Archive for the ‘Marriage’ Category

Varia

Sunday, January 30th, 2011

The following are some of the highlights from the daily email briefing about news and events, which I send out to some of my friends and contacts (if you’re interested in subscribing to the daily mailing, leave your email address in the comments box):

  • Try to imagine a world without abortion, and what it would be like.  Can we go there please?
  • Our 100% pro-abortion President lauds the anniversary of the iniquitous legal usurpation that permitted the destruction of an entire class of human beings.
  • Meanwhile, the Catholic pro-life Speaker of the House has a different perspective on the anniversary, and has plans to do something about it.
  • The Newsletter of the Cult of Moloch, er, I mean the Times, publishes a snide opinion piece about the abortion rate in NYC that winds up with a sympathetic look at a late-term abortionist.  All the callous indifference of the Culture of Death that’s fit to print.
  • Anti-euthanasia hero Wesley Smith warns us of the looming threat of health care rationing.
  • Kathryn Jean Lopez suggests a nice target for the Tea Party — cutting abortion funding in the federal budget.  Proving her point, an obscure change in the Medicaid rules will produce greater “access” (i.e., government spending) for contraceptives, which will inevitably lead to more abortions.
  • Sobering summary of the true costs of egg donation on women and on the human beings in embryonic stage who are lost in the process.
  • This is how it is in modern Ireland — Franciscans of the Renewal friars pray outside of a “family planning” center, are vilified on the radio as a result.  How does that go, “Blessed are those who are persecuted…”?
  • It’s pretty well established that divorce is bad for kids. Yet another study shows that it’s worse for boys than girls.  So what does our state do? That’s right — it passes a “no-fault” divorce law last year, which makes divorce easier, with no regard to the best interests of children.
  • This is really neat — a time-lapsed video of the March for Life.
  • (Please note that these links will take you to websites that are not affiliated with the Archdiocese.  We neither take responsibility for nor endorse the contents of the websites.)

    Varia

    Thursday, December 30th, 2010

    The following are some of the highlights from the daily email briefing about news and events, which  I send out to some of my friends and contacts (if you’re interested in subscribing to the daily mailing, leave your email address in the comments box):

  • The Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith has issued a statement regarding the Holy Father’s comment about condoms.  In essence — there were no changes in Church teaching, as any attentive reader would already have understood.
  • Bishop Olmstead of Phoenix revoked the Catholic status of a hospital that approved an abortion (and which has been involved in cooperation with contraception, sterilization and abortion in other cases) and that refused to acknowledge the bishop’s authority to oversee their compliance with Catholic ethics.  Story and Bishop’s Olmstead’s full statement.
  • Rather than humbly submitting to the judgment of the Bishop, the Catholic Health Association has once again wounded unity in the Church by siding with the hospital against the Bishop.  Amazing, since the Ethical and Religious Directives, which is cited as authoritative by CHA, gives the ultimate moral authority to the diocesan Bishop, not to CHA or to the hospital.
  • More facts about the situation, directly from Bishop Olmstead.  For those who want the Canon Law side of the story, check out this analysis.
  • One of the tactics of the same-sex “marriage” movement is to brand us all as “haters”.  The strategy is to “marginalize, privatize, anathematize”.
  • Meanwhile, this headline says it all: “Obama ‘wrestling’ with same-sex marriage”.  Yeah, as if the outcome of that wrestling match is really in doubt.
  • It appears that Sonia Sotomayor is now a leader of the “liberal wing” of our Black-Robed Platonic Guardian Rulers on the Supreme Court.  This will, no doubt, become even more evident when the first abortion or “same-sex marriage” case reaches Mount Olympus.
  • A Ugandan Archbishop decries child sacrifice, which is rampant in that troubled nation.  The Cult of Moloch lives on.
  • Speaking of the demon and his devotees, the Temple of Moloch, er, I mean Planned Parenthood, has ejected one of its chapters because they didn’t want to perform abortions.  Oh, but they’re just “pro-choice”, not “pro-abortion”, right?
  • While the Cult of Moloch continues to say that crisis pregnancy centers mislead pregnant girls, check out Kathryn Jean Lopez’s piece on the MTV show “16 and Pregnant”, and you’ll understand how our culture and the abortion industry consistently and blatantly lie to pregnant women.
  • Some useful advice from scientists — really.  If you want your relationship to survive, make sure you speak about “we”, instead of “you and me”.  You could also follow their advice delay sex until marriage, which can strengthen your relationship.
  • What do men want more than anything else from the women in their lives?  To be admired.   Here’s the other side of the story — what women want is to be loved by a man they admire.  Now that’s an agenda for a good marriage.
  • (Please note that these links will take you to websites that are not affiliated with the Archdiocese.  We neither take responsibility for nor endorse the contents of the websites.)

