D. Green Bay Wisconsin will withhold 2010 funds from CCHD

From CNA:

Wisconsin diocese withholding 2010 funds from CCHD

Green Bay, Wis., Feb 25, 2010 / 06:15 pm (CNA).- The Diocese of Green Bay in Wisconsin has chosen to withhold its annual funding of the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD) until further information has been gathered on allegations that recently surfaced[Is this the first diocese to adopt this policy?]

The CCHD, which is under the jurisdiction of the U.S. bishops, has recently come under fire for alleged connections with a network of community organizations that have promoted homosexual causes and abortion advocacy. In response to recent allegations the CCHD subcommittee has been investigating claims.

The Diocese of Green Bay’s newspaper The Compass reported on Wednesday that Bishop David Ricken has decided to send his diocese’s donations only to CRS and Peter’s Pence, citing his need for more time to assess CCHD’s situation locally and nationally.

Every year on the fourth Sunday of Lent, parishes in the Diocese of Green Bay have traditionally taken up a collection with a portion of it going to the CCHD.

“There have been some questions about programs that have received funding from CCHD,” said Fr. John Doerfler, vicar general and chancellor for the Diocese of Green Bay to The Compass. “That, along with the enormous post-earthquake needs in Haiti, we decided this is an appropriate time to give additional support to Catholic Relief Services while we analyze the situation with CCHD.”

The Green Bay Compass clarified that there have been no apparent problems in the local diocese regarding CCHD grants and church teachings. CCHD grants in the area so far have been allotted to Spanish-speaking immigrants, homeless and formerly homeless individuals and home health care aids, the paper reported.

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31 Responses to D. Green Bay Wisconsin will withhold 2010 funds from CCHD

  1. Random Friar says:

    Sounds like a great and prudent move. Let’s make sure the money of the People of God is going to the right folks. And yes, CRS needs a lot of help in Haiti!

  2. TJerome says:

    I think Bishop Ricken is wise to force a little transparency on the USCCB. I recall, and it may have been reported on WDTPRS, that certain
    staff members at the USCCB are pro-choice “Catholics” and who knows what else. I stopped giving money to the USCCB a long time ago because I believe they promote left-wing political causes, causes which are inappropriate for the Church to support.

  3. [Is this the first diocese to adopt this policy?]

    I don’t know, but I can say that when the time came for the CCHD collection, our cathedral parish did not take it up. It was never mentioned; just simply never happened.

    And our bishop is on the board.

  4. moon1234 says:

    Spanish-speaking immigrants should read illegal aliens. We had ICE go thru at work and all of the “immigrants” were not at work when they left.

    I wish the Bishops would start respecting the catechism teaching:

    Paragraph 2241 states “Political authorities for the sake of the common good for which they are responsible, may make the exercise of the right to immigrate subject to various juridicial conditions, especially with regard to the immigrants’ duties toward their country of adoption”

    Paragraph 2429 states that anyone has the right of economic inititiative, but qualifies this by stating ‘He (the immigrant) should seek to observe the requlations issued by legitimate authority for the sake of the common good.’

    “We often hear ‘Illegal immigration is necessary for our economy.’ The Catechism of the Catholc Church addresses the issue of a just wage in paragraph 2436, stating simply ‘it is unjust not to pay the social security contributions required by legitimate authority.’ We have an underground economy which is flourishing largely, to a tremendous extent because of illegal immigration. .We have employers exploiting immigrants, paying them low wages. We have many benefits that they proffer from that they don’t contribute to in taxes. Both of those conditions are unjust.

    It is time for Bishops to start respecting the catechism. I am sick of hearing that these people are “immigrants.” They are here illegally violating the laws of the land and of the Church. I am all for helping people in need, but not when they are breaking both the civil and ecclesial laws.

    I am glad the Bishop is doing something about CCHD. They have been a front group for Homosexuality and other unsavory groups for a LONG time. Hopefully we can start sending the money to Catholic Charities instead. At least they are helping those who are truely in need.

