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Catholics and Evangelicals: Past, Present, and Future
Catholic World Report ^ | 11/7/12 | Carl E. Olson

Posted on 11/09/2012 6:45:16 AM PST by marshmallow

An interview with Kenneth J. Collins, author of "Power, Politics, and the Fragmentation of Evangelicalism"

Kenneth J. Collins, PhD is professor of historical theology and Wesley Studies at Asbury Theological Seminary in Wilmore, Kentucky. He is the author of several books, including The Theology of John Wesley (Abingdon) and The Evangelical Moment (Baker). His most recent book, Power, Politics, and the Fragmentation of Evangelicalism (InterVarsity Press, 2012), is a history of American Evangelicalism from the late 19th century to the present day, focusing on the cultural influence and political fortunes of Evangelical Protestants; it also addresses many facets of Catholic-Evangelical relations. Dr. Collins spoke recently with Carl E. Olson, the editor of Catholic World Report, about the history of Evangelicalism and Fundamentalism, Catholic and Evangelical relations, and the common challenges facing Christians in the United States today.

CWR: Many Catholics aren’t very familiar with ecumenical relations between Catholics and Evangelicals, or why such relations are important. How would you, as an Evangelical, address the significance of those relations?

Collins: I think there are a lot of ways that Catholics and Evangelicals can work together. I want to strengthen those connections. What we are facing in the days ahead is very important. Catholics are like canaries in a coal mine. We, as Christians, weren’t supposed to bump against a modern liberal democracy; it was supposed to be everyone choosing their own good. But the Catholic Church is bumping up against it, in terms of the contraceptive issue, but also in terms of what Catholic Charities faced in Massachusetts, where the collision between the state government and the Church forced the closure of Catholic Charities, which has had a wonderful history of service to the poor.

CWR: Let’s go back to the beginning, historically. There is a lot of confusion, isn’t there.....

(Excerpt) Read more at catholicworldreport.com ...


TOPICS: Catholic; Ecumenism; Evangelical Christian; Theology
KEYWORDS:

1 posted on 11/09/2012 6:45:22 AM PST by marshmallow
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To: marshmallow

Evangelicals have very little respect for a church that has prominent abortion-supporters such as Pelosi and Biden as members.


2 posted on 11/09/2012 7:00:27 AM PST by txrefugee
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To: txrefugee
Evangelicals have very little respect for a church that has prominent abortion-supporters such as Pelosi and Biden as members actually has a liturgy, stained-glass windows, uses wine at communion, and doesn't believe the dinosaurs died because they didn't fit on the Ark.
3 posted on 11/09/2012 7:14:36 AM PST by teflon9 (Political campaigns should follow Johnny Mercer's advice--Accentuate the positive.)
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To: marshmallow

This kind of stuff makes me want to pull my hair out. The catholic bishops are totally corrupted by the hundreds of millions of dollars their various charities get in the form of Federal grants— and that is not even counting the hospitals!

Had it not been for their lust to get billions more through the federalization of healthcare Obamacare would never have passed. It is poetic justice that they will now have to pay for Slut Fluke’s birth control.

Until they abandon “catholic social teaching” (just a cover for more big government) and stop living off taxpayer dollars, it is foolhardy to think of them as anything but the faintest of allies.


4 posted on 11/09/2012 7:36:51 AM PST by gypsylea
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To: teflon9; wideawake; KC_Lion
Evangelicals have very little respect for a church that . . . actually has a liturgy, stained-glass windows, uses wine at communion, and doesn't believe the dinosaurs died because they didn't fit on the Ark.

I understand that dinosaurs figure prominently in traditional Catholic iconography. [/sarcasm]

5 posted on 11/09/2012 7:55:07 AM PST by Zionist Conspirator (Ki-hagoy vehamamlakhah 'asher lo'-ya`avdukh yove'du; vehagoyim charov yecheravu!)
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To: gypsylea; marshmallow
Until they abandon “catholic social teaching” (just a cover for more big government) and stop living off taxpayer dollars, it is foolhardy to think of them as anything but the faintest of allies.

