Bp. Tobin… Chris Matthews… you decide.

Bp. Tobin… Chris Matthews… you decide.

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90 Responses to Bp. Tobin… Chris Matthews… you decide.

  1. Oneros says:

    Why didnt Tobin just say, “Yes, it should be criminalized. Doctors should be charged as murderers, given life in prison, women should be charged as accessories.” He should also have made it clear that this is also about giving the police the power to STOP abortions IN PROGRESS. Punishment after-the-fact isnt even as important, it’s about stopping them from happening, saving the baby.

    See, when that guy shot Tiller, everyone was quick to distance themselves…but the whole country perceives us as “over talking”…we call it “murder” say it’s a “genocide”…but then wont even suggest punishing it as murder or accessory to murder, let alone any question of taking the kinds of personal defensive action that we wouldnt give a second thought to for a born innocent.

    It’s about time the Pope dissolved Catholic’s allegiances to the government of the United States of Babylon.

  2. medievalist says:

    Hmm, for an interviewer who seemed to want the Church to avoid interference in public affairs, he was pretty quick to ask the bishop to step into precisely that arena and write laws.

    If he’d the decency to listen for a minute, instead of badger, the interviewer would have heard +Tobin’s quite clear answer: “The Church establishes moral principles which the law reflects. The particulars of said law are the province of legislators.”

  3. Marius2k4 says:

    Two things:

    A) Oneros, I like you.

    B) I’m quite proud of Bishop Tobin for speaking up, and hope (unfruitfully, I’m sure) that Chris Matthews is fired from his employer for such a disrespectful tirade, and reprimanded ecclesially for the blatant disrespect shown to a prelate of the church.

  4. Frank H says:

    At the MSNBC Hardball page they have transcripts of the complete shows. Look what Matthews said coming back after the break…

    MATTHEWS: We’re back and it’s time for the politics fix with Eugene Robinson and Pat Buchanan, our political analyst for MSNBC. I’m not going to talk about what the excellency, the bishop just talked about because I let him make his point. We’ll see how that develops.

  5. Somebody should tell C. Matthews to “stuff a sock in it”…or do it themselves…sheesh. What an idiot (I apologize for any scandal I may commit in this comment!)

  6. iudicame says:

    Chris Matthews is abominable. Tobin is personally heroic for subjecting himself to this kind of scorn and he responded admirably. Its clear to me from this encounter why so many bishops are cowards.

    m

  7. DisturbedMary says:

    My neighbor ran into Chris Matthews in Rockefeller Plaza one morning and sat with him over coffee. In regard to abortion he asked Matthews “what did they teach you at Holy Cross that they didn’t teach me at St. Michael’s”. Matthews responded by asking what would he do to a woman who had an abortion. Throw her in jail? My friend said that he would throw the woman in a bathtub of holy water and then then take her right over to St. Patrick’s so she could go to confession. He was shocked at how stupid and shallow Matthews is — and his TV persona must be scripted.

    I notice that Matthews uses the same hysterical retort that Clinton used when he was questionned by pro-lifers. Somewhere, someone has told them, or they use as a battering ram, the idea that if you outlaw abortion, women will be thrown in jail, or God knows what.

    I thought his performance with Bishop Tobin was typically unflattering and petulant.

  8. Oneros says:

    “Somewhere, someone has told them, or they use as a battering ram, the idea that if you outlaw abortion, women will be thrown in jail, or God knows what.”

    And why not? We’d do that in a second if she did it to the baby, sometimes, just days or hours later.

  9. Yubbly says:

    I’ve got to say, Matthews was asking the right questions. His motives were wrong, but they’re the questions everyone is thinking. “If people of faith think abortion is wrong, is murder, then what should the State do about it?” And the fact is, most Pro-Lifers arent willing to say, “Use police force to stop it, and punish it as murder”. So we look like we won’t put our money where our mouth is, we look like big-talking fools.

  10. Leonius says:

    Please stop trying to be nice your excellency and just say plainly abortion is murder and the same penalties should apply to people who perform, procure and assist in an abortion as those who perform, procure and assist in murder.

    At the same time all funds currently;y used to procure abortions would be redirected into adoption agencies to provide a truly humane alternative to those women who would otherwise allow the inhuman and barbaric destruction of their own babies because thsi is promoted falsely as the easy and perfectly fine solution to a baby.

    And the result of this would be a huge reduction in abortions, eventually to pre Roe v Wade levels.

    If anyone then decides to illegally take part in a criminal abortion on their own head be it.

  11. Leonius says:

    Exactly Yubby we look like we don’t even believe what we are saying about abortion so how can you expect others to, this lack of conviction is extremely unconvincing to say the least.

    If I was a neutral watching this I would not be convinced at all simply because of the way the good Bishop, and I have no doubt he is a good Bishop, and a very brave one to, is uncomfortable and is trying to avoid the question.

  12. Kimberly says:

    I would hesitate to say that Bishop Tobin’s word were “unfruitful”. It was obvious, to me, that Matthews had an agenda to make a prince of the church look like he had egg on his face, but he also made himself look pitiful as he spit on the camera , dominated the interview, was interruptive and repeated “what should the law be?” so many times I wondered if his vocabulary exisited of any other words. I thought the Bishop was patient, articulate and, most important of all, he was standing up and “speaking out” about an issue that has been swept under the table for far to long. Many people look to the Catholic Church for guidence whether they realize it or not and Bishop Tobin gave it.

  13. What were the laws pre-Roe v. Wade? Were women sent to jail for having a procured abortion? Is that what the Church is asking?
    I don’t think so.
    The canonical aspects of this whole thing are one thing; the legislative decisions are another.
    Women have abortions for all kinds of reasons; the canon on this, if I am correct, stipulates that for the woman, the three conditions of a mortal sin have to be in place. If she is coerced or in any way made to have that abortion, it is against her free will. If she is not aware of what she is actually doing, there is furthermore a lack of knowledge or consent.
    Why is this, in C. Matthew’s diatribe, about criminal sanctions against women?
    I am not making any kind of judgment here, but the lawmakers who allow and fund abortion, the doctors and other health care workers who do them, the people who support abortion are providing the means to this abominable crime; the women are another matter, and have to be judged according to the circumstances, as to whether or not they are fully culpable.
    Am I wrong on this?

  14. EoinOBolguidhir says:

    A Letter to Matthews:

    “November 24, 2009

    I was embarassed for Mr. Matthews while watching his interview of the Bishop of Providence. It was worse than immoral, it was bad journalism. There was no pretext of impartiality on the issue, which Msgr. Tobin had every reason to expect from a what purports to be news programme. Rather than an impartial discussion of the truth, the interview was the television equivalent of asking a man to be an honoured guest at dinner with the intent of belittling him. I expect Mr. Matthews would have been more courteous if the Most Reverend Dr. Tobin’s title was “Catholic Community Organizer,” which gives a more accurate sense of the public authority he holds over Mr. Kennedy, which is to say none.

    From within the cocoon of his political and religious biases, Mr. Matthews either uninentionally failed to see or mendacioulsy would not state that the matter at hand was never the possibility of a man being forced to vote in any particular way on any particular issue by anyone. No one in congress can be forced to vote on the basis of anyone’s conscience but their own. The real matter at hand was whether any group of freely assembled Americans can seek to have the beliefs of their members inform the voting of their members given that others might differ with their morals. This possibility, which is a fundamental and longstanding part of our American Democracy, seemed to anger Mr. Matthews. Yet this is not what Msgr. Tobin sought to do. Their concern was solely with what was happening in their Church.

