Archbp. Dolan elected – Liberals go bananas

From the Catholic League:


Catholic League president Bill Donohue comments on the way some of the critics of New York Archbishop Timothy Dolan are reacting to his election yesterday as the new head of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops:

NPR is worried that Archbishop Dolan is “overtly conservative,” and Tim Rutten of the Los Angeles Times is fretting about his “confrontational approach.” Dissident Catholics are upset as well: New Ways Ministry says the vote “sends an ominous message”; Call to Action also sees his election as “ominous”; Sr. Maureen Fiedler says “we now have our very own Catholic version of the ‘Tea Party’ movement”; DignityUSA concludes that Dolan’s election means the hierarchy is “out of step” with Catholics. Similarly, the Human Rights Campaign, a gay secular group, says the vote means the hierarchy is “out of step.” Not to be outdone, the website of the Tucson Citizen accused Dolan of evincing an “arrogant” attitude in winning (it is true that he was caught smiling).

SNAP, the professional victims’ group, opines that Dolan’s “winning personality obscures his terrible track record on abuse.” Marian Ronan of Religion Dispatches says his election is “not a good sign,” and her colleague, Sarah Posner, concludes—and this really is ominous—that “the bishops are targeting families with loved ones who are lesbian, gay, bisexual or transgender.” The Internet site Lez Get Real calls Dolan “the Vatican’s spin-doctor,” and the website of Time has a headline which reads, “More Bad News for Obama 2012: Catholics Elect Dolan.” picked up the AP piece, but chose to give it a new headline: “Catholic Bishops’ Vote to Mean Harder Church Stance Against Gay Families.” And atheist Susan Jacoby is sweating over the fact that Dolan will be treated by the media “as if he is the voice of all American Catholics.” She needs to get used to it.

Now it is tempting to conclude that some in the asylum have escaped. More likely, it means these are not good times for those who have sought—in many cases their entire adult life—to turn the Catholic Church, and America more generally, upside down and inside out. They gave it their best shot, but they lost. Maybe it’s time they retired.

That was great!

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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  1. Pax0mnibus says:

    When I first saw the picture of the new president smiling after the election, I found it somewhat disconcerting. I saw it as arrogant, as if he was gloating over the defeat of a Bernadin remnant. My apologies to Archbishop Dolan. It was what the Baltimore Catechism called rash judgment on my part.

  2. Desertfalcon says:

    I wonder if those critics have any clue that press reports such as these cause many of us to say, “Oh, he must be a good choice then!”

  3. Supertradmum says:

    Sadly, some of us have suspected a real, not a hidden, schism for some time. I think that the liberals know their day in the sun is over. However, as one good priest in our diocese said two weeks ago, “I am tired of ignorant Catholics.” He had gone to three meetings in his three parishes, where the people were clamoring for women priests. One can blame the local Catholic college and the seminaries for teaching liberal ideas, some of the deacons who are pro-gay,pro-women priests. But, in the end, the fault lies with years of lax catechesis from the pulpit and the bishops.

    God is preparing us for a clarity in the American Church which has not been seen in 35 years, but it will come with a cost. Those bishops who have not taught or challenged their flocks to follow the beautiful teachings of the Catholic Church will now face the rebellion they have fostered by not disciplining those who were making up their own doctrines.

    With this clarity, will come persecution, so get ready, all of us. I already have it in my classrooms, where students on the whole, are not church-going and are “scared of religions”. They have expressed this after the recent elections. This is the generation of the individual, who does not trust any authority and has no moral bearings, as well as no sense of the sublime. Journalists and Bostonians obviously fall into those categories.

  4. pberginjr says:

    That was great! I would reply to Jacoby that +Dolan should be treated “as if he is the voice of all American Catholics.” After all, I’m sure that the majority/all of American Catholics who actually practice their faith are beyond pleased at this recent news.
    In response to Time magazine, what a bad headline. It misrepresents and distorts the process by which the president of the USCCB is elected, and turns the church into what they want it to be, a democracy. It suggests that Catholics elect their own hierarchy. If that were true, I would venture to say we would have avoided the consequences and abuses of the 70s and 80s entirely.

  5. The best way to know somebody is to read (or to listen) the bad things people say about him. Seeing what they are saying about this Bishop ( I don’t know him, I’m not american) makes me think very well of him.

  6. Zilla says:

    What wonderful news! Thank you for sharing this, Father!

  7. Torkay says:

    The Church has been turned upside down ever since Vatican II – all these heretics have done is to attempt to ensure that it remains in that state. Where is Abp. Dolan on the restoration of tradition?

  8. TJerome says:

    overly conservative = orthodox, Catholic. Terrible for lefties. They wanted a marshmellow

  9. The-Monk says:

    Shakespeare had it just about right in this regard: “Methinks thou does protest a bit took much….”

