Skip to comments.Catholic Bishop Thomas Tobin assigns blame to himself and church for same-sex marriage in R.I.
Posted on 08/15/2013 10:59:07 AM PDT by Alex Murphy
PROVIDENCE Addressing a wide range of issues posed to him Tuesday night at a meeting of the states Young Republicans, Roman Catholic Bishop Thomas J. Tobin said he was not only deeply disappointed by the passage of same-sex marriage in Rhode Island, but that he felt a sense of personal failure on his part as well as a failure of the Catholic Church in Rhode Island to keep it from becoming law.
I was profoundly disappointed that the state moved in that direction and that so many Catholic politicians abandoned ship on this issue, the bishop said, speaking to about 40 people at the Holy Rosary Band Hall on Gano Street in Fox Point. This was a critical issue, and they let us down.
Though a good deal of the questions at the two-hour session dealt with the churchs teaching on respect for life, questions toward the end shifted to what one participant referred to as the pink elephant in the room and whether there might be a way for members to uphold traditional marriage while not denying some of our friends who are gay by having a system that recognizes civil marriage for gays while at the same time reserving sacramental marriage that allows only marriages between one man and one woman.
Well, thats what we have now. We feel we do not have the right to redefine marriage from what God has designed. We believe that any homosexual activity is immoral, and for the state to establish same-sex marriage would be a state approbation of that.
Bishop Tobin added that the church continues to have a great deal of respect for all people, and loves and supports those with same-sex attraction, and that they should not be subject to any sort hate or discrimination.
He said he believes that same-sex marriage passed in Rhode Island as a result of a tidal wave of support for gay marriage that came as a result of President Obamas evolving support for it and heavy lobbying by the entertainment and news media, the support given to it by Rhode Island House Speaker Gordon Fox, the Rhode Island State Council of Churches, the Board of Rabbis and by others.
For gays working for passage of the law, this was their issue and they obviously were strongly invested in it, he said, while for the church, the issue was important but just one of many issues.
In an interview afterward, Bishop Tobin, who has not commented publicly on the gay-marriage issue since its passage in May, said he did not believe that he and other gay-marriage opponents were undercut by Pope Francis remarks during a news conference on a return flight from Brazil that if a person with a same attraction is of good will and seeks to follow the Lord, who am I to judge?
Bishop Tobin said the pope had simply restated the churchs teaching with different words, and never said that homosexual activity is not a sin.
On the question of whether priests should deny Communion to couples they know are living together be they as gay couples or cohabitating heterosexual couples Bishop Tobin said that question would be best left to the individual parish priests who know the individuals and who have counseled the couples about the churchs teaching.
During his address Tuesday, Bishop Tobin said he felt he was out of his element speaking to a political group, but noted at the onset that he had had changed his political affiliation from Democrat to Republican, largely based on his dismay at the Democratic Partys support for abortion rights.
At the same time, he urged those considering political careers to hold on to their moral convictions and not to base their votes solely on the latest polls.
The bishop had been invited to the gathering by Daniel Harrop, a Republican who recently threw his hat in the ring for another try at becoming the mayor of Providence. Harrop said he invited the bishop after hearing him speak at a seminar on religious freedom held at Portsmouth Abbey.
On other topics, the bishop said that during a recent visit to a beach in Florida, he saw notice closing a portion of the beach to the public to protect the endangered sea turtle. He said the church believes too in the need for protecting Gods creation but it seemed strange that the federal government is so willing to protect the unborn sea turtle but not protect unborn children.
He strongly defended the right of the church and all religious believers to speak out on matters of political discourse, saying the separation of church and state is meant to protect the church from interference from the state, not the other way around.
He said it was deplorable that the new healthcare exchanges that have been set up as part of the implementation of the Affordable Health Care Law in Rhode Island do not include even one option allowing participants to choose a plan that does not provide coverage for abortion. That to me is a dictatorship, and you have to wonder whos imposing what on whom.