    Varia

    Sunday, December 19th, 2010

    The following are some of the highlights from the daily email briefing about news and events, which  I send out to some of my friends and contacts (if you’re interested in subscribing to the daily mailing, leave your email address in the comments box):

  • More responses to Time Magazine’s slander against the Holy Father from Tom Peters, Fr. Zuhlsdorf and Kathryn Jean Lopez.   For my response, see below.
  • An appalling story on the international surrogate parent business — a gross example of the objectification of the human person as an economic commodity, and the commercial and emotional exploitation of the poor and the desperate.
  • I typically refer to the pro-abortion movement as the “Cult of Moloch” because of its religious adherence to the sacrifice of children.  Here is a scary account by a former clinic worker, who relates that the clinic in which she worked was pervaded with the occult and looked upon abortion as a form of sacrifice.  On the positive side, this same woman credits prayer witness outside of the clinic as being instrumental in her conversion.
  • Speaking of the death-cult, Planned Parenthood has released its annual report, and once again the numbers are jarring.  $363 million in federal funding.  324,000 abortions (a 6% increase over the previous year) and only 9,400 adoption referrals. Another $700 million spent on spreading contraception and abortion internationally.  Time to defund the billion-dollar Murder Incorporated.  Joint the fight.
  • And, if you want to see the real-world effect of the work by the Temple of Moloch, read about the creeping genocide that is resulting from the high rates of abortion among blacks and Hispanics in New York City.
  • The new political climate, and the results of the November’s elections, means that key new GOP House leaders are likely to push for restrictions on federal funding for abortion.
  • Same-sex “marriage” advocates are gearing up for the battle in New York next year. See here and here.
  • If you want a glimpse into the Strange New World, check out this review of a book about “polyamory” (romantic/sexual relationships with multiple partners).  Coming soon to a “right to privacy” near you.
  • Kathryn Jean Lopez examines two competing views of the role of religion in public life: Sarah Palin’s v. John Kennedy’s.  See also Rick Santorum on the same issue.
  • The European Court of Human Rights decided a major abortion case this week, in a challenge to Ireland’s pro-life laws.  The court did not invent a fundamental right to abortion, but  did rule against some parts of Ireland’s pro-life legislation,  which undermines the abilities of nations to restrict abortion.
  • A heartrending story about a funeral held for babies who were stillborn, and whose bodies were abandoned in hospitals, the “unwanted dead”.
  • (Please note that these links will take you to websites that are not affiliated with the Archdiocese.  We neither take responsibility for nor endorse the contents of the websites.)

    Varia

    Friday, December 10th, 2010

    The following are some of the highlights from the daily email briefing about news and events, which  I send out to some of my friends and contacts (if you’re interested in subscribing to the daily mailing, leave your email address in the comments box):

  • On the same day as the oral arguments in the Prop 8 lawsuit, leaders from Anglican, Baptist, Catholic, Evangelical, Jewish, Lutheran, Mormon, Orthodox, Pentecostal and Sikh communities in the United States release an open letter in support of marriage.  Apropos of that, here’s a good short overview of the Prop 8 case and the oral arguments.
  • A new scholarly presentation of the nature of marriage, and a persuasive rebuttal of the case for re-defining it.  Download it here.
  • A new report shows a troubling “retreat from marriage in Middle America, particularly among Americans with “moderate education” (high school grads, some college).   This requires careful study and response by our Church.
  • How does she do this so consistently?  Kathryn Jean Lopez knocks another one out of the park, writing about how the Church’s position on contraception is being supported by Pope Benedict, glamorous actresses and modern feminists alike.
  • Here’s a New York Magazine piece on “the pill”.  It’s a surprisingly honest reflection, including some of the negative effects of contraception, particularly the regrets about denying one’s fertility, and living with the unintended consequences.
  • Thank God for Rep. Chris Smith, who managed to keep abortion out of a bill dealing with health care for female veterans.  Are you curious about how pro-life are the other Catholics in Congress?  Check out their voting records.  Lots of low pro-life ratings.  Not good.
  • The climate control movement continues its campaign against human life, with prominent advocates calling for mandatory one-child policies.  As a second child, I object.
  • Europe continues to hurtle down the moral mine shaft.  Exhibit One:  Belgium approves a “wrongful life” lawsuit against a doctor failed to diagnose an illness which, if the parents had known about it, would have led them to abort the disabled child.  Exhibit Two:  Switzerland implicitly legalizes active euthanasia.
  • Continuing the flight from reason, an advocate in Australia is saying that legalized euthanasia could actually lead to prolonging lives.  Remember, one of the effects of sin is to cloud the intellect.
  • By failing to pass the Defense Department budget bill, the Senate stopped an attempt to overturn the ban on abortions at military hospitals.
  • The lawless Temple of Moloch, er, I mean Planned Parenthood, is being sued by a 14-year-old who had an abortion — and the clinic flagrantly violated Ohio’s parental involvement and informed consent law.  An extra horror is that they failed to report that she had been made pregnant by an adult.  Meanwhile, the international wing of the Temple of Moloch is making tons of money, profiting from killing over 1.4 million children.
  • Varia

