in the context of the slaughter of 40+ million Americans since 1973.

The irony of this kind of attitude is that people like Greeley praise "Catholic leaders" today for acting in a manner that would have drawn outrage if the person in question was named Pope Pius XII, and the period in question was the 1930s and 1940s instead of 2004.

23 posted on 08/10/2004 8:44:17 AM PDT by Alberta's Child ("Ego numquam pronunciare mendacium . . . sed ego sum homo indomitus")
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To: madprof98
Question....

Are the Catholic bishops going to listen to Ratzinger now, even though many of them ignored him recently, when he established "the principle of refusing communion to pro-abortion Catholic politicians "?

The Kerry Affair: What Ratzinger Wanted from the American Bishops What he wanted, but didn’t get.... the prefect of the Holy Office establishes the principle of refusing communion to pro-abortion Catholic politicians

ROMA – Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, prefect of the Vatican Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, was clear with Theodore Cardinal McCarrick, archbishop of Washington and the head of the “domestic policy” commission of the U.S. Catholic bishops’ conference. He was more than clear, he set it down in writing: no eucharistic communion for the politicians who systematically campaign for abortion.

Read: no communion for the Democratic candidate for the White House, the Catholic John F. Kerry.

Ratzinger’s memorandum is presented in its entirety below. It was sent as a confidential letter, during the first half of June, to cardinal McCarrick and to the president of the bishops’ conference, Wilton Gregory. But the bishops of the United States made a different decision.

After months of discussion, and after days of wrangling at their conference’s general assembly, held in Denver from June 14-19, they published a note entitled “Catholics in Political Life,” which leaves to each individual bishop the decision of whether or not to give communion to pro-abortion Catholic politicians.


24 posted on 08/10/2004 8:46:49 AM PDT by syriacus (Let's give a jeer, and 1 jeer more, for the ersatz hero of Swift 94. He IS a flipping man.)
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To: All

25 posted on 08/10/2004 8:48:16 AM PDT by Prime Choice (When Clinton lies, he insults our integrity. When Kerry lies, he insults our intelligence.)
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To: madprof98
Catholics can vote for Kerry

Well this catholic isn't going to vote for Kerry, and you can take that to the bank.

26 posted on 08/10/2004 8:48:28 AM PDT by Kaslin (It took Kerry 40 minutes to react on September 11, 2001)
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To: madprof98
"A Catholic would be guilty of formal cooperation in evil, and so unworthy to present himself for Holy Communion, if he were to deliberately vote for a candidate precisely because of the candidate's permissive stand on abortion and/or euthanasia. When a Catholic does not share a candidate's stand in favor of abortion and/or euthanasia, but votes for that candidate for other reasons, it is considered remote material cooperation, which can be permitted in the presence of proportionate reasons."

They used to call this kind of reasoning "Jesuitical." So I guess you could vote for Hitler if you opposed his position on Jews but supported his health care plan.
27 posted on 08/10/2004 8:48:33 AM PDT by Steve_Seattle
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To: BobCNY

Great point.

I bet, heavily, that Ratzinger is being taken horribly out of context. Yes, one can vote for a pro-abortion candidate for the office of "dog catcher" since such elected offices have no impact on human life/death issues. I am sure that THAT was the point of Ratzinger's statement.


28 posted on 08/10/2004 8:49:40 AM PDT by Miles the Slasher
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To: Pyro7480

HOWEVER!!!! Let's look at that nice neat word "PROPORTIONATE". The Church has done everything it can do lately to make Catholics understand that the death penalty, social justice, and the socio-economic safety net are not proportionate issues to abortion. Abortion and euthanasia stand atop the ladder because of the fact that they are GRAVE SINS that cannot be allowed for any purpose. The Church grants that States have the right to capital punishment (even though the Church is clear that it doesn't think that there is adequate reason in today's Western Culture). But, they do acknowledge the right. There is a right to defend yourself in war. But there is never an allowance for the murder of the unborn and elderly. Ratzinger is not saying it can be permitted!! We have to understand that abortion would never be an equal issue; therefore, a Catholic can NEVER vote for a pro-death, baby killing candidate.


29 posted on 08/10/2004 8:49:54 AM PDT by lnbchip
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To: Netizen
Does RATzinger speak for himself, the church and or the Pope?

Ratzinger's words on doctrine should be heeded.

But the American bishops have ignored his previous words which said that the politicians who systematically campaign for abortion should not get Eucharistic communion.

