Pro-abortion Speaker Pelosi gives more public scandal

A reader alerted me to an interview in the execrable Newsweek with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), pro-abortion but self-named "Catholic".   You might remember some of her scintillating theological explanations about how she justified promoting abortion.

Here is a bit from the interview with my emphases and comments.


The Target

Nancy Pelosi doesn’t care if you like her. All that matters is getting the job done.
By Eleanor Clift | NEWSWEEK

Published Dec 21, 2009
From the magazine issue dated Jan 4, 2010


Q It was reported that you were negotiating with the conference of bishops.

I talked to one of the cardinals. I said to him that I believe that what we are doing honors the principles we talked about: we want to pass a health-care bill, we want it to be abortion neutral, and we want it to [have] no federal funding [for abortion], which is the law. And we believe that our language does that. They said, "We believe that it does not." I said, let’s sit down at the table and our lawyers can compare language. That’s what the meeting was about—to make our case. Clearly, the people at that table were not willing to accept what we know to be a fact.  [Someone isn’t telling the truth.]

Q I think you have had some brushes with [church] hierarchy.

[Remember… this person calls herself "Catholic"…] I have some concerns about the church’s position respecting a woman’s right to choose. [What sort of addled comment is that?  Note the language she uses.  She lives entirely within her liberal political view and even imposes its language on the teaching of the Church.] I have some concerns about the church’s position on gay rights. I am a practicing Catholic, although they’re probably not too happy about that. But it is my faith. I practically mourn this difference of opinion [Is that what it is?  A difference of opinion?  As if her opinion could possible have some sort of equivalence with the teaching of the Church… which is just the Church’s "opinion"?] because I feel what I was raised to believe is consistent with what I profess, and that is that we are all endowed with a free will and a responsibility to answer for our actions. And that women should have that opportunity to exercise their free will. [But apparently she wasn’t raised to believe that people have a right to be born.]

Q Is it difficult for you to reconcile your faith with the role you have in public life?

You know, I had five children in six years. The day I brought my fifth baby home, that week my daughter turned 6. So I appreciate and value all that they want to talk about in terms of family and the rest. When I speak to my archbishop in San Francisco and his role is to try to change my mind on the subject, well then he is exercising his pastoral duty to me as one of his flock. When they call me on the phone here to talk about, or come to see me about an issue, that’s a different story. Then they are advocates, and I am a public official, and I have a different responsibility.  [So, she has adopted the Kennedy Dichotomy.]


I cannot fathom why she hasn’t been told she must not receive Holy Communion.

How much more public scandal does she have to give before the bishops of the places where she resides take concrete action?

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
This entry was posted in Emanations from Penumbras, Our Catholic Identity and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. MargaretMN says:

    I find it dreadfully creepy that a woman who bore 5 children is so passionately advocating for funding for incentivizing other women to kill theirs, no matter what religion claims she is. She thinks she can lawyer a basic truth and the teaching of the church. I certainly hope that nobody in the hierarchy gave her that impression.

    And her idea that her faith is hers and hers alone, just like her ability to publicly dissent is very protestant, no matter what she says about how strong her supposed Catholic identity is. I don’t really understand what her attachment is at all.

  2. Emilio III says:

    There comes a time when the bishops’ inaction becomes the bigger scandal, and I think we’re about there. But when there is no big deal made about the scandal caused by Archbishop Weakland’s book, why should they worry about a mere politician?

  3. Cavaliere says:

    Since today is the feast of St. Thomas Becket I think it is apropos to review the ‘excommunication scene’ from the film “Becket” You can see it here,

  4. moon1234 says:

    WOW Cavaliere! You win the link of the year award!

    I want to have THIS Bishop in my Diocese. He is awsome, even if it is a movie. Imagine if we actually had a Bishop act this way. It would sure send a CLEAR and CONCISE message.

    O Lord, please send us Bishops like this one! A Bishop who will stand strong for your faith and love of your Church. A Bishop who is not afraid to speak your truths and dispense your Justice in Holiness. O Lord, send us Bishops like St. Thomas Becket.

  5. Random Friar says:

    The Church is not now and has never been “against” free will. She will proclaim to the end of days that God gave you free will — in order to choose the GOOD. Removing funding or making it illegal does not remove free will. Are pirates and profiteers somehow without free will because we don’t have state-sponsored piracy and privateering any more?