  5. TJerome says:

    moon1234 – maybe the USCCB is exempt from the requirements of the Catholic Catechism. I think it’s proper for the bishops to be concerned that illegals are treated with dignity while they’re in the US. But the US has every right to control its borders and ship them back to their country of origin. But what puzzles me is that the left-wing loon media in the US keeps reminding us almost daily (particularly when a Republican occupies the White House) what a truly horrible country this is, full of racists and economic injustices of all kinds. But yet, these illegals keep coming here. They really need to listen to their betters in the media and stay home where everything must be just dandy (except for dictators and arbitrary detention, killings, and abject poverty).

  6. PS says:

    Here’s 2241 in full:

    “2241 The more prosperous nations are *obliged, to the extent they are able,* to welcome the foreigner in search of the security and the means of livelihood which he cannot find in his country of origin. Public authorities should see to it that the natural right is respected that places a guest under the protection of those who receive him.

    Political authorities, for the sake of the common good for which they are responsible, may make the exercise of the right to immigrate subject to various juridical conditions, especially with regard to the immigrants’ duties toward their country of adoption. Immigrants are obliged to respect with gratitude the material and spiritual heritage of the country that receives them, to obey its laws and to assist in carrying civic burdens.”

    Both these paragraphs are obviously problematic if you are using them as the sole foundation upon which to base an argument on immigration rights (for example, does “assist in carrying civic burdens” mean “assist in a manner that any naturalized citizen is expected to assist” or does it mean “assist to the best of their capability”?). More important is the language in the first paragraph, that I set off with asterisks. We can argue until we are blue in the face as to whether or not the US is able to absorb its current illegal immigrants as well as whatever other immigrants cross the border illegally in the future. But to suggest that the USCCB is dodging 2241 is, frankly, only true if you restrict your reading to the second paragraph.

    2429 states, in full:

    “Everyone has the right of economic initiative; everyone should make legitimate use of his talents to contribute to the abundance that will benefit all and to harvest the just fruits of his labor. He should seek to observe regulations issued by legitimate authority for the sake of the common good.”

    Again, the language is vague. An immigrant should “seek to observe regulations issued by a legitimate authority for the sake of the common good” does not necessarily mean, “must at all time observe regulations.” Indeed, the “for the sake of the common good,” as I read it, refers to the regulations, not the observation of them- that is, the immigrant is not necessarily obligated to follow rules which are not for the common good (nor are any of us for obvious reasons). In any case, the other operative part here is “should seek.” The catechism is more than comfortable issuing demands, telling us when we must and must not do something. The Catechism here only says that the immigrant “should seek” not “should do” nor “must do.” Basically, I read this as saying, if you come to the country illegally you ought to try and follow all the just laws, including trying to become a legal citizen.

    You are right about what 2436 says, but I would point out that just about every economist out there, from the ultra conservative to the far left acknowledge that many, if not the majority of illegals pay most taxes, including social security. I read an interesting paper back when I was in college that stated that since 1986, when congress passed the Control Act, the amount of tax dollars we see going into the coffers every year has skyrocketed, largely because now that an employer has to collect an ID, social security #, etc or be subject to very hefty fines, a great many illegals entered the tax system without the ability to receive many of the benefits they were paying into (including unemployment and social security). McCain brought this up a few times when he was stumping for an immigration reform bill and went so far as to suggest that if we kicked out all the illegals we would see Social Security collapse decades earlier than was projected…

  7. moon1234 says:

    The point is that it is up to the civil authorities to decide the extent we are able to absorb more immigrints. This is done through the naturalization process or via applying for a VISA. That is how this country decides how many immigrants and from where they will be admitted. This is the process that the catechism forsees. It would be very hard to imagine that the catechism favors wholsale illegal immigration irrespective of the laws of the country. For the Bishops to openly advocate that US citizens are to support the illegal activities of those who come here illegally, violating civil and ecclesial law, is wrong.

    There is no way to justify illegal activity that is hurting legal Americans. The unemployment rate is over 10% in this country. Many of those that are unemployed are being hurt by the people who are doing jobs that Americans could do. If you counter that Americans will not do these jobs then why not allow those people who have VALID VISAs to do those jobs. This is the only way the government can prevent the exploitation of both the alien worker and the American Citizen. American wages will be artifically depressed if he faces the threat of an illegal worker willing to do his job for half the compensation.