    Friday, November 19th, 2010

    The following are some of the highlights from the daily email briefing about news and events, which  I send out to some of my friends and contacts (if you’re interested in subscribing to the daily mailing, leave your email address in the comments box):

  • Here’s yet another way that the health care law will sneak abortion in through the back door — by defining contraceptives as “preventive care”, including those with an abortifacient effect.
  • And now supporters of the health care law are admitting that “death panels” are in the future for us too, thanks to the health care law.
  • Interesting reflection on how pro-lifers should fit into the debate on repealing or repairing the health care law.
  • Greg Pfundstein gives you a flavor of what the City Council hearing on the New York City Council’s awful crisis pregnancy center bill was like.  Check out my blog post below for my take on the travesty.
  • Yet another review of the extensive scholarly literature establishing a variety of negative effects of abortion on women.  Response from the regular media:
  • Some within the GOP are urging the new House leaders to avoid social issues.   They love it when pro-lifers vote for them, but after the election they just want us to do to the back of the bus again.
  • If anyone tries to tell you that passing pro-life laws doesn’t have an effect on abortion, show them this report, in which a notorious late-term abortionist admits that he’s moving his killing field to a new state because of the strict regulations in Nebraska.
  • And the next time abortion rights advocates talk about how we’re just talking about religious dogma and not science, remind them of the public statement of the head of the Temple of Moloch, er, I mean Planned Parenthood that “We are not going to try to use science or evidence — the fact of the matter is, this is, this is opinion. We all have our own opinions as far as when human life begins.”
  • As always, in the eyes of the Times, the only real Catholics are dissidents and schismatics, as witnessed by their recent gushing account of the Protestant Reformation, er, I mean the decision of a few sad deluded Belgians to set up their own “ecclesia”.  For a biting critique of the nonsensical way that the Times covered this non-story, see here.
  • Yesterday was the anniversary of the day when our Black-Robed Platonic Guardian Rulers on the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court re-defined marriage to mean something that it never has, and never could, mean.  Power corrupts.
  • More madness in Massachusetts — a new policy in Provincetown that would permit condom distribution to first graders, without parental knowledge or consent.
  • This is extremely cool, and not just because he’s one of my patron saints — a photo of the handwriting of St. Thomas Aquinas.  With handwriting like that, now we know why he’s a Doctor of the Church.
  • Here’s a stunner — a positive presentation of a couple’s commitment to pre-marital abstinence, in the Washington Post, no less.
  • Beautiful story of how a family dealt with a fatal birth defect in their unborn child.
  • Varia

    Saturday, October 16th, 2010

    Pretty much every morning of the work week, I send out to my friends and contacts an email entitled “Varia”.  It’s basically a morning briefing, based on my review of what’s going on in the world that affects the Culture of Life.   It usually consists of a link to an article or blog, plus a pithy comment or two by me.

    I thought it might be handy to occasionally post here the highlights of those daily mailings.

