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66: Bishops Decry "Toxic Residue" of Notre Dame Scandal
LifeSite News ^ | May 6, 2009 | Kathleen Gilbert

Posted on 05/06/2009 8:01:28 AM PDT by NYer

SOUTH BEND, Indiana, May 5, 2009 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Four more U.S. bishops have come out against the decision by the University of Notre Dame to honor President Obama with the commencement address and an honorary law degree at the school's graduation May 17.

Philadelphia's Archbishop Emeritus, Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua, released to the Catholic professional group Legatus his letter to University president Fr. Jenkins expressing "great distress" at the invitation and calling for its retraction. (http://patricknovecosky.wordpress.com/2009/05/04/cardinal-bevilacqua-addresses-n...)

"While one may understand an invitation to President Obama to engage him in conversation on creating a culture of life, it is not appropriate for him to speak at the commencement exercises of a Catholic university, nor should he receive an honorary degree," wrote Bevilacqua.  "Such actions cause confusion among faithful Catholics and send a mixed message regarding the clear Magisterium of the Catholic Church on life issues.

"It is my hope and prayer that the University of Notre Dame will rescind the invitation to President Obama to speak at the commencement and withhold the conferral of an honorary degree to him or to anyone who so blatantly disregards the basic moral principles upon which the United States of America was founded," he wrote.  Cardinal Bevilacqua added that he would keep "a special remembrance in my thoughts and prayers" for Fr. Jenkins and Notre Dame.

In a statement yesterday, Bishop Lawrence Brandt of the Greensburg, PA diocese wrote that he learned "with shock and deep distress" of Notre Dame's honoring of "one of the most pro-abortion politicians ever to appear on the American political stage." (http://www.thecompassnews.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&...)

"Although the University claims to be opposed to abortion, this issue is apparently not deemed important enough to preclude Mr. Obama's receiving honors at the Notre Dame Commencement," said Bishop Brandt.  "There is a serious dichotomy between what the University says it believes and what it does."

Bishop Brandt also declared his solidarity with Notre Dame's Bishop John D'Arcy, who has condemned the Obama honor and announced he would boycott the ceremony.

"The attempts to justify this invitation represent for so many a pathetic trivialization of Notre Dame's Catholic identity," Brandt continued.

"The toxic residue from this scandal will be the perception that Notre Dame has made dissent in the Catholic Church respectable.  This cannot be looked upon as a paradigm to be followed by others.

"For the sake of those yet to be educated at Notre Dame, for the good of the Church which Father Jenkins, as a religious priest, is vowed to serve, I urge him to do what is honorable by acknowledging the crisis and having the courage to cease and desist from pursuing the deconstruction and division he has embarked upon," Bishop Brandt concluded.

Another letter to Fr. Jenkins was issued by Bishop George Thomas of Helena, Montana, on May 1.  In it, Bishop Thomas said he felt the decision was "misguided and damaging both to the University and to the Catholic Church at large."  (http://www.diocesehelena.org/thomas/050109%20letter.pdf)

"The honorary doctorate should be reserved for persons whose lives and accomplishments reflect those exemplary qualities and values we wish to cultivate in the lives of our students," wrote Bishop Thomas.  "Sadly, President Barack Obama's consistent assault upon the civil rights of the unborn reflects the very antithesis of our Catholic social and moral teaching on the sacredness of life from conception until natural death."

The Helena bishop joined the majority of opposing bishops who pointed out that the invitation violated USCCB policy, and said he was "particularly disappointed" in Fr. Jenkins' leadership. 

"By allowing the University to confer this degree, you have failed to exercise your prophetic voice and teach the American people that the only change we can count on is 'founded on truth, built upon justice, and animated by love' - love for the least, the last, and the lowliest in our midst," he wrote.

According to an article in The Compass, the newspaper for the diocese of Green Bay, Wisconsin, Bishop David Ricken has also spoken out against the scandal and said the Obama honor violates USCCB policy.  (http://www.thecompassnews.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&...)