    This was for two years a private issue until Mr. Kennedy made it public with the purpose, I imagine, of trying to appear victimized. And yet Mr. Kennedy’s pastor did nothing more than to make a request, and it was a request made for the benefit of both Mr. Kennedy and others in their Church in a matter that affected nothing outside the walls of Mr. Kennedy’s parish, much less the Capitol. The leadership of the Church which Mr. Kennedy attends do have the right privately to ask him not to conflate his beliefs with the publicly stated beliefs of their Church when the two are directly and profoundly opposed to one another. They have, as Americans, to speak up in the public square to express what their beliefs are. And they have the right to respond to public remarks made about them and to them, particularly be members of the federal government. These are rights no honest person would deny any group – not the Rotarians, nor the Elks, and not the Catholic Church.

    In the end, one must remember that Mr. Kennedy may chose any religion that is more in accord with his beliefs better than those of the Catholic Church; perhaps the Church of Chris Matthews would suit him better.”

  15. EoinOBolguidhir says:

    A Letter to Hard Ball:

    “November 24, 2009

    I was embarrassed for Mr. Matthews while watching his interview of the Bishop of Providence. It was worse than immoral, it was bad journalism. There was no pretext of impartiality on the issue, which Msgr. Tobin had every reason to expect from what purports to be news programme. Rather than an impartial discussion of the truth, the interview was the television equivalent of asking a man to be an honoured guest at dinner with the intent of belittling him. I expect Mr. Matthews would have been more courteous if the Most Reverend Dr. Tobin’s title was “Catholic Community Organizer,” which gives a more accurate sense of the public authority he holds over Mr. Kennedy, which is to say none.

    From within the cocoon of his political and religious biases, Mr. Matthews either uninentionally failed to see or mendacioulsy would not state that the matter at hand was never the possibility of a man being forced to vote in any particular way on any particular issue by anyone. No one in congress can be forced to vote on the basis of anyone’s conscience but their own. The real matter at hand was whether any group of freely assembled Americans can seek to have the beliefs of their members inform the voting of their members given that others might differ with those morals. This possibility, which is a fundamental and longstanding part of our American Democracy, seemed to anger Mr. Matthews. Yet this is not what Msgr. Tobin sought to do. His concern was solely with what was happening in his Church in Rhode Island.

    This was for two years a private issue until Mr. Kennedy made it public with the purpose, I imagine, of trying to appear victimized. And yet Mr. Kennedy’s pastor did nothing more than to make a request, and it was a request made for the benefit of both Mr. Kennedy and others in their Church in a matter that affected nothing outside the walls of Mr. Kennedy’s parish, much less the Capitol. The leadership of the Church which Mr. Kennedy attends do have the right privately to ask him not to conflate his beliefs with the publicly stated beliefs of their Church when the two are directly and profoundly opposed to one another. They have, as Americans, to speak up in the public square to express what their beliefs are. And they have the right to respond to public remarks made about them and to them, particularly by members of the federal government. These are rights no honest person would deny any group – not the Rotarians, not the Elks, and not the Catholic Church.

    In the end, one must remember that Mr. Kennedy may chose any religion that is more in accord with his beliefs better than those of the Catholic Church; perhaps the Church of Chris Matthews would suit him better.”

  16. Oneros says:

    nazareth priest,

    Whether the women are culpable of Mortal Sin is one thing, whether they should be punished by the State is quite another.

    We dont send people to jail for Mortal Sin qua Mortal Sin, we send them to jail to deter crimes that hurt others.

    If women arent punished, as Matthews says, they will continue seeking out abortions, and there will always be people willing to provide them with a coat-hanger.

  17. gloriainexcelsis says:

    I watched parts 1 and 2 on the Catholic Tradition website and posted a comment:
    Chris Matthews hasn’t a clue. The Bishop is concerned with the individual’s soul and the duty of that individual to conduct his or her private and public life’s decisions according to a right conscience and the moral imperative to act in concert with that conscience. In reality, the government should have no role in draftng laws concerning abortion, pro or con. It isn’t a mandate of the Constitution in any case and the government may be overstepping its authority to even consider such legislation.

  18. brianwalden says:

    I cannot type the adjectives for Matthews that went through my head while watching that. Kennedy isn’t in trouble for not pursuing and end to abortion; he could live his whole life without doing anything to end it and not receive any penalty (from his bishop, at least). It’s actively promoting abortion that has him in hot water.

    I wonder if a part of Bishop Tobin’s reluctance to speak to what the penalty for participating in abortion should be is that it’s a prudential matter. The state has a responsibility to defend the most basic rights of its citizens, but there can be legitimate differences in how such violations are prosecuted. Matthews wanted Bishop Tobin to provide one definitive answer as to what the penalty should be, but there is no one answer.

    Matthews laid a trap for Bishop Tobin. If he answered what sanctions he thought the law should impose for abortion, he would be accused of trying to impose a Theocracy. Matthews was itching for Tobin to suggest even the mildest of penalties for woman who procure an abortion. When he didn’t he was accused not really believing abortion is murder. It’s obvious that in Matthews’ world religious people are either theocrats or hypocrites – there is no such thing as an honest believer (except maybe those who, like Matthews, take JFK as gospel and don’t exercise their beliefs in the public square).

  19. Hmm, for an interviewer who seemed to want the Church to avoid interference in public affairs, he was pretty quick to ask the bishop to step into precisely that arena and write laws.

    Matthews was setting the bishop up. He put Bishop Tobin at his ease with initial softball questions, then gradually painted him into a corner as a set-up for his tirade.

  20. kenoshacath says:

    I was very impressed with Bishop Tobin’s courage, a gift of the Holy Ghost. I will remember the Bishop in prayer today. +

  21. aladextra says:

    I’m afraid I’m disappointed with Bp. Tobin, or rather his communications staff. He is a hero of mine, but he should never have been allowed to go on with Matthews. Matthews does this for a living, and was using foils the left has thrown at prolifers for 20 years on these kind of shows and Bp. Tobin did not interject or redirect as he should have done. He allowed Matthews to create the ground they were fighting on, namely that Bp. Tobin has interjected himself into the legislative arena. This is far from the truth, and Bp. Tobin should have denied the premise of Matthew’s badgering.

    In fact, as Bp. Tobin would no doubt be able to elucidate without Matthews’ berating him, Bp. Tobin is concerned about the soul of Rep. Kennedy first. Second he is concerned about the souls of other Catholics he is affecting by public scandal, which he has a public duty to correct. Finally, he is concerned about the preservation of innocent human life, not about any moral issue per se. The point is we are talking about innocent human beings, and if you believe that you must accept that the weight of the law must be brought to bear in support of the unborn.

    The Church was very active in opposing segregation, but never specified what should be in the voting rights act of 1965. To say that because one sees injustice and seeks its redress implies one must be a legislator–it’s absurd.

    Finally, the matter at hand is public financing of abortion, not its legality. Compelling opponents of abortion to pay for its funding is not pro-choice or leaving the issue aside.

    Matthews feels guilty for sloughing off his upbringing. It shows in his projected hostility.

  22. Penguins Fan says:

    Bishop Tobin showed a lot of courage for going on that network and talking to Chris Matthews. I loathe MSNBC and will not watch it due to the people they employ for their opinion programs.

    Bishop Tobin has the fortitude I wish other bishops from Pittsburgh would show in dealing with abortionist politicians.

  23. Father Totton says:

    This morning the local Kansas City, MO radio station reported that a man had been charged with double murder in the death of a pregnant woman and her unborn child. Has this double standard never bothered anybody? Such a man can be charged, but the woman could just as soon choose to terminate the baby’s life under protection of “the law of the land.”

  24. haleype says:

    The law, Mr. Mathews is the Fifth Commandment of God – Thou shalt not kill and implicit in that law is the fact that it refers to innocent life. Every Catholic is bound in conscience to obey that law and since it is a Divine Law, it trumps and supersedes all other laws. What I would tell a woman is that Abortion is a violation of God’s Laws but that she can appeal to God’s Mercy and be forgiven but that does not change the nature of the offense – an offense, a very serious offense, against God. Human laws must take cognizance and be compatible with the laws of God and, so far, the laws allowing abortion do not do that. Do not try and minimize the horror of Abortion, Mr. Mathews, it is murder of the innocent!