    Would you be ok with a Bishop or other cleric advocating those who are starving to go into a store and steal another persons livelyhood or worse their means of survival? This would be wrong, yet this is what is being advocated by those who want Americans to pay for services to those who are here illegally. The illegals are stealing the prosperity of others who are legal immigrants or natural citizens.

    Charity should be an individual contribution. Forced charity is theft and I think a lot of people are upset about this.

  8. wolskerj says:

    [Is this the first diocese to adopt this policy?]

    For the past two years Bishop Morlino of the Madison Diocese has re-directed the national portion of the CCHD collection to other causes. In 2008 to the Archdiocese of Galveston-Houston for relief of victims of hurricane Ike, and in 2009 to the Little Sisters of the Poor. A local committee oversees the distribution of the portion retained by the Diocese.

    http://www.madisondiocese.org/Outreach/JusticePastoralOutreach/Outreach/CatholicCampaignforHumanDevelopment/tabid/184/Default.aspx

  9. markomalley says:

    PS,

    You said,

    You are right about what 2436 says, but I would point out that just about every economist out there, from the ultra conservative to the far left acknowledge that many, if not the majority of illegals pay most taxes, including social security. I read an interesting paper back when I was in college that stated that since 1986, when congress passed the Control Act, the amount of tax dollars we see going into the coffers every year has skyrocketed, largely because now that an employer has to collect an ID, social security #, etc or be subject to very hefty fines, a great many illegals entered the tax system without the ability to receive many of the benefits they were paying into (including unemployment and social security).

    There are three issues to address here:

    First, the issue of day laborers and other casual help. At best, they would get a 1099 for their work…at best. In other words, no taxes are deducted, including social security. These people are paid on a cash basis. Frankly, I don’t know of too many folks who count cash earnings when paying out taxes (such as the babysitter, the boy who mows the lawn, and so on). Maybe some do.

    Secondly, in order to gain employment from a workplace where one’s wages have withholding, the workplace must complete a USCIS Form I-9. On this form, there are specific documents that must be provided by each employee, US citizen or not, to establish their legal ability to work — you can see that list on page 5 of the form (link above). If an employer does not have an I-9, along with copies of the supporting documents, the employer is breaking the law.

    This brings up the third and final point: in order to get a social security number (which is on the list of required documents), according to the social security website, you must be able to prove that you are here legally and are authorized to have employment. The problem comes in with fraudulent documents, particularly social security cards. In fact, this problem is severe enough that the government had to create the E-verify program to provide employers the ability to verify their potential employees’ eligibility.

    Here’s the point of the above facts:

    1) If an employer hires an illegal alien, he is either intentionally not complying with the law by not verifying their eligibility or by accepting fraudulent documentation.

    2) If an illegal alien is actually working in this country, he either lied in obtaining legitimate documents or is intentionally using fraudulent documents.

    In either case, you may wish to consider CCC 2475-2487, speaking about the eighth commandment of the decalogue. Living a lie is not only unpleasant and dangerous, but it can put the status of one’s soul in jeopardy.

    In other words, there are other issues that must be considered with illegal immigration that would not apply to legal immigration.

    One other point, you continue on, saying,

    McCain brought this up a few times when he was stumping for an immigration reform bill and went so far as to suggest that if we kicked out all the illegals we would see Social Security collapse decades earlier than was projected…

    You may already know this, but citing Mr. McCain as a reference will not impress any conservative. Mr. McCain served his country honorably during Vietnam, but that fact does not make him a conservative, his protestations notwithstanding.

  10. wmeyer says:

    PS, CCC 2241 is one of my favorites. As you rightly observe, the two paragraphs must be taken together. Your emphasis in the first paragraph risks ignoring the equal importance of the second.

    As has been pointed out again and again, illegal entry to this country is only a misdemeanor. However, using falsified documents to obtain work, and reporting for work for which a person is not eligible, are both felonious acts. So the oft repeated claim that these folks are not criminals is entirely wrong.