The bishops who have so far expressed disapproval of Notre Dame's invitation to Obama (in alphabetical order) are:

1. Bishop John D'Arcy - Fort Wayne-South Bend, IN
2. Bishop Samuel Aquila - Fargo, ND
3. Bishop Gregory Aymond - Austin, TX
4. Bishop Gerald Barbarito - Palm Beach, FL
5. Bishop Leonard Blair - Toledo, OH
6. Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua (Archbishop Emeritus) - Philadelphia, PA
7. Bishop Lawrence Brandt - Greensburg, PA
8. Archbishop Daniel Buechlein - Indianapolis, IN
9. Bishop Robert Baker - Birmingham, AL
10. Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz - Lincoln, NE
11. Archbishop Eusebius Beltran - Oklahoma City, OK
12. Auxiliary Bishop Oscar Cantú - San Antonio, TX
13. Archbishop Charles Chaput - Denver, CO
14. Bishop Paul Coakley - Salina, KS
15. Bishop Edward Cullen - Allentown, PA
16. Cardinal Daniel DiNardo - Houston, TX
17. Archbishop Timothy Dolan - New York, NY
18. Bishop Thomas Doran - Rockford, IL
19. Auxiliary Bishop John Dougherty - Scranton, PA
20. Bishop Robert Finn - Kansas City-St. Joseph, MO
21. Bishop Joseph Galante - Camden, NJ
22. Bishop Victor Galeone - St. Augustine, FL
23. Cardinal Francis George - Chicago, IL; President, USCCB
24. Bishop Gerald Gettelfinger - Evansville, IN
25. Archbishop José Gomez - San Antonio, TX
26. Bishop Bernard Harrington - Winona, MN
27. Bishop Robert Hermann - St. Louis, MO
28. Bishop William Higi - Lafayette, IN
29. Archbishop Alfred Hughes - New Orleans, LA
30. Bishop Michael O. Jackels - Wichita, KS
31. Bishop James V. Johnston - Springfield-Cape Girardeau, MO
32. Bishop Peter Jugis - Charlotte, NC
33. Bishop Joseph Latino - Jackson, MS
34. Bishop John LeVoir - New Ulm, MN
35. Bishop Jerome Listecki - La Crosse, WI
36. Bishop William E. Lori - Bridgeport, CT
37. Bishop Paul Loverde - Arlington, VA
38. Bishop George Lucas - Springfield, IL
39. Bishop Robert Lynch - St. Petersburg, FL
40. Bishop Joseph Martino - Scranton, PA
41. Bishop John McCormack - Manchester, NH
42. Bishop Robert Morlino - Madison, WI
43. Bishop William Murphy - Rockville Centre, NY
44. Bishop George Murry - Youngstown, OH
45. Archbishop John J. Myers - Newark, NJ
46. Archbishop Joseph Naumann - Kansas City, KS
47. Bishop R. Walker Nickless - Sioux City, IA
48. Archbishop John C. Nienstedt - St. Paul-Minneapolis, MN
49. Archbishop Edwin O'Brien - Baltimore, MD
50. Bishop Thomas Olmsted - Phoenix, AZ
51. Archbishop Daniel E. Pilarczyk - Cincinnati, OH
52. Bishop Reymundo Pena - Brownsville, TX
53. Bishop Glen Provost - Lake Charles, LA
54. Bishop David Ricken - Green Bay, WI
55. Cardinal Justin Rigali - Philadelphia, PA; Chairman, USCCB Pro-Life Committee
56. Bishop Kevin Rhoades - Harrisburg, PA
57. Bishop Alexander Sample - Marquette, MI
58. Bishop Edward J. Slattery - Tulsa, OK
59. Bishop Richard Stika - Knoxville, TN
60. Bishop Anthony Taylor - Little Rock, AR
61. Bishop George Thomas - Helena, MT
62. Bishop Robert Vasa - Baker, OR
63. Bishop Michael Warfel - Great Falls-Billings, MT
64. Bishop Thomas Wenski - Orlando, FL
65. Archbishop Donald Wuerl - Washington, D.C.
66. Bishop David Zubick - Pittsburgh, PA

See related LifeSiteNews.com coverage:

62: Three More Bishops Against Notre Dame Scandal, Obama Urged to Decline Invitation
http://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2009/may/09050403.html