    Well, that’s what I would say for what it’s worth.

  25. Salvatore_Giuseppe says:

    The first flaw in the argument is that Matthews fails to realize there is a difference between morality and theology. The first is not religious per se, even though it is held by a religion. The morality simply assumes there is a value of human life, a concept that is shared by the majority of people of various religions and of no religion at all. From there, the only debate is whether or not a fetus is a human person, which is a scientific and philosophical one.

    So the fact that he is a bishop is not relevant, other than that he is a prominent figure. It is essentially no different that any other well known public figure advocating a position.

    Second it should be noted that Kennedy has submitted himself to the Church, specifically to the Diocese of Providence and its Bishop, and is therefore obligated to listen to him.

    Finally, it should be noted that the person at most fault for an abortion should be the doctor who performs it. He actually commits the murder, while the woman meerly facilitates and assists in it. Also, the question assumes that just as many people would be looking to get abortions as do now. However, since most abortions are convenience ones (they get one because they can), and most, if not all, of these would presumably not look to get one if the option was not readily available. (which makes me wonder, somebody should do a study comparing the number of abortions performed to the closeness and availability of abortion “clinics”)

  26. ndjo3 says:

    This was painful to watch. The good Bishop was restrained from making a public statement on what the law should be, despite Mr Matthews barrage, since he was representing the magisterium. I think the Bishop should have pointed out, like so many of you have, that it is the role of the Church to provide guidance on what is right and what is wrong. It is the role of the legislature to determine the appropriate punishment for the crime. It seemed to me this was what the Bishop was trying to say, I’m sure it was very unsettling being shot at in the spotlight like that. I think all that the Bishops can say is that the law, or in this case, the health care bill, is not a good law because it finances evil.

    It’s unfortunate that the Bishops have to stand up and take a beating like that in place of other Catholic senators and laymen who should be standing up for the Church and the Bishop.

  27. theloveofwisdome says:

    Dear Chris Matthews,

    “…it is unlawful to follow one line of conduct in private life and another in public, respecting privately the authority of the Church, but publicly rejecting it; for this would amount to joining together good and evil, and to putting man in conflict with himself; whereas he ought always to be consistent, and never in the least point nor in any condition of life to swerve from Christian virtue”

    -The Vicar Of Christ, Pope Leo XIII Immortale Dei

  28. Thomas S says:

    Matthews deserved a sharp backhand across the face for that disgusting performance. I don’t believe people like him can even be argued with. Their idiotic arguments are refuted time and time again, but they just keep trotting them. Name another moral question they apply their logic to? These people are transparently deceitful, “Oh, I believe abortion is wrong, I accept that teaching, but I just don’t think a damn thing should be done about it.” Shut up!

    Heretics need to be dealt with severely for the good of their souls and for the good of the Church. Yes, they are in grave sin, yes they cause scandal, but I’m thinking of another reason:

    Persecution of Catholics IS coming in this country. We can’t give the oppressor the fig leaf of self-professed Catholics who will gleefully encourage and take part in the persecution. We can’t give them the ability to point to “Catholics” and say, “See, we’re not anti-Catholic. Many Catholics in good standing with their Church agree with us.”

    The Church needs to name them for what they are, enemies of life, enemies of the Church, enemies of God.

  29. stgemma_0411 says:

    Folks…you need to understand something. Yes, Mr. Matthews did something wrong but probably not what you think. The Church is in an awkward position in that it retains an NPO status under 501 C3 from the IRS which allows them to remain as a tax-free institution…BUT…it is at a cost. This is where we get our separation of Church and State, currently.

    Now, this being said. Chris Matthews, in an albeit disrespectful way, did call out the Bishops for not having done anything for the last 30 years. Essentially, he’s telling them “You reap what you sow”. All those years they wanted to stay out of the political scene, all those years they wanted to adhere to the political correctness and not offended anyone, all those years of the indifference towards the traditions of the faith and NOW you want to step into the ring?

    The bishops have one of two choices, currently. 1) Throw off the collar of the 501 C3 exemption and come right out and say that all people who procure and all the people who are active agents in an abortion, as well as all accomplices, should be tried and convicted as murderers or accomplices to the act. This puts them squarely into the ring of political activism…but at a price they have yet to comprehend. 2) Continue to wear the collar of the 501 C3, and try and “inspire” people from the pulpit to take more assertive action in politics, and perhaps re-shape politics for the future.

    This may be this is the kick in the pants that the Bishops need to help re-shape the Catholic Church…and perhaps the world. Maybe this is the time that the pendulum swings back in the favour of the “City of God” versus the “City of Man”

    I think it will be interesting to see what Bp Tobin says on the O’Reilly show, tomorrow.

  30. Onerous: Please forgive me if I am misunderstanding what this argument is all about…
    It is news to me that outlawing abortion ‘per se’ involves jail for women who have them. If I am ignorant on this, I am sorry.
    As for the canonical penalty, this is what I thought the ruckus was all about.
    And, yes, you are correct, if someone participates in the willful death of another innocent person(born or unborn), they should be prosecuted. But I was not aware that this was, in fact, the issue.

  31. Supertradmom says:

    I thought the Bishop did a great job, especially as he remained so peaceful in the face of aggressive stupidity. God bless Bishop Tobin.

  32. Thomas S says:

    Frank H,

    Interesting information you provided. Did Pat Buchanan say anything to Matthews about his wretched behavior? I’m a huge fan of Buchanan and know he’s a very faithful Catholic. A public scolding by him would have been priceless.

    Note of interest: When my sister graduated Holy Cross in 1999, Chris Matthews and Helen PreJean were both given honorary degrees. Our institutions of higher learning are always distinguishing themselves so well. (Vomit)

  33. Servant of the Liturgy says:

    Matthews’ use of “Your Excellency” appeared, at first, to be respectful. However, it turned to sarcasm quickly. For some reason, Matthews thinks that someone who quite clearly leads a sect or faith, and who justifiably leads those in his purview should dictate every aspect of a law. I laud Bishop Tobin, who clearly shows forth the Gift of fortitude in his works. Mr. Matthews must understand that the Bishop has the right and duty to correct those in his jurisdiction, which we all (hopefully) know. One last thought: it was only in the last minute that Matthews actually turned the camera over to Bishop Tobin to explain his views. It is worth noting that this was the only time His Excellency could speak without being shot down by some half-minded question.

    PS. Am I the only person that heard Mr. Matthews refer to the teaching Office of the Church as the “magistar”?

  34. Servant of the Liturgy: No, in fact, you are not. Laura Ingraham noted this this morning (I was doing errands listening to the radio) and made quite a comment about it!!

  35. jasoncpetty says:

    Anyone involved in discussing abortion, His Excellency included, should understand the state of the law prior to the legalization of abortion. Women weren’t prosecuted. Doctors were.

    Don’t get caught by such a stupid question.

  36. jasoncpetty: Thank you.

  37. Mike says:

    I think Bp. Tobin did well; Mathews is in the entertainment field, as well as advocating his own poltical/moral views, and this show showed him acting as a fool. The Bishop made some solid points, with dignity, and grace.

    CM is part of the fall-out of the break-down in catechesis. He is the fruit of not telling people the truth, and not living it.

  38. EXCHIEF says:

    I think 501 (c) 3 gives the Bishops far more lattitude than earlier discussed. It prevents them from endorsing or opposing particular candidates for political office. That is quite clear. Other than that it states that Churchs (or any 501(c) 3) cannot devote a “substantial amount” of their money/resources to political issues. It is open to interpretation but the current issue is the first one in decades the Bishops have devoted much at all in the way of money/resources to. I’m no tax lawyer but I think they could speak out a great deal more on this issue and not jeopardize their tax exempt status.

  39. Frank H says:

    Thomas S, here’s the link to the transcript page.