    Your list of the anti-Dolanites along with their commentary reads like a brochure identifying the members of the American catholic “Hall of Shame.”

    It likely is quite good that God term limited every human being.


  10. TJerome says:

    Sr Maureen Fiedler, your group is the functional equivalent of ACORN.

  11. Marcin says:

    Wasn’t it Card. Ratzinger who once quipped that if he had not read anything bad about himself in a week he would have had to examine his conscience?

    (I’m sure I botched the tense…)

  12. Del says:

    We can trust that Archbishop Dolan is right in line with Pope Benedict concerning the direction and the pace of all reforms.

  13. irishgirl says:

    Hooray for Archbishop Dolan! And ‘Boo’ for the liberals!
    What a bunch of whinging crybabies they are! Hey you guys [and girls], your time has come and gone! Now move along!
    One more thing….there is no such term as ‘American Catholic’, or ‘American Church’….we are ‘Roman Catholic Americans’ and it’s the ‘Roman Catholic Church in America’. Big difference!

  14. Andy F. says:

    Hierarchy “out of step” with Catholycs in America? Is this supposed to be bad?

  15. Great piece. To the left, remember …I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it.

  16. kab63 says:

    The first round ballot had a number of votes for Archbp Chaput. And they think Archbp Dolan is conservative! The libs dodged (what they would consider) a bullet and they don’t even recognize it.

  17. Scott W. says:

    The paranoia over a Vast Right-Wing conpiracy is a hoot. Uncle Di points to an article that blames right-wing Catholic bloggers for the bishops’ election: I know you would probably not refer to yourself as right-wing Fr. Z, but I’m pretty sure they mean you. :)


  18. Daniel Latinus says:

    I think these comments from John Allen at the Fishwrap are probably closest to the truth:

    In Dolan, the bishops have turned to their most gifted natural communicator, a leader with a demonstrated capacity to project a positive image for Catholicism in the public square. Rather than electing a behind-the-scenes broker of compromise, in other words, the bishops tapped their best front man. That choice could be taken as an imminently rational reaction to recent events.

    Second, while Dolan certainly is more “conservative” than Kicanas, it’s not what’s distinctive about him. To be sure, there are plenty of other conservatives in the USCCB. Dolan’s defining quality isn’t really his ideology, but rather his capacity to build relationships with people who don’t share his outlook.

    In many ways, Dolan is a high-octane, populist American expression of what I’ve called the “affirmative orthodoxy” of Benedict XVI: no compromise on matters of Catholic identity, but a determination to express that identity in the most positive key possible, keeping lines of conversation open with people outside the fold.

    Article here:

  19. Henry Edwards says:

    Good news from the USCCB meeting just keeps coming. It is reported in some quarters that, at yesterday’s closed session, the bishops were told that the CDW in Rome is currently revising the text of the corrected translation, that a final version will be sent out by Rome, and then everything will go forward on schedule for implementation in Advent of 2011.

    Before this meeting, some of the extreme-liberal blogs had been rife with hopeful speculation that the bishops would rise up and, in view of recent liberal complaints, put the whole thing on hold. However, this liturgy report to the bishops was apparently received as information without discussion. (I guess the lefties don’t know that the “liturgy wars” are o-v-e-r, at least at the bishops level.)

  20. LarryD says:

    The Catholycs are indeed upset about Archbp. Dolan’s election. I have a transcript of their post-election meeting.

  21. RichR says:

    I remember the memorable quote of Cardinal Ratzinger when he was asked about receiving negative press on a particular decision. His response was: “If I don’t read anything critical about myself in the newspapers for a few weeks, I feel I have to make an examination of conscience.”

    Welcome to the gaunlet, your Excellency. You’re in good company.

  22. jlong says:

    Wonderful result, however, the election didn’t show unity amongst the Bishops but rather their division. They pretty much split 50 – 50 with Bishop Kicanas getting 111 votes, and leading in the first round, compared to Archbishop Dolan’s 126 votes in round 2.

    I would like the names of those 111 Bishops to find out if mine voted for Bishop Kicanas.

    The US Church still is divided between liberal and orthodox. But with Benedict in control, hopefully, in due time, those 111 Bishops will be replaced by more faithful Bishops.

  23. Bill puts a pretty good list together. Perhaps I missed it, but I don’t see him quoting “Catholics for Equality” which, from all I’ve read, threw the biggest and most ridiculous nutty.

    Catholics For Equality Says Election of Archbishops Dolan and Kurtz Signals Increased Vatican Influence in US Politics

  24. thouart says:

    Archbishop Dolan, the newly elected President of the USCCB, said in a news conference yesterday, when asked about his priorities moving forward: “I think what I can safely say is that probably my major priority would be to continue, with all the vigor that I can muster, what’s already been put in place.