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Philosophy; Political Humor/Cartoons; US: Indiana
KEYWORDS: abortion; bhoabortion; catholic; ndu; notredame; notredamescandal; obama; prolife; usccb
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1 posted on 05/06/2009 8:01:28 AM PDT by NYer
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To: Salvation; narses; SMEDLEYBUTLER; redhead; Notwithstanding; nickcarraway; Romulus; ...
Philadelphia's Archbishop Emeritus, Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua, released to the Catholic professional group Legatus his letter to University president Fr. Jenkins expressing "great distress" at the invitation and calling for its retraction.


Catholic Ping
Please freepmail me if you want on/off this list


2 posted on 05/06/2009 8:02:30 AM PDT by NYer ("Run from places of sin as from a plague." - St. John Climacus)
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To: NYer

Thanks,
I’m still waiting on a statment from Bishop Dale J. Melczek’s office (Gary/NW Indiana Diocese).


3 posted on 05/06/2009 8:03:48 AM PDT by jaydubya2
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To: NYer

How many Catholic bishops are there in the US?? What percentage have not (yet!) signed on to the protest??


4 posted on 05/06/2009 8:05:29 AM PDT by CedarDave (Not new news: Obama has Pork Flu)
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To: jaydubya2

Also, our supposed “conservative” Bishop Di Lorenzo in Richmond, VA diocese - let’s have the Church break with ND and be DONE with it, already! Also, Georgetown, BC, Xavier, etc - we don’t need the examples of doctrinal hypocrisy rubbed in our kids faces anymore. Call yourself a Catholic - BE and live life as a CATHOLIC!


5 posted on 05/06/2009 8:08:30 AM PDT by matginzac
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To: matginzac
I don't know what Bishop Dale J. Melczek’s position on the ND situation is, I would like him to make a statement indicating so. (he's my parish's bishop)
6 posted on 05/06/2009 8:11:03 AM PDT by jaydubya2
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To: NYer

What are there, about 300 Bishops in the United States? 25%, nice work standing up for our Central Beliefs, guys.


7 posted on 05/06/2009 8:11:18 AM PDT by South Hawthorne (In Memory of my Dear Friend Henry Lee II)
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To: CedarDave

Do you count retired bishops? Auxilary bishops? About 1 in 4 bishops have signed, but this includes most of the authoritative ones. The biggest two who have not are from Boston, Archbishop O’Malley, and Los Angeles, Cardinal Mahony. Bevilaqua is the first retired bishop, but he probably spoke out because he is still a U.S.-based, active, voting Cardinal. I wouldn’t expect many other retired bishops to. Only two auxiliary bishops have spoken up, but that’s unusual for them to speak up, also. Actually, it’s amazing that anyone besides Notre Dame’s own bishop (D’Arby) and metropolitan (Cdl. George) has spoken up, but I guess several bishops feel they need to speak up for the benefit of their own congregants who may be students at Notre Dame.


8 posted on 05/06/2009 8:13:41 AM PDT by dangus
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To: matginzac

Bwah hah hah hah! You’ve gotta have a lot of deranged fruitcakes if they’re calling Di Lorenzo a conservative!


9 posted on 05/06/2009 8:14:51 AM PDT by dangus
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To: matginzac

Bwah hah hah hah! You’ve gotta have a lot of deranged fruitcakes if they’re calling Di Lorenzo a conservative!

(I’m pretty sure that the last time I attended a mass in the diocese of Richmond, Harrisonburg, the pianist was a he-she.)


10 posted on 05/06/2009 8:15:38 AM PDT by dangus
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To: dangus

You bet, still no word from Massachusetts; Kudo’s to Manchester.


11 posted on 05/06/2009 8:15:54 AM PDT by MSF BU (++)
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To: CedarDave

There is about 256 Bishops and Cardinals in the USA!

Only 66 Bishops signed up.

Archbishop of Wilton Gregory of Atlanta does not respond to request that he express his disapproval of Obama at Notre Dame!