Asked why the church doesnt clamp down on Catholic politicians who help to enact laws that extend or expand abortion rights, the bishop said its hard to say to someone youre not a Catholic anymore except under certain conditions, and that frustrating as it may be to some in the pro-life movement, I dont have the canonical right to do that.
If I read your post right, you're saying that there are more Catholics who vote conservative than there are Protestants who vote conservative? If you're right, I'd like to hear your reaction to this Catholic-authored thread:
Evangelicals plunge America into darkness mislead polls and stay home on Election Day
I don’t know what NKP meant “”If you capture the protestant vote you dont win.””
The Protestant vote has only been “captured” by the democrats in 1932, 1936, and 1964, and they won those three elections.
And the most liberal states, not surprising.
“Cafeteria” Catholics should not call themselves Catholic, but the media never differentiates between twice a year Mass attending Catholics and devout Catholics. The media would like for everyone to believe that the vast majority of Catholics are liberals, which is not true. Church attending Catholics by and large are very conservative and vote that way. None of my Catholic friends are liberals. I am also a member of Knight of Columbus and have never ran across a Knight that was liberal. They probably exist but I’ve never met one.
The only majority Catholic state in the US.
Until you find a way to ban church members who don’t pass your personal test, then you have to accept that church members count as, church members.
How many of the USCCB-reported 70+ million American Catholics make up this regular-mass-attending, conservative-voting "vast majority"?
...studies of the 2004 results identified a new hardcore vote of roughly 16 percent of Catholics (nearly 10 million people) who attend church more than once a week and identify as ideologically conservative.
-- from the thread America's conservative Catholics are on the warpath. Republicans should be courting them
Well as for myself I follow the teachings of the most conservative Christian church in the world. And that is Catholic Church. No abortion of any kind, no women ordination, no openly homosexual priests. Doctrine that is based on the Word of God, not a show of hands. For those “catholics” that can’t abide by their teachings of their faith, why do you persist in calling yourself Catholic? The Episcopal Church awaits you.
Maybe these hypocrites need to read the words of JP2.
“It is sometimes reported that a large number of Catholics today do not adhere to the teaching of the Catholic Church on a number of questions, notably sexual and conjugal morality, divorce and remarriage. Some are reported as not accepting the clear position on abortion. It has to be noted that there is a tendency on the part of some Catholics to be selective in their adherence to the Church’s moral teaching. It is sometimes claimed that dissent from the Magisterium is totally compatible with being a “good Catholic,” and poses no obstacle to the reception of the Sacraments. This is a grave error that challenges the teaching of the Bishops in the United States and elsewhere.”
~ Pope John Paul II speaking to US Bishops in Los Angeles
For some reason Church-going conservative Catholics are blamed for liberal cafeteria Catholics. Blame the Jesuits, not us. My parish preaches against abortion and homosexuality, especially at election time.
Interest in who is pure enough among Catholics to be polled for voting data is your personal thing, but it isn’t applicable to collecting the percentages of how members of the Catholic denomination vote.
You can’t be for abortion or vote for a pro-abortion candidate and be in good standing with the Catholic Church.
That is fact. So why does the liberal media even include these liberal hypocrites among Catholic voters. They are not Catholic. They forfeited the right to be called Catholic when they went against the Church and either agreed with abortion themselves, or voted for a pro-abortion candidate. Cafeteria Catholics are included by the liberal media because they know it makes the Catholic Church look bad, and they LOVE to make the Church look bad.
That is all your personal feelings, pollsters are generally interested in measuring the vote of the members of the Catholic church, not in arguing internal Catholic doctrine with individual Catholics.
in CT, we target suburban Catholics who are in church on Sunday morning. Therefore, we are getting the least number of Hispanic Catholics and if this group is not 80% pro-life voters .... I don’t know who is.