    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/34128572/ns/msnbc_tv-hardball_with_chris_matthews/

    Buchanan nicely supports the Bishop and his responsibility to correct one of the faithful who have strayed. Matthews questions Buchanan along the same lines he did the Bishop, as to what should the penalty be for the mother who aborts her baby. Buchanan also defends the appropriateness of church leaders weighing on such issues, citing the civil rights movement.

  40. Bp. Tobin took a wise approach. Matthews rambled for minutes from here to there showing his anger, spite, and lack of logic. Tobin was right not to get into a shouting match, which is usually what happens on these trash shows. He peacefully listened to the slander and incoherent babel coming from the loud mouth, then quietly and logically presented the Church’s teachings. Bp. Tobin showed class and reserve and also fortitude. CM’s method was to detract from the main point of the abortion discourse: abortion takes an innocent life. This a typical strategy of the libby lib libs (esp. fallen away Catholics) because they have no counter to this point (none exists in the medical/scientific community). You simply cannot prove, scientifically, that conception is not the start of life (all good philosophy and science actually assert that life does begin at conception). Punishments/consequences are dealt with in light of this *fact*.

    Do not fear friends, the ‘magistar’ is speaking the truth. The runaround is the only response of abortion supporters because truth is indisputable. This is why progressives are so emotional and illogical when discussing abortion. Think about it, how often do you hear a logical argument in defense of abortion that isn’t totally emotional? CM exemplified this point well.

  41. wanda says:

    I’m with Nazareth Priest @ his 4:42 posting.

    No offense taken. As far as I’m concerned, the socks you mentioned should be the really big knee-high ones that hunters wear. The ones that are gray with the red toe. Roll them up in a nice huge roll and offer them to Mr. Mattew’s for the proscribed stuffing procedure.

  42. wanda says:

    Bill O’Reilly was way more respectful to Bishop Tobin tonight than was Mr. Mathews.

  43. Central Valley says:

    Thanks be to God for Bishop Tobin, how we need men like him in California. Matthews is a political hack who could not be happier if Franklin Roosevelt were still president. Matthews still lives in camelot but doesn’t realize camelot was cently burried. Having grown up in Massachusetts, I was surrounded with prople like Matthews, they call themselves catholic but vote for pro abortion pro sodomite politicians because the politician comes from a “good catholic” family. The ilk of the Kennedy’s and Matthews are exposed and the end is near. Do not be surprised to see more bishops like Bp. Tobin to speak up. Recent appointments from Rome point in that direction. Readers of this blog should pray for Bp. Tobin and email or call the diocese and offer support. And of course, in charity, pray for the souls of congressman Kennedy and Chris Matthews.

  44. JonM says:

    Chris Matthews is a notorious dissenter. I think it is fair to say that he was completely disrespectful, arrogant, and in open revolt against a bishop of the Church. He ended his interview in ‘instructing’ Bishop Tobin and calling him ‘in error’ after promising ample time for his emminance to respond.

    Mr. Matthews also seemed to believe that JFK had a meta-magesterium power…

    First of all, the law is a direct extension of morality. That has to be stated. Mr. Matthews attempted to play the old canard ‘the law has nothing to do with morality! not a thing!’

    Beyond this point, he cleverly averred that most Catholics do not think abortion is a criminal act. Well, that sounds like a word game to me: technically most abortions are sanctioned by fiat per the Supreme Court, so they are according to civil law, de jure, lawful. One could argue that the 14th Ammendment conflicts with Roe v. Wade, however I personally don’t think that is a sturdy position especially given that the Supreme Court increasly offers, shall we say, vigorous interpretations of the Constitution. So ultimately what they say goes unless the Executive or Congress were to openly disobey (or individual states were to nullify federal directives, which is totally legal in many circumstances).

    Bishop Tobin has really put himself in the jaws of the beast by corageously standing up for fundamental teachings of the Church that date right back to St. Paul (1 Corinthians 10:14-21 is CRYSTAL CLEAR). John Paul II wrote in Ecclesia de Eucharistia

    The celebration of the Eucharist, however, cannot be the starting point for communion; it presupposes that communion already exists, a communion which it seeks to consolidate and bring to perfection. The sacrament is an expression of this bond of communion both in its invisible dimension, which, in Christ and through the working of the Holy Spirit, unites us to the Father and among ourselves, and in its visible dimension, which entails communion in the teaching of the apostles, in the sacraments and in the Church’s hierarchical order.

    Thanks to therealpresence.org on this quote.

    Bishop Tobin especially needs prayers. And so does Chris Matthews.

  45. shoofoolatte says:

    Chris Matthews very forcefully articulated the problems with the Church imposing its moral authority on the secular jobs of our lawmakers. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen anyone do this as provacatively (or effectively) as Matthews did when he confronted Bishop Tobin. Tobin was obviously unprepared.

    Dr. Martin Luther King is the leading American example of how to bring morality to the legislative level. His nonviolent drive was one of the most successful expressions of Christian social action in the history of the United States. Bishop Tobin should learn as much as he can about Dr. King before going before the media.

  46. kenoshacath says:

    I agree JonM. We must also pray for CM so that he may come to know the Truth. Faith is a gift that can be lost by any of us; for without God, we can do nothing!

  47. Oneros says:

    “Anyone involved in discussing abortion, His Excellency included, should understand the state of the law prior to the legalization of abortion. Women weren’t prosecuted. Doctors were.”

    Which is why so many back-alley coat-anger abortions were being performed (one of the big practical reasons the Court decided to legalize it, whatever nonsense “theoretical” reasons they cooked up to justify it).

    Start punishing infanticidal mothers, and it will stop.

  48. Clinton says:

    Shoofoolatte, I’m puzzled by your reference to Dr. King. How would Rev. King’s opposition to racial segregation, which he based on
    his religious beliefs, be something you see as positive, and Bishop Tobin’s opposition to abortion (based on Church teaching) be a
    case of the Church inappropriately imposing itself in politics?

    It seems to me that if Chris Matthews has a problem with Bishop Tobin for his stance because it has a foundation in religious belief,
    then he would have to disagree with the stance of Rev. Dr. King for the same reason.

  49. I’ve asked my aging parents why they endure watching Chris Matthews. They tell me they do it to keep their blood pressure up….

  50. wanda: LOL!!
    I was just thinking of the standard gym socks with the red bands; your suggestion hits the mark!

  51. MisterH says:

    Bishop Tobin appeared on the O’Reilly Factor tonight.

    Unlike Chris Matthews, Bill O’Reilly was respectful and let the Bishop speak.

    Here’s the video:
    http://allhands-ondeck.blogspot.com/2009/11/bishop-tobin-appears-on-oreilly-factor.html

  52. rakesvines says:

    Matthews set the bishop up then beat him up. He wasn’t interested in what the bishop had to say as shown by not really listening and understanding the bishop’s points. Matthews was there to make the bishop appear incompetent and his position irrelevant or unreasonable. The bishop answered his questions but Matthews just yelled over them with the usual talking points of pro-aborts.

    How I wish more bishops will stand up and excommunicate all the pro-abortion supporters specially those in public office. If the Poles and Spaniards can do it, so can Americans. Abp. Tobin just did. That can really tip the scales of abortion support in this country. I think Kennedy’s calculated risk in revealing Bp. Tobin’s action backfired.

  53. Melania says:

    I think the best approach for the bishop would have been to say that by confronting Rep. Kennedy he was merely doing his job as a bishop, which is to assure that Catholics and non-Catholics are clear about the teaching of the Church.

    Democratic politicians know that Catholics constitute a significant portion of the voting public and that they cannot get elected without them. At the same time, they are unwilling to give up their pro-abortion stance. Therefore, they try to confuse and manipulate Catholics into thinking that abortion is not a primary issue, that they are “moderate” on abortion or that one can be a good Catholic and still be “pro-choice” etc. Hence we see Nancy Pelosi declaring herself to be an “ardent Catholic,” rushing to be photographed enthusiastically kissing the Pope’s ring during his 2008 visit, angling for a photo op with the Pops during her visit to Rome. Unscrupulous pro-abortion “Catholic” politicians have used their fame, their ready media access and their national position to mislead Catholics. Phoney Catholic organizations like Catholics United are formed, funded by George Soros, to further this end.