Well said!

I believe it is a mistake to ever consider RC's allies of any degree. The more accurate view is they are co-belligerents on some social issues. They could not produce a simple majority for Romney and in the swing states where they are a higher % of the vote this is a disaster.

One result of this election is it puts to bed that there really is a "Catholic vote". The leadership of this church made it pretty clear they did not support obama and his policies, but the members of this church voted otherwise. As far as the "social teaching" goes that won't change. They are liberal at the core.

Evangelicals will be better served to try and convert RC's. The USA will not recover from this socialist wave until traditional values are no longer considered passe. The RC's have made it clear that they say one thing and do another when it counts.

6 posted on 11/09/2012 8:09:47 AM PST by wmfights
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To: txrefugee

Seems to me there is more fragmentation amongst Roman Cathlics then most other Christian groups.


7 posted on 11/09/2012 8:11:08 AM PST by DManA
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To: teflon9
Stereotyping is not as effective as thinking.
8 posted on 11/09/2012 8:13:56 AM PST by DManA
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To: marshmallow

Blaze Analysis: The Catholic Vote Went to Obama Over Romney Despite Contraception & Religious Freedom Debates

Posted on November 8, 2012 at 9:12am by Billy Hallowell

The Catholic Church, infuriated over the notion that the government would force associated organizations to violate conscience by providing employees with birth control free-of-charge, launched into a nation-side campaign against the provision. Despite a concerted effort on the part of Catholics and evangelicals, alike, to expose the issue as government intrusion on personal and institutional religious liberty, on Tuesday, President Barack Obama still won the majority of the U.S. Catholic vote.

Read full article here:
http://www.theblaze.com/stories/blaze-analysis-catholic-voters-chose-obama-over-romney-despite-contraception-religious-freedom-debate/

CATHOLICS FOR OBAMA (CFO)

“A project of Catholic Democrats, Catholics For Obama (CFO) was formed to promote the presidential candidacy of Senator Barack Obama in 2008. Noting that “Americans are weary of being pitted against one another over issues of race, disparity of wealth, and religion,” CFO stated that “Senator Obama has made bringing Americans together to solve common problems the central theme of his campaign.” One CFO board member called Obama “a presidential candidate of historic accomplishments,” and lauded his background as a 1980s-era community organizer whose efforts “to [economically] empower the lives of thousands of people” had received vital “funding from the U.S. Bishops.” Obama’s employer in the eighties had been the Chicago-based Developing Communities Project, an initiative of the Catholic Campaign for Human Development.”

Though Obama has been an unwavering backer of abortion rights throughout his years in politics—he opposed even the Born-Alive Infants Protection Act as a state senator—CFO says that by the standards of “Catholic Social Teaching,” Obama is technically “pro-life” because he “has spent his entire career striving for the common good.” Specifically, CFO praises the President for supporting “health care programs that will cover all Americans, a living wage for working families, and solutions that allow distressed families to stay in their homes.” Moreover, CFO reasons that Obama’s presidency will ultimately reduce the number of abortions “by promoting health care for pregnant women and better infant care, day care and job training.”

Maintaining that “the state has a positive moral function to promote the common good,” CFO views the expansion of governmental power as a preferred means of solving society’s most pressing problems.

The president and board chairman of CFO is Patrick Whelan, who also serves as president of Catholic Democrats. A member of the pediatrics faculty at Harvard Medical School and a co-director of Pax Christi Massachusetts, Whelan was formerly a national co-director of Catholics for Kerry; he served for three years on the Democratic National Committee’s Faith Advisory Council under Howard Dean; and he volunteered with the Catholic Worker communities in Los Angeles and Houston.

