CNA: Publisher apologizes for Sen. Kennedy memorial prayer

The funeral of the late Senator Edward Kennedy is one of those events which keeps spurring discussion.

From CNA with my emphases and comments.

Publisher apologizes for Sen. Kennedy memorial prayer

Chicago, Ill., Sep 12, 2009 / 07:05 am (CNA).- Liturgy Training Publications, the Chicago-based publisher associated with the Archdiocese of Chicago, has apologized for distributing a controversial prayer that praised the late pro-abortion Sen. Edward M. Kennedy as one who had promoted peace, justice, equality and liberty.

The prayer was made available for use at Sunday Masses after the prominent Catholic senator’s death on August 25.

The original prayer, posted through the publisher’s downloadable Prayer of the Faithful resource, [So, if your parish doesn't have a mechanism for developing these prayers for Mass... you can get them from this publisher? This raises deeper questions.] read: “For those who have given their lives to service to their country, promoting values of peace, justice, equality, and liberty; especially, Senator Edward M. Kennedy, that he may find his eternal reward in the arms of God . . . . We pray.”

Pro-life Catholics such as the 87-year-old priest and blogger Fr. John Malloy complained about the prayer, citing the late senator’s ardent support for abortion in the latter half of his political career.

Liturgy Training Publications Director John A. Thomas wrote to Fr. Malloy and others to apologize for the “extremely poor use of words” in the prayer.

He explained that the prayer had been adapted from the text for “Prayers on the Inauguration of a Public Official.” Calling the source text a “poor choice,” he said that the prayer is future-oriented and not intended as a reflection on “the quality of the life of a person.”

“This was not considered enough when adapted. As adapted for the Prayer of the Faithful, the text inappropriately presents a sense of support for the positions and actions taken by the late Senator by those who wrote it or pray it.

He said the editors did not intend to show support for Sen. Kennedy’s positions.

“I apologize for our failure in judgment and poor selection of words used in the prayer. I pray that we do better in the future,” his letter concluded.

A spokeswoman at Liturgy Training Publications confirmed for CNA that Thomas had sent out the letter, which has been published on several websites.

Responding to the apology, Fr. Malloy explained his reaction to the prayer and commented that Sen. Kennedy “certainly didn’t promote liberty for the unborn, or equality and justice. And that’s what I found offensive."

"I think we pray for everyone who’s dead, our enemies, we pray for them, but we don’t extol them," he continued[Fair enough.]

Fr. Malloy told ChicagoCatholicNews he has “great respect” for the publisher and said he believes their apology is sincere.

It occurred to me, as I read that, the many Catholic publishing concerns – especially in the liturgical sphere – are very much in liberal camp.

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12 Responses to CNA: Publisher apologizes for Sen. Kennedy memorial prayer

  1. cwillia1 says:

    How I love the Great Litany of the Divine Liturgy. Majestic, comprehensive, unchanging.

  2. pcstokell says:

    It’s sad to read that some of the old “Huck-sterism” still exists at LTP. Perhaps Cardinal George needs to come back with the broom!

  3. revueltos67 says:

    On the day of Ted Kennedy’s funeral I was travelling in Colorado and attended a vigil communion service in a small town there. As the service ended, one of the faithful walked to the front of the chapel and described at length how beautiful Teddy’s funeral mass had been, how wonderful President Obama’s eulogy was, how proud it made him as a Catholic, what a wonderful man Teddy had been, then requested and led prayers for Teddy and for passage of health care reform.

    It was quite a performance. I said a prayer for Teddy’s soul, and for the future of the Church.

  4. chironomo says:

    On the day ofSenator Kennedy’s funeral, a posting on the blog of the WLP Publisher (Gotta Sing… Gotta Pray) was equally gushing about the late Senators “Service and respect for the poor and forgotten”. I left a response noting that it may be true, unless of course those poor and forgotten were as yet unborn. It was the usual reply that we “have to look past that” to the good things he did for those in his community. It’s amazing what can pass for Catholic these days…

  5. robtbrown says:

    It was the usual reply that we “have to look past that” to the good things he did for those in his community. It’s amazing what can pass for Catholic these days…
    Comment by chironomo

    Yeah, it’s a bit like saying that we should look past the holocaust because Hitler made Germans proud again.

  6. robtbrown says:

    He said the editors did not intend to show support for Sen. Kennedy’s positions.

    Of course, they did. Liberals never change. They push their snake oil ideology, then lie about it afterwards when someone objects.

    Anyone wanna bet that John A. Thomas didn’t vote for the pro abortion Obama?

    We have seen a similar strategy with Summorum Pontificum. After years persecuting priests who wanted to say a Latin Novus Ordo, now the Libs, “Oh, there’s a Latin novus ordo that priests can use.”

  7. Ioannes Andreades says:

    “Do not consider what we truly deserve, but grant us your forgiveness.”

    I think that this is the right note to sound when it comes to such petitions at mass.

  8. Geoffrey says:

    “It occurred to me, as I read that, the many Catholic publishing concerns – especially in the liturgical sphere – are very much in liberal camp.”

    Please pray for my little publishing concern, that the Lord may bless it so that it may “turn the tide”!

  9. drea916 says:

    The prayers of the faithful are almost always too wordy and mini-sermons. If they are going to have them, keep them simple:
    for the souls in purgatory, the safety of travelers, those looking for work, the sick, etc, etc.

    In this case, just “For the repose of the soul of Sen. Kennedy.” Isn’t that what every one wants for the man?

  10. Virgil says:

    “Very much in the liberal camp”…

    Hunh?

    Why does it always come down to politics?

    Liturgical abuses are liturgical abuses, and the injection of political slants into the Prayers of the Faithful is a sin committed by nearly all.

    What pro-life mass has ever passed without a string of such abuses during the Prayers of the Faithful?

    And those Prayers of the Faithful are written (improvised) by the same “liberal” Catholic publishing houses.

  11. dcs says:

    Liturgical abuses are liturgical abuses, and the injection of political slants into the Prayers of the Faithful is a sin committed by nearly all.

    What pro-life mass has ever passed without a string of such abuses during the Prayers of the Faithful?

    I’ve never been to a “pro-life Mass” (at least not a Novus ordo one); what sort of things are said during the Prayer of the Faithful there?

    Prior to watching the Kennedy funeral intercessions, the oddest thing I had witnessed was a prayer for the unification of Ireland at a Mass celebrated for the AOH (Ancient Order of Hibernians).

  12. MichaelJ says:

    Virgil,
    As the old saying goes “If it quacks…”.

    Provide some documentation about liturgical abuses that push a conservative political slant and your objections might carry more weight. As it stands, though, I have never seen *any* evidence that a liturgical abuse came from anywhere other than a political liberal. Now is your chance to step up to the plate and prove that this is not a liberal problem.