  • The appalling New York City Council, having solved all problems facing the City, has now turned their attention to singling out crisis pregnancy centers for burdensome regulations — in other words, acting at the behest of the abortion industry to intimidate a bunch of volunteers who help pregnant women.  Here’s the story and an excellent critique.
  • Msgr. Charles Pope of Washington points out that, according to a recent survey, only 30% of Catholics who attend Mass regularly agree that pre-marital sex is always morally wrong (only 14% of all Catholics believe that). The numbers for our Protestant brethren are much better.  We have a lot of work to do.
  • When all else fails, the powers-that-be resort to censoring pro-life views, in this case an Ohio elections commission ordering the Susan B. Anthony List to take down billboards because the incumbent Congressman thinks they’re false.  Funny, I thought the First Amendment applied to Ohio.
  • Interesting polling numbers about religious people and their political preferences in the upcoming elections.  Strong trend towards the GOP among Catholics, especially among churchgoers. Protestant churchgoers trend GOP even more strongly.
  • From Australia, a blood-chilling story about babies who survive late-term abortions but are being left on shelves to die.  Now, explain to me again how we are any more civilized than the ancients who exposed or sacrificed unwanted children?
  • Freedom of conscience is frequently under severe attack in Europe, most recently in an attempt to eliminate the right of physicians and hospitals to refuse to participate in abortions. Fortunately, pro-lifers held firm and the Council of Europe instead re-affirmed the right to conscience.
  • I decline to link to the awful Slate.com, but I couldn’t resist this. They asked a number of women to define who gets to be called a “feminist”. Here’s what director and writer Nora Ephron said: “I know that I’m supposed to write 500 words on this subject, but it seems much simpler: You can’t call yourself a feminist if you don’t believe in the right to abortion.” Yes, indeed, that pretty much says it all about the state of modern “feminism”.
  • (If anyone is interested in receiving the daily version of Varia, leave a comment with your email address and I’ll add you to the list).

    It’s Not All About Me

    Wednesday, October 6th, 2010

    I’ve been involved in promoting and defending marriage for many years now, both on the public policy front, and by presenting marriage preparation days with my wife.  So, when the press reports about marriage, I always take an interest.  Unfortunately, what we’ve seen recently are stories about several negative trends about marriage.  In one report, we learned that people are putting off marriage to later and later ages, and that in the prime age (25 to 34), there are now more unmarried persons than those in wedlock.  In another report, we see the continued trend towards cohabitation, either in place of marriage or as a “trial run”.

    To me, these and other developments come back to a significant, but often overlooked underlying attitude about human relations in general, and marriage in particular — the idea that it is all about me.  That what matters is my personal satisfaction, my emotional growth and development, my career, my possessions, my hopes and dreams, and my comfort.

    This kind of radical individualism permeates our modern American society, and it has deeply infected personal relationships.  It is the direct opposite of what authentic marriage is all about, and it is the deadly enemy of marriage.  When the attitudes of radical individualism infect a marriage, it is guaranteed that trouble will follow.

    Marriage is absolutely not about me.  It is about being a gift to my wife, and to my children.  I can’t be a successful husband or father — or a person, for that matter — if all I care about is myself.

    This has enormous significance for public policy and for marriage and families.  Here are a few examples of how radical individualism hurts people in their relationships:

    Child-free marriages by choice — A significant problem that we are seeing more and more often are marriages in which the spouses deliberately choose never to have children. Some of this comes from a strange misplaced attitude of environmentalism, but much of it stems from radical individualism — a desire not to have my life, my figure, my finances, my peace and quiet or my career interfered with or interrupted by children. It also finds an outlet in outright hostility towards children and towards those who bear them (for an example of this hostility, see if you can stomach this article).

    Cohabitation — In many ways, this is the quintessential expression of individualism in relationships.  Cohabitation is fundamentally an arrangement of convenience with no sense of permanency.  There are many reasons that people cohabit — financial expediency, desire for a steady sexual partner, fear of commitment, lack of confidence in their ability to marry, and so on.  But much of it really comes back to the notion that the relationship is all about me — whether I am fulfilled, whether this meets my needs, and what’s in it for me.  The bottom line is that there is no gift of self to the other.

    Those who choose to cohabit are not doing it out of malice, or out of a reckless indifference to what is good for them and others. But so many of them have unconsciously bought into a false attitude of radical individualism without even realizing it.  The tragedy is that people who cohabit are actually harming their ability to commit to an authentic marriage — rates of divorce are higher among those who cohabit, and so are other negative outcomes for the couple and any children they may have.  They also are leading others into a situation where they will come to harm.