Despite Bishop Martino and Dougherty of the Scranton Diocese of Scranton expressing their disapproval Obama at Notre Dame, BISHOP JAMES CLIFFORD TIMLIN, THE BISHOP OF EMERITUS OF SCRANTON, HAS NOT EXPRESSED HIS DISAPPROVAL OF OBAMA. BY THE WAY BISHOP CLIFFORD TIMLIN IS A SUPPORTER OF SENATOR BOB CASEY WHO HAS A 64% APPROVAL RATING FROM NARAL!


12 posted on 05/06/2009 8:16:05 AM PDT by ethics
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To: NYer
Philadelphia's Archbishop Emeritus, Cardinal Anthony Bevilacqua

I am so proud of my Cardinal. He is a great leader.

13 posted on 05/06/2009 8:17:34 AM PDT by mickie
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To: Owl_Eagle

Don’t fall for the tactics of the leftists on this one. Bishops don’t need to conduct a walking plebescite among themselves on this one. The local bishop (D’Arcy), the metropolitan (Cdl. George), the de-facto prelate (Cdl. Dolan), the “king-maker” (Cdl. Rigali), the top American curiate officer (Abp. Burke) and all the key leaders of the USCCB have all spoken out. There are 190 dioceses, by the way.

It’s always nice if other bishops affirm the relevant ones, but it’s not really their place. I guess we got about 60 who are speaking out for the benefit of their congregants who may be students at Notre Dame. But I’ll pardon the bishop of New Ulm if he thinks the issue has been settled by his brothers.


14 posted on 05/06/2009 8:22:19 AM PDT by dangus
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To: NYer
Personhood Imperative BUMP!
15 posted on 05/06/2009 8:22:53 AM PDT by EternalVigilance ("I tremble for my country when I consider that God is just.")
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To: CedarDave
How many Catholic bishops are there in the US??

That number includes residential, auxiliary, eparchial and metropolitan bishops. Of that number, 195 are residential. List of Bishops in the US.

What percentage have not (yet!) signed on to the protest??

The percentage that don't want to tread on toes, get involved or support Fr. Jenkins. Not all bishops will agree on this issue. Take a look at NY. Only 1 of the 16 bishops has made a statement (+ the new Archbishop Dolan). The silence from the other bishops (including mine), is deafening.

16 posted on 05/06/2009 8:22:55 AM PDT by NYer ("Run from places of sin as from a plague." - St. John Climacus)
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To: dangus
Don’t fall for the tactics of the leftists on this one. Bishops don’t need to conduct a walking plebescite among themselves on this one.

I understand your point, The Church isn't a democracy (nor should it be), but I do believe it would be helpful to actually illustrate the united front and identify anyone who's wobbly.

17 posted on 05/06/2009 8:28:14 AM PDT by South Hawthorne (In Memory of my Dear Friend Henry Lee II)
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To: dangus
The Dreadful Diocese of Richmond (DDR) is simply stiff with nuts, fruits and flakes of the worst description. Retired Bishop Walter Sullivan ran the DDR (into the ground) for thirty years during which he encouraged or allowed heretics, liturgial abusers, other sorts of abusers to invade nearly every parish and chancery office. He oversaw the utter collapse of the Catholic School system in tidewater, the closure of the diocesan seminary, the wreckovation of many old church buildings the length and breadth of the diocese, and mandated the construction of ugly, barren "prayer barns" in those places where new facilities were needed.

It would be difficult to exaggerate the damage done to the Church in Richmond during his tenure.

By comparison, Bishop Di Lorenzo is a conservative, and the demonic lunatics who ran the assylum during Uncle Wally's tenure have been spitting mad for a couple of years, now.

18 posted on 05/06/2009 8:32:14 AM PDT by ArrogantBustard (Western Civilization is Aborting, Buggering, and Contracepting itself out of existence.)
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To: ArrogantBustard

Sadly, I know you are correct.


19 posted on 05/06/2009 8:34:57 AM PDT by dangus
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To: NYer

Nothing would make me happier than to see hundreds of people walk out of his speech in droves. After he’s done, people can return to their seats.


20 posted on 05/06/2009 8:35:27 AM PDT by VA_Gentleman (The tree of liberty needs to be refreshed...)
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