We are at a “precarious moment in our history” when churches must speak truth to power

As baptized Catholics we have a role and work to do in the world, each according to our vocations.  We must affect change… as Catholics. How can we imagine that we can do that if we don’t have a clear idea of who we are?  If our Catholic identity is shaky, foggy, vague, superficial, nebulous, ill-defined, why should anyone listen to us?  If we are hesitant, equivocal or hazy in what we know and believe about our Catholic Faith, can we bring about change within the Church and in the public square? Ad intra and ad extra?

Our identity depends in a fundamental way on our sacred liturgical worship of God.  The first thing we owe to God by the virtue of Religion is worship. God must be at the summit of the hierarchy of our relationships. If as individuals and as small groups like parishes, or larger groups like dioceses, and as the greater Church, we have amorphous, lax, ambiguous, muddy, and even puzzling liturgical worship, we will be amorphous, lax, ambiguous, muddy, and even puzzling.  When we speak – or rather squeak like tremulous little gerbils – we will be discounted in the public square, held in contempt and walked on.

We must get back to basics.

  • Get out those Catechisms.
  • Get that sacred worship in order.

I think that two things in our worship will make a huge difference to our Catholic identity.

First, let’s get our altars turned back toward the Lord again.   We need ad orientem worship.  This will require lots of catechesis and guts.

Next, we need more and more priests of the Latin Church to put aside their fear of making mistakes or being criticized, to put aside their nervousness about Latin, put on their big boy pants and learn the Extraordinary Form.

Remember, Fathers, our Latin Rite has two forms.  If you don’t know the Extraordinary Form yet… you don’t know your Rite yet.

We need you now.

Fathers… Bishops… we need you now.

Via LifeSite:

Priest: ‘You might not have a church to go to if you don’t vote the right way in November’

NAPLES, Florida, September 23, 2016 (LifeSiteNews)—We are at a “precarious moment in our history” when churches must speak truth to power or risk the loss of a lot more than their tax statuses, former Ave Maria Law School chaplain Father Michael Orsi said in a blistering speech at a National Day of Remembrance for Aborted Children event on September 10.

Orsi, now on the pastoral team of St. Agnes Church in Naples, Fl said, “For too long, pastors and churches have been bullied into believing that they can say nothing political from the pulpit,” said Orsi. The regulation that is used to silence them “was a piece of spite work” against non-profits that had opposed President Lyndon Johnson, he said.

“Let me remind you: the Bible is a political document,” the priest said. “The prophets, including John the Baptist, and Jesus, lost their lives because they spoke the truth to power.”  [I recently wrote THIS.]

The Constitution is quickly being destroyed,” warned Orsi, and “unless the right choice is made in November, we may not have a court that is fair and balanced in its interpretation of the Constitution.”  [There is it, friends.  SCOTUS.  This is a huge dimension of the election.  Also, I noticed today that the GOP candidate added a few names to the list of potential nominees to the SCOTUS.  He has said that his picks will come from this list.  HERE]

“Too many of the pastors—too many, practically all—in Germany refused to speak against national socialism,” continued Orsi. “And look [at] the result: millions of Jews, pastors, priests, homosexuals, gypsies all lost their lives because everyone was afraid. What are you afraid of, a couple of bucks? Your tax-exempt status? What’s that going to do to you? [NB]Your churches may be closed anyway, because if a certain party gets elected, this certain party said, if the churches do not agree with our interpretation of women’s reproductive rights, they’ll just have to change their doctrine.” [Hillary Clinton said last April that Christians must be forced to change their religious views to accommodate abortions.  HERE]

“If a certain party gets elected, I can assure you what kind of judges are going to be on those appeals courts,” he said. And those judges will be charged with deciding whether the government may force churches and religious institutions to pay for abortion, contraception, and abortifacient drugs, he noted.

Furthermore, “I’m not going to vote for a candidate who decides that we can redefine the meaning of marriage,” proclaimed Orsi. “Our opponents believe once they destroy the family, once they destroy the churches, they can re-create society in their own image and their own likeness. That, my friends, is not just political. That is diabolical. Get it straight, for crying out loud! The devil is in this!

“We are in a battle for the soul of America,” he said.

Somehow, [Christians] have come to buy the story that you cannot be political in church,” said Orsi. “Let me tell you right now, oh yes, you can, and oh, yes, you better be. Because you might not have a church to go to if you don’t vote the right way in November.