    She hinted at the right answer. We will all answer for our choices freely made. Including me; including her. The grave error she and much of our society make is to make choice or the freedom to choose itself a god. Choice is a means. It is not an end in itself. The end is that which is all Good, true Love, God.

  6. Bthompson says:

    This is a bad situation. Thank God I am not a bishop, much less her bishop. I know what the law says and such, but I can only imagine the *blank*-storm that would result if ever she were given a medicinal canonical penalty. I probably just need to man up a bit, but still I do no envy our bishops having to weigh the pastoral considerations of dealing with politicians who have strayed from the path on various issues.

  7. TomB says:

    Isn’t it about time for a formal and public excommunication? She persists in obstinacy and is causing great scandal and confusion. This has gone too far already. The Church needs to take this seriously. I do not see how this can now be put off any longer, after this interview.

    Thanks for the link to St. Thomas, who we commemorated today. One of my favorite scenes in all of cinema. They knew how to do it right! That “outer darkness” thing is chilling.

  8. Central Valley says:

    Madame Speaker interviewd by Eleanor Clift, a spawn of satan, the interview was held in the lowest level of Hell. Nothing will be said or done to her. The California bishops, probably with the exception of Oakland, are absolute moral cowards. The faithful suffer in California. Fr. Serra must be crying in heaven looking down at the California bishops.

  9. Jack Hughes says:

    Howabout somebody asks Bp’s Fellay, Burke, Dolan and Chaput to have a little “chat” with your dear little speaker, if she refuses to repent then they should tie her down and perform the necessary exorcism.

  10. Warren says:

    Pelosi can call herself anything she wants. However, referring to herself as a Catholic is offensive to those who strive to live all that the Church teaches. There is no cost in her version of Christianity. Her words and actions mock the saints and martyrs who died and continue to die rather than capitulate with the culture of death.

    The bishops have been rebuffed time and time again by her statements like: “I feel what I was raised to believe is consistent with what I profess(.)”

    Eminent cardinals and excellencies, she doesn’t get it. Your counsel is falling on deaf ears.

  11. tzard says:

    I wonder if she were told she must not receive communion whether she’d just ignore it “choose” to go charging along.

    In San Francisco, they also have another “practicing Catholic” in the person of Mayor Gavin Newsome. Future Governor? Worse than Pelosi, imho. It’s a place where the local government can officially bad-mouth The Church and receive approval from the courts.

    This is truly hostile territory – before you get too critical, realize you may be insisting on personal martyrdom and the institutional death of the Archdiocese, something that may be what is called for, but is dire enough to warrant discretion.

  12. Sieber says:

    When asked by Fox News if she had discussed the issue of abortion during her visit with the Pope, Pelosi said, “He shared his point of view.”

  13. Father, Father: We are living with the Fruits of the Second Vatican Council and the implied theology of JP II. You see, everyone is saved! There is no Hell. No one will ever have to answer. What did Pelosi do after five children in six years??? What did all those Catholics do in the 60s and 70s after they hit the “limit” of children they wanted? They CONTRACEPTED. And the best birth control? Abortion! And the priest who was telling them in the confessional that contraception was not a mortal sin? “Laity, I won’t look in your bedroom window if you don’t look in mine”. That is how we got here and no one is going back. That is why there is so much tension between the Novus Ordo Church and the return to the Pre-Vatican II (Traditional) movement. The Church has collapsed. Pray for It.

  14. Kerry says:

    The cardinal she talked too arrived at the feeder just berfore the flicker in the picture below.

  15. ckdexterhaven says:

    If her bishop did excommunicate her, I think it make other pro-abortion Catholics wake up and smell the incense. It would tell all Catholics that being pro abortion is not consistent with the Catholic faith.

    The bishops also need to get their keesters out on tv and campaign forcefully against the abortion language in the Senate bill. All they’ve done so far is release a toothless letter. Think of how they could galvanize the flock if they showed some backbone!

  16. Norah says:

    Imagine if we actually had a Bishop act this way. It would sure send a CLEAR and CONCISE message.

    Yeah and how long do you think it would be before he submitted his resignation to the Pope on the grounds of ill health?

    The Church has imploded. We Faithful are just moving the deck chairs and kidding ourselves that it will all be alright.

    I have just read Sandro Magister on the Church in the Netherlands – promises of things to come.

