Skip to comments.Obama meets quietly with head of U.S. bishops (Archbishop Dolan)
Posted on 11/13/2011 11:26:33 AM PST by NYer
President Obama met quietly with New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan Nov. 8, the White House has confirmed. Dolan is the president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.
The men discussed a range of issues related to the often complicated and recently fractious relationship between the administration and the U.S. church hierarchy. A spokesperson for the USCCB declined to confirm or deny the meeting.
The meeting came in advance of next weeks plenary meeting of the USCCB in Baltimore at which the bishops will discuss their new ad hoc committee on religious liberty. It was sandwiched between two of President Obamas foreign trips, to France for the G-20 summit and his forthcoming trip to Asia.
According to a White House official, who spoke with NCR on background, the meeting was part of the Obama Administrations work with faith leaders from across the spectrum, and was one among many meetings with officials from the Catholic Church and the Administration.
The official also noted that the Obama Administration has robust partnerships with organizations such as Catholic Relief Services and Catholic Charities USA to serve individuals and families in need across the country and the world. The official said that the administration looks forward to continuing these critical partnerships in the future.
The meeting between the President and Archbishop Dolan comes against the backdrop of continued news stories about friction between the administration and the bishops. In this mornings Washington Post, Jerry Markon reports on congressional Republicans inquiring into the decision by the Department of Health and Human Services not to renew a contract with the USCCB for a program assisting the victims of human trafficking. Another article in the Post, by Religion News Services David Gibson, highlights that tension between the White House and the USCCB.
On the other hand, my colleague John Allen has just published a book, A People of Hope: Archbishop Timothy Dolan in Conversation with John Allen, Jr., based on a series of interviews with Archbishop Dolan in which Dolan had kind words for the President. Ive been impressed with Obamas sincerity, Dolan says in the book. On the day of the vote on health care, which was a tough day for us, I was talking to Patrick Gaspard [Director of the Office of Political Affairs in the White House]. He said that some of the things Bart Stupak had said about a group of sisters who came out in favor of the legislation were very uncivil. I said, Patrick, theres been a lack of civility on both sides. Have you read Maureen Dowd this morning? For anybody you can bring up on the pro-life side whos been uncivil, I can match it. He said, Point well taken. I then remarked, Having said that, I think the man you work for, the President, has been a model of civility. I do admire that.
Not peep from the left about the fake separation of church and state issue from the left when the administration and the church meet.....
I imagine if they meet with the RNC they would screaming
Isn’t Obama and the White House remembering how many Bishops came out AGAIST his election as president? If you want the list — I’ve got it.
Also — there were hordes of Bishops who spoke out against Obama speaking at Notre Dame. If you want that list, too, I’ve got it!
Following is the text of a statement issued by Bishop Charles H. Helmsing of Kansas City - St. Joseph (Mo) Diocese. The statement pertains to the National Catholic Reporter, which is published in the diocese and is an outgrowth of its diocesan newspaper
The Catholic Reporter, formerly the official newspaper of the Kansas City - St. Joseph, was begun by my predecessor under a policy of editorial freedom. That policy of editorial freedom [I] endorsed on my appointment as bishop of Kansas City - St. Joseph. When the National Catholic Reporter was launched, that original policy of editorial freedom was announced as basic to the new publication.
At all times it was presumed that the policy of editorial freedom was none other than that legitimate liberty declared and defended by the Second Vatican Council in its Declaration on Religious Liberty, further defined in the conciliar Decree on Communications, and, likewise, defended in the Constitution on the Church in the Modern World. It could not imply that pseudo-freedom from man's obligations to his Creator, Redeemer and Sanctifier in vogue under the standard of the 19th century liberalism. It could not imply, as a conciliar declaration on religious liberty clearly states, freedom in the moral order. As Cardinal Koenig pointed out in his recent address to editors, there is a legitimate freedom of opinion to be exercised by the Catholic press so long as it is absolutely loyal to the Church's teachings. If an editor is to merit the name "Catholic," he must remember "to think with the Church."
As long as the Catholic editor carries the name Catholic, he can never forget that he is a teacher of Christ's revelation. What he writes necessarily touches on faith -- that gift of the Holy Spirit which "we carry in earthen vessels" and by which we accept Christ, the Word of God Incarnate, and His revelation.
The Catholic editor must manifest a reverence which must shine through in his attitude and in his every expression. The Gospel is clear on the destructive effects of ridicule, for example, in recounting of the taunts hurled at Simon Peter: "You also were with Jesus of Nazareth," and their effects on him who, once converted, was to confirm his brethren.
As the editors of the National Catholic Reporter know, I have tried as their pastor, responsible for their eternal welfare, and that of those whom they influence, to guide them on a responsible course in harmony with Catholic teachings. When private conferences were of no avail, as is well known, I had to issue a public reprimand for their policy of crusading against the Church's teachings on the transmission of human life, and against the Gospel values of sacred virginity and dedicated celibacy as taught by the Church.
NOW, AS a last resort, I am forced as bishop to issue a condemnation of the National Catholic Reporter for its disregard and denial of the most sacred values of our Catholic faith. Within recent months the National Catholic Reporter has expressed itself in belittling the basic truths expressed in the Creed of Pope Paul VI; it has made itself a platform for the airing of heretical views on the Church and its divinely constituted structure, as taught by the First and Second Vatican Councils. Vehemently to be reprobated was the airing in recent editions of an attack on the perpetual virginity of the Blessed Virgin Mary and the virgin birth of Christ, by one of its contributors.