Other CFO board members include:

- Victoria Reggie Kennedy: The widow of the late Senator Edward Kennedy, Victoria is an attorney and an activist who has been an official with numerous groups focused on reducing gun violence and restricting access to firearms.

- Kathleen Kennedy Townsend: The eldest of Robert F. Kennedy’s eleven children, Townsend served two years as deputy assistant attorney general during the Bill Clinton administration, and later as Maryland’s lieutenant governor (1995-2003).

- Thomas P. O’Neill III: O’Neill was lieutenant governor of Massachusetts from 1975-1983. Today he is CEO of O’Neill & Associates, a government and public-relations firm in Boston. (”Tip’s” son - haffast)

- James Roosevelt, Jr.: Formerly the chief legal counsel for the Massachusetts Democratic Party, Roosevelt currently co-chairs the Rules and By-laws Committee of the Democratic National Committee. He is also president and CEO of the Tufts Health Plan. (FDR’s grandson - haffast)

- William D’Antonio: This retired professor of sociology was once the CEO of the American Sociological Association.

- Lisa Schare: This Cincinnati-based high-school art teacher serves as state chair of the Catholic Democrats of Ohio. A longtime Democratic Party activist, she did volunteer work for the Clinton/Gore, Gore/Lieberman, and Kerry/Edwards presidential campaigns.

Read full article here:
http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/groupProfile.asp?grpid=7727

And also in Chicago:

WARNING - FOLLOWING WEBPAGE CONTAINS OBSCENITY ON PAGE AND IN VIDEOS ON THAT PAGE

Obama Supporters Celebrate Election Victory: ‘No More Israel… **** That S***, Kill Those Mother ****ers’

Posted on November 7, 2012 at 11:09pm by Jason Howerton

http://www.theblaze.com/stories/obama-supporters-celebrate-election-victory-no-more-israel-fk-that-sht-kill-those-mother-fkers/


9 posted on 11/09/2012 8:14:45 AM PST by haffast
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To: DManA

“Seems to me there is more fragmentation amongst Roman Cathlics then most other Christian groups.”

Well its the biggest Christian “group” by far, inevitably you’ll get differing opinions. Moreover, it’s more of a split than a fragmentation; the church hierarchy (e.g. bishops, archbishops on up) are out of touch with the laity, even out of touch with the faithful, active laity. The vast majority of Roman Catholics have used birth control at some point in their lives. All the end-of-mass bishops’ letters in the world won’t change their minds. Humane Vitae may have been one of the Church’s biggest mistakes in modern times; right up there with the failure to pursue pedophiles in its ranks (and I say this as an active Catholic). As for abortion, most active Catholics find it repugnant to an extent, and are happy to see the grisly partial-birth procedure banned. But they’re largely willing to tolerate 1st trimester abortions as a last-ditch procedure, especially in case of severe fetal deformity (e.g. Down’s, trisomy 13, spina bifida etc.) or rape/incest. But the church doesn’t recruit its bishops from the parish level (as a rule), rather, it picks people who it believes will make good administraitve apparatchiks right out of the seminary. Too often, these people, good and even holy they may be, are isolated from the daily lives of their flock.


10 posted on 11/09/2012 8:26:08 AM PST by teflon9 (Political campaigns should follow Johnny Mercer's advice--Accentuate the positive.)
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To: wmfights
The naysayer's guide to Catholicism:

1)When the bishops remain silent: "Look at those cowardly bishops.....too frightened to speak. They either have no spine or are in love with Obama."

2)When the bishops speak against government policies but are ignored by large numbers of self-identifying Catholics: "Their leaders speak and they ignore them! They're liberal to the core. They say one thing and do another. Hopeless."

3)When the bishops speak and everybody follows their directives: "Look at those brainwashed Catholics. They're like robots. They do whatever their bishops tell them without even thinking. Pitiful."

11 posted on 11/09/2012 8:38:40 AM PST by marshmallow (.)
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To: teflon9

Thanks for the thoughtful reply.