    An archbishop speaks of a time in the Netherlands when there was a ” rigid moralism” does he mean that people obeyed the commandments and feared going to Hell?

  17. bookworm says:

    “What did Pelosi do after five children in six years???”

    Whatever she did, she didn’t do it alone… she does have a husband, right?

    Mentioning that she had 5 kids in 6 years and “appreciates all they (bishops) have to say about family” could be interpreted two ways. On the one hand it could be an attempt to establish a sort of “pro life” street cred — “Hey, I had all these kids and raised them Catholic so I was ‘truly’ pro-life when it counted.” Or it could be another subtle dig at the Church — “I kept myself barefoot and pregnant all those years because the Church demanded it, and now look what they’re doing to me.”

    She also concedes that trying to “change her mind” on abortion is part of her bishop’s “pastoral duty” to her as a “member of his flock.” Logically that means that if he were to bar her from Communion that would be a legitimate exercise of his pastoral duty.

    Things are coming to a head with regard to the abortion issue and I predict (you heard it here first!) that sometime in the coming year, at least one U.S. bishop will excommunicate or bar from Communion at least one prominent pro-abortion “Catholic” political figure. Not saying who the bishop or the pol in question will be, or that it will necessarily be the bishop of the diocese the pol lives in… but it will happen.

  18. Penguins Fan says:

    As a body, the USCCB will do nothing. The USCCB has been, for most of the past 40 years, a religious arm of most of Democrat Party domestic policy.

    As pointed out, the California bishops are…well…what they are, and that seems to be disciples of Mahony. California is Holland. So is the Northeast. The saddest thing is that we brought it all on ourselves.

  19. Kimberly says:

    Hmmm…”I had five childen in six years”, she sounds angry. Maybe she is grinding that axe with the church.

  20. Philippus says:

    I believe it is time for Mrs. Pelosi to be excommunicated.

    I don’t believe her bishop is helping her by giving her a long leash. If she really was going to be converted she would have done so a long ago, but instead, she piles on her scandals and insults the Church unabashedly.

    A good old remedy of excommunicating her will be sure to rouse her into examining herself.

  21. TNCath says:

    It’s definitely time for Archbishops Niederauer and Wuerl to get their acts together and do something about this disgrace to the Church in the United States, even if it means sacrificing whatever political clout they think they have with Speaker Pelosi.

  22. adagio48 says:

    I Am Writing To You, children, because your sins have been forgiven for his name’s sake. I am writing to you fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I am writing to you, young men, because you have conquered the Evil One. I write to you, children, because you know the Father. I write to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I write to you, young men, because you are strong and the word of God remains in you, and you have conquered the Evil One. Do not love the world or the things of the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world, sensual lust, enticement for the eyes, and a pretentious life, is not from the Father but is from the world. Yet the world and its enticement are passing away. But whoever does the will of God remains forever. ( from the first Letter from St John) Console your God, pray for our brothers and sisters

  23. Tom A. says:

    I must sadly agree with William Phelan. While there is always hope for a turn around, the typical N.O. mass is woefully lacking reverence and beauty. This spills over into the teaching we get from the pulpit. The CCD program in most parishes is a joke. The music is mostly awful and the selection of songs is dreadful. The distractions at Mass are too numerous to count. The abuses flow continously and new ones invented weekly. I have gotten involved in our parish, but it falls on deaf ears and then you get ostracized as “one of those.” No wonder so many older Catholics stopped going to Mass in the 70s.

  24. Sedgwick says:

    +Niederauer take public action?? Uh, the guy who went to see Brokeback Mountain?

  25. taad says:

    I believe behind every “pro choice’ politician is a bishop and or priest(s)
    who are advising them that this is okay. Example: The Kennedy family was
    pro life until Fathers Drinnan of Georgetown (who also was a friend of Pelosi),
    Charles Curran (who was silenced by JPII and our current Holy Father), and a third
    priest I do not recall, changed their belief. How many bishops are telling these
    people we understand that you are a public official and must represent the
    views of all. If you read what Pelosi said, “he is exercising his pastoral
    duty to me as one of his flock. When they call me on the phone here to talk
    about, or come to see me about an issue, that’s a different story. Then they
    are advocates, and I am a public official, and I have a different
    responsibility”. Did her archbishop state this or is this what she came up with
    on her own? Did he give her the impression that he had to say this to her, but left
    her with the belief that her public life, is separate from her private beliefs. I’d bet he
    didn’t go anywhere near what Bishop Tobin told Congressman Kennedy.

