Skip to comments.The Al Smith dinner: the cardinal and the tax collector
Posted on 08/12/2012 4:09:04 PM PDT by Salvation
August 09, 2012 9:36 AM
Jesus ate with tax collectors. And Cardinal Dolan plans to eat with President Obamawho, Chief Justice Roberts tells us, has imposed a tax on employers who refuse to subsidize contraception. But theres a difference.
When Jesus sat with tax collectors, the dinners were private. They were not photo ops for political candidates. The Lord could speak directly to the hearts of his dining companions, and convert them. Remember, St. Matthew left the tax-collecting business to follow Christ. Does anyone believe that after the Al Smith dinner, Obama will decide to rescind the contraceptive mandate?
The annual fundraiser for Catholic Charities in New York is a non-partisan event, the organizers assure us; politics will play no part in the nights events. Non-partisan it may be, but not apolitical. There are no apolitical public events on the schedule of a presidential candidate during the last few weeks of a campaign. Both Mitt Romney and Barack Obama will attend because they expect to gain some political advantage. They know exactly what theyre doing. Can the same be said for the host, Cardinal Dolan?
During the dinner, the Cardinal and Obama and Romney will laugh and joke together. (The cardinal will be the star of the show, because unlike the other two men, he has a detectible sense of humor.) All good fun. But is it really harmless?
On the morning after the dinner, millions of Americans will see, prominently displayed on the front pages of their hometown newspapers, pictures of President Obama and Cardinal Dolan smiling together. What message will they receive? Can these be the same men who are fighting a bitter political battle on a matter of conscience? The same two men who are the principal forces behind opposite sides of a landmark lawsuit? If theyre laughing and back-slapping together, the disagreement cant be all that serious, can it? So maybe that matter of conscience isnt so important after all? Apparently it wasnt important enough to interfere with a night of fun.
In attendance at the dinner, appropriately clad in white ties, will be corporate executives who have donated large sums to the Obama campaign. The Catholic bishops of the USCardinal Dolan prominently among themhave repeatedly told the faithful that it is gravely wrong to support political candidates who promote unrestricted legal abortion, euthanasia, and same-sex marriage. Yet Catholics continue to support Obama, disregarding the bishops warnings. When they see Cardinal Dolan arm-in-arm with a President whose administration has done so much to advance the culture of death, will they be more or less likely to take the bishops seriously?
Cardinal Dolan may be the most gregarious man I have ever met. He seems quite genuinely to take delight in the presence of everyone he meets. Thats a quality that I admire: an enormous strength of his character. However, a man who habitually thinks the best of everyone can fail to pick up on the telltale signs of enmity. Cardinal Dolan seemed genuinely surprised that after promising to accommodate the consciences of Catholics regarding the HHS mandate, Obama did nothing of the sort. Call me a cynic if you want, but I wasnt surprised.
During the past several months Cardinal Dolan has proven remarkably tough in his statements regarding the mandate and feisty in his willingness to do political battle with the White House. Yet now, in the thick of that battleand, not coincidentally, of the presidential campaignhe has offered a temporary truce. Is he making a calculated gesture, as part of some Machiavellian plan? Id like to think so. But the cynic in me fears that the cardinal has slipped back into the naïve belief that political disagreements can be put aside for an evening of joking and backslapping without any adverse consequences. And on political affairs, sad to say, the cynic in me is almost always right.
Ok, I will.....he’s one of my Peeps....i PRAY he does what you say!! BUT, it’s a “FUN” dinner.....not a serious one.
There is an old saying that applies to Cardinal Dolan.He is too smart for his own good.We in NY know why the press like Cardinal Dolan.Cardinal Dolan is no Cardinal O’Connor and he is preoccupied with his legacy.Obama has won on this issue,let’s win the election.God bless Paul Ryan and Mitt Romney. This is the day of thr Laity.
The Catholic Church is full of sinners. We have heretics, priests that have abused children, bishops that have ignored that abuse, Catholics that do not worship God or follow his Commandments, etc.
Judgement is reserved for God and we will each be subject to HIS judgement.
While we can express our opinions and not be happy with Obama attending the Al Smith dinner, only God knows the whole truth.
God may be inspiring Cardinal Dolan to interact with President Zero and our next President Romney and Catholic VP Ryan.
I truly believe that Cardinal Dolan is a holy and humble man that is folowing God’s plan to lead our Catholic Church and we the faihful must follow Jesus example and encourage others (even when they don’t seem to be listening).
Related thoughts.... excerpts from a recent talk given by Archbishop Chaput:
“Critics of the Church have attacked Americas bishops so bitterly, for so long, over so many different issues including the abuse scandal, but by no means limited to it for very practical reasons.
***If a wedge can be driven between the pastors of the Church and her people, then a strong Catholic witness on controversial issues breaks down into much weaker groups of discordant voices. ...****
We also need to change the way we act. We need to understand that we cant quick fix our way out of problems we behaved ourselves into. Catholics have done very well in the United States. As I said earlier, most of us have a deep love for our country, its freedoms and its best ideals. But this is not our final home. There is no automatic harmony between Christian faith and American democracy. The eagerness of Catholics to push their way into our countrys mainstream over the past half century, to climb the ladder of social and economic success, has done very little to Christianize American culture. But its done a great deal to weaken the power of our Catholic witness.”
Full address here: http://www.ncregister.com/daily-news/building-a-culture-of-religious-freedom
Thank you for your courage and understanding of our faith to post this.
Saying these things are not easy and are even rejected by our own who have been weakened by our society
Watching the AL SMITH dinner and Romney’s remarks.
WOW can he deliver a line!!!!
AND WHAT A BUNCH OF ZINGERS!!!!!!!