40 Professors Decry Attacks on the Pope


Statement: Sex Abuse, the Catholic Church and Pope Benedict XVI: An Appeal for Perspective and Fairness

In light of recent events and media coverage concerning the sexual abuse of minors by members of the Catholic clergy, we, the undersigned, would like to express the following sentiments:

1) We condemn in the strongest possible terms any sexual abuse of minors by any members of the Catholic Church, especially the clergy.

2) We share in a collective sense of sorrow and shame for the harm done to victims of sexual abuse by members of the Catholic clergy.

3) We resolve to pray and fast for all victims of clergy sexual abuse and those who have committed these crimes.

4) We recognize that mistakes have been made in the past by Church authorities in dealing with the sexual abuse of minors, and we applaud measures to correct these mistakes by conferences of bishops throughout the world. We likewise support more rigorous screening of candidates for the priesthood, especially in the areas of chastity and adherence to Catholic moral teachings.

5) We express our gratitude to Pope Benedict XVI for his leadership and courage in dealing with the problem of sexual abuse within the Catholic Church, and we condemn the unjust attacks made against him by certain elements of the secular media.

6) We condemn as unfair and inaccurate all efforts to link the sexual abuse of minors to the Latin rite Catholic discipline of priestly celibacy. We likewise affirm consecrated celibacy as a gift to the Catholic Church which, “in many ways, is in harmony with the priesthood” (Vatican II, Presbyterorum ordinis, 16).

7) We recognize the sexual abuse of minors as a grave problem that affects many segments of society. We reject, as inaccurate and unjust, all attempts to portray the sexual abuse of minors as a problem particular to the Catholic Church. We support all efforts of the criminal justice system to deal swiftly and effectively with those who sexually abuse minors in public or private settings.

Signed:

Robert L. Fastiggi, Ph.D. Professor of Systematic Theology, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI USA

Jane Adolphe, LL.B/B.C.L, J.C.D. Associate Professor of Law, Ave Maria School of Law, Naples, Fl USA

Eduardo Echeverria, S.T.L., Ph.D. Professor of Philosophy, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI USA

Board of Directors and Membership of the Society of Catholic Social Scientists, Steubenville, Ohio USA,

Fr. Joseph Koterski, S.J., Ph.D. Associate Professor of Philosophy, Fordham University, Bronx, N.Y. USA, Editor, International Philosophical Quarterly, President, Fellowship of Catholic Scholars

Fr. Joseph Fessio, S.J., Th.D. Founder and Editor, Ignatius Press, San Francisco, CA USA

Fr. J. Michael McDermott, S.J. S.T.D. Professor of Theology, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI USA, Consultant, U.S. Bishops Committee on Doctrine

Fr. Earl Muller, S.J., Ph.D. Bishop Kevin M. Britt Chair in Theology/Christology, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI USA

Fr. David Meconi, S.J., Ph.D. Professor of Theology, St. Louis University, St. Louis, MO USA, and Editor of Homiletic and Pastoral Review

Fr. Dennis J. Billy, C.S.s.R., Ph.D., S.T.D. John Cardinal Krol Chair of Moral Theology, St. Charles Borremeo Seminary, Philadelphia, PA USA

Fr. Brian Harrison, O.S. S.T.D. Associate Professor of Theology (emeritus), Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico, Ponce, P.R., St. Louis, MO USA

Scott Hahn, Ph.D. Professor of Biblical Theology, Franciscan University of Steubenville, Steubenville, OH USA

Fr. Richard J. Cassidy, Ph.D. Professor of Sacred Scripture, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI USA

Fr. Daniel Trapp, S.T.D. Professor of Theology and Graduate Spiritual Director, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI USA

Fr. Daniel Jones, S.T.D., Assistant Professor of Theology, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI USA

Fr. Michael J. Byrnes, S.T.D., Vice Rector/Dean of Formation, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI USA

Fr. Michael Orsi, Ph.D., Chaplain and Research Fellow in Law and Religion, Ave Maria School of Law, Naples, FL USA

Stephen L. Mikochik, J.D. Ll.M. M.A. (Philosophy), M.A. (Religious Studies), Professor of Law, Temple University, Philadelphia, PA USA and Visiting Professor of Law, Ave Maria School of Law, Naples, FL, USA

Ligia De Jesus, Ll.M. Assistant Professor of Law, Ave Maria School of Law, Naples, FL, USA

J. Brian Scarnecchia, J.D., M.Div. M.A. Associate Professor of Law, Ave Maria School of Law, Naples, FL, USA

Peter Williamson, S.T.D. Adam Cardinal Maida Chair of Sacred Scripture, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI USA