  26. markomalley says:

    I have some concerns about the church’s position respecting a woman’s right to choose. I have some concerns about the church’s position on gay rights.

    The Theologian of the House has spoken. Rome must listen. /sarcasm

  27. JohnH says:

    I just yesterday read these words from Dom Gueranger, O.S.B. about the duty of Bishops:

    A Bishop may not flee, as the hireling, nor hold his peace, like those dumb dogs of which Isaias speaks, and which are not able to bark. He is the Watchman of Israel: he is a traitor if he first lets the enemy enter the citadel, and then, but only then, gives the alarm and risks his person and his life.

    The Liturgical Year, December 20th, St. Thomas of Canterbury

  28. JohnH says:

    Correction, that should read December 29th, not 20th.

  29. irishgirl says:

    Oy-the arrogance of this woman!

    I’d like to see SOME Bishop ‘do a Becket’ [yeah, that’s my favorite scene in the movie, especially with Richard Burton’s voice] and excommunicate her and all the other CINO politicians!

  30. EXCHIEF says:

    It is quite likely that if Pelosi (or any other “prominent” liberal politician) were to be publicly excommunicated the media would have a field day trashing the Church. It is also likely that some idiot legislator would attempt to revoke the Church’s tax exempt status in retalliation. Bring it on! Principles are worth fighting for even though the consequences may be difficult. Moral principles even more. As it is, not only do errant “catholic” politicians have an in your face attitude towards the Church because of the Church’s wimpy approach to their public scandal but our society as a whole is beginning to loose the respect for the Church that it once enjoyed. While the public did not always agree with the Church they respected its moral stance. That respect is rapidly erroding if not disappearing altogether. It’s time for firm action on the part of the USCCB but I seriously wonder if they have it in them.

  31. chironomo says:

    So the (also liberal) media would trash the church… what’s new about that? They do that anyway. Would that be worse than Bishops selling out their own faith for the sake of public opinion? What would happen if Pelosi said that the Church actually doesn’t believe abortion is wrong… Oh wait…she DID say that! Okay, so what would happen if she said that Catholics are free to decide for themselves whether abortion is right or wrong… Oh wait… she said that TOO! Just what exactly does she have to say publicly as a Catholic before someone steps in and stops her for the sake of those who actually ARE Catholic?

  32. ssoldie says:

    Ambiguous language, it has been a big part of our catholic life for the last 50 years, but some just don’t want to admit it.

  33. Gail F says:

    Folks, please don’t blame this on Vatican II or, worse yet, John Paul II (I confess, I don’t get that one!). Back in the 20s and earlier, Christian writers of all sorts were lamenting and puzzling about the “current” lack of sense of sin, so different from earlier Christian eras when people were quite sure that they sinned. Vatican II theologies, and strange theologies that CLAIM to be so, cater to this sense that there is no sin and there are no sinners. But it’s older than that and seems to be widespread. Certainly, the Church’s teachings SHOULD prevent this from spreading to Catholics. But Catholics are not and never have been immune to surrounding culture.

  34. Bornacatholic says:

    The President, Cardinal George, and Vice President, Bishop Kincas, of the USCCB are Prelates who have publicly and knowingly supported/defended/promoted a known predatory pedophile Priest,Rev. Daniel McCormack

    Because they will not clean-up and clean-out their own house first, they have no legs to stand on to face-down and excommunicate politicians and the pols know it.

    Cardinal George

    At the height of the sexual abuse scandals in 2002, U.S. Catholic bishops adopted a policy calling for the removal of any priest credibly accused of child molestation. Beforehand, George had argued repeatedly on national television that the “zero tolerance” policy was too stringent. McCormack was first picked up by police in August 2005, but not charged. The cardinal’s review board recommended that the priest be removed from ministry, the archdiocese said. But the cardinal refused. McCormack went on to abuse other children. He pleaded guilty last July and was sent to prison. Four months later, the cardinal was elected president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

    Bishop Gerald Kicanas

    While rector of Mundelein Seminary in the 1990s, Tucson Bishop Gerald Kicanas says he knew about three reports of “sexual improprieties” against then-seminarian Daniel McCormack. Still, Kicanas supported McCormack’s ordination, he recently told the Sun-Times. “It would have been grossly unfair not to have ordained him,” Kicanas said. “There was a sense that his activity was part of the developmental process and that he had learned from the experience. I was more concerned about his drinking. We sent him to counseling for that.” McCormack was ordained in 1994. The following year, Kicanas became a Chicago auxiliary bishop and in 2001, a bishop of Tucson. Two months ago, he was elected vice president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.