¡Hagan lío!

You might read THIS.

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34 Responses to We are at a “precarious moment in our history” when churches must speak truth to power

  1. AnnTherese says:

    Speak truth to power: Amen to that!

  2. Benedict Joseph says:

    We need speak truth not only to secular power structures, but to ecclesiastical power structures as well. The abuse of power is not a monopoly of the state, but is a trait shared by those in academic, ecclesiastical and in the broad spectrum of the culture in the symbiosis of the zeitgeist.
    Toxins more often than not are not chemical, but notional. Even small doses can be fatal.

  3. Cincinnati Priest says:

    Ooh rah!

    Thanks God for a priest who preaches the blunt and prophetic truth that Catholics need to hear.

    Now if only our ordinaries (bishops), chancellors, and chancery officials would come on board with this attitude, instead of fretting about losing tax exemptions and being “polite” in an election year (which almost invariably equates to minimizing the threats to the Church and the wider culture and ignoring grave evils). Please keep praying for a tremendous infusion of courage for our bishops.

    Until that happens, it will be difficult for Catholics to make a difference. Not that they can’t, but a lack of leadership slows down the mobilization of the faithful.

  4. Jenson71 says:

    [Hillary Clinton said last April that Christians must be forced to change their religious views to accommodate abortions. HERE]

    In this edition of “What Did the Speech Really Say?” …. at no point did she say this. A reader would really have to stretch meanings and impute his or her own biases to infer Clinton means something like, “Christians must be forced to change their religious views to accommodate abortions.”

    This article contains the actual context of the words:
    http://www.politifact.com/florida/statements/2015/jun/17/jeb-bush/jeb-bush-says-hillary-clinton-said-progressive-age/

    After reviewing the statements, would it be accurate to say that Fr. Orsi, in criticizing Clinton’s remarks, doesn’t care about women’s reproductive health care, genital mutilation, domestic violence, forced marriages, etc.? Idon’t think so . We can’t have productive political dialogue without honesty in that dialogue.

    So, let’s be honest. Clinton is pro-choice. Clinton thinks contraception should be more available, and that Christian-corporations and non-profit Christian organizations should include contraception coverage in their employees’ health insurance plans. All of these opinions can be legitimately attacked as morally wrong positions. Clinton also thinks that with certain practices, like forced marriage, genital mutilation, rape, etc. that have ‘deep-seated cultural codes or religious beliefs,’ those beliefs should be changed. Yeah, I should hope so. In fact, what Catholic wouldn’t have the same opinion? [She’s not talking about what adherents of the Religion of Peace do to their womenfolk.]

    But did Clinton say Christians who are against abortion “must” change their beliefs? There’s not even a reasonably honest indication of that; so why say so? [Of course that’s what she meant, that is, Christians who block her vision.]

    [“Rights have to exist in practice — not just on paper,” Clinton argued. “Laws have to be backed up with resources and political will. And deep-seated cultural codes, religious beliefs and structural biases have to be changed.” Video HERE – start at about 8:30 ff.]

  5. FarmerBrawn says:

    Indeed! I would submit that we must also pray and advocate that the US Constitution be amended to acknowledge the Social Kingship of Jesus Christ. I see no chance of any meaningful secular change without it.

  6. Jenson71 says:

    Why start at about 8:30? Why not start at 5:30, when Clinton begins talking about the global context of women’s safety and rights throughout the world? Why ignore the 3 minutes that lead up to, and provide the context, for that language you find so damning when taken out of context?

    It’s the “Women in the World” Summit. At the 6:55 mark, she talks about a girl born in Tanzania. At the 7:05 mark, she talks about a girl in Nepal dying in childbirth; the 7:20 mark, a girl in Rwanda facing genocide and rape. Twenty seconds before your mark, Clinton talks about the increased number of countries now with laws prohibiting violence against women.

    All you are doing is directing your readers to the out-of-context reading LifeNews already provided. Why are you doing that?

