The National Catholic Review

Check out Chris Wallace's interview of Washington's Cardinal Donald Wuerl on Fox News Sunday. Wuerl highlights his efforts at "new evangelization" and the need for respect in discourse, as well as "Don't Ask, Don't Tell," of which he says that there is no official Church stance. Have a look below.

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Anne Danielson | 12/27/2010 - 1:01pm
No official stance on don't ask, don't tell? It appears Cardinal Donald Wuerl has not been properly catechized. The Catholic Church views homosexuality as a disordered sexual inclination. It is precisely because all men and women are to be treated with dignity and respect, that under no circumstance can homosexual sexual acts be condoned.
Love is not possessive nor does it serve to manipulate.
ROBERT NUNZ MR | 12/27/2010 - 10:28am
The Bishop's coments on child sex abuse sem to be in sharp contrast to the recent comments of the Pope and more in line with  a kind of PR approach.
I suspect victim groups will be quite unhappy with his take and they probably have something to be said for that point of view.
Marie Rehbein | 12/28/2010 - 10:39pm
So if some people in the military want to set up a blind date between their homosexually oriented male friend and a woman, because they don't know he is homosexually oriented, it would lead to his discharge if he were to decline by saying he is not attracted to women, right?  That is, under DADT, of course, and Nancy and Maria think that discharge is appropriate and that Archbishop Wuerl should say that this is what the Catholic Catechism teaches.
Jim McCrea | 12/27/2010 - 3:31pm
Nancy:  he commented on DADT, not homosexuality.  There is a huge difference and one that I thought you could grasp.  Evidently not.  Too bad for you.

What if the subject had been the admission of openly divorced and remarried Catholics in the military (yes, there are more than a few of those!).  Do you think he should have said that the church was against that?  Of course not; he's way too much of a politician to deal with THAT kind of a hornet's nest, but the church considers divorced and remarried Catholics to be living in sin.

Or should the church just pick the battles that you like?
Anonymous | 12/27/2010 - 2:40pm
Cardinal Wuerl said Mass Christmas Day. I was moved to tears by the sacred manner in which the Mass was said. Charity is in the very voice of Cardinal Wuerl...He speaks the Truth with charity...
Tom Maher | 12/27/2010 - 11:20am
America Magazine could be counted on to at least mention the Sunday 12/26  interview of  Cardinal Wuerl by Chris Wallace's weekly news, analysis  and commentary show "Fox News Sunday". After all Wuerl is a significant Catholic leader making significant comments and explainations about Catholic church and his actions in the Archdiocese of Wahington, D.C. where he very recently has been made a Cardinal. 

I do not recall ever seeing any Catholic leader on CBS's "Face the Nation" or NBCs "Meet the Press". the two weekly news shows that I always DVR to keep up with what is going on in America. 

It seem smart for a representative of the Church to appear on these public forums with their large audiences to give the church's view point on issues in our society the church is involved with.  That makes the church more understood and more of a Player in America society.   Too bad the church does not have better access in all news venues. 

Wuerl's explaination of why the Washington D.C. archdiocese withdrew from Washington , D.C.'s social service programs was most informing and instructing while being very matter-of-fact:  "we don't do that".  He very non-confrontationally  but also very non-apologeticly  stated we don't do abortions, we do not provide the service of adopting children to homosexuals as demanded without exemption or regard for religious conviction by Washington ,DC  municiple governmment.   In time Wuerl's policy of "We do not do that" which obviously has the approval of the Pope since Wurerl was just made a Cardinal will be adopted by all Catholic diocese across the United States. 

Wuerl's understated but clear policy of "We do not do that" is good for everyone to know in all available media forums.   Wuerl's use of Fox News Sunday made Wuerl's important views and prospectives known to all.  Very vise and adroit use of media.  
Stephen O'Brien | 12/30/2010 - 5:21pm
In his Fox network interview, Cardinal Donald Wuerl has provided a model for other cardinals and bishops, who should be encouraged to defend the true Faith via television interviews.  If St. Paul were here today, it would be hard to imagine that he would decline any opportunity to appear on television to spread the Gospel.
We should pray that Cardinal Wuerl will become even more articulate and assertive, and that he and other members of the hierarchy will eventually realize that the Faith and unborn children cannot be adequately defended unless the bishops first eradicate the terrible scandal of the non-excommunication of politicians who support legalized abortion.  There is an evident logical clash between telling people (correctly) that abortion is murder and simultaneously allowing pro-abortion lawmakers to receive Holy Communion and present themselves as Catholics in good standing.
As for the rescission of the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy, while it would have been preferable, from a Catholic standpoint, to retain that policy to contest and impede social acceptance of the sin associated with the Biblical city of Sodom, Cardinal Wuerl prudently stated that the Church has no official position on that military issue per se.  True, the Vatican document entitled Some Considerations Concerning the Response to Legislative Proposals on the Non-Discrimination of Homosexual Persons (July 23, 1992) mentions military recruitment, but that topic is notably missing from two subsequent Vatican instructions: Doctrinal Note on Some Questions Regarding the Participation of Catholics in Political Life (November 24, 2002) and Considerations Regarding Proposals to Give Legal Recognition to Unions Between Homosexual Persons (July 31, 2003).
Given Congress’s recent vote, Catholics in the United States should now realize that the fight to secure societal respect for the virtue of chastity (CCC 2348 and 2359) has moved to a more propitious battleground: upholding the authentic concept of marriage in accordance with Jesus’s teaching (Mt 19:4-5) and the natural moral law.
Jim McCrea | 12/28/2010 - 12:14pm