    WHY are these Prelates still in their positions? That they are says all we needd to know about The Catholic Church in America

  35. My 11 year old and I had a discussion about this just yesterday when reviewing lesson 19 in the Baltimore Catechism #249: “What are the chief duties of those who hold public office? The chief duties of those who hold public office are to be just to all in exercising their authority and to promote the general welfare.”

    I sadly informed him that not only did the politicians make his life harder because there is no more group discriminated against today than white Catholic males which means that he will have to work 3 times as hard to get into college or a good job, but they deny life itself to those among us who are not yet born. The idea of promoting the general welfare has been thrown out the window with the current crop of liberal politicians. It amazes me that these bishops can look at themselves in the mirror and call themselves Catholic.

  36. John 6:54 says:

    Fr. Z why won’t the Bishops Act?

    Could you write and op-ed piece on this? If you’ve already done so where its it published I would like to get your comments in full.

  37. wmeyer says:

    At the risk of being uncharitable, one wonders what happened in the seventh year… I mean, if she had five babies in six years, was the lack of more babies God’s will? Or given her defense of “a woman’s right to choose” is it unreasonable to imagine her having exercised that “right”?

  38. chironomo says:


    I’m white, Catholic and Male and I certainly don’t feel discriminated against. Yes, there are those who hold views contrary to mine and who work to defeat those views that I hold dear. That is their problem, not mine (I’m talking about discrimination here… not the public actions of politicians). I can’t control how they feel about me, but I can certainly control how I react to them (I think that was St. Max Kolbe who said something like that).

    It sounds as though your son has a fine teacher…keep him close.

  39. The Astronomer says:

    “Pelosi locuta…CAUSA FINITA EST”

  40. Dennis Martin says:

    Sorry, folks, but formal excommunication is exactly what Speaker Pelosi lusts for. It would take the focus off of her and put it on the bishop(s) who excommunicated her.

    Thirty or forty years ago excommunication would have been a threat to Pelosi. That time has passed because the bishops failed to use their authority when it meant something to most Catholics. Now it means something only to those Catholics to whom the Church means something.

    But to many “Catholics,” for whom Pelosi is Exhibit A, the Church is a big tent in which everyone’s opinion is of equal weight (to modify Orwell, though some of those opinions are more equal than others, namely Pelosi’s opinions) and nothing more than opinions remain.

    Hence the bishops try to get the politicians to self-excommunicate, to stop coming up for Communion. But they are not so stupid as to fall or that trick. They are daring the bishops, not to excommunicate, but to deny Communion publicly.

    That’s the only weapon the bishops have left. Excommunication without public denial of Communion will backfire.

    Public denial of Communion will also end up with the bishops being excoriated in the media and with a significant number of “Catholics” siding with the “victim” rather than the bishops.

    Sooner or later this step will, however, be unavoidable. Enough of the bishops do not yet fully understand that it will eventually come to that pass.

    But please, people, recognize that calling for the bishops to excommunicate or even calling on them to deny Communion will not change the minds or chasten the hearts of either the politicians or those who support them. It will only make things “worse” for the time being. It will eventually have to be done, but instead of loudly calling for it and blithely assuming that that will then solve things, when you call on the bishops to act, you’d better be prepared for your bishop to have his back against the wall.

    What then will YOU do to help him in that situation? After all these years of bishop-bashing (and yes, they’ve done a lot of foolish things), will you turn on a dime and back him with life and property or will you find something else to complain about what he’s not doing right?

    Think about it now, while there’s still time to prepare. Because when the day finally comes that the bishops do excommunicate and deny Communion, your bishops are going to be under the gun. And constant bad-mouthing of bishops is not healthy for the soul.

    Pray for them instead. Pray now. For every time you are tempted to bad-mouth a bishop say five Rosaries for your bishop.

    Then say another five. Then you can allow yourself a few seconds of bishop-bashing.

    Then say some more Rosaries.