  7. Clinton says:

    Recent events are bearing out Fr. Orsi’s words. The state Civil Rights Commissions
    for both Iowa and Massachusetts have both been making moves to very narrowly
    define anything done outside of actual worship at a church– teaching, administration,
    hosting a Friday Fish Fry– as a “public accommodation” and therefore not protected
    from the state’s regulation under civil rights statues. That is to say, those states are declaring
    that anything a church does outside of actual worship services must accommodate the
    state’s laws regarding equal treatment regardless of sexual and gender orientations, etc.
    The state appears to reserve to itself the right to determine what is and is not “religious
    activity” and subject to its authority in this matter.

    The Iowa CRC’s new interpretation of it’s Civil Rights Act includes the mandate that
    all public accommodations be open to individuals based on their “gender identification”
    as well as a ban on conduct which would make “persons of any particular … gender
    identity” feel “unwelcome”. Iowa’s case is being challenged in federal court and hearings
    have begun. As for Massachusetts, its Commission Against Discrimination has declared
    that as of October 1, all places of public accommodation (now including churches when
    the activity is determined to be non-religious) will be in violation if they “restrict a person
    from services because of that person’s gender identity”. The Massachusetts CAD has
    not said just how it’ll determine which church activities are religious, and which are
    ‘secular events’.

    Until recently, it was understood that the First Amendment should be understood to
    guarantee religious freedom in the widest sense possible. These cases in Iowa and
    Massachusetts represent a reversal, an attempt to restrict religious freedom to its
    narrowest sense– a “freedom of worship” that no longer even protects what
    happens inside a church.

  8. Athelstan says:

    Fr. Orsi is certainly dead on about churches being bullied with loss of tax exempt status (and federal funding). He’s also right that Hillary Clinton has made reasonably manifest her hostility to traditional Christianity, and there’s reason to believe that her administration will be more of what we have seen for the past eight years.

    But where I part company is the admonition “unless the right choice is made in November.” It’s a not-even-veiled demand that the listeners vote for Trump. But there’s nothing “right” about that choice, either, just as there’s zero assurance that he would appoint the kinds of judges Fr Orsi favors. And I won’t be mau-mau’d into voting him.

  9. robtbrown says:

    Jenson71 says,

    So, let’s be honest. Clinton is pro-choice.

    Let’s really be honest. She’s not talking about choice of hair color or pasta sauce. She’s talking about choosing abortion. She’s pro abortion. And she’s definitely not pro choice in requiring all businesses to pay for it.

    Clinton thinks contraception should be more available, and that Christian-corporations and non-profit Christian organizations should include contraception coverage in their employees’ health insurance plans. All of these opinions can be legitimately attacked as morally wrong positions. Clinton also thinks that with certain practices, like forced marriage, genital mutilation, rape, etc. that have ‘deep-seated cultural codes or religious beliefs,’ those beliefs should be changed. Yeah, I should hope so. In fact, what Catholic wouldn’t have the same opinion? 

    All of those opinions can also be attacked legally–as an infringement of the Free Exercise of Religion.

    First, you admit that Hillary includes abortion and contraception in her idea of Reproductive Health Care. Then, you think that Catholics should have no objection because what she considers Reproductive Health Care includes some things that are actually good.

    Of course, we don’t need to stop there–we can apply your strategy in other areas. How about Social Security Reform? The govt can increase payments so that anyone receiving Social Security pension payments gets at least $30,000 a year. On the other hand, anyone benefitting from such a plan will be euthanized at the age of 72. Because all Catholics would favor increased SS payouts, they would also favor the second part of the plan.

  10. frjim4321 says:

    “The bible is a political document.”

    I like that statement.

    On the other hand, I think the legal office of our little diocese would disagree with him.

    I’m not an attorney, maybe this priest is. Meanwhile, I will go with what our legal office dictates.

    It seems to me that some Henny Penny thinking is going on here.

    But he makes some good points, and I’ll give him credit, he’s making me think.

  11. Cincinnati Priest says:

    Jenson71: “But did Clinton say Christians who are against abortion ‘must’ change their beliefs? There’s not even a reasonably honest indication of that; so why say so?”