Astrid Caicedo, B.A. Assistant Dean of Studies, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI USA

Philip Blosser, Ph.D. Professor of Philosophy, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI USA

Mark S. Latkovic, S.T.D. Professor of Moral Theology, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI USA

Daniel Keating, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Theology, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI USA

Mary Healy, S.T.D. Associate Professor of Sacred Scripture, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit, MI USA

John P. Hittinger, Professor of Philosophy, Thomistic Institute, University of St. Thomas, Houston, TX USA

Mark Lowery, Associate Professor of Theology, University of Dallas, Irving, TX USA

Kenneth J. Howell, Ph.D. Senior Fellow and Director, St. John Institute of Catholic Thought and Adjunct Professor of Religious Studies, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, IL USA

David Moss, President, Association of Hebrew Catholics, St. Louis, MO USA

Anne Englund Nash, Ph.D. Book Editor and Translator, Cambria, CA USA

Carolyn R. Lemon, Production Editor, Ignatius Press, San Francisco, CA USA and Vice President, Guadalupe Associates, Inc.

Peter Pagan, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Philosophy, Aquinas College, Nashville, TN USA

Margaret Schatkin, Ph.D. Associate Professor of Theology, Boston College, Chestnut Hill, MA USA

Judith Marie Gentle, Ph.D. Adjunct Professor of Theology, Franciscan University of Steubenville, Steubenville, OH USA

Dennis Bonnette, Ph.D. Professor of Philosophy (retired), Niagara University, Lewiston, N.Y. USA

José V. Pereira, Ph.D. Professor of Theology (emeritus), Fordham University, Bronx, N.Y. USA

James Likoudis, M.A. Catholic Author, Montour Falls, N.Y. USA

Damian Fedoryka, Ph.D. Center for Personalist Anthropology and Ethics, Ypsilanti, MI USA

Eugene R. Milhizer, Ll.M., J.D., President and Dean, Ave Maria School of Law, Naples, FL USA

Bernard Dobranski, J.D., Dean Emeritus and Professor of Law, Ave Maria School of Law, Naples, FL, USA

Teresa Tomeo, Author and Radio Personality, St. Clair Shores, MI USA

The Catholic Church Kills With HIV & Dogmatism



Q. According to the New York Times sexual repression caused by the right wing American churches Catholic and Protestant has stopped, through pressure groups, condom provision to 16 countries and reduced 13 others, including some with the highest rates of AIDS infection.The influence of Christian view of sinfulness of sex outside marriage, the U.S government has required that one-third of it’s AIDS prevention funds allocated to Africa be squandered on teaching abstinence rather than condom use. Millions WILL die due to this religious dogmatism.
How would you answer this question?

A. The NYT is a left wing propaganda machine and a news organization barely at all.Many of the men in Africa who have AIDS think that if they have sex with a virgin they will be cured. So will they use a condom? Will rapists use a condom? Many who spread the AIDS Virus do so primarily because they have the contraceptive mentality that permeates Western culture which approves and encourages the goal of sexual pleasure stripped of its procreative meaning of total self-giving love. So pleasure seekers are reluctant to use condoms b/c they reduce the pleasure.

JPII’s Theology of the Body portrays the sexual union of a husband, wife and child as an image of the HOLY TRINITY! Putting a barrier between lovers destroys the beauty of love. Can you imagine one of the persons of the Holy Trinity rejecting the creative power of one of the other persons???? That is precisely what happens with contracepted sex–rejection of the fertility of the beloved. That is NOT Total Self-Giving Love it is total self-getting love & pleasure.

Abstinence works. Uganda promotes this and has for some time and they have reduced their AIDS problem. Don’t have the stats on hand but click HERE for the story. Abstinence does work.

To hand out condoms as a preventative for AIDS is absolutely IRRESPONSIBLE. Your give people a false sense of security that may very well lead to their death and the death of those they infect and on, ad infinitum. Condoms break and slip. Condoms have very small pores or holes that are 50-500 times larger than the HIV virus but much, much smaller than sperm. Click HERE. Due to the layers of latex these pores are not aligned all the time, so the openings to HIV are reduced BUT THEY ARE THERE.

Would you jump out of an airplane with a parachute that had a 15 % chance of not opening? Condom protection against AIDS has an 15% failure rate for vaginal sex and only of 50% chance of protecting against AIDS with anal sex. A room full of sex experts were at a conference and were asked if they would use a condom in order to have sex with someone they knew had AIDS. NONE were willing to risk their lives for the momentary pleasure of sex with someone who had a deadly disease. Would you? I wouldn’t.

