On this feast of the Holy Innocents, when we remember how so many babies were ordered to be slaughtered by Herod, shortly after the birth of Jesus, Catholics have traditionally also remember the death of countless unborn babies through abortion.
Today, I’d like to thank Bishop Thomas Olmsted of Phoenix for being an impressive advocate to protect the sanctity of life. He seems to understand that an effective bishop cannot hide in a closet and preach to the choir. He also has to step outside the parish walls and take some public stands, even if it means taking some heat. Sometimes that’s the only way to reach people.
Back in 2009 he wrote a letter to University of Notre Dame president Fr. John Jenkins condemning the invitation to President Obama to offer the school’s commencement address and receive an honorary law degree. He called Fr. Jenkins’ actions a public disobedience to the authority of the bishops.
In March 2010, Bishop Olmsted publicly condemned an abortion that took place at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Medical Center in Phoenix.
Last week, the good bishop has stripped St. Joseph’s of its “Catholic” title. No more shenanigans. The hospital refused to comply with the bishop’s orders, including a promise to no longer perform abortions.
I’m sure it wasn’t easy, but Bishop Olmsted did the right thing. Clearly, if a hospital is performing abortions, then it’s not really a Catholic institution, regardless of the words on the hospital’s front door and letterhead. So let’s just cut the crap and be honest with each other.
This sort of “purging”, for lack of a better word, needs to take place in lots of other “Catholic” institutions, starting with St. Paul’s University in Ottawa (although I’m not sure that they flash the word “Catholic” very much these days). So many impostors are giving Catholics a bad name and spreading confusion and error among the faithful. If they won’t come back to the fold, then they need to be stripped of the title until they change their mind.
Many thanks, Bishop Olmsted. May the Baby Jesus bring you abundant blessings in your ministry.
Dear reader, won’t you take 30 seconds to send a quick email to Bishop Olmsted to thank him for his witness? Keep it short and simple: Contact-Us@diocesephoenix.org