30 posted on 08/10/2004 8:51:14 AM PDT by syriacus (Let's give a jeer, and 1 jeer more, for the ersatz hero of Swift 94. He IS a flipping man.)
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To: madprof98

If Andrew Greeley is a "distinguished theologian," then John Kerry is a "Vietnam war hero."


31 posted on 08/10/2004 8:51:25 AM PDT by Tax-chick ("The short, gray-haired lady, with all the kids.")
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To: madprof98

Accrding to Greeley's logic a voter could, in good conscience, vote for Adolph Hitler based on his economic revival of the German economy despite Hitler's pesky little "final solution" program.


32 posted on 08/10/2004 8:53:00 AM PDT by Inwoodian
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To: Inwoodian

...just as long as one is "personally-opposed" to genocide.


33 posted on 08/10/2004 8:55:37 AM PDT by Miles the Slasher
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To: madprof98
The key phrase: "in the presence of proportionate reasons."

Those proportionate reasons range in number somewhere between few and none.

This is a newspaper's butchering of a cardinal's philosophically precise explanation.

34 posted on 08/10/2004 8:57:17 AM PDT by Aquinasfan (Isaiah 22:22, Rev 3:7, Mat 16:19)
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To: dead
Absolution would be worthless if you are not to leave the confessional with a firm purpose of amendment to not supporting abortion. The Catholic would still not be in the state of grace therefore the person could not receive communion Confession is only for the contrite heart and I do not see a contrite heart in Kerry. And reading some of the letters to the editor in our diocese paper, it seems there would not be many contrite hearts confessing.
35 posted on 08/10/2004 8:57:17 AM PDT by franky (Pray for the souls of the faithful departed. Pray for our own souls to receive the grace of a happy)
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To: syriacus

Let me rephrase. If RATzinger says it's ok to vote for pro abortion candidates, does that mean that the Pope would agree? If not, then why place RATzinger above the Pope?


36 posted on 08/10/2004 8:57:42 AM PDT by Netizen (Abortion is not a choice -- it's murder. The only 'choice' is which method of birth control to use.)
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To: Tax-chick

Good one.


37 posted on 08/10/2004 8:57:49 AM PDT by milford421
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To: steplock

I was the Pope for a while. Then they found out I was a Baptist and fired me. They replaced me with some old dude.


38 posted on 08/10/2004 8:58:14 AM PDT by Conspiracy Guy (I'm Conspiracy Guy and I approve this message. "John Kerry is a liar !")
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To: madprof98
Some notes from Ratzinger's Fan Club bio:

1932 December:
Due to his father's outspoken criticism of the Nazis, Ratzinger's family is forced to relocate to Auschau am Inn, at the foot of the Alps.

1969
Scandalized by his encounter with radical ideology at Tübingen, Ratzinger moves back to Bavaria to take a teaching position at the University of Regensburg.

39 posted on 08/10/2004 8:58:54 AM PDT by syriacus (Let's give a jeer, and 1 jeer more, for the ersatz hero of Swift 94. He IS a flipping man.)
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To: madprof98
What a theological crock of deceptive steaming poop. God holds all of us responsible for our actions, even our votes!

Those whom we vote for will act upon their political and personal convictions. Mr. Kerry supports abortion, likewise, because he opposes a constitutional marriage amendment that simply defines marriage as "the union between one man and one woman" by default he supports also supports homosexual marriage (He has never stated otherwise regarding abortion or homosexuality). It is important to note that the Democratic Party is solidly behind abortion and homosexuality. Therefore, anyone voting for him will be placing a man in office who has every intention on continuing the policy of killing the unborn and promoting homosexuality within American society, both of which are TOTALLY CONTRARY to the known will and word of God.

It is the height of spiritual evil, ignorance and dishonesty for so-called "spiritual leaders" of the Roman Catholic church to tell those under their care that it is "OK" to vote for Mr. Kerry when he stands in opposition to Christ and the Word of God.

God will hold those who vote for Mr. Kerry, and those who have convinced them that "God says it is OK," responsible for their votes and actions.

40 posted on 08/10/2004 9:00:50 AM PDT by Jmouse007 (Call me when they recind the PC war)
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To: Pyro7480
It tells me that there are Catholics in more places than just the US.

In Europe, say the Cardinal's native Germany, there is no such thing as a prolife candidate.

There are candidates who support only first trimester abortions and there are candidates who support third trimester abortions.

