While Catholic nuns are busy feeding the poor and ensuring that people actually have beds, Catholic bishops are busy trying to legislate what happens in your bed and in your body. In Catholic Times, Roman Catholic Bishop Thomas John Paprocki of Springfield, IL, warned his parishioners that they should worry about their souls if they vote for Obama, but hey, he’s not telling you who to vote for (emphasis added):
The Democratic Party Platform also (in addition to birth control and safe and legal abortions) supports same-sex marriage, recognizes that “gay rights are human rights,” and calls for the repeal of the Defense of Marriage Act, the federal law signed by President Clinton in 1996 that defined marriage as the legal union of one man and one woman.
Again, I am not telling you which party or which candidates to vote for or against, but I am saying that you need to think and pray very carefully about your vote, because a vote for a candidate who promotes actions or behaviors that are intrinsically evil and gravely sinful makes you morally complicit and places the eternal salvation of your own soul in serious jeopardy.
Is it possible he might have been talking about the Republican party as well? Here’s what he had to say about Republicans.
I have read the Republican Party Platform and there is nothing in it that supports or promotes an intrinsic evil or a serious sin.
I guess greed is no longer a sin.
Unlike the Pope, Bishop Paprocki has no problem with the death penalty.
The Republican Party Platform does say that courts “should have the option of imposing the death penalty in capital murder cases.” But the Catechism of the Catholic Church says (in paragraph 2267), “Assuming that the guilty party’s identity and responsibility have been fully determined, the traditional teaching of the Church does not exclude recourse to the death penalty, if this is the only possible way of effectively defending human lives against the unjust aggressor. If, however, non-lethal means are sufficient to defend and protect people’s safety from the aggressor, authority will limit itself to such means, as these are more in keeping with the concrete conditions of the common good and more in conformity to the dignity of the human person. Today, in fact, as a consequence of the possibilities which the state has for effectively preventing crime, by rendering one who has committed an offense incapable of doing harm — without definitely taking away from him the possibility of redeeming himself — the cases in which the execution of the offender is an absolute necessity are very rare, if not practically nonexistent.”
He does admit that the Republican platform isn’t perfect, saying, “one might argue for different methods in the platform to address the needs of the poor, to feed the hungry and to solve the challenges of immigration, but these are prudential judgments about the most effective means of achieving morally desirable ends, not intrinsic evils.”
So, helping the poor is nice and all, but creating more poor babies and ensuring that women and gay people remain second class citizens is the real priority of God. Gotcha. Is it any wonder people are leaving the Catholic church?
Here’s a video of part of the OpEd:
Catholic nuns, on the other hand, think that the Bishop’s priorities are completely upside down. Their Nuns on the Bus tour is about helping the poor. While they aren’t threatening Catholics with eternal damnation, they are saying that favoring the wealthy over the poor is wrong and against Jesus’ teachings. Can nuns take a ruler to Bishops’ knuckles? More importantly, perhaps the IRS should take a look at the Church’s tax exempt status.