So, responsible, caring and truly loving people will only promote abstinence to protect against AIDS and STI’s . It is the only moral choice. I don’t want blood on my head. Do you?

Other Links about Condom Failure: Here or Here

You can do your own research. Just remember that this is a topic rife with political correctness. So, try to ascertain any bias and make up your own mind about what is really SAFE.

Effects of Gay Marriage: It’s Already Happened!


Why is the Church against Contraception?



Q. Why doesn’t the Catholic Church allow contraception?

A. Because the pleasure of the marital embrace was created by God for babies & bonding. It is a package deal. Anytime the pleasure of the sexual act is obtained while actively or purposely excluding either of these goods, it is a grave sin. The following acts are gravely sinful:

Below are sins that result from the pursuit of sexual pleasure alone while excluding both bonding and openness to procreation:

  • masturbation-CCC
  • pornography-CCC
  • prostitution-CCC
  • rape-CCC
  • anonymous homosexual acts
  • beastiality
  • orgies
  • Oral sex without intercourse

Below are sins that result from the pursuit of sexual pleasure within the context of bonding with another human being but excluding openness or the possibility of procreation:

  • homosexual-CCC
  • fornication-CCC
  • contraception-CCC
  • Oral sex without intercourse

Below are sins that occur when there is a pursuit of procreation outside of the marital act which excludes bonding and in addition to this it includes the grave sin of masturbation:

  • artificial insemination-CCC
  • artficial procreation (test tube babies)-CCC

Contraception is only one of several sins resulting from the misuse of human sexuality according to the laws of God. These are some of the reasons the Catholic Church can never approve of any of these practices.
For a more elegant and complete explanation see the Catechism of the Catholic Church 2351 ff.


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Faith Alone


Q. I am a Catholic. I teach CCD/PSR to 4th graders.
I teach them what the bible says and that is that if you believe in 
Jesus Christ,you will live with him in his kingdom for eternity. 
There are dozens of scripturepassages to back up this thought.

A. That is too minimal for several reasons. God may, MAY make that judgment for some people, but the Church cannot teach that authoritatively.

The ordinary and secure method for salvation has been given to the Catholic Church.

Baptism

John 3:3 In reply Jesus declared, “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.4″How can a man be born when he is old?” Nicodemus asked. “Surely he cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb to be born!” 5 Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit.

I Peter 3:21 Corresponding to that, baptism now saves you


Eucharist

John 3:50But here is the bread that comes down from heaven, which a man may eat and not die. 51 I am the living bread that came down from heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. This bread is my flesh, which I will give for the life of the world. 53 Jesus said to them, “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. 54 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 55 For my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. 56 Whoever eats my flesh and drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him. 57 Just as the living Father sent me and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because of me.”

Attend mass as a minimum to obey the commandment.

Exodus 20:8 “Remember the Sabbath day by keeping it holy. 9 Six days you shall labor and do all your work, 10 but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God.

It is a mortal (as in deadly) sin to knowingly and willfully, without a good reason, skip mass or any other holy day of obligation.

Confession

For the forgiveness of a mortal sin one needs to go to confession to a priest and receive absolution. Dying with a mortal sin on your soul would bring condemnation.

I John 5:16 If anyone sees his brother commit a sin that does not lead to death, he should pray and God will give him life. I refer to those whose sin does not lead to death. There is a sin that leads to death. I am not saying that he should pray about that. 17All wrongdoing is sin, and there is sin that does not lead to death.

CCC 1472 To understand this doctrine and practice of the Church, it is necessary to understand that sin has a double consequence. Grave sin deprives us of communion with God and therefore makes us incapable of eternal life, the privation of which is called the “eternal punishment” of sin. On the other hand every sin, even venial, entails an unhealthy attachment to creatures, which must be purified either here on earth, or after death in the state called Purgatory. This purification frees one from what is called the “temporal punishment” of sin. These two punishments must not be conceived of as a kind of vengeance inflicted by God from without, but as following from the very nature of sin.

Remarriage

Mark 10:11 He (Jesus) answered, “Anyone who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery against her.

Adultery is a mortal sin and is not a good thing to have on your soul. Now, let me be clear. A person would have to know first of all that remarriage is adultery and do it anyway for it to qualify as a mortal sin for that person. Nevertheless, adultery is always objectively a grave sin.

In closing, as a catechist who earnestly desires the salvation and safety of souls, or you wouldn’t take the time to teach CCD, I hope you can now see that it is risky to teach that belief in Jesus is all you need to go to Heaven.