Who do you vote for? By the idea of "proportionate reason" you vote for the former since fewer abortions will likely occur if they are legally restricted to the first trimester.

41 posted on 08/10/2004 9:00:54 AM PDT by wideawake (God bless our brave soldiers and their Commander in Chief)
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To: lnbchip

I look at my Grandkids (19-17-13-10) and we love them so
damn much- they are all spoiled rotten....My wife bakes
cookies every time any of them are coming over...they go
right to the cookie jar....we just had our 50th Wedding Anniversary and all our own (4) and all husbands,etc. also there exept oldest granddaughter..in Atlanta (we live in
California),..she is taking extra ballet instructions there
be back this week....I cringe when thinking of politicans like the two Senators from Mass....oh, well..if the voters
don't support Bush...it is their loss....love to all..Jake


42 posted on 08/10/2004 9:02:17 AM PDT by sanjacjake
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To: Aquinasfan
The key phrase: "in the presence of proportionate reasons."

Proportionate. Does that mean that if you are opposed to abortion, BUT you are pro homosexual marriage, then proportionately you could vote for the pro abortion candidate?

But wait, homosexual marriage should be another violation, so now we have two issues in which the church should be standing firm against. Proportionately I would think they would look to encourage their members to vote for the candidate whose moral values most closely match up with their spiritual ones. jmo

43 posted on 08/10/2004 9:02:39 AM PDT by Netizen (Abortion is not a choice -- it's murder. The only 'choice' is which method of birth control to use.)
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To: madprof98

What are the proportionate reasons with Kerry?

I can see how this applies to my congressional race. I will vote for pro-abort Republican Melissa Brown over pro-abort Democrat Allyson Schwartz because Brown willhelp solidify the pro-life Republican party in power in the House.

I can't see what is proportionate about voting for Kerry.


44 posted on 08/10/2004 9:03:02 AM PDT by Hermann the Cherusker
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To: madprof98
The Voters Guide for Serious Catholics at http://www.catholic.com/library/voters_guide.asp says otherwise. It gives 5 non-negotiable issues:

1. Abortion

2. Euthanasia

3. Fetal Stem Cell Research

4. Human Cloning

5. Homosexual "Marriage"

It also gives advise on how NOT to vote and how TO vote. In the item how NOT to vote, item 3 is

3. Do not vote for candidates simply because they declare themselves to be Catholic. Unfortunately, many self-described Catholic candidates reject basic Catholic moral teaching. They are "Catholic" only when seeking votes from Catholics.

It also mentions why these items are included but other items such as Death Penalty are not. For example:

Since the Church "does not exclude . . . recourse to the death penalty" in some situations, it is not intrinsically evil. It is something that can be morally permitted in some situations. Though in the prudential judgment of Pope John Paul II, such instances are rare (Evangelium Vitae 56), it is not a non-negotiable issue but one requiring prudential judgment as to the situations in which it is warranted.

45 posted on 08/10/2004 9:03:06 AM PDT by Rich_E
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To: Jmouse007
It is the height of spiritual evil, ignorance and dishonesty for so-called "spiritual leaders" of the Roman Catholic church to tell those under their care that it is "OK" to vote for Mr. Kerry when he stands in opposition to Christ and the Word of God.

No Catholic spiritual leader has said this.

This is a lie that Rev. Greeley is telling to further his personal agenda. Bear in mind, this is a retired priest who has no parish ministry.

46 posted on 08/10/2004 9:03:21 AM PDT by wideawake (God bless our brave soldiers and their Commander in Chief)
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Greeley is a loser. This catholic is voting Bush!


47 posted on 08/10/2004 9:03:50 AM PDT by Rocket1968 (Democrats will crash and burn in 2004.)
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To: Jmouse007

Your #40 is very well stated. Thanks.


48 posted on 08/10/2004 9:05:00 AM PDT by Netizen (Abortion is not a choice -- it's murder. The only 'choice' is which method of birth control to use.)
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To: madprof98

Father Greeley should stick to writing his border line pornographic novels.


49 posted on 08/10/2004 9:05:43 AM PDT by NeoCaveman (John Kerry did not spend Christmas in Cambodia, it was another lie from the faux Irishman)
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To: wideawake

The fact that the UK and Australia do not allow third trimester abortions means that the issue is coming our way.

America has some of the most permissive abortion laws...


50 posted on 08/10/2004 9:06:55 AM PDT by fooman (Get real with Kim Jung Mentally Ill about proliferation)
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