Finally, it has given lengthy space to a blasphemous and heretical attack on the Vicar of Christ. It is difficult to see how well instructed writers who deliberately deny and ridicule dogmas of our Catholic faith can possibly escape the guilt of the crime defined in Canon 1325 on heresy, and how they can escape the penalties of automatic excommunication entailed thereby.
In fairness to our Catholic people, I hereby issue an official condemnation of the National Catholic Reporter. Furthermore, I send this communication to my brother bishops, and make known to the priests, religious and laity of the nation my views on the poisonous character of this publication.
As a bishop, a member of the college of bishops, and one in union with the head of the college, Christ's Vicar on earth, I proclaim with my brother bishops that the Church is, indeed, always in need of reform. This reform is a matter of putting on the mind of Christ, as St. Paul declared, through our contemplation of Christ in His teachings and through our loyalty to the teachings of the Church so painstakingly expressed in recent years in the constitutions, decrees and declarations of the Second Vatican Council.
The status of the world when our Lord came was a deplorable one. We are not surprised that the status of man, wounded by original sin, remains deplorable as long as he does not heed the voice of Christ and his authoritative teacher, his Church. Sociological studies, according to modern techniques, can help us appreciate the status quo -- the exact thinking and acting and attitudes of our people. For this we are grateful. But it is a total reversal of our Divine Lord's policy to imagine for a moment that the disclosure of attitudes through such surveys becomes the norm of human conduct or thinking.
Christ and His apostles preached first and foremost penance, metanoia, the change of mind and heart. The Church continues to do so today, but it finds itself increasingly more frustrated in its teaching of the ideals of our Lord by the type of reporting, editorializing and ridicule that have become the week-after-week fare of the National Catholic Reporter.
IN AS MUCH as the National Catholic Reporter does not reflect the teaching of the Church, but on the contrary, has openly and deliberately opposed this teaching. I ask the editors in all honesty to drop the term "Catholic" from their masthead. By retaining it they deceive their Catholic readers and do a great disservice to ecumenism by being responsible for the false irenicism of watering down Catholic teachings.
I further ask the editors and the board of directors, for the love of God and their fellow men, to change their misguided and evil policy; for it is evident to me that they have already caused untold harm to the faith and morals not only of our laity, but of too many of our priests and religious.
I make this statement with apostolic freedom as given by our Lord to His followers; I make it conscious of the heavy burden that is mine as a bishop, as one enjoined by the Holy Spirit through the pen of St. Paul: "Reprove, entreat, rebuke in all patience and doctrine; for there will come a time when they will not endure the sound doctrines; but having itching ears, will heap up to themselves teachers according to their own lust, and they will turn away their hearing from the truth and will turn aside rather to fables." (2 Tim. 4:2-4)
She has done more for the Church in North America than any bishop I can think of.
If she had not stood firm on EWTN to the USCCB, then we would see EWTN being used to raise funds for the Campaign for Human Development.
Did Obama lecture the Bishop on Natural Law?
…Last week, Obama met with New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan, president of the bishops' conference, an administration official said. The independent National Catholic Reporter said the two men discussed issues that have created tension between the administration and the Catholic hierarchy.
The closer focus on religious liberty comes as bishops are becoming more outspoken on preserving the religious identity of Catholic colleges and other institutions, and publicly calling out Catholic politicians and voters who don't follow church teaching on abortion.
Scott Appleby, a prominent religious historian at the University of Notre Dame, says many church leaders have recently adopted "a more pugnacious style, much more of a kind of culture-wars attitude." At the same time, the bishops' have been stung by their loss of public influence from the sex abuse crisis and the years of bruising revelations that many dioceses moved guilty clergy among parishes without alerting parents or police.
"The church no longer receives deference or the hands-off attitude that it once had for many years. That's gone," Appleby said.
Critics of the bishops view the closer focus on religious liberty as another sign that church leaders are turning inward and away from promoting the church's teaching on social justice.
Steven Krueger, national director of Catholic Democrats, pointed to the agenda released ahead of this week's meeting, which included no public discussion of poverty despite the state of the economy. In the 1980s, the bishops issued an influential pastoral letter on Catholic principles and the economy, which church leaders reaffirmed in statements and education programs over the next decade.
"I think this certainly will represent to a vast majority of Catholics a tone-deafness on the part of many, many bishops," Krueger said.
Well, if Mr. Krueger is opposed to the Dolan administration, I'd say it is a pretty good start.
Stupak was a moron. I mailed him his 30 pieces of silver when he announced that he was going to support O-care.
He since got turfed in the last congressional election. The people have spoken.
I hope we are wrong about Dolan.
What is the latest on Mother’s health?
There seems to be an assumption by the Catholics posting on this thread that Dolan met with Obama to give him a high-five. Are we sure that that’s the case? Are we sure it wasn’t rather like the meeting the Holy Father had with Pelosi, in which he pounded her into the ground? I would have thought Dolan would use an occasion like this—a private conversation with no witnesses—to tell Obama exactly what sort of poisonous hell-breathed evil his support for abortion is.
God save us! God preserve us from the Evil One and all his foul works to ensnare the souls of women and murder babies.
The NCCB ceased to exist in 2001 when the NCCB and the USCC merged to become the USCCB. Mother Angelica has many Bishops amongst her and EWTNs staunchest defenders.
Absolutely not! I attribute that reaction to the skewed reporting from this fishwrap of a newspaper. Should never have posted this thread. (Good to hear from you! Hope you and the family are all well.)
What the Sam Hill is this? Sr. Carol Keehan of CHA and Bart Stupak are the two people who tipped it in. Both gut-clenching traitors. How is it possible that Bart would "say something uncivil" about the very person who set up the play?
And how can Dolan think the whole point of the incident was about "civility"?
THis is so unreal I feel like I'm in some other quantum universe.