Of course, only 1 in 7 at daily Mass vote in primaries ... 1 in 4 in special elections and 40% in Nov ‘14. They don’t really DO POLITICS which explains why their views are not translated into public policy.
And the A.L.L. boycott voters just add to the problem.
THIS is the crux of the problem.
Yeah, the Church's official teachings on homosexuality and abortion are in the Catechism, but if true intentions are revealed by actions, they're's really no big woof to the Church. If they were, you would hear a homily or two on the subjects.
Now open borders--THAT's an issue they can get behind.
It is not my personal feelings. Pro-abort “catholics” have forfeited the right to call themselves catholic. You can’t be for abortion and be in good standing with the Catholic Church and the liberal media needs to quit lumping these people with church-going catholics. It’s BS, but it will never change.
I don’t know why you want to keep posting to me about your internal arguments with your church and the purity of it’s members.
If you want democrat voters kicked out of your church then talk to the Vatican, not polling firms and people interested the Catholic vote.
Since American democrat Catholic leaders like Nancy Pelosi and Joe Biden and the Ted Kennedys travel to the Vatican to visit their Holy Father and take communion, I don’t think that the Catholic church is going to purge the majority of it’s claimed American membership.
Heck, this Bishop has been a democrat all his life.
If that's the case, there goes the "vast majority are conservative voters" argument....
LifeSiteNews recently reported the unsurprising findings of a poll commissioned by The Washington Post and ABC stating that a majority of American Catholics are in favor of abortion in all or most cases.
-- from the thread Why you shouldnt blame the clergy that a majority of Catholics support abortion
The disagreement over Notre Dame and Obama is essentially the same as the disagreement among clashing American Catholic camps over the issue of the moral and legal status of abortion itself. In fact, 61 percent of the attend less often Catholics believe that abortion rights should be protected in all or most cases, as opposed to 30 percent (still an interesting number) among the attend weekly Catholics.
from the thread Those consistently complex Catholic voters
They may call themselves Catholics, and they may even go to Mass, but when it comes to life choices they are virtually indistinguishable from everyone else in America. They dont live radical Christianity out in any real sort of way. Their lives look just like the lives of their worldly neighbors. They dont give any more than the average joe. They seem just as likely to divorce their spouses, have only 2.5 children as their non Catholic neighbors and they seem just as materialistic as everyone else. They attend church if they feel like it, but if theres a weekend football game or the call of the beach house theyre just as likely to respond to that demand. When it comes to voting, theyll vote as they wish according to wherever they get their opinions fromTV, the newspaper, the mass mediajust like their neighbors. The one source they wont consider when informing their vote is their priests and bishops.
from the thread Catholic Vote?
Are Catholics now so successfully assimilated into American political life that they are without political impactthat there really is no such thing as a Catholic vote? Unfortunately enough, Catholics are largely indistinguishable from non-Catholics and, despite a few pundits, no, there really is no Catholic vote. This obvious conclusionclear enough from the fact that the vote for the winning candidates in the last national election was approximately the same for Catholics and non-Catholicshas serious current implications....
....Compare two lists: According to the USCCB, the five most Catholic states, in population, are: Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York and Connecticut. According to the American Life League, the states with the most pro-life legislation (i.e., inhibiting abortion in various ways) are: Oklahoma, Louisiana, Pennsylvania, Arkansas and Texas. This is a shocker. In short, there is no Catholic political impact in support of life in those states reportedly having the most Catholics. As Archbishop Charles Chaput of Philadelphia put it, after the 2008 election, [w]e need to stop overcounting our numbers, our influence, our institutions, and our resources, because they are not real.
from the thread The Mythical Catholic Vote: The Harmful Consequences of Political Assimilation
Pro-abortion politicians have excommunicated themselves from the Catholic Church. Don’t bother me anymore with your constant putdowns of anything and everything Catholic.
No devout Catholic is for abortion. Now the same can’t be said for those protestant churches that are overfilled each and every weekend. Especially the black ones.
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