  41. Father Bartoloma says:

    She is one of several Catholic politicians who knows exactly how to play the bishops. I’m never surprised when I read interviews like this one; the error and toleration of error has been calcified for a decades now and there is no tipping point within sight for Catholic politicians to start heeding the bishops’ teachings or even an attempting to have integrity of faith.

    I hate to say it also, but even the whole concept of the “Catholic Vote” is something is unreliable, fragile, and fickle. It is no more something to be counted upon or held up than the Catholicity of public officials; again with zero consistency.

    I am always struck how where Vatican II called for lay Catholics to live out their baptismal call to be ambassadors of Christ and bring Gospel truths to the wider world where they have a greater sphere of influence than the clergy; quite the opposite has happened.

  42. Sam Schmitt says:

    Blaming Pelosi’s confusion and heresy on John Paul II and the Novus Ordo mass – well, that’s just weird.

    How about blaming Modernism on Pope Leo XIII?

    If you think run-a-muck politicians are something new you obviously haven’t read about the Middle Ages lately – wasn’t that what the Becket video was about?

  43. Bornacatholic says:

    Dear Mr. Martin. I am glad the laity was not silent in the time of Arius.

    And why is speaking the truth about Bishops “bashing?”

    Catholics in America are in this situation because Feminism has seized control of the USCCB. Collectively, the USCCB, while run by males, is not run my men.

    From the neglect of the Liturgy, to the neglect of Catechesis, to the refusal to exercise male authority, to letting liberal do-goodism ascend to the highest priority, the USCCB may as well consist entirely of women.

    The faithful laity are are not responsible for the feckless feminised USCCB. Not one of them asked for the male Bishops to stop acting like men and to turn over control of the Liturgy to radicals and begin to act as though they were women and to value,emotionalism, timidity, temporising, collectivism, and consensus and collaboration over Catholic Truth and their Duties to Teach,Rule,and Sanctify.

    My Catholic Heritage has been stolen by my Bishops and so I had the sole responsibility in my household to uphold it and try to keep the flame of faith alive while the Bishops became feminised and collectivised and radicalised, as they protected predatory perverts, and held their annual meetings at such places as The Breakers on Palm Beach, Florida where they were wined and dined in lavish and expensive surroundings while, back at home, we were supposed to drag our family to Mass where a retarded RENEW Tree was crammed into our Sanctuary as our local Priest told us the Jesuit Martyrs were wrong to try and convert the Indians of north america.

    Too much bashing?

    I think it a signal triumph of male self-control that not one man in America ever punched-out a Prelate yet I never read a single word of congratulations extended to men who were able to restrain themselves.

    Nope. I always read how we should just shut up and pray.

  44. Dennis Martin says:

    Dear Bornacatholic,

    Thank you for your “charitable” response. For your information, I did not say you should pray and shut up. Your claim that I did is a misrepresentation. The 8th Commandment has something to say about that.

    If you were to read calmly what I wrote, you would have noted that I noted that bishops have done plenty that is wrong.

    All I said was that excommunication and denial of communion, which I said does need to be done, will only make things worse at least at the outset and that you and others might want to prepare yourselves for the worse by


    My premise is that bishops have effectively squandered their authority. We can no longer assume that the Pelosis of this world will be fazed by denial of Communion, indeed, they may welcome it as a weapon to be turned to their advantage. If you do not realistically assess the situation we are in, you will be taken by surprise when the bishops finally do act, as they eventually will. If you read what I wrote you will note that I favor the excommunication of and denial of Communion to Nancy Pelosi and others like her. I’m just also very much aware of what will happen after that is finally done. Please note that I believe it SHOULD BE DONE SOONER RATHER THAN LATER. But I also believe that you will be very surprised at what follows.

    If you pray a lot for the bishops before you criticize bishops (many of whom deserve criticism, let me repeat), your criticism will be truly Catholic.

    It might also be a bit more charitable and less self-righteous. Self-righteousness is the besetting sin of conservative Catholics like you and me. It helps to acknowledge it so as to learn to avoid it. I speak of myself as much as of anyone else.

    Two wrongs do not make a right. Uncharitable criticism, even if the criticism is merited, is wrong. Prayer goes a long way to avoid adding sin to sin.