    Wow. That is almost shockingly naive. “Why say so?” Perhaps because …

    * Mrs. Clinton, as secretary of state, aggressively promoted cultural imperialism insisting that aid to foreign country be contingent upon”family planning” and “reproductive rights” (i.e. forcing them, against their will and cultural values, to impose contraception and abortion if they wanted material aid)

    * Because she has opposed all state versions of the federal Religious Freedom Restoration Act (RFRA), which was signed into law by her husband, categorizing them as “bigoted attacks on the dignity and rights of LGBT people.” +

    * Because she spoke last fall to the Human Rights Campaign, openly belittling religious liberty and Christianity and promising to support the federal Equality Act. +

    * Because she is virtually certain to appoint exclusively radically secularist judges to the federal judiciary and Supreme Court, who are hostile to religious beliefs, believe in Casey and Roe v. wade and believe, as the recent U.S. Civil Rights Commission Report “Peaceful Coexistence” states, that
    “The phrases ‘religious liberty’ and ‘religious freedom’ will stand for nothing except hypocrisy so long as they remain code words for discrimination, intolerance, racism, sexism, homophobia, Islamophobia, Christian supremacy or any form of intolerance,” [Martin R. Castro, a Chicago Democrat named USCCR chairman by President Obama in 2011.
    … And Hillary would certainly appoint more ‘Martin Castro’s’ at all levels of the federal bureaucracy, thus endangering anyone who wants to live out their Christian beliefs outside the walls of their worship space.

    Need I go on?

    + (see http://www.nationalreview.com/article/438911/hillary-clinton-opposes-religious-liberty)

  12. TopSully says:

    I work in Naples several times a year, usually over a weekend. When I’m there I attend Mass at St Agnes parish, but at the FSSP EO Mass. I’ve never heard Fr Orsi preach, I don’t know if this is normal for him or if he’s finally just had enough. Maybe next time I’m there I’ll find out when he’s saying Mass and attend.

  13. ericdanielmoore says:

    This is classic Fr. Orsi! We used to get awesome hard-hitting homilies like this every day when he was chaplain at Ave Law.

  14. robtbrown says:

    FrJim4321 says,

    It seems to me that some Henny Penny thinking is going on here.

    I’ve never been one to think the black helicopters are after me, so I would likely have agreed with you–before June 30, 2014. That’s when the Hobby Lobby v Burwell decision was announced.

    It was a 5-4 decision, and I anticipated that it would at worst be 8-1. I thought that the 3 Jews on the court (Bader, Breyer, and Kagan) would be more sensitive to Freedom of Religion, even though they probably are agnostic secular Jews.

    It is often thought that anti-semitism is a consequence of nationalism–that as nationalism decreases, so also will anti-semitism. In one of Walker Percy’s novels, however, he takes the opposing view. He says that as nationalism declines and secularism advances, anti-semitism will increase because the Jew is forever tied to the nation of Israel. And Israel is forever tied to the religion of Moses and King David.

  15. juergensen says:

    I have had the good fortune to hear Fr. Orsi’s homilies at my children’s high school. He is the best priest by far I have ever heard. He speaks the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. He calls a spade a spade. No chance he’ll ever be a bishop.

  16. Jenson71 says:

    robtbrown: Your assumptions are still clouding your criticism. If Clinton says that Christians must change their views regarding abortion, then by all means, criticize. But she did not. In order to argue that she implicitly did, or you can make inferences that she would, you have to make some speculative assumptions.

    Cincinnati Priest implicitly makes those assumptions in his reply. If Clinton supports A, B, and C, then maybe she supports D, so we can criticize her for supporting D. In this case, D is our stand-in for “Christians must change their views to accommodate abortions.” This gets to the heart of our freedom of thought and religious beliefs. It’s a significant charge. And an accusation like that needs to have evidence not based on speculation and assumptions.

    Maybe this comes down to how much evidence you demand in forming your opinions. If you are fine with making convictions based on assumptions and speculation, then perhaps you are fine with convicting Clinton on this charge. I’m not, and I don’t think others should be. But that’s my opinion.

    But here’s a fact: Clinton never said that churches must change their doctrine, or Christians their views, to accommodate abortion.

  17. Rocha90 says:

    God bless this priest! We need more Bishops and Priests to speak out like he does.

    Sancta Maria, Ora Pro Nobis!

  18. boxerpaws63 says:

    Jenson 71 so what exactly is Clinton’s intention? “But here’s a fact: Clinton never said that churches must change their doctrine, or Christians their views, to accommodate abortion.” Of course she’s not going to say that and of course she knows that might be impossible in some cases. What she knows that she can do is leave you free to believe your doctrines but make it impossible for you to actually practice them.
    Let’s not be blind here.What has the Obama administration either tried to do or managed to do in re to the practice of our Catholic faith?Do you really think Clinton is going to change course? Lo and Behold Clinton could get the one thing Obama would have loved to get his hands on.The Supreme Court. How has that worked out so far?

