As readers of Socon or Bust know, Salt + Light, our “Channel of Hope”, was front and center this past summer in featuring the denials of Development & Peace’s coverup of their scandalous funding of abortion groups in the Global South.
Feeling the effects of the Kennedy funeral fallout because of Fr. Tom Rosica’s defamatory blog posting on the subject, Salt + Light has whipped up the spin machine yet again. This time they decided to host an ecumenical meeting of sorts with some young people on the issue:
On Tuesday morning, a group of young adults from the Toronto area asked to meet with Fr. Thomas Rosicaregarding the aftermath of Senator Kennedy’s Funeral. Several of the young people were Catholic, others were friends from various confessions and some had no religious convictions. They have been viewers of Salt + Light Television for the past few years. They shared their concerns openly about abortion, same-sex marriage, end-of-life issues and asked Fr. Rosica for clarification on the Church’s teaching on each matter. What followed was a good, frank discussion on each of the points. Following the meeting, one of the young women who attended sent this letter to Fr. Rosica. We publish it here to indicate what can sometimes result from honest, frank discussions on topics of great significance for the Church and for society.
Obviously, people were upset and confused, otherwise why would it be necessary to have such a meeting? They rightly sensed that there was something terribly wrong with the Church’s scandalous witness at the Kennedy funeral. That’s why Father Rosica had to “clarify” the Church’s teaching on the matter to them. And what did he tell them? We don’t know. I can guarantee you all, though, that it wasn’t based on canon law or a sound and fair reading of Scripture or an appeal to the Church’s tradition or the proper context of true mercy and compassion. Instead it was most likely the same kind of milksop rationalizations that we have heard thus far. You know, “judge not lest ye not be judged” drivel. What most of the young people said we will never know, since Mr. Dmytrenko, the author of the blogpost, wasn’t volunteering their specific reactions, except to say it was “frank”. That’s diplomatic jingo for basically saying there may have been serious differences.
But, surprisingly!, we read one of the reactions from a young lady who thanked Fr. Rosica for his witness. Here is the money quote:
I also believe I was reacting against the very strong, antagonist approach that is characteristic of certain groups in the pro-life movement. Their hostility towards women who would choose abortion made me frustrated and it always felt as though it was a question of one group pushing their ideals onto the rest of society. I was angry that the movement seemed to be judgmental instead of helpful and supportive to women considering abortions. I think most of my reasoning for being pro-choice was founded in a reaction against the radical pro-life movement.
Now we’re not sure what she means by “radical pro-life movement” or the “hostility towards women who choose abortion”. Does “radical” mean the willingness to upset people? Does “hostility” mean holding up a sign outside of an abortion clinic? I suspect from reading her letter, it probably does. I have been involved in the pro-life movement for over 20 years, and I have never, NEVER, seen or experienced any hostitility to post abortive women from pro-life groups or individuals. The only thing that I have ever seen shown to these women is mercy and compassion and tangible help. In fact, NONE of the pro-life “official” critics of the Funeral fit into this woman’s description in any way whatsoever. And yet this young woman, consciously or not, chooses to attribute the worst conduct to people who, whether active in the pro-life movement or not, would dare criticize the scandal of the Kennedy funeral.
But, let us now remove the large plank from Salt + Light’s eye so that it may “stop judging by mere appearances, and make a right judgment” (Jn 7:24).
The object of Fr. Rosica’s offensive in Canada is LifeSiteNews. He won’t say it, but trust me, it is. LifeSiteNews is a division of Campaign Life Coalition which in turn is the largest and most significant political and social activist pro-life group in Canada. So in other words, any significant organized event or demonstration in this country will likely involve Campaign Life.
Campaign Life is involved in many pro-life events each year – events which the young lady featured in Salt+Light’s blog post may consider “radical” or “hostile”. Let’s take just two as an example. The first is the annual March for Life in Ottawa, a peaceful occasion for Canada’s pro-life movement to gather publicly and call for a change in this nation’s abortion laws and be witnesses to a Culture of Life. The second event is 40 Days for Life which involves a peaceful vigil outside of the nation’s abortion mills. (In Ottawa, many babies have been saved by our presence there. The next campaign starts in less than two weeks on Sept. 23). Now while these events are not exhaustive of every event or function that the pro-life community participates in, it certainly represents the tone, theme, and modus operandii of our activities. Therefore, if this young woman has a problem with us, she has a problem with these events. And if she has a problem with these events, then her view of “radical” and “hostile” needs to be gently corrected.
But if we are hostile and radical, then what does that make Salt+Light?
See this picture just to the left here? That’s the gang of Salt + Light posing on Parliament Hill earlier this year at the same March for Life mentioned above, which was organized by that radical group over at Campaign Life. See Father Rosica, there, second from the right with the big smile on his face? He looks to be having a really good time, no? You can even read about their rather buoyant coverage about the event here and here. And, of course, making a little cash off of the event never hurt either – to help Salt+Light’s operations of course. Of course.
And then there is 40 Days for Life. That’s a little bit more radical than the March for Life. It’s also a more dangerous place to be, a place where hostility is all around us. I doubt very much whether the young woman in the article would approve of such measures, even though our vigilers have shown supernatural restraint to provocation and the loving hand of Christ to save lives. And Salt+Light? What do they think of this event?
Well, actually, they are quite open to it. One of their writers said this about it on a blog entry, “The 40 Days for Life is the most successful pro-life campaign in the last 40 years.” During our last campaign during Lent, they even interviewed the 40 Days for Life Toronto Campaign co-ordinator on FOCUS, Salt+Light’s Catholic current affairs program.
But how could this be if the organizers are so “hostile and hateful”?
So what does this demonstrate to us? It demonstrates the desperation of a group of people who want to differentiate themselves from the existing “mean” and “hateful” pro-life movement. It’s a kind of juvenile and pathetic strategy designed to smear us in order to justify their comical defense of what happened at Kennedy’s funeral. The problem with that, however, is that every time they report or even participate in a major pro-life event in this country, they seem to be completely oblivious to the fact that they are doing so on the backs of those whom they now consider “radical”.
Ladies and gentlemen, the irony of this situation and cluelessness of the people involved could not be more apparent.
The folks over at S+L need to stop the diversion and focus on cleaning up the corruption in the Church. Considering what they did with Development & Peace, I’m not particularly surprised that they have performed as the sock puppets of the hierarchical establishment. And speaking of corruption, I just read a news report of the Pope speaking recently about the influence of St. Peter Damian, the great 11th-century theologian and reformer. He mentioned that St. Peter Damian “was not afraid to denounce the state of corruption that existed in the monasteries and among the clergy.” I find the Pope’s exhortation to be a timely message in this time of severe corruption in the Catholic Church.
As the the Holy Father says, don’t be afraid to denounce the corruption. We take great solace in that exhortation, and we’re not afraid. Not one little bit.
We need to move past the lukewarm approach to pro-abort politicians, and start to take the Gospel seriously.
We need to move past compromising with the Culture of Death and giving platforms to its pimps.
We need to move past grey and into some black and white…..
Grey’s my favorite color
Black and white has never been my thing
I’ll take my drink lukewarm now
Hot and cold is not the thing for me
Absolutes are hidden
I’ve buried my convictions
I cannot be blind no more
Numb to what I’m living for
Help me stop this compromise that justifies these lies
I need Your passion in this life
I don’t want to impose
Who really needs to know what I believe
Cause no one likes rockin’ boats
And who would care to see the way I see
So give me the fire, yeah
God give me Your fire
And raise this life higher