    Regarding punching out prelates, you may recall that Jesus said that one does NOT deserve praise simply for doing what one ought to do. You imply that men might somehow have been justified in punching out a prelate or two, hence they should be congratulated for their self-control. Sorry, your premise is wrong.

  45. Okay, this is probably a stretch, but my thought here is, what idiot priest has been advising her?
    This sounds like situation ethics/proportionalism/consequentionalism /you name it (refer to “Evangelium vitae” for the descriptions).
    This has nothing to do with VII or the Ordinary Form. This is just plain stupid moral theology (or immoral theology, however you want to put it).
    The woman is in dire need of spiritual direction and a good course on moral theology (from the “Summa” of St. Thomas, no less…I could direct her to an excellent course/courses, if I was ever asked).
    And her Archbishop and the Archbishop of Washington, D.C. need to advise her that she is in “mega trouble” with these views. As a “practicing Catholic”. Do I sound harsh?

  46. As a second thought: Pope John Paul’s “Veritatis splendour” would also be of great help in clearly up her confusion (and that’s probably where the descriptions of all the “isms” are…my mind is going…sorry!)

  47. Gail F says:

    Dennis Martin: I think you are exactly right. If the bishops really speak up — and I think, given the direction the country is going — they will have to, then none of us is going to like what happens. Not just to the bishops, but to US. What will your neighbors say to you, when the bishops “start trying to tell everyone in the United States what to do”? What will your boss say, when the bishops “think they can control the government”? When that day comes, “get your rosaries off my ovaries” is going to sound like a nursery rhyme. And some of the people who will say the worst things will be Catholic.

  48. Let me clarify my earlier comments re: John Paul II. His candidacy for sainthood is being delayed by two major items: His protection of Fr. Marciel Marcial, founder of the Legionaries of Christ, who fathered children, sexually abused seminarians and priests, who was honored by JP II with a lavish celebration in St. Peter’s square in November, 2004(?), only to have Cdl Ratzinger notify him in January, 2005(?) that he was under investigation by the Vatican on charges going back 50 years. Suffice it to say that Pope Benedict has ordered a full scale investigation of the Legionaries. The second is the case of Dr. Wanda P., a long time friend of JP II going back decades, who insists she had a “special relationship” with JP II which the Vatican is investigating at this time. My main criticism is that he admitted he was poor at management(look what B. XVI has accomplished in four years vis a vis JP II’s twenty-five), and there was a tone of universal salvation in so much of his approach. These are substantial grounds for serious concern.

  49. Dennis Martin says:

    It is simply incorrect to say that John Paul II’s cause is “being delayed.” A decree of heroic virtue was just issued, a few months before the normal point at which a cause would even have been introduced.

    A decree of heroic virtue cannot be issued if any doubts, of the sort William Phelan alleges, had not been resolved positively. The rumors that the two “concerns” were delaying the cause were just that, rumors. Why repeat them now. The cause is now in God’s hands, awaiting a confirmed miracle. Whatever Mr. Phelan or I may think of John Paul II’s virtues or culpable failings, as far as the Church is concerned, he was a saint. We await our Lord’s confirmation or refusal to confirm. I’ll defer to Him, not to rumors.

  50. Thank you for your very thoughtful comments, Dennis Martin, in response to my remarks on John Paul, II. I fear that I have been dealing with the Church too long and that cynicism is the result. It is true that JP II was declared Venerable at the same time as was Pius XII. One is despised by the Jews and the other loved as he allowed the two Covenant solution to obtain, i.e., the Jews can be saved by remaining Jews, while others must convert to Christianity (Catholicism?). JP II also went to synagogues and visited Israel as well. While there, he visited Yad Vashem where a portrait of Pius XII is displayed with some hateful comments about P XII and what he did or did not do for the Jews. B XVI has reversed the two Covenant teaching by insisting all salvation comes only from Jesus the Christ.
    My remarks above I read in substantial Catholic journals and I do not consider them “rumors”. Fr. Gumpel, the Jesuit expert on the cause of Pius XII, insisted recently that his cause was delayed because of “politics”. The Vatican wishes to canonize Pius XII so, in my opinion, they have taken the political approach and put forward the two at the same time. Whether or not JP II is a saint is of no concern to me. I wish him well as I wish everyone well. Justice requires that his pontificate be measured for what he did and did not do for the Church at a perilous time.

