Catching Up

I just came back from my apostolic visitation of the Irish seminaries, and I’m catching up on some reading. You may have seen these  articles recently, but just in case you haven’t, let me share them with you.

Rocco Palmo’s wrote about Cardinal Wuerl’s recent column on civil discourse last week in Whispers in the Loggia. Here is an excerpt:

In his most prominent intervention to date on an issue he’s tackled repeatedly over recent months, Washington’s freshly-elevated Cardinal Donald Wuerl has taken his campaign for civility in the public discourse to the pages of the capital’s Post.

Especially given his position in the thick of a heated hyper-political conversation nationwide, the lack thereof is something the finessed DC prelate’s become unusually used to over recent years, and from both sides of the aisle: while the secular left rained down fury on Wuerl after the Washington church warned that it would move to decline public funding for its Catholic Charities in response to the city’s legalization of same-sex marriage (with its requisite granting of benefits to the spouses of gay employees), elements of the Catholic right have likewise made clear their protests of, among other things, the cardinal’s longtime stance against canonical sanctions on politicians whose public stances fail to reflect church teaching.

You can read the whole post here.

I also came across an interesting article in The Weekly Standard by Joseph Bottum about Dr. Kermit Gosnell, the Philadelphia abortion doctor who has made headlines recently.

Dr. Gosnell was a little befuddled at his arraignment on January 20. Indicted for eight murders, the Philadelphia abortionist told the court that he understood the first count, a charge of third-degree murder for the death of a woman on whom he had operated. He didn’t understand, however, the seven other counts—the first-degree charges for the deaths of seven babies delivered alive and then killed in his clinic.

No, “clinic” is too antiseptic a word for what the 69-year-old doctor ran for over three decades in a small brick building on the corner of 38th and Lancaster in Philadelphia. A grand jury, led by district attorney R. Seth Williams, began investigating Kermit Gosnell’s abortion practice when a drug raid last February (the man ran a profitable side business in dodgy painkiller prescriptions) revealed conditions almost beyond belief.

You can read the whole article here.

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2 Responses to “Catching Up”

  1. Joseph Sexton says:

    When you have both extremes criticizing you as, e.g., has been the case with Cardinal Wuerl, you’re probably doing something right! Bringing more civility to the various debates certainly isn’t easy, since the prevailing attitude on all sides seems to be \I am totally correct and you are totally wrong!\

  2. Irene says:

    It is so encouraging that Cardinal Wuerl has spoken out for civility in political and religious discourse. Things have gotten so out of hand in the way we speak to and about those who disagree with us.

    I recently heard a survivor of the Rwandan genocide talk about her experiences; she said that, in the times leading up to the genocide, commentators on the radio frequently spoke disparagingly of the Tutsi tribe; calling them mice, roaches and other vermin. They spoke “jokingly” and would “jokingly” saying the Tutsi should all be killed. Then one day, they stopped joking and went out and massacred them.

    I don’t know if violent language is a cause or a symptom of violent intent, but I think if we don’t rein in the rhetoric in this country, it will eventually escalate into violent acts.

    I hope other leaders follow the Cardinal’s example and speak out against this extremism.