12 posted on 11/09/2012 8:45:59 AM PST by DManA
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To: marshmallow
That's about what I expect.

I was watching to see if this great "Catholic vote" was going to stand up for religious liberty. We all know how that turned out.

One thing you can bank on with Evangelical Christians is a majority of us will vote our faith.

13 posted on 11/09/2012 8:46:51 AM PST by wmfights
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To: wmfights
2/3rds of Catholics who can actually be bothered to attend a Catholic church on a regular basis voted for Romney.

Someone who lives like a pagan can be expected to vote like a pagan, whether or not they call themselves a "Catholic". That's not the bishops' fault, nor is it the fault of real Catholics.

You're right that the concept of a "[self-identified] Catholic vote" is meaningless.

14 posted on 11/09/2012 8:52:55 AM PST by Campion ("Social justice" begins in the womb)
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To: wmfights
That's about what I expect.

Ditto. Hence my previous post. When the issue is theology, we're a monolithic bunch of brain dead zombies who uncritically accept everything the Church says. When it's politics, we're a fractured, undisciplined rabble.

I'm thankful for the support of other Christian groups on the HHS mandate, for instance, but I'm also aware that for them, this is purely a "freedom of religion" issue, rather than a deep, non-negotiable point of theology as contraception is for the Catholic Church. They share our aversion to the secular uber state telling us how to practice our faith but aren't quite sure why the underlying Catholic teaching is so important. So keep "watching"; I expect to see Catholics walking the walk in a coming confrontation even as many Catholics shrug their shoulders and say "so what?" just as they did during the election.

The travesty of course, is that those doing the heavy lifting and bearing the pain inflicted by the state will be those who actually voted against the current incumbent. They'll cop it from all sides and already have. Freepers will scream "you deserve it.......you voted for him!!". The secularists and socialists will scream "hateful, right wing religious nuts".

So be it.

15 posted on 11/09/2012 9:19:13 AM PST by marshmallow (.)
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To: marshmallow
Thanks for posting this article. I learned some things I didn't know about evangelical history even though I was raised Protestant.

I think Olson's right that we face numerous common challenges. The question for me is will both sides ever stop throwing stones long enough to unite as brothers and sisters in the Lord? We don't have to agree on theology to unite for the common good of our nation, do we?

I was surprised when I read this: "Evangelicals today have enormous respect for Roman Catholics." Outside of nonCatholic family members, I don't see that too much. Online I rarely see it.

Makes no sense to me that folks who claim to love God feel a need to insult each other. I don't appreciate it when either side does it. This thread will probably descend into a stone throwing contest so I'll just shut up now and close with this link. What Does the Bible Say About Insults?

16 posted on 11/09/2012 9:36:35 AM PST by PeevedPatriot ("A wise man's heart inclines him toward the right, but a fool's heart toward the left."--Eccl 10:2)
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To: Campion
That's not the bishops' fault

What IS the Bishops' fault is their support of state-funded healthcare. The only reason they don't now support Obamacare is the abortion provisions.

When the Bishops speak out in favor of Gov't intervention it follows that the catholic rank and file will vote for it.

17 posted on 11/09/2012 9:41:26 AM PST by what's up
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To: wmfights

“They could not produce a simple majority for Romney and in the swing states where they are a higher % of the vote this is a disaster.”

Where is the list of the Catholic vote in the swing states? Is the national number made up of all the states exit polling? Is there a breakdown by state anywhere? The only one I have seen was Ohio, which said Catholics went Romney by 9 points.

Freegards


18 posted on 11/09/2012 9:46:30 AM PST by Ransomed
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To: PeevedPatriot

I would suggest that one’s love of God might sometimes be obscured by love of government dollars. See www.networklobby.org/news-media/federal-funding-catholic-organizations

And way too many so called evangelicals just want to join them at the trough.