    Evidently someone doesn’t know the Clinton’s very well. All you have to look at[ is] who she’s beholden to. The Clinton foundation(pay for play)had no problem taking donations from Muslim countries. In this case,they look the other way when it comes to religious practices. Another big Clinton donor-directly to her campaign- is George Soros. This should make anyone shudder. Finally,let’s not overlook her mentor Saul Alinsky. https://therasberrypalace.wordpress.com/2016/09/25/saul-alinskya-wolf-in-sheeps-clothing/
    Don’t kid yourself Jeno. She is careful in how she uses her words but those who know her. know exactly what’s she’s up to. She’s pro abortion. She’s pro same sex marriage.She’s pro planned parenthood.She’s pro euthanasia.She’s pro Marxist Socialism. Wake up!

  19. boxerpaws63 says:

    Side note re Hillary:she is more than willing to look the other way when it comes to her husband’s infidelity and attacks the women to cover for him. She’s always known this about Bill-but HER goal is power and whatever it takes to get it.Bill just likes the perks.I’m sorry that’s blunt,but it’s true.

  20. PTK_70 says:

    This post from Fr Z has me thinking about an article I read not long ago which tied the ascendency of Donald Trump to something the author called the “identity imperative.”

    Yes, we Catholics need to get our “Catholic” on. And let’s have more Masses celebrated ‘ad orientem’….not because it’s the “traditional” thing but rather because it’s just needed right now.

    One more thing I want to add: in order for the Church, and for Catholics individually, to effect meaningful change in the social sphere, we must not only reclaim our identity, we must get out of (or at least begin to seriously trim) financial debt.

    Debt is indiscriminate….it shackles both those with a clear and a muddy self-understanding.

  21. DanS says:

    I have heard so many pro-choice arguments and they all say it is none of our business. It all comes down to the definition of when life begins. My definition is simple. The father has his own genetic fingerprint that is God’s blueprint for him. The mother has her own genetic fingerprint that is God’s blueprint for her. The child has his/her own genetic fingerprint that is God’s blueprint for him/her. Age or viability has nothing to do with whether this third genetically different human should be born. It is no longer mother or father but God’s child, his handiwork, his blueprint. The first time man messed with God’s blueprint was in the garden. Look where that got us! Look at what that cost God!

    Below is a verse from a poem I wrote called “Then (To Our Leaders)”. It is from my unpublished book called “Poems in the Shade of the Tree of Life” Two of these pro-life poems are posted on my blog. I will post the rest during the next month. http://www.godseendimly.blogspot.com.

    Then
    (To Our Leaders)

    And when you finally reach that entry gate,
    a million tiny souls will lie in wait.
    And as your judgement fell upon them then,
    your judgement comes to you as yours to them.

  22. In 1973, the U.S. Supreme Court decided that abortion is a “right” guaranteed by the Constitution — despite the fact that this “right” had thitherto gone wholly undetected by any human being in the history of our republic. Why was this a frontal assault on (among other things) the free exercise of religion? Because to enshrine abortion as a constitutionally guaranteed “right” is to set up opponents of abortion as “enemies” and “violators” of “civil rights.” The most consistent, outspoken and unwavering opponents of abortion are Christians, and especially (at least doctrinally) the Catholic Church. Everyone knows this, without our having to be named explicitly in political speeches. If we Christians are enemies of the civil rights of women, on a par with segregationists and the Ku Klux Klan, then the government should be entitled to bring its coercive police powers to bear against us. The exercise of the state’s coercive police powers against Christians as opponents of a constitutionally guaranteed “civil right” can only have as its objective the silencing of Christians — by forbidding us to assemble, or to spread the Gospel, or to provide pregnant women with alternatives to abortion; and ultimately, if lesser measures don’t do the trick, by killing us.

    This is really not hard.

  23. acardnal says:

    Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, in his book Truth and Tolerance: Christian Belief and World Religions, stated that “Wherever politics tries to be redemptive, it is promising too much. Where it wishes to do the work of God, it becomes, not divine, but demonic.”