    In the face of this enormous onslaught of misinformation and manipulation, the bishops of our Church have a duty to do everything they can to assure that the Church is not coopted by the unprincipled, that Church teaching is clearly enunciated. They have a duty to instruct and guide the faithful.

    In this interview, Chris Matthews was able to control the dialogue and make the bishop’s actions about possibly inappropriate Church interference in matters of public policy. Once Matthews was able to do that, he won.

  54. I got a rough count on the words of this badgering cloaked as an interview.

    Matthews: ~1500
    Bp Tobin: ~700

    I miss the Tim Russert kind of professionalism where they actually allowed people to answer questions.

  55. Fr Martin Fox says:

    Several points:

    Chris Matthews engaged in sloppy thinking, bathed in a lot of emoting. Some here are doing the same.

    > The notion of “imposing” morality or morality “intruding” into the “secular” sphere of the law is absolutely bogus. Is not every law founded, one way or another, on a moral impulse, albeit remotely? No doubt there are some laws that are exceptions, but when I ask people to cite one, they find it hard to do so. Traffic laws? Food safety laws? Founded o n the moral value we assign to protecting human safety–i.e., “thou shalt not kill.”

    > The idea that because abortion is murder therefore women must be thrown in jail is specious. In our law, we have lots of categories of “murder” and lots of different penalties. Having yet another one for abortion–in which we might choose, for any reason we wish, not to include a penalty for the woman–is not any great inconsistency. The law is moral–but it is also practical.

    Had I been the bishop, asked that question, I would have said:

    “Chris, you are misrepresenting this as a Catholic issue–but what I’m saying as a Catholic bishop is what people who are other religions, or no religion, say about the law on abortion. What we believe is that on matters that go to the core of human dignity and the kind of society we are going to be, the law absolutely MUST address it. That’s why we had to address issues like child labor, slavery and racism through law–and we believe abortion is in the same category.

    “So what we believe is the law–playing a key role in shaping the soul of a nation–must be on the side of the dignity and worth of the unborn. So, yes, we want that reflected in the law. Details about penalties–while important in their own right–are not as important in this matter. If I didn’t know better, I’d say you were carrying water for those who favor legal abortion–because they’d love nothing better than for the majority of Americans who are pro-life to fight each other over penalites, instead of agreeing together in passing laws that stop abortion, or at least reduce, abortion.”

    > It’s a subtle point, but important: what gets Kennedy and other legislators in trouble with the Church is NOT failing to support this or that pro-life bill, but their active efforts in support of destroying human life.

    I would have told Matthews, had I gotten the chance, that “it’s Kennedy’s endorsement of keeping abortion legal, and his support of tax-funding for the same, that damages his relation to the Faith–not his failure to support a specific pro-life bill. So, no, Mr. Matthews, I don’t seek to write the laws; but I have a duty as a shepherd to tell members of my Church, what our Catholic values mean for the law; and I have a right as citizen, to tell the same to any elected official, or anyone else who cares to listen. Mr. Kennedy is free to ignore or defy me as a bishop; but if he makes choices or espouses beliefs that put him outside the Faith of the Church, that’s his decision, not mine. I’m trying to talk him out of it.”

    > The idea that the pope should absolve American Catholics of allegiance to our nation is the single most ill-advised idea I’ve seen brought up in these discussions, perhaps ever in my experience.

    > Matthews did what a political activist/advocate does in a discussion: frame the debate in your terms. When you skillfully frame the debate the right way, you win. The bishop–who probably hasn’t done this all that often, and this isn’t an easy thing for everyone to learn how to do–ideally should have called Matthews on it: “Chris, you’re trying to frame the issue in the way you like, and that’s fine–but I don’t accept your way of framing this, sorry”–then you can argue about the framing, rather than debate entirely on Matthews’ terms.

    > All that said, I give Bishop Tobin major props for doing this. Not easy to do; not that many people can really go into an interview like this and do half as well as he did. He’s got a lot of other things on his mind, so I don’t expect him to become an expert at effective “spin.” Choosing this moment to complain about the bishops, who are stepping up more than they have, is poor form.

  56. stbasil777 says:

    I personally am embarrassed to see good Catholics here criticizing Bishop Tobin, saying that he did not have enough conviction or did not say the right words or did not employ the best argument. I can’t believe it. I cannot believe it – then again, from past experience, I can, sadly.

    What he did do was sit silently while attacked, much like Our Lord was silent when attacked. What he did do was speak the truth and the Truth, Our Lord, never returns void. What he did do was take a stand and he paid for it. We should encourage him, stand behind him and praise God for a Bishop willing to endure what he did for the truth.

    It seems like sometimes some Catholics – many well-intentioned I am sure – will criticize if Bishop’s speak up and if they don’t; no matter what they are displeased. Either way they are unhappy with the results. Would you have had the courage to endure what the Bishop did and do so in such a charitable, humble manner? What are you doing and suffering for the truth of the Faith?

    God bless Bishop Tobin. We should all take a minute to write to the diocese to encourage him, thank him and give him our support. I’m so thankful for the Bishop. If only all Bishops were like him. That interview could not have been easy with Mr. Matthews spewing his venom at him. And while we’re at it, we could easily say a prayer or two for Mr. Matthews’ soul, which is obviously in great need. Miserere mei.

    Pax Christi tecum.

  57. This was a very sad event in my opinion. The abortion issue and how to debate it has been around for forty years and Bp. Tobin did not have the slighest idea how to proceed. Why did he not have an attorney? Why did he let Matthews argue from the position of the “mother” and not the doctors and the Government? Why did he not suggest the real issue was to reduce the number of blacks (and others) with their high out-of-wedlock rate from our urban areas (Please tell me that no one missed the fact that Obama is both pro-abortion AND black). He is the Judas Goat. How else do you think we have aborted 50 million Americans? The Government wants it! It gives $300 million to Planned Parenthood each year to do it.
    Why didn’t he cite the Holocaust and 6 million Jews vis a vis 50 million Americans? WHY DID HE EVER AGREE TO GO ON THE PROGRAM?

  58. JohnE says:

    Chris Matthews: “Render unto Caesar that which is Caesar’s, which is the law”.

    …but render unto God what is God’s, which is everything.

    So when a senator has before him legislation that kills the unborn, he should ignore that fact? He’s MAKING the law, not deciding whether or not to OBEY the law!

    I don’t fault Bishop Tobin one bit. It’s difficult to formulate an argument against illogical statements.

  59. john 654 says:

    Lots of great points have been made above. I’m prolife and I say charge all involved with an abortion with murder. A mother would be charged with murder if she killed her 1 month old. A killer is charge with a double murder if he kills a pregnant woman. There should be no pause when asked what the charge for an abortive mother should be. As far as I know Tobin wasn’t there to discuss the charges of such a case he was there to explain why he had requested Kennedy to refrain from communion. Something he had done privately and that Kennedy made public nearly 3 years after the fact.

    As far as the 501 C3 status goes the Church is well within their rights here. Bishop Tobin is not endorsing a candidate he is handling a church matter on a moral issue. He has never told the Kennedy how to vote, he has only said he voting is not aligned with his faith and therefore is not in communion with the church. Kennedy is obviously Pro-Choice, he chooses to not to repent. May the Lord have Mercy on us all.