19 posted on 11/09/2012 10:54:32 AM PST by gypsylea
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To: Campion
2/3rds of Catholics who can actually be bothered to attend a Catholic church on a regular basis voted for Romney.

We can play this game with Evangelical votes and we will get up into the high 80's.

You're right that the concept of a "[self-identified] Catholic vote" is meaningless.

When looking at this group we should be talking about married status, gender, ethnicity, income.

I don't know what your church will do about all the schools and hospitals that are now mandated to provide contraception and abortificents. If your church leaders follow through and begin closing these institutions it will create all kinds of problems for a lot of people. If they don't how much credibility will they have left.

20 posted on 11/09/2012 11:43:55 AM PST by wmfights
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To: marshmallow
'm thankful for the support of other Christian groups on the HHS mandate, for instance, but I'm also aware that for them, this is purely a "freedom of religion" issue, rather than a deep, non-negotiable point of theology as contraception is for the Catholic Church.

This election makes it very clear that this point is a non-negotiable point for your church leadership, but your members don't care what they think.

We are not arguing theology. What we are looking at is a lack of discipline. We are already seeing the cries of the "moderates" that Pubs have to change their attitudes about abortion and the role of Christians in the party has to be reduced. I think the opposite is the case. We need a full throated conservatism that is not embarrassed to stand for GOD, family, country (in that order).

We will be in a minority for at least a generation with obamacare being the law of the land. We might as well strive to be Jonah's crying out to Ninevah.

21 posted on 11/09/2012 11:58:29 AM PST by wmfights
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To: wmfights

SOME THOUGHTS ON THE CATHOLIC VOTE

November 9, 2012 by  
Filed under Latest News Releases

Bill Donohue comments on the Catholic vote:

Catholics are a quarter of the electorate, and they voted for Obama over Romney by the same margin as the total electorate, 50%-48%. Contrary to what many pundits are saying, this suggests that the bishops’ campaign for religious liberty, waged against the Health and Human Services mandate, actually paid off: Obama got 54% of the Catholic vote in 2008 to McCain’s 45%.

Some commentators talk about the Catholic vote as if it were monolithic, and others say it doesn’t exist. It would be more accurate to say there are four Catholic votes: practicing and non-practicing; white and Latino.

Among practicing Catholics, Obama received 42% to Romney’s 57%; among non-practicing Catholics, Obama picked up 56% while Romney got 42%.

White Catholics gave Obama 40% of their votes while Romney earned 59%; Latino Catholics gave Obama 71% of their votes while Romney earned 27%.

From previous survey research published by the Pew Forum, we know that practicing Latino Catholics are less likely to support the Democrats than are non-practicing Latinos.

What this shows is that the more practicing a Catholic is, of any ethnic background, the less likely he is to support the more secular of the candidates.

Finally, there is a serious question whether non-practicing Catholics should be considered Catholic. By way of analogy, if someone tells a pollster that he is a vegetarian, but has long since abandoned a veggie-only diet, would it make empirical sense to count him as a vegetarian? Self-identity is an interesting psychological concept, but it is not necessarily an accurate reflection of a person’s biography.


22 posted on 11/09/2012 12:20:12 PM PST by Brian Kopp DPM
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To: wmfights
This election makes it very clear that this point is a non-negotiable point for your church leadership, but your members don't care what they think.

To what degree they're "members" is a subject for discussion but why would they? Large numbers of them don't even go to Church. Bishop who?

We are not arguing theology. What we are looking at is a lack of discipline.

No we're not. We're looking at the complete loss of Catholic identity which has been several decades in the making. We're looking at people who don't think like Catholics, who don't really care what the Church teaches and...surprise, surprise......they don't vote according to Catholic principles either. Why would someone who's embraced the secular ethos of artificial birth control really care about some spat between Obama and the Church over contraception, irrespective of what the bishop says? They're not even listening.