    Further, the meaning of the phrase to the extent they are able must also be considered. It is not an order to a) bankrupt the country, nor b) an order to displace citizens from work in favor of illegals. The CCC also makes plain that elected authority has responsibilities to the citizens, and one of those is competent stewardship (I am not claiming that phrase is in the CCC, but that the meaning is–I have not sufficient time this morning to cite CCC paragraphs.) Failure to enforce borders, or to enforce duly legislated statutes, are not evidence of competent stewardship.

  11. wmeyer says:

    One more thing, PS. As studies have shown, the average household of illegal aliens contributes about $10,000 annually to taxes of one sort or another, but consumes roughly $30,000 in benefits, leaving the citizens with a net loss of $20,000. Therefore, the best face that might be put on tolerating this is to describe it as tax subsidies to employers, something liberals declare loudly against.

    We are called to charity. We, as individuals, are called to charity. For the government to remove dollars from us by threat of force and divert them to uses they declare essential, humane, or charitable, does not relieve us of our call to charity. It does, however, reduce our ability to engage in real charity, to the degree that our means have been reduced.

  12. Close down CCHD and then the USCCB, and start over.

  13. The Egyptian says:

    Close down CCHD and then the USCCB, and start over.
    Comment by Fr. Marie-Paul — 26 February 2010 @ 8:20 am

    I second that motion, since this is turning into discussion on illegals I wonder.

    I hear and see all the hand ringing about illegals ect, (I don’t mean here)from liberals and from churchmen, including some parishes putting out papers on how to help hide illegals and how the horrible government, (at the time code word for HalibertonCheneyChimpyBushhitler”)are going to either send them home or exploit them. Question, what is the problem with the word “ILLEGAL” ? Is the subversion of the rule of law to be encouraged, does it not affect the way we look at our religion also, “It’s just some silly rule”?

  14. TJerome says:

    I remember a time when the US Catholic looked to itself and not Mammon to care for the poor and unfortunate. I agree with Fr. Marie-Paul, shut down the USCCB. It’s more harmful than beneficial.

  15. JonM says:

    First, I agree with F. Marie-Paul.

    As for the issue of taxation, charity, and immigration, we are faced with anything but a simple set of issues.

    Taxation is a necessary part of life because government is a necessary part of life. God did ordain, not simply permit, government and heirarchy. We have it in the Church, in family, and in communities. So the extreme anti-government mentality that some adopt is not only historically abberant, it is contrary to natural law.

    The difficulty comes in force when we find ourselves in a pluralistic society in terms of matters of faith. If a particular nation is de jure Roman Catholic or Byzantine Catholic or Ukrainian Greek Catholic, the civil authorities will work with Church leaders for various social needs.

    Part of this would be making laws that abide by sacred teachings. Part of this would involve charity and relief to the poor and in need.

    Since our country is not only pluralistic but in fact is agressively secular, public charity becomes extremely hard to properly administer. This combined with centralization of 300 million plus people is a recipe for graft, corruption, and great harm.

    Specifically on the issue of immigration…

    It should absolutely be a legal, orderly process. However, we should be very careful about blaming aliens without proper authorization to be here; the situation is far more nuanced and complex (and no, this is not leftist bather.) Mexico went through terrible upheavals in the last century to the point that the Church was completely illegal. Before this, intrepid US banks obtained the country auctioned off by corrupt local officials. As a result, this and other Southern neighbors were left with powerless, destitute populations.

    The legal immigration process is a nightmare. I know this first hand from a South African friend. Take a look at the requirements; now, legal immigrants are forced to get very new and potentially harmful vaccines. Is it any wonder people blow off the process?

    Furthermore, I think that the very reason we have a tolerated illegal immigration situation is that big business likes how things are: Illegal aliens can be exploited in cruel ways, big business can hire out labor at a cheap price, and executives can keep their multimillion dollar bonuses.

    We as Catholics have to ask ourselves what is the best solution. Do we really think that the best, most Christ-like solution is splitting up families and rounding up millions of people already situated here? Or, is a better solution ended the flagrent violation of law, giving those here a path to citizenship, and preventing crony capitalist exploitation?