  60. tm30 says:

    With respect to Chris Matthews, further proof that the eyes are the window to the soul. I don’t know how to describe his appearance other than “Gollum-esque”, bitter, cold, earth-bound…

    I know it’s a repeated comparison, but it can’t be made enough: Slavery was a perceived moral good by many powerful citizens of the South. Lincoln went one better than arresting people, he started a war. Doesn’t need to come to that, but for the sake of obliterating a moral evil, yes, there needs to be laws that criminalize abortion. Perhaps leniency to begin with towards the culprits, but stiffer penalties over time. I never used to believe that was a good way to go. But it seems to me the only way to save our society from the abyss, ideally, would be to re-introduce the concept of “consequences” for evil acts.

    If I guesstimate the future, it appears to me bleak and lifeless and dehumanized — the unrelenting effort of secular humanism to rip the image of God from our very being…

  61. GordonB says:

    I’m going to wager the good Bishop would do things differently if given another chance — but I think he held his own in an ambush situation. To me, the issue is the real bone of contention here is the fact that the Church teaches on matters of faith and morals INFALLIBLY so in light of that, the debate seems rather pointless. Those who engage in such debates with liberal Catholics and nonCatholics, in my humble opinion need to set that out as the point, as the debate really is about WHO is the ultimate authority and keep the discussion less about policy and more about why the Church IS the God’s Church.

  62. Jayna says:

    What part of “yes, absolutely, I would vote to outlaw abortion” does Matthews not understand? He asked him the same question like 87 times.

  63. JonM says:

    Chris Matthews did say ‘magistar’ and though it is possible (likely) that [gross] overindulgence in politics has oxidized his memory of Church matters, I would give him a qualified pass on this. When speaking a lot and quickly, you tend to pepper a conversation with your own form of liturgical innovation.

    Of course, trying to verbally trap a Bishop, humiliate him on television, and proceed to lecture him (the Shepherd) are poor excuses for speaking a lot and quickly.

  64. James Locke says:

    Chris Matthews is sooo offensive. He should be fired. this is insane, he is such a fool.

  65. Melody says:

    I feel bad for Bishop Tobin, he was pushed into a corner and badgered to the point where it must have been difficult to make coherent responses.

    On jail time for women who abort: This is certainly required for some. However, many women are coerced and even threatened to have an abortion by their boyfriends, parents, and doctors.
    Woman deciding to have their children are often threatened with losing their main means of support, and sometimes even with physical violence. An anti-abortion charity near me operates a pregnant women’s shelter for this very reason.

    Given these circumstances, there are cases where the charges should fall on the person responsible for the coercion.

  66. moon1234 says:

    Do all of you not realize that this is all scripted on the part of Matthews? You think he can ACTUALLY get all of those words out without a script? This is not an interview people. It is an inquisition held by the owners of NBC. His little remarks at the end of the “interview” were 100% written/scripted.

    That said, +Bishop Tobin needs to grow a spine and actually SPEAK what the church believes. Abortion is murder. Those committing it are MURDERERS! Both the doctor and the woman. Each should receive the same penalty as a 1st degree premedated murder from the state authorities. This is what abortion is. Plain and simple.

    The Church does not establish the penalty for murder of adults (right now anyway) so why should it establish the penalty for the murder of the unborn. The question of whether an act is a mortal sin or not or meets the conditions of a mortal sin also has no bearing on whether the state should punish such action. There are many laws that result in jain time or worse for acts that are not sins at all. There are also no laws to punish the most heinous violations of Church/Natural law tolerated by the state (Abortion, Homosexulaity, Certain Wars, Human Cloning, etc.).

    Catholics, especially the clergy, who were formed during and after the 60′s were taught to be appeasers. They were not formed to do battle in the public square defending the Church. I would LOVE to have seen Archbishop Fellay or Williams on hardball speaking to the same questions. Matthews would have been handed his lunch and then some.

    I admire Bishop Tobin’s courage to go on the show, but he needs some conviction to speak the truth. Islam is growing for a reason. There are REAL and SEVERE punishments that attach to violating the laws of Islam. Many people are attracted to a religion where the clergy practice what they preach. We don’t need the severe punishments of Islam in the Catholic church, but we do need our clergy to stand up and actually speak the plain, un-watered down truth.

  67. moon1234 says:

    Perhaps leniency to begin with towards the culprits, but stiffer penalties over time.

    You will feel differently when the same “tolerance” is shown towards someone who MURDERS one of your loved ones. Maybe a little slap on the wrist and “Don’t do that again” and the Murderer of your wife, husband, mother, father, sister, brother, child, etc. is on their merry way.

    Abortion is 1st degree, premeditated murder. The woman PLANS to commit murder and then DOES it. The doctor goes further. He not only plans it, performs, he also PROFITS from it. Abortion doctors are no different than hired, cold blooded, killers. If you want to understand how Islam can tolerate suicide bombers, just look at our country. We tolerate genocide of the unborn; it is even financially supported by the state. To a muslim this is no different than Iran paying suicide bombers. I dare you to tell me it is not the same without minimizing the value of an unborn life.

    There is no wishy washy middle ground here. Either unborn lives have the same value as born or they don’t. If you say unborn life has less value, then you lower the value of all of our lives. This leads to Euthanasia, genocide, race wars, etc. If one class of people is less valuable then the state can start to do away with other classes of “undesirable” people. The Nazi’s, Bolshevik’s and others who committed mass murder have ADMITTED during their trials that they saw these classes of people as NON-HUMAN. That is what ALLOWED them to kill so many people without a thought that they were doing anything other than exterminating rodents or insect infestations.

    We need witnesses to truth, not patsies to the evil one.

  68. MikeM says:

    Matthews’ questions were irrelevant. +Bp. Tobin’s disagreement with Kennedy was not about his (non-existent) vote on (non-existent) anti-abortion legislation. It was about whether the government should subsidize abortion.

    To those of you criticizing +Bishop Tobin for lack of backbone, it’s not like he’s known for backing away from orthodoxy. He’s doing his best to effectively spread the Word of God and we should thank him for that. Let’s leave the bishop-ing to the bishops.

  69. It is times like this that I like to reflect on the fact that I myself am not a Bishop with their responsibility. I can easily imagine in my mind that if I were a Bishop I would excommunicate the whole lot of them (pro-murder so-called Catholic politicians) and then just never give them a second thought. I would hand out a list of names of people that the priest in the parishes under my care could not give communion to, or indeed any sacraments at all. If they were seen coming onto Catholic property I would notify the police of trespass. In short I would see to it that I would treat them not only as public sinners but as public enemy number one. But even as it is so easy for me to imagine this I also know that this is probably why I will never be a Bishop because for all the gusto of it, we all know there is something lacking in it. The same way it is probably a good thing that I am not judge, jury and executioner as Mr. Matthews would have a lot to worry about in the area of preserving his life.

    In the interview they spoke about law. We as Catholics need to remember that America is not our country, never was and never will be. Our loyalty to this country will always be conditional because our loyalty to Christ must be unconditional. We are bound only to follow the JUST laws of the government. We are not bound to follow unjust laws and indeed we are commanded to fight against unjust laws. Any Catholic who is in public office who does not fight against unjust laws should be reprimanded and denied communion. That is in fact to soft. Any Catholic who not only does not fight unjust laws but actually helps the creation of unjust laws does not deserve to call themselves a Catholic. We as Catholics may not obey unjust laws and if the United States government or any state therein wishes to pass unjust laws they need to be aware that Catholics will not obey their laws. We have always had and continue to always have available to us the government of the Church and we can turn to it to replace the civil government.

    The civil government says that a couple needs state permission to get married but the Catholic Church does not say this. What are young Catholics to do? The answer is simple. They get married in the Catholic Church and they are under no obligation to register or even inform the state of their action. If they have a child there should be no reason to register or inform the state of this. All that is required to have the child baptized.

    Suppose a friend of mine tells me that he has gotten married. I ask where and he says at the justice of the peace. Well he can have his peace and keep his peace but I don’t consider him married any more then I consider two five year olds married who just happened to put on the costumes to make believe. And later when my friend gets divorced, because you know he will, and goes though all the hurt and pain of it there is no reason for me to get involved since his marriage was a sham from the beginning.