23 posted on 11/09/2012 12:29:56 PM PST by marshmallow (.)
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To: what's up

The Bishops are cafeteria socialists.


24 posted on 11/09/2012 4:55:15 PM PST by DManA
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To: gypsylea
What criteria should we use to decide if love of God or loving God in our fellow man is at play? Is it unChristian to contract with the government to provide a service?
25 posted on 11/10/2012 10:33:41 AM PST by PeevedPatriot ("A wise man's heart inclines him toward the right, but a fool's heart toward the left."--Eccl 10:2)
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To: PeevedPatriot

What individual Christians do about entering into contracts is one thing. What churches do is another matter. There are two major food banks in my community. One takes government money (a very small portion of their budget), one does not. At the latter, no one has to fill out any forms to get food. At the other, government required paperwork has to be kept. My church supports the solely privately funded one.

And by the way, I go to a church that has a significant minority of Democrats. They largely support government welfare programs. I don’t. We all agree that we should do what we can as a Church to mitigate suffering in our community without any possibility of government dictation at any time or in any manner. We can sing hymns together on Sunday and happily vote against each other on Tuesday the way God intended. :)


26 posted on 11/10/2012 11:26:16 AM PST by gypsylea
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To: gypsylea
We all agree that we should do what we can as a Church to mitigate suffering in our community without any possibility of government dictation at any time or in any manner

I understand what you're saying and appreciate your reply as well as the zeal of your congregation to fulfill your mission. God bless you :) Imagine though for a moment that your church started a hospital 130 years ago. What would you do with that hospital now that it has to meet unfunded government mandates and other regulations that weren't in place when your church began its ministry to provide health care to the poorest of the poor?

To be entirely free of the government, you'd have to refuse to treat Medicare and Medicaid patients. You wouldn't be able to stay in operation very long because you'd be running afoul of patient discrimination laws. You'd have to shut down your hospital. On the other hand, you could contract with the government as other groups are free to do and continue providing health care services. You could also accept grants that are available to care for the uninsured. Or you could be pure and refuse them, but you'd still have to close down because the law doesn't allow you to stop accepting indigent patients when your finite resources have been exhausted.

If you see Christ in the ill, have you abandoned him if you close your hospital to avoid government intrusion in your ministry? Please understand I am not trying to be argumentative. The only way to avoid government interference is to shut down your hospital and let secularists eventually fill the void. Your conscience may feel pure about not being under the thumb of the govt, but how does it feel about all those sick people in your community who now have fewer hospital beds during flu season? Fewer options for the uninsured? Fewer outreach programs? Fewer surgical suites in the community? The gaping hole you made in the community's safety net? Is it more in keeping with Christian charity to burden the entire system or try to adapt to continue alleviating the burden in the community?

Finally, I wholly respect your efforts to privately fund your food bank. Even without govt funds there are federal and state laws to comply with. The days of having a ministry without "any possibility of government dictation at any time or in any manner" are gone. Forever :( Nonacceptance of federal funds isn't exemption from federal law.

Peace be with you.

27 posted on 11/10/2012 1:19:16 PM PST by PeevedPatriot ("A wise man's heart inclines him toward the right, but a fool's heart toward the left."--Eccl 10:2)
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To: PeevedPatriot

As far as health care goes, I think it is fine to raise funds to help people out who have trouble paying their medical bills. Doctors in our community have done an admirable job of serving in our local interfaith clinic

In our region, two religiously affiliated hospital chains— one Baptist, one Catholic—have been taken over by one for profit chain. In both instances, the percentage of services provided without reimbursement has actually stayed about the same. In other words, their disappearance has not created any new holes in the safety net. You don’t have to own hospitals to help the sick. I would go even further and say that compliance with the realities of running a hospital that you mention can, in practice, interfere with true charity. The Baptist chain I mentioned had the reputation of being hyper aggressive in referring unpaid accounts to outside bill collectors.