    The answer lies somewhere between mass deportation and blanket amnesty. Let’s just keep in mind that the economy is on the brink because we have de-industrialized and our education system has collapsed. Oh, and we totally lost our moral bearings as a country choosing to worship before Mammon instead of Christ.

  16. markomalley says:

    JonM:

    Since our country is not only pluralistic but in fact is agressively secular, public charity becomes extremely hard to properly administer. This combined with centralization of 300 million plus people is a recipe for graft, corruption, and great harm.

    It’s called “subsidiarity.” If it would seriously be tried, we’d find that it works.

  17. EXCHIEF says:

    The discussion of illegals is appropriate as many of the Bishops equate “social justice” with supporting immigrants whether they are here legally or not. There is no conflict in the direction given in the Catechism. We are obligated as a well-to-do country to assist immigrants. But the catechism does not say ILLEGAL immigrants. For those who want to come here legally they have that opportunity and I know very few people who oppose legal immigration.

    Too many of our Bishops are like our liberal politicians. They want everybody to love them and they have a perverted sense of what social justice is. Look at the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. To remain popular Mahoney must cater to illegals since he has hundreds of thousands of them living there. Rather than encourage them to follow the law he becomes much more popular with his constituency by championing their cause legal or not. Popularity is not equal to doing the right thing. Bishops need to do the right thing, not the popular thing.

    Withholding funds from the CCHD accomplishes a number of “goods”. It keeps that money from being used to suport the homosexual agenda, contraception, abortion, and aiding illegals. Even if my diocese continues to collect for CCHD (by the way have you heard any of their currently running liberal commercials on the radio?) I will not contribute.

  18. Sedgwick says:

    RealCatholicTV.com has been hitting the USCCB hard over this CCHD corruption. However, it appears their indignation is selective: when I pointed out to them, amidst their complaints about “watered-down Catholicism,” that the Novus Ordo was the source and summit of this watering down, they cut me off at the knees.

  19. John 6:54 says:

    Close down CCHD and then the USCCB, and start over.
    Comment by Fr. Marie-Paul — 26 February 2010 @ 8:20 am

    I 3rd the motion to shutdown the CCHD and the USCCB, and start over. I would be interested on Fr. Z take sometime in a post on the USCCB, what is the good of the organization and what is the bad or areas for improvement. Do we really need a USCCB?

  20. Dave N. says:

    With CRS sponsoring things like the Lenten Carbon Fast:

    http://catholicclimatecovenant.org/about-us/coalition-members/

    I wonder whether this is an improvement. (No, I do agree–it is BETTER, but still…)

    I just hate seeing donations wasted. It makes people cynical.

  21. The Egyptian says:

    Really Sedgwick, so if we all celebrated the Latin Mass tomorrow it would all go away? if only. The novus ordo is but a minor player, if said reverently it is a good mass and will be even better after the new translations, I place the blame on progressive Bishops and priests who wanted to be popular and hip, forgot to be PRIESTS, in other words worldly, the democratic party at prayer so to speak. Power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

    I do not envy a young bishop having to kick butt with some of these out of control religious under their care, for some the biological solution is the only hope. When you look at the whole situation I pray the Holy father can be strong until his end and that the Holy Spirit replaces him with one just as strong or stronger

  22. JonM says:

    @MarkoMalley

    Yup. Definitely a teaching. Definitely important. Definitely fundamentally reasonable.

    And yet subsidiarity is totally ignored by most of our Bishops. You know, many people rant and rave about the powers of kings and dukes, but actually at any given time, the common people were less meddled with in the ‘Dark Ages’ than today.

    @Dave

    ugh, I donated to CRS money I don’t have to help in Haiti. I hope every last cent actually goes to those people and not a single mill is diverted to kookery of ‘carbon fasts.’

    @ Sedgwick

    Yes, neo-con Catholics are very selective in their criticism.

  23. wmeyer says:

    Words matter. Always.

    An immigrant is one who participates in the immigration process, a legal proceeding with which I am quite familiar.

    The illegals under discussion are not immigrants, but aliens who have moved here illegally and proceed to flaunt our laws. I can find no support in the CCC for such persons.