    If the state wants to make regulations about car safety, ok. I suppose they need to find a way to reduce accidents. If they pass a law that says it is illegal to drive while Catholic then I will have to flat out ignore the law and any supposed authority that issued it. If the government says that we have to buy health care coverage that funds abortion or go to jail then I will go to jail. But even before going to jail, I probably will just not get the coverage and then just not inform the unjust government of this fact. If they discover it then it will be my duty to force them to spend as much money as possible to put me in jail. It will also be my duty to attempt escape as often as possible and to put the lives of as many police officers as possible in jeopardy until they see the light and stop enforcing an unjust law.

    America has so much to be ashamed about and this is really just the latest thing. But we Catholics have been discriminated against in this country before and will continue to be discriminated against. This is not our country, we owe no loyalty to it. What is more, if they pass the health care bill, even with a ban of abortion funding it will signal an interesting turnabout. It would mean that Russia and America will have switched places, Russia representing freedom of religion and capitalism while America represents socialism and religious repression.

  70. Joseph says:

    I think nobody questions Bishop Tobin’s intestinal fortitude, though he did look a bit like a rabbit caught in a head light vis a vis this pompous ass. I have a strong suspicion Bishop Tobin has not fully thought his (the Catholic) position through. Since abortion is murder, therefor it must carry the same penalties as such. what is there so hard to say? Bishop Tobin should have also mentioned (as an act of charity) while he was at it, hell is a lot more unpleasant place than jail And objectively seen, thats where all those who promote and commit abortion knowingly and with full consent, will end up.

  71. Rev. Philip-Michael says:

    I thought the O’Reilly interview was very helpful to explain to a secular audience the stance of the Church. Bishop Tobin’s interview on Hardball with Chris Matthews I think highlights the real issue between Church and State and how both secular and ecclesiastical authorities need to seriously look at this issue. The Catholic Church changed its position in this regard at the Second Vatican Council and it did so in regards the socio-political environment of that time. I think a necessary look into this topic in a particular nuance vis-a-vie Abortion and other issues of that sort and how indeed the Church has a role in the formation of the State for the sustenance of the Communal Good and the protection of Natural Law and the dignity of human life. Matthews raises a great point that needs to be addressed: If the Church believes Abortion to be murder, ought it be criminalized by the law? And, is this not the interjection of the Church in the affairs of the State? And, if it is, is such the proper role of the Church in regards its role of governance and the formation of society?

    Really this all comes down to Church – State relations. Personally I feel that the Catholic Church when it embraced a separation between Church and State at the Second Vatican Council did not intend to either diminish its role in the public square or eliminate its role in contributing to the legislative process of the State in the sense that when Moral issues arise the Church has the duty to lobby the State for the protection of the Rights of the Church and the Rights and Dignities of mankind. This is attested to by the way Popes since the Council have spoken out against crimes against humanity and any restrictive policies toward the proclamation of the Gospel by the Church. Clearly then there is not a separation of Church and State to the detriment of the Church having a deliberative voice in the formation of society and the laws that govern and protect it.

    In the United States this concept of Church and State, as stated above, does not necessarily exist in its current application. The current interpretation of the Church – State separation in the government of the US is either complete and utter separation or that the State has the right to restrict the voice of the Church but the Church has no right to raise a voice in regards public policy in order to avoid theocracy or one given religious/moral values system to impose itself on a pluralistic society. Although I am no fan of Matthews, his points must be taken within this context and as such the Catholic Church and all religions within the US have some serious discernment ahead of them in regards just how far they can and are meant to become involved in the legal system in order to cultivate and protect a just society. Unfortunately, because of Roe v. Wade, abortion is not simply a Moral issue but it is a legal issue in the US and therefore requires a legal response. Is then the movement of religious bodies of people to change the laws and make illegal abortion an interference or blurring of the Church – State separation? I pray and offer Mass frequently for an end to Abortion and for Laws to proceed from Christian principles. I also want to see Bishops, Priests, Deacons and Lay people take to protests and a loud, unavoidable, voice against these abominations like abortion to bring an end to them but I find it quite hard for this to occur where Church – State relations are completely viewed as separate removing then an authoritative moral voice from which to provide order amidst a plurality of subjective individual moral voices.

  72. ASD says:

    Has anybody been able to find a link or email address where we can give msnbc some, uh, feedback? TIA.

  73. We need to start an effort to let MSNBC know that there are consequences for Matthews using his bully pulpit for an attempt to define the Church’s public role in matters of morals. An email address would be nice, maybe a Facebook group as well.

    Good point MikeM. Matthews’s argument is out of context. Patrick Kennedy votes for every initiative that supports payment for abortion, abortion rights and abortion providers. He publicly advocates for the right to abortion and opposes reasonable restrictions that would reduce abortions by giving women options, that would provide substantial information for informed consent, waiting periods and parental notification… the question about the punishment of women is nowhere near being on the table. Besides, the punishment cold well be for the health care professionals that perform the killing. For the woman, the emphasis would likely be on rehabilitation and healing… Matthews oversimplified it so he could attack the Church.

  74. JonM says:

    Quomodocumque rightly points out that Russia and America are assuming inverted roles in this century. Russia has pursued commercial development and easy to follow, low income tax policies and is actively preventing Protestantism from entering its country. However, it still allows abortion and until they ban it, it will not be given the place of leadership as a counter to the secular, freemasonic-enriched West.

    How sad is it to see this country so obviously in rebellion against God? Visiting family this weekend, I was able to see some television and the mainstream culture is ramping up its contamination of culture. Driving down the highway there are very large and obvious advertisements for ‘gentleman’s clubs’ and then while shopping for food you can see nearly EVERY magazine with a poor (and very airbrushed) girl in a highly sexualized pose.

    This clash of civil power and ecclesial authority has happened before. America has always been hostile to Catholics (indeed, the most openly difficult places, the South, are home to some of the best parishes). Bishop Tobin clearly stated that if there is a conflict between religion and work, we would have to quit our job. Period. In the same sense it is absurd to argue a dualistic approach for exactly the reasons argued by Leo XII (thank you loveofwisdome). Sadly, many prominent Catholics put American politics (liberal and otherwise) at the head of their lives.

    But when most Americans are against abortion and the trend is in favor of ending abortion, why in the world is it politically expedient to adopt a pro-death platform?

    We have to look to the history of America as well as the modern states of France, Italy, and Germany. Secularism was ingrained in their founding so much so that most have no idea that state secularism and a separation of religion and state is historically aberrant at best, and, more likely, socially untenable. I don’t want to get conspiracy-y so I will leave it to the reader to do his own research on freemasonry (Please do not rely on Internet ‘sources.’ Half-correct and half-wrong is still wrong and often those who discuss this cloaked issue are very unfriendly to the Church. Pick out a few old books from the library and then look at writings that specifically address this issue.)

    There is a revolt ad extra, obvious given our current president whose upbringing was tragic and never contained reliance on religion – or a welcoming environment to faith at all. Commentators like Glenn Beck and others view the political challenges as purely secular and never mention that unless we pledge ourselves to God, September Th will look like a passing cloud on a sunny Saturday. Beck also claimed last week that America was founded on the notion that one could worship any way he wished (while the Constitution was secularized, 9/13 states required membership in a particular faith community to hold office and atheists were banned from testifying in court, as they absolutely ought to be today.)

    As we can see with Reps. Kennedy, Pelosi, Sanchez et. al. and Chris Matthews, there is a massive insurrection ad intra. Catholic Sean Hannity is much the same as he addressing the real challenges as a purely political paradigm. He also stated he was not committed to ending abortion and openly defies the teaching on artificial birth control, as has Bill O’Reilly (though I think he is a little more grounded in his faith as he does address abortion).