  24. AnnTherese says:

    Boxerpaws63: How do know Clinton’s motivation for staying married? My pastor tells wives whose husbands cheat on them to “hang in there,” “offer it up”–because divorce is sinful. Perhaps Clinton is struggling to honor her vows. Unlike Trump, who goes through wives like handkerchiefs.

    I don’t know if abortion laws will change; or, even if they did, if that would really make a difference. The problem is deeper– one symptom of our culture of death that we have declined into. It’s a social son– few of us are innocent. If Catholics really want to save an unborn child, then maybe we need to meet and accompany women who feel desperate, and help provide good homes for these babies. THAT’S pro-life. Catholics aren’t very good at action, but we’re great at judging and pontificating.

  25. Jenson71 says:

    Clinton’s campaign was specifically asked about the quote. You don’t have to guess her intention or make up some nefarious tale about how she desires to end Christian’s beliefs.

    The explanation (provided at the link in my first response): “Hillary Clinton was talking about atrocities and horrible practices around the world that are carried out against women and girls in the name of deep-seated cultural codes and religious beliefs,” Josh Schwerin said. “If any candidate thinks rape, child marriage and genital mutilation — done in the name of deeply held religious beliefs — should be allowed to continue, they should say so directly and not try to make it into a false political attack.”

  26. iamlucky13 says:

    @ Jenson71
    “But here’s a fact: Clinton never said that churches must change their doctrine, or Christians their views, to accommodate abortion.”

    She did not say those words verbatim, but she did say it by plain meaning. What she did not say is the change must be compelled by law. That is the actual assumption you refer to, but it seems to be a safe assumption. Before I explain why, a quick bit of contextual housekeeping:

    “Why start at about 8:30? Why not start at 5:30, when Clinton begins talking about the global context of women’s safety and rights throughout the world? “

    From 5:30 to 7:55 she talks about progress so far, mainly with regards to education, political involvement, economic rights like property ownership, and protection from crimes like rape. Then she says “but” and changes tacks. I think your argument can reasonably start around 7:55, but regardless of where you start, it is exegetically clear that she is talking about abortion (and other issues) and she is talking about the US (and other countries).

    After 7:55, she brings up the absence of laws in some nations related to two matters: providing education for women and protecting women for violence. Then she protests blocking of women’s access to reproductive health care. It has been pretty clear in the past that when she says “reproductive health care,” she means contraception and abortion, not prenatal care, and her campaign website is doubly clear. The distinction is once again clarified in this talk as she separately adds prenatal care: “…and safe childbirth.”

    So she has raised this set of women’s issues (education, violence, abortion rights, and health care) all in the same segment of her talk, after which she calls for them to be addressed with laws, finishing that “deep seated religious beliefs…have to be changed.” So as I said, by plain meaning, she has said that doctrines opposing abortion must be changed.

    The grammar does not plainly mean “laws must prohibit anti-abortion beliefs.” Yet the rapid transition in a single sentence from emphasis on strong laws to demanding changes in beliefs can not merely be ignored. And lest you think she is just talking about Muslim countries (which would be a very a rare, even if non-explicit criticism of Islam by a member of the current administration), she then continues and plainly states, “and not just in far away countries, but right here in the United States.”

    The alternative is to presume Clinton would not, if she could, demand that Christians accept abortion is a right. Of course, she’s not stupid and can not yet get away with it, so she won’t say it explicitly, but even without this speech, I don’t know how one could logically conclude otherwise, since she’s consistently held that abortion is an unassailable right, and she is an authoritarian. At absolute best, it would be desperate supposition. Granted, there is an assumption to be made to bridge the gap between her position “could be” and “is” that anti-abortion beliefs should be outlawed, but that gap is very narrow.

    And it is not an assumption that she believes doctrines against abortion must be changed by a means short of legal compulsion.

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  28. robtbrown says:

    Jenson71 says:

    robtbrown: Your assumptions are still clouding your criticism. If Clinton says that Christians must change their views regarding abortion, then by all means, criticize. But she did not. In order to argue that she implicitly did, or you can make inferences that she would, you have to make some speculative assumptions.

    Let’s review:

    1. On multiple occasions Hillary Clinton has made it clear that Women’s Health Care, Reproductive Health Care, and Reproductive Rights include right to abortion.