  24. wanda says:

    It is the time for this. There have been concerns from several different parties for some time now.

    I didn’t contribute to the collection this year. I instead gave to Priests for Life. It bothered me not to take part, but, I think a thorough investigation must be done.

    It’s time to let the sunlight in.

  25. spock says:

    In regard to the illegal alien issue:

    I really struggle with issue of illegals. For me, it is an issue of symmetry or lack thereof, really. Virtually no-one allows people they don’t know to enter their particular domicile without permission. One certainly cannot get onto an airplane without paperwork. And yet many in the Church think that people should be allowed to cross our borders without due process. At another level, I would be more amenable to accepting this if I thought the people doing promulgating it were doing it for the good of the Church. There are things I have to deal with everyday that I don’t like and most of us can say the same thing. But it seems that the people the promoting this aren’t really working “for the Church”; they’re really more interested in “serving society.” Not that serving society is a bad thing but that the latter should be a subset of the former. The proof of this for me is that I can say that whenever I’ve confronted a strongly pro-immigrant person, they, without exception, have other issues with de fide teachings of the Church be it women priests or contraception or hierarchy in the Church, or issues with the office of the Holy Father etc. etc. I’d like to think that my mind is capable of changing and that I actually might be wrong but with this issue, but it’s really tough for the reasons I’ve stated.

    In regard to the CCHD issue:

    There are more and more good places within the Church where one can put their hard-earned financial resources. This is improving, not getting worse. With regard to charitable acts, feeding the poor, taking care of the homeless etc.; if you’re actually participating in the good work, you will likely know where your money is really going to go and if it’s worthwhile. If you simply send money to your diocese and effectively say, “Here’s my money, do with it what you will”, you only have yourself to blame. That’s not stewardship.

  26. BenFischer says:

    The US Bishops are solely responsible for how CCHD money is spent. They appoint the local CCHD reps who recommend funding, then after the national office allocates funds, they approve of the dispersal. The national CCHD office may be staffed by wild-eyed leftist idealogues, but the Bishops are responsible for that, too. The only wrinkle is that portions of a local diocese’ CCHD collection may be reallocated someplace else. The good Bishop in Green Bay may not approve of gay marriage, but his CCHD dollars will go to more favorable climes, for instance. So if a Bishop withholds CCHD collections, he’s basically saying that he doesn’t trust his brother Bishops, nor himself, with the money. And if that’s the case, there’s no telling whether the substitute fund will be any better (as mentioned before CRS is sponsoring a lenten carbon fast: just in time for the coldest winter on record).

    Now, he’s probably right to distrust his brother Bishops. Pope Benedict hasn’t had the chance for a clean sweep. Yet. Perhaps CCHD is a lost cause, but something needs to be done or else whatever replaces it will be just as bad.

  27. Dave N. says:

    Right. CCHD is a symptom, not the problem.

  28. catholicmidwest says:

    Close down CCHD and then the USCCB, and start over.
    Comment by Fr. Marie-Paul — 26 February 2010 @ 8:20 am

    Agreed 100%.

    The problem is that some dioceses, including my own, have collections set up so that they’re supposedly “convenient” for the giver. My rear end. They’re convenient for the diocese. What happens is you put money in the plate and it goes to the wacko-cause-of-the-month as well as the decent causes. The stance is “don’t you worry your little head about it, we’ll take care of it for you.” My answer to that is unprintable. There’s always EWTN, the food bank and the humane society, as far as I am concerned. This kind of coercion, secrecy and using people is not Catholic, or even Christian.

  29. catholicmidwest says:

    PS, I think a lot of dioceses are set up this way, and it’s one of the big reasons there is zero accountability is the halls of the USCCB, and in the offices of many dioceses.

  30. catholicmidwest says:

    Made worse by the fact that the Church employs some of the biggest dissenters there are. You look at Call to Action and the like and you will see that their supporters and contributors are often church employees. The liturgical music industry is particularly filled with these folks. And this money goes right into their hands and the bank accounts of the USCCB with no strings attached.

  31. lacrossecath says:

    This is the second diocese in Wisconsin, also Madison Bp Morlino. Woot!