I realize you can’t get into a lot of detail at the level you are teaching, but they need to hear a little more about what the Bible actually says we need for salvation. What if they never have the opportunity of receiving more advanced teaching and they honestly have been convinced that they can live any way and do any thing and still go to Heaven as long as they believe in Jesus. Sola Fide, Faith Alone, is one of the errors or the Protestant Reformation.

CCC 816 “The sole Church of Christ [is that] which our Savior, after his Resurrection, entrusted to Peter’s pastoral care, commissioning him and the other apostles to extend and rule it. . . . This Church, constituted and organized as a society in the present world, subsists in (subsistit in) the Catholic Church, which is governed by the successor of Peter and by the bishops in communion with him.“267

The Second Vatican Council’s Decree on Ecumenism explains: “For it is through Christ’s Catholic Church alone, which is the universal help toward salvation, that the fullness of the means of salvation can be obtained. It was to the apostolic college alone, of which Peter is the head, that we believe that our Lord entrusted all the blessings of the New Covenant, in order to establish on earth the one Body of Christ into which all those should be fully incorporated who belong in any way to the People of God.” UR #3

Wounds to unity

817 In fact, “in this one and only Church of God from its very beginnings there arose certain rifts, which the Apostle strongly censures as damnable. But in subsequent centuries much more serious dissensions appeared and large communities became separated from full communion with the Catholic Church – for which, often enough, men of both sides were to blame.” The ruptures that wound the unity of Christ’s Body – here we must distinguish heresy, apostasy, and schism 270 – do not occur without human sin:

Where there are sins, there are also divisions, schisms, heresies, and disputes. Where there is virtue, however, there also are harmony and unity, from which arise the one heart and one soul of all believers.

Is having multiple wives adultery?



Q. Is it adultery for a man to have more that one wife?

A. I would have to say if someone has multiple wives as we find with the patriarchs in the Old Testament, it would not be adultery as long as they were married. This was permitted by God in the Old Covenant as a concession to ancient pagan practices. Long after Adam and Eve, God needed to wean His chosen people away from paganism.

Since God gave Adam only one wife we are convinced God desires that ideally marriage be between one man and one woman.

Also, in the New Covenant we find that anyone who desired to be a leader in the Church of Christ, bishops, priests, elders, deacons could only be the husband of one wife.

I Timothy 3:2 Now the bishop must be above reproach, the husband of but one wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach,

1 Timothy 3:12 A deacon must be the husband of but one wife and must manage his children and his household well.

This would exclude men who had divorced and remarried as well as men with more than one wife from legitimate leadership roles in the Church of Jesus Christ.

Catholic Opposition to Contraception Not Sensible



Q. I also would like to raise the question of a person continually reproducing offspring that they cannot afford to clothe and feed. Do you think that God would approve of us conceiving a child that we cannot feed, clothe, or nurture?

A.  Regulation of family size is completely under the control of the parents. It is very simple–abstinence. That is how responsible people have since the beginning of history have been able to regulate their family size when necessary. Self control/self mastery is a Christian Virtue. It is our post-Christian culture that has come to believe that having sex is an inalienable right!

Q. I believe that every child is a precious gift from God, but do you believe that God intentionally allows a child to be born to drug addicts or child abusers?

A. No. He created our fertility. Our job is to seek to live virtuous and holy lives and love Him. Drug Addicts and child abusers and children born to them are the result of the sinful choices man makes with his free will. Does God intend these choices? Absolutely not. But He does allow it. You will have to take that up with God.

Q. I believe this becomes a question of our free will. Yes he wants us to be frutiful and multiply. Yes he wants us to have children and teach them about God, but he would want us to use our brain and not create children that may be loved from the depth of our heart, but cannot be provided for.

A. I could not agree more. So, self denial is called for in order to regulate family size.

Q. More often than not, this actually leads to a family having more children than they can possibly afford and can lead to money issues which can lead to abuse of an innocent child.

A. It is not cause and effect. Yes, poverty can stress parents. But I live in Southern California and travel down to Mexico where there is a lot of poverty due to government corruption. And, yes, a friend of mine and her family left their father in Mexico because he was abusive…but they were NOT poor. Although, of course, I don’t doubt it can happen in poor families also. But do you know what I see in Mexico and here in the US among poorer Mexicans? Love and celebration of family. Because of their poverty they value that which is eternal –people/family and friends. No doubt this will change, unfortunately the longer they are here. But poverty does NOT cause abuse, sin does that. Poverty oddly enough gives better clarity about what has lasting value.