    It’s not like we’re in crisis or anything!!! Just keep destroying the Church as fast as you can Dolan. This is the clueless leading the schismatic.

    Fr. John Hardon: “In the USCCB there are 6 orthodox, and 6 mostly orthodox Bishops. All the rest are heretics.” Amen!

  25. TJerome says:

    Henry Edwards, that’s great news. I think the lefties know they had their chance, they blew it, and now it’s time to move on. Best, Tom

  26. TJerome says:

    thouart, I think Father Hardon, if alive today, would adjust that number of orthodox bishops significantly upward.

  27. Amerikaner says:

    Deo Gratias!

    They show themselves for the wolves that they are.

  28. Legisperitus says:

    Good comments by Mr. Allen (though I think he meant “eminently”).

  29. Shadow says:

    @TJerome: Oh, he ain’t no “marshmellow.” Methinks this is gonna be fun (smiling widely).

  30. Mrs. O says:

    I voted for Chaput myself but excited about Dolan too!

    Before the election, B16, speaking to Brazilian Bishops, expressed the conference of Bishops is to help carry the fatigue of the Bishop, not replace him. I dare say we have something similar that happens in some dioceses here whether it is a new Bishop that defaults to whatever the Conference says OR one that is lazy, OR ……fill in blank. That could be ok if the Conference itself was in line with what the Church teaches but it is evident that some of the offices are run by some people that have left the church, just not physically yet. But most of the time, the documents are just flat, they don’t say anything new and by the time you finish you want to beat your head against the nearest tree in anguish…Some have suggested starting all over – going back to the basics. I guess it depends on the department and your own Bishop as to how much this will matter. Some it will seem like they have a new Bishop, but others where their Bishop is doing a good job of shepherding, business as usual.
    Dolan has a facebook page and actually uses it so it is one step closer to the younger generation…gap not quite as big anymore.

  31. JosephMary says:

    To have the numbers at close to 50-50 is something we have not seen in decades! The true orthodox bishops have been a vast minority with many knowing Catholics being able to name them! But now the tide is turning: DEO GRATIAS!

    But having said that, I still mourn the los of faith for so many countless souls over these dissenting decades and most places are far from out of the woods yet.

    Yes, the bishops did choose one of the best “front men” whose engaging personality can bring the truths of the Gospel home to a wide variety of people. This is a solid step in the right direction and Bp. Kurtz looks to be very good too.

  32. doozer125 says:

    The last paragraph is AWESOME! “They gave it their best shot, but they lost. Maybe it’s time they retired.” AWESOME! I gotta quote that to my 70 yr old liberal mom…

  33. Carolina Geo says:

    For a moment I thought this was another “Post your good news” thread!

  34. Al Kresta of Ave Maria Radio interviewed a number of people at the hotel where the USCCB meeting was at just hours after the Dolan/Kurtz win.

    Go to November 16, 2010 and listen to the first hour. The discussion continues somewhat in the second hour.

  35. Supertradmum says:

    Diane at Te Deum Laudamus,

    Thanks for both links above. I checked these out. We do not have Catholic radio in our area. Great commentary. As to the other site, who is that priest who is being quoted>

  36. I just found a sort of ironic bit of news:

    Bishop Kicanas just celebrated a Pontifical Low Mass in the Extraordinary Form on November 6th in Tucson.

  37. Tony from Oz says:

    Perhaps it is time to put a little a corrective to all the hype about Abp. Dolan who said, upon being asked what his chief priorities will be as Pres. of the USCCB: “I think what I can safely say is that probably my major priority would be to continue, with all the vigor that I can muster, what’s already been put in place. It’s not like — thanks be to God — we’re in crisis. Things are going well.”

    Not in crisis? Ummm…I hope this is a case of diplomatic speak on Dolan’s part, and not yet another case of episcopal delusion.

  38. Tony Layne says:

    Oh, it gets better ….

    LarryD over at Acts of the Apostasy has a report on an after-election meeting that’s worth reading, which has even driven some to desperate acts of cartooning.

  39. UncleBlobb says:

    Let us pray that Archbishop Dolan lives up to all these expectations.

  40. Geremia says:

    @PatrickThornton: I am a Tucsonian, and I can confirm this. It was for a confirmation. Bp. Kicanas has a very good relationship with the Institute of Christ the King’s oratory here because he knew someone from the Institute when in Chicago.

  41. cl00bie says:

    It might be a bit unChristian, but I’m going to sit back with a smile on my face and enjoy a nice tall ice-cold glass of Schadenfreude :)

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