    2. Further, she is the nominee of the Democratic, whose official position mirrors that of Hillary.

    3. Therefore, it is not speculation or assumption that: When she uses one of the three phrases above, the burden is on her (or here, you) to show that it does not include abortion.

    You have not.

    4. Re Hillary and Religion: It is no secret that she was once opposed to abortion but then changed. So it’s also not an assumption or guess that when she talks about religious people changing their beliefs (the nature of which contradicts religion, which by definition refers to binding oneself) she includes her change on abortion. Once again: the burden is on you to show that it does not include it.

    You have not.

    5. Basically, what you’ve tried to do is common with trial lawyers–equivocating the situation. For example, a man on trial for murder said repeatedly that he wants to kill every member of an entire family. After only one member is killed, the defense lawyer maintains that the accused never once said that he wanted to kill that particular member. I can’t say how often that works with a jury, but it doesn’t work here.

  29. iamlucky13 says:

    Soooo….that ended up being a rather numerically one-sided debate with Jenson71.

    I hope you won’t take it personally, since this kind of debate is useful, and also because I’d hate for us to coalesce into a mob driving people away from Father Z’s fine site. Since I can speak for my own post only, I want to emphasize that my point is not that we don’t have to be careful to address a person’s actual words, which I know was a major part of your point. My point is that Mrs. Clinton has said enough that I am quite confident we can fill in the small gaps between her chosen words and her overall view.

  30. Jenson71 says:

    I don’t mind being out-numbered, so no worries. If any group of people would appreciate the idea that truth is not based on popular vote, it should be this group.

    I do mind, however, the burden-shifting attempt that went from Person A stating, “Clinton said X;” Me showing, “Clinton never said X;” and follow-up responses being, “Yes, Clinton never said X. But we can assume Clinton means X, and you have the burden to show that she didn’t mean X.” The bar keeps shifted.

    You certainly have a right to assume Clinton will force Christians to change their religious beliefs, and we can debate the reasonableness of that assumption. (For an inverse position that you might sympathize more with, I remember well how often liberals declared that George W. Bush wanted to create an American Evangelical Theocracy in America, and could spend all day showing what that assumption was not speculating; I felt the same way with that as I do with these claims). But it’s more than bad form to state someone affirmatively stated something when in fact that person never said that, and in a follow-up, further clarified that she didn’t even mean the other thing she was accused of saying.

    Anyway, though I disagree with the burden-shifting on numerous levels, I will provide an example of a statement from Clinton directly at odds with your assumptions that she will work to force pro-life Christians to change their beliefs on abortion: “Yes, we do have deeply held differences of opinion about the issue of abortion and I, for one, respect those who believe with all their hearts and conscience that there are no circumstances under which any abortion should ever be available.” http://www.lifenews.com/2005/01/26/nat-1153/

  31. Pingback: TUESDAY EDITION | Big Pulpit

  32. robtbrown says:

    Jenson71,

    Let’s do this again:

    Hillary has said more than once that Women’s Health Care and Reproductive Health Care included abortion.

    From the article you quoted:

    Yes, we’ve cut the maternal mortality rate in half, but far too many women are still denied critical access to reproductive health care and safe childbirth.

    All the laws we’ve passed don’t count for much if they’re not enforced.  Rights have to exist in practice, not just on paper.  Laws have to be backed up with resources and political will.  And deep-seated cultural codes, religious beliefs, and structural biases have to be changed.

    Why would you assume that she is not including abortion when she refers to Reproductive Health Care?

  33. robtbrown says:

    Jenson71,

    BTW, thank you for taking a load off my mind. I didn’t think Hillary empathized with those opposing abortion. Of course, that means that any victim can’t complain when the culprit empathizes with the victim.

    Just because she says she respects those people doesn’t mean she doesn’t think they should change their beliefs on abortion on demand. When she was anti-abortion, no doubt that she considered it a matter of her own conscience and that she should be respected.

    As a matter of fact, she has made it clear that she favors abortion for anyone, regardless of ability to pay. That indicates she wants the govt to pay for it. In so far as that would use public money, she wants those opposed to abortion to help pay. Even though she respects the conscience of those opposed, she’s still thinks they should cough up the money.

    So much for choice.

  34. Semper Gumby says:

    Cincinnati Priest: I second that Oohrah!