I do not define myself as an object of sexual desire.  I consider my partner of 38 years to by my husband, and I, his.  Who we are and how we live most certainly respects each other's human dignity.  That is one of the reasons we have been in a committed relationship for 38 years and intend to remain as such so long as we both shall live.

But absolutely none of that is relevant to the repeal of DADT.
Benjamin Alexander | 12/28/2010 - 12:03pm

Are you claiming that we are not the objects of God's desire? Is God not the object of our desire? By saying that we are in fact objects of desire, I am not saying that is all we are, or all God is, but by acting like this is not the case, well, then I suppose you are contradicting the entirety of Church teaching. The inherent goodness of desire was affirmed by Trent, not rejected by it. Read some Aquinas, or Augustine for that matter. Or, read Benedict's Deus Caritas Est if you want a defense of erotic love and desire. This doesn't say anything about the licitness of homosexuality, only that your charge on 'object of sexual desire' doesn't stick or stand by itself with regard to homosexuality.

Still, it's special pleading to claim that husband/father/mother/daughter etc. make no reference to sexual activity and only "homosexual" does. It beggars belief, in fact.

You still haven't said anything to explain how in fact DADT was not discrimination against persons and was only justifiable discrimination against acts. And why Wuerl wasn't properly catechized, given a lack of explanation for your claims on DADT. That's bordering on libelous, given Wuerl's role as a shepherd of the Church.

Anonymous | 12/28/2010 - 11:32am
Right you are, Nancy. Right you are...
Benjamin Alexander | 12/27/2010 - 8:38pm
Nancy-how does DADT regards sexual orientation, not sexual activity. True, one's orientation is often revealed via one's activities to others (for example, having a photo posted of one's partner), but that's not a necessary truth. One could simply say he or she was gay and celibate and still be discharged under DADT. 

But to say that he should have used the opportunity to condemn homosexual activity is what I mean when I say you are moving the goal post. Wuerl has been plenty vocal on that topic in the past, but the question was homosexuals serving in the military, not homosexuality itself.

If you are bothered that gay people will now be able to serve in the military without lying, tell us, what jobs should gay people have? Let's presume they are "actively" homosexual-should they be left to die in the streets without housing or employment? Is that properly Catholic? Is that just discrimination? I don't understand why this "sin" disqualifies people for so much in your eyes. Sinners or not-people are people. You seem to think that because they are gay they should not be able to participate in any of life's goods. Why do you hate them so much? (Or Claim To Love Them By Making Their Lives Miserable Because You Think That Is The Truth?)

Anne Danielson | 12/27/2010 - 8:10pm
If  it is true that Cardinal Wuerl has been properly catechized in regards to The Catholic Church's teaching on homosexuality, then he should make it clear that it is precisely because all men and women are to be treated with dignity and respect that homosexual sexual acts and thus homosexual sexual relationships can never be condoned.
Benjamin Alexander | 12/27/2010 - 4:38pm
I'm with Jim on this Nancy: your comments keep moving the goal post. To say Wuerl hasn't been properly catechized is ridiculous. And, to say that there is no official stance on DADT is simply to acknowledge that one's sexual orientation is not a determining factor with regard to eligibility to serve in the military. It says nothing about condoning or condemning anything. That's all-regardless of what you claim 'dignity and respect' command. 

Still, I would have thought being loved by God is the basis for our dignity and respect: if God love's us, why shouldn't we love each other? I didn't know God was a slave to our categories, and I didn't know our dignity was based on our biological functions.

Hey look, I can digest food. Give me dignity and respect!

Anne Danielson | 12/27/2010 - 4:18pm
Jim, one cannot comment on DADT without commenting on homosexuality. With all due respect to Cardinal Wuerl, it is precisely because The Catholic Church teaches that all men and women are to be treated with dignity and respect, that homosexual sexual acts can never be condoned. This is The Catholic Church's position based on respect for the dignity of the human person. 
Anne Danielson | 1/3/2011 - 9:00am
While it is true that God created all men equal and thus all men and women regardless of race or ethnicity are equal as persons and complementary as male and female, it is absurd to claim that all sexual acts are equal and that our Constitution provides for the protection and affirmation of the equality of sexual acts and sexual relationships. The Catholic Church recognizes that homosexuality is a disordered sexual inclination and that all those who suffer from this anomaly may not be personally responsible due to the fact that it is a disordered inclination. Those who respect men and women who suffer from this disordered sexual