    So, what is the Church to do in response to this? As in all situations, our primary obligation is to tell the truth.  There have been excellent statements by our bishops about the challenges facing modern marriage, but that’s not enough.  This is the responsibility of all of us — we married people, and our clergy.  We need to tell people, plainly and lovingly, that sexual activity outside of marriage, cohabitation, and choosing a childless marriage are not only against God’s will, but they are harmful to us and others. We need to help people liberate themselves from the attitude of radical individualism.  This message can only work if we present it with love and humility, and never with condemnation.  It must be taught primarily by the witness of our lives, more so than with our words.

    Marriage and true happiness — and the meaning of life itself — is not all about me.  That is a pearl of very great price, and we must make sure that everyone learns about it.

    Dishonoring Marriage

    Tuesday, June 15th, 2010

    Our New York State Legislature, unable to do their basic duty to pass a budget, has turned instead to real mischief — they are going to dishonor marriage by passing a so-called “no-fault divorce” bill.  The Senate passed it today (by one vote), and the Assembly is expected to follow suit soon.

    New York is the only state in the nation that does not yet have a “no-fault divorce” law.  Divorce is always a tragedy, but sometimes it is necessary to protect the well-being of a spouse or children.  But it shouldn’t be easier to end a marriage than it is to get out of a cell phone contract.

    Essentially, this “no-fault” bill will establish a new ground for divorce — all you need is for one spouse to swear under oath that the marriage has been “broken down irretrievably” for a period of six months.  In essence, you could just run down to the corner drug store and swear before the notary that your marriage isn’t working, and that’s the end of it.

    This utterly fails to respect the importance of marriage to individuals, families, and society.  Unilateral divorce by ambush would be permitted and even encouraged by this law.  There is no standard for determining what’s “broken down irretrievably” – it is an entirely subjective standard that is based entirely on the attitude of the spouse who wants to end the marriage.   There is no requirement of mediation or counseling to stave off an unnecessary divorce.  And there’s no waiting period before the divorce is granted, which doesn’t allow for a “cooling off period” for reconciliation.  That’s important, because many people have regrets about their divorce, and many couples reconcile during the process.  Even worse, there is no consideration for the best interests of the children in dissolving the marriage, or any requirement that they receive counseling.

    The “no-fault” approach completely turns the law on its head.  Marriage will be the only civil contract that can be breached for any reason at all, with no demonstration of fault, and no damages to the injured  party.  This makes the marriage contract less worthy of protection (and easier to get out of) than mere economic contracts (e.g., a cell phone contract or a real estate lease).  This also gives an unfair advantage to a wrong-doer (e.g., the spouse who abandons the other, or an adulterer).  This is contrary to the traditional legal “clean hands” doctrine, under which you can’t ask for relief from the court when you have committed misconduct.

    Contrary to what its advocates claim, “no-fault” divorce will not eliminate conflict from the domestic relations courts.  Because the legislation permits divorce by ambush, an innocent party can be blindsided by a wrong-doer — not only will that  fail to eliminate conflict, it will make it worse.  And the bill does nothing to reduce disputes over any of the other key issues at play in a divorce — maintenance, child custody and support.  These will still have to be resolved by the courts, and because the innocent party is treated so cavalierly, the level of conflict over these issues will likely increase.

    Of course, there are parties to the divorce whose interests will be well-protected by our Legislature — the lawyers.  Alongside the “no-fault” bill, they will also pass a bill that ensures that legal fees are paid by the more wealthy party to the divorce.  So, the psychological and social well-being of kids — not so important to our solons.  But the economic health of lawyers?  That will be fully protected.

    Once again, our New York State government has lived down to expectations.  This time, instead of just passing bad economic legislation, they’re dishonoring the foundation of society itself — marriage and the family.  Shame on them.

    UPDATE — In an extraordinary example of incompetent journalism, the Times led its story on the bill today by stating that the Senate “approved legislation that would permit couples to separate by mutual consent…”  Sorry, that’s not even close.  New York already has a method by which couples could end their marriage by consent — it involves a formal separation agreement, or just not contesting the grounds for divorce (e.g., abandonment).  This bill has nothing to do with mutual consent, and everything to do with empowering one spouse to try to get out of the marriage unilaterally.  Don’t they have editors at the Times, or reporters who can read legislation?

    The State of the Union

    Saturday, January 30th, 2010

    On Wednesday, the President gave the annual State of the Union Address to a joint session of Congress.  Since I am known as a political junkie, I was asked by many people if I watched the speech and what I thought of it.