    So, this is not a circumstance of ‘all leftists are causing scandal and those with conservative trappings are good.’ Many cultural Catholics I know think that biological and chemical warfare programs are perfectly acceptable areas of spending and that pre-emptive nuclear attacks on dramatically weaker countries is perfectly in line with Just War theory.

    But anyway, the point we can draw from this is that the world has much antipathy for the Church. Since the USCCB loudly announced that it would do what it can to rip out abortion funding from the proposed national health plan, those who set themselves against Christ have pilloried the faith. I personally believe there will be very open persecutions in the future IF we do not understand that faith in a particular candidate (Sarah Palin, Ron Paul, Bobby Jindal, etc.) is misplaced. Unless we understand that politics and law writing are extensions of faith and not just other extracurricular activities, we will never change the disastrous course we are on.

  75. We need to start an effort to let MSNBC know that there are consequences for Matthews using his bully pulpit for an attempt to define the Church’s public role in matters of morals. An email address would be nice, maybe a Facebook group as well.

    Good point MikeM. Matthews’ argument is out of context. Patrick Kennedy votes for every initiative that supports payment for abortion, abortion rights and abortion providers. He publicly advocates for the right to abortion and opposes reasonable restrictions that would reduce abortions by giving women options, that would provide substantial information for informed consent, waiting periods and parental notification… the question about the punishment of women is nowhere near being on the table. Besides, the punishment cold well be for the health care professionals that perform the killing. For the woman, the emphasis would likely be on rehabilitation and healing… Matthews oversimplified it so he could attack the Church.

  76. The reason nobody wants, or ever wanted in the past, to jail women who abort their children, is that it’s a lot more like the impulse to gnaw off your own leg when caught in a trap, or commit suicide, or post partum depression, than the desire to kill.

    And that’s the ‘voluntary’ cases. There are plenty of involuntary abortions done under threat, and there always were. Clearly, women acting under duress shouldn’t be jailed; those forcing them to abort are the ones who should be punished.

    Women wanting abortions are not thinking or acting rationally, even if they believe they are at the moment. (This is similar to the false clarity of severe depression, which sees everything clearly except hope and proportion.) If they lived in a healthy society where abortion was thought of as a temporarily debilitating mental disorder, like an overwhelming urge to commit suicide or post partum depression, they would be protected from their desperation by those around them. Instead, people conspire to help them hurt themselves and their babies.

    Women today need constant persuasion that pregnancy isn’t a curse to dread. Instead, we have constant campaigns that claim sex is pleasure with no consequences, but children and pregnancy are millstones unless perfectly perfect rich people are involved.

    Jail or execute the abortionists. Make the coercive boyfriends and parents stand trial for all their crimes. But we don’t throw temporarily insane victims of murderous doctors into jail.

  77. bookworm says:

    “As far as I’m concerned, the socks you mentioned should be the really big knee-high ones that hunters wear. The ones that are gray with the red toe. Roll them up in a nice huge roll and offer them to Mr. Mattew’s for the proscribed stuffing procedure.”

    Well now I just HAVE to pass along this story. When Obama announced his presidential candidacy in 2007, at the Old State Capitol in Springfield, Ill., Matthews and all the MSM stars were there. It was an extremely cold day (probably around 15 degrees) so everyone was bundled up as if for an arctic expedition.

    Among them was Matthews, who was spotted by an Illinois political blogger seated in front of the MSNBC cameras, wearing these big fat hunting socks with a red stripe at the top to keep his feet warm. The blogger good naturedly called out “Hey Chris, nice socks!” His reply? “Go (bleep) yourself!”

    The whole story can be found here (WARNING: this site does contain profanity):

    http://theinsidedope.blogspot.com/2007/02/amid-arctic-media-frenzy-chris.html#links

    And now, Father, I also have a confession to make… I was there too, at the request of a newspaper I used to work for, to cover the event (though I didn’t see the incident mentioned above). At the time I thought of it as a chance to potentially see history in the making, even though I knew Obama was pro-abortion and had absolutely no intention of voting for him or showing any kind of support for him.

    With all that has happened since, however, I no longer feel any kind of pride or excitement at having been there, and almost wonder if I committed a sin that I will end up doing a few extra decades in purgatory for :-)

    I agree that there is a difference between Catholic politicans who reluctantly and realistically accept and/or try to work within the status quo when it comes to abortion, and those who actively promote it or expand it. The latter are the ones who really cause scandal.

  78. Peggy R says:

    Matthews was rude and disrespectful, hands down. I guess he won’t be hearing from his bishop anytime soon, though he ought to. God bless Bp. Tobin for maintaining composure and dignity. I would have lost it with the creep. Matthews does this with all he disagrees with. A female GOPer was on talking about Obie’s failed foreign policy (which Matthews conceded this week). Matthews was disgusted w/her and said that’s why he puts GOPers on so people can see what they’re like.

  79. IL Catholic says:

    Bishop Tobin: 1
    Chris Matthews: -1

  80. Kerry says:

    TradMom, “aggressively stupid”, and, stupidly aggressive. Heh. Matthews might be described as a person who blows snot onto everything he touches, and then gripes about the stickiness.

  81. Peggy R says:

    Matthews: “How would it work?” Do we have to explain the birthing process to him?

    Not outlawing abortions doesn’t prevent them?

  82. Frank H says:

    ASD – write to hardball@msnbc.com

  83. Central Valley says:

    In regards to Chris Matthews, talk show host Michael Savage has it right…..liberalism is a mental disorder.

  84. bookworm@9:30am: Thanks for sharing the “socks” story…Mr. Matthews’ response seems to fit his persona. Yikes!

  85. Ferde Rombola says:

    Yubbly: I’ve got to say, Matthews was asking the right questions.

    I don’t think so. I think the right question, from a secularist, is ‘How does the Catholic Church assume the right to establish civil law for non-Catholic Americans?’

    At that point, Bishop Tobin could have said, ‘We don’t make civil laws; we establish moral principles derived from the laws of God and impose them on all who wish to call themselves Catholics. That’s what I did with Mr. Kennedy. That’s what I’m supposed to do. It’s in my job description. That said, there are already civil laws making murder illegal. That the courts have chosen to legalize murder in this instance does not alter the law against murder. The penalties vary from judge to judge.’

    I wonder what Matthews would have said to that.

  86. Ferde Rombola says:

    stbasil777, writing Bishop Tobin with thanks and encouragement is an excellent idea. I did that yesterday and hope others here will, too.

  87. bookworm says:

    Re the “socks” story: I notice that the blogger who told the story (correction: he wasn’t the one who commented on Matthews’ socks, he saw someone ELSE do so) is a flaming liberal with a serious case of Bush Derangement Syndrome, but even he didn’t seem to have much good to say about Matthews.

    It’s just as well Bp. Tobin WASN’T in the studio with Matthews, else he might have gotten soaked by Matthews’ “sputtering”.

  88. bookworm: I just have to comment on this; 15 degrees here in Wisconsin is a “fall day”…try 15 below zero and then I’d understand the hunting socks! C. Matthews=big baby:<)!

  89. Girgadis says:

    Matthews’ comments before Tim Russert’s funeral tell us all we need to know about what kind of Catholic he is. In describing the Jesuit-run church where the funeral Mass would take place, Matthews said that the Jesuits were “his kind of Catholic” because the only mortal sins you could commit were “nuclear war and murder”. CM obviously does not see that abortion is murder and given his narrow interpretation of mortal sin, I don’t think any Bishop should subject themselves to his rants. Given that he was invited to be the commencement speaker at St. Joe’s University this past Spring, I would venture to guess he belongs to a Jesuit-run church where it is unlikely he will be asked to refrain from receiving the Eucharist.

  90. wanda says:

    bookworm! Thank you so much for sharing the saga of the socks. Nazareth Priest, CM already owns the perfect socks, I feel less guilty (almost) for the stuffing suggestion. It wouldn’t cost us a cent!

    Blessed Thanksgiving to all.