The food bank we and other churches in our community support is staffed entirely by volunteers and is housed on a rotating basis in various churches. No one tells us who we can serve or how. I suppose the buildings have to comply with the building codes and so forth, but that doesn’t really seem on point.

I confess to being a life long strict separationist. Receipt of tax dollars inevitably corrupts the church. There are plenty of human needs that can be met by churches without building up large institutions that inevitably become commingled with the state.


28 posted on 11/10/2012 3:40:18 PM PST by gypsylea
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To: gypsylea

I think your information is incorrect. Are you getting it from a pamplet? From a preacher or church that hates Catholcism?

What happens to people who speak ill of others?

I remember Christ not liking that!


29 posted on 11/11/2012 1:33:48 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: DManA
What do you mean by fragmentation? All the different Catholic rites, all different, but still under the Pope. We are one, holy, catholic and apostolic.

You might want to check out this FR thread"

THE RITES OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH -- There are many!

30 posted on 11/11/2012 1:37:01 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: Salvation

I’m not sure which information you are referring to. As far as the amount of dollars Catholic charities get from federal funding, I posted a link earlier in this thread that is from a Catholic lobbying group. As far as anything stated in the immediately preceding post, everything stated is public information from various media reports covering the merger of St. Mary’s Hospital and Baptist Hospital in Knoxville TN into a new entity called Mercy Hospital and the subsequent buyout of that chain by a for profit now named Tennova.

I understand that there are pamphlets of the nature you refer to but I haven’t seen anything like that in decades. To say I have spoken ill of others when I have only said I was opposed to ANY church receiving government money seems a stretch.


31 posted on 11/11/2012 3:13:18 PM PST by gypsylea
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To: gypsylea; Salvation
As far as the amount of dollars Catholic charities get from federal funding, I posted a link earlier in this thread that is from a Catholic lobbying group.

You posted a link from Network, home of the nuns on the bus tour. Not exactly a group known for its orthodoxy. (Salvation, here's their Catholic Culture rating).

So I take it the answer to my question, gypsylea, is that your church would close its hospital or sell it to secularists? I can respect that choice if your church chose to make it. I disagree though if you're implying that a faith based group automatically fails or is deficient in charity if they continue health care ministries.

two religiously affiliated hospital chains— one Baptist, one Catholic—have been taken over by one for profit chain. In both instances, the percentage of services provided without reimbursement has actually stayed about the same.

The operative words there being "for profit chain." Catholic facilities I'm familiar with are nonprofit although I don't know that all are. The ones I'm familiar with outpace their secular counterparts by a mile in the uncompensated care they provide.

their disappearance has not created any new holes in the safety net.

How do you know by looking at the dollar amount? You have to examine whether particular services were discontinued. For example, a mobile outreach to homeless shelters might be discontinued and the funds spent on a different initiative. There's a hole in the safety net for homeless people that you wouldn't see looking at the dollar amount. Or a program that provided medication assistance is cut to help balance the budget. You wouldn't know there's a group of people who no longer get medications just by looking at the dollar figure.

No one tells us who we can serve or how.

Not to be argumentative, but yes they do. Try not serving people of a particular ethnic group. Or making people memorize scripture as a condition of receiving assistance. Or serving food that's spoiled. Not that you would do those things, of course. But you do have rules with which you must comply or face consequences.

I suppose the buildings have to comply with the building codes and so forth, but that doesn’t really seem on point.

Of course it's on point. You must meet various laws to operate a physical structure just as a hospital must. There's so much govt creep into our lives! Therefore I say it's hard to imagine a ministry that has no federal regulations impacting it in some way.

I appreciate hearing your views on the topic. Peace be with you. And know that I appreciate what your church does to feed the hungry :)

32 posted on 11/11/2012 4:30:52 PM PST by PeevedPatriot ("A wise man's heart inclines him toward the right, but a fool's heart toward the left."--Eccl 10:2)
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