    I have to confess that I haven’t watched a State of the Union Address in over twenty years.  I find them almost unbearable to watch — full of platitudes and bromides, with artificial applause lines, and little that is of real substance or interest.  I liken it to an American political version of Kabuki theater — highly stylized and formal dance, with everyone wearing a mask.

    In my mind, it would have been much more interesting if the President and Congress had taken a few moments to take stock of the real state of the most important union we have — marriage.

    The strength of marriage is an essential measure of how healthy our society is.  Marriage — the life-long faithful union of a man and woman, dedicated to their well-being and the procreation and raising of children — is the foundation of any society.  And by all reasonable measures, marriage is in trouble right now:

  • The marriage rate — the number of people getting married, as a portion of the population — continues to fall.
  • The percentage of the population that is married continues to go down — soon, fewer than half the women in America will be married (as opposed to almost two-thirds in 1960).
  • The number of couples who are choosing to cohabit without marriage continues to rise.
  • The number of children born out of wedlock is still going up — it will be over 40% soon, and is a catastrophic 77% among African-Americans.
  • While the divorce rate has gone down in recent years, it remains true that about 40% of marriages don’t last.
  • All of these measures of marital health are even worse among low-income people and African Americans.
  • By all measures, marriage is in a crisis right now, and one would think that our political leaders would see the problem and want to address it.  The Department of Health and Human Services actually has a pretty good program called the “Healthy Marriage Initiative“.  But that’s not good enough — has anyone even heard of it?

    In fact, think about this.  When’s the last time you heard any significant public official say that we need to start looking at our public policies — taxes, health care, etc. — to see how they impact marriages?  When’s the last time you heard a political leader say that we need to promote marriage?  Did you read the President’s proclamation last fall for “National Family Day“?  The word “marriage” wasn’t even mentioned.

    This is a crisis that needs to be addressed by our own Church, too.  The Bishops of the United States have issues a pastoral letter on marriage, and have set out on a National Pastoral Initiative on Marriage, which is producing excellent resources for couples and those helping to serve them.  Here in the Archdiocese, Cardinal Egan and our priests were very supportive of our efforts in the Family Life Office to enhance our marriage preparation and natural family planning programs.  It is very encouraging that Archbishop Dolan has put such a strong emphasis on marriage as a pastoral priority, calling the state of marriage a “real vocation crisis”.  The promotion of marriage will require a wide effort by all our Church institutions.

    Let’s be honest — the state of our most important union is troubled.  We have to redouble our efforts to support and promote marriage.

    The Manhattan Declaration and You

    Thursday, January 14th, 2010

    On November 20, a broad coalition of religious leaders jointly issued an important statement, called the Manhattan Declaration.   This declaration represents a watershed moment in American religious and political history — a coalition of faith communities, committed to having a significant impact on our culture and our law.

    Here’s how the sponsors state the purpose of the Declaration:

    Christians, when they have lived up to the highest ideals of their faith, have defended the weak and vulnerable and worked tirelessly to protect and strengthen vital institutions of civil society, beginning with the family.

    We are Orthodox, Catholic, and evangelical Christians who have united at this hour to reaffirm fundamental truths about justice and the common good, and to call upon our fellow citizens, believers and non-believers alike, to join us in defending them. These truths are:

    1. the sanctity of human life
    2. the dignity of marriage as the conjugal union of husband and wife
    3. the rights of conscience and religious liberty.

    Inasmuch as these truths are foundational to human dignity and the well-being of society, they are inviolable and non-negotiable. Because they are increasingly under assault from powerful forces in our culture, we are compelled today to speak out forcefully in their defense, and to commit ourselves to honoring them fully no matter what pressures are brought upon us and our institutions to abandon or compromise them. We make this commitment not as partisans of any political group but as followers of Jesus Christ, the crucified and risen Lord, who is the Way, the Truth, and the Life.

    The Declaration has been signed by almost 200 religious leaders, including our own Archbishop Dolan, and over forty other Catholic bishops.  When they opened the Declaration up to the public,  over 370,000 people have signed on so far.

    Why is this so important?  This Declaration represents the basis of a new, broad-based ecumenical effort to bring our Christian values to the public square.  For too long, our efforts have been hampered by the sad divisions that separate Christians from one another.  But now, we have a unifying document, one that we can all rally behind, regardless of our theological differences.

    I encourage everyone to read the Manhattan Declaration, which can be found on their website.  Then, join the rest of us in this new movement of Christian conscience, and sign it.