  51. Bornacatholic says:

    Thank you for your “charitable” response. For your information, I did not say you should pray and shut up. Your claim that I did is a misrepresentation. The 8th Commandment has something to say about that.

    LOL Dear Dennis. I did not claim you wrote that. When I wrote, “I always read…” obviously, refers not just to what you wrote in your post. It refers to what others have written also.

    If you were to read calmly what I wrote,

    LOL Good Lord. You are touchy to the point of afflatus. I can think of no other explanation for you thinking I was not calm when I read what you wrote. Other than afflatus, what could account for your ability to discern my inner mood?

    Dear Dennis. Please don’t take comments so personally when they are not personal and it does you no good to suggest others are breaking particular Commandments when there is no warrant for such a rash suggestion.

    I bear you no ill will brother. I will assume you are done correcting my manifest sins and delinquencies and so I will let you concentrate on correcting poor Mr. Phelan; and any others needing correction.

    Have a pleasant and prosperous New Year

  52. wanda says:

    At the risk of revealing my lack of understanding, how does the Speaker of The House get her position? Is she nominated? How long is her term? Please tell me it’s not a lifetime thing.
    Is Mrs. Pelosi also a Senator, I guess? Can she be voted out? Please say YES. Thank you and advanced gratitude for any enlightenment you can offer.

    St. Michael the Archangel, defend us in battle..

  53. Dennis Martin says:


    Your comment was addressed to me by name after I addressed people in general.

    If the last part of it was not addressed to me personally, you should have signalled the change of address. Instead you now personalize things by blaming me for touchiness. If you do not wish for things you write to be taken as directed at someone, then do not direct sharply worded personalized responses to individuals.

  54. Francisco Cojuanco says:


    The Speaker of the House is just another Member of the House of Representatives who has been elected by her fellow Representatives to the position. Her term is the same as any Congressman’s – every two years.

    As such, theoretically she could be voted out of office next year. But that will not happen, as her constituency is the City and County of San Francisco, which is a Democratic stronghold. Doesn’t stop you from moving there and registering to vote, however.

    By custom and tradition, however, she will only preside for a few terms, before someone else takes up the position, whether because the Democrats lose the election, or because someone more junior will take the position.

  55. wanda says:

    Francisco Cojuanco, Thank you so much for the information, it is very helpful. No intention of moving to SF, thank you. May the days of her term pass quickly by.

    Thank you again, many blessings in 2010 to you and to all and to Fr Z. – it’s almost here!

  56. All day I have been feeling guilty for my comment about an “idiot priest” that might be advising N. Pelosi. Especially at the “Confiteor” and Kyrie at today’s Mass. I want to apologize for that very intemperate and inappropriate comment; a true lack of charity on my part. I was afraid to look here to see if someone might have “called me” on it; nevertheless, as a New Year’s resolution, I must try to be more temperate and careful about my commentary.
    I do not take back my comments on N. Pelosi’s need for proper formation of her conscience.
    But especially in the Year for the Priest, I should be must more careful about castigating my brother priests and our bishops for their sins or omissions, and instead, pray and do penance.
    A blessed New Year in our Lord and Blessed Lady to you all!

  57. avecrux says:

    A blessed new year to you, too, nazareth priest – and know that we all understand how such comments can be made. I posted my new year’s resolution earlier – for more patience and an ability to respond more charitably in difficult situations – so I understand very well, not only your comment but your apology! I struggle with the same things. I for one will say a prayer for you tonight – may God bless you and the Blessed Mother keep you very close.

  58. avecrux: Thank you for your kind and compassionate words.
    A blessed new year with our Lord’s graces and our Lady’s intercession!

  59. rinkevichjm says:

    Archbishop George H. Niederauer ought to put her under the inderdict, it is he, not Mahoney, that is responsible for her district and failure to do so is causing more scandal than not making today a holy day of obligation. Maybe he still gives the LA Cardinal respect, since he was ordained a priest there (in L.A.), but I think even Cardinal Roger Mahoney might place her under the interdict as much as she promotes abortion by the back door. Interdict is the right punishment: she has a badly formed conscience, possibly, in part, due to clerical or religious members of the Church. Excommunication is for someone who knows they are wrong and refuses to reform. Nancy doesn’t seem to know right from wrong.

  60. wanda says:

    Nancy does her level best to not let her ‘faith’ interfere with her politics. She forgot about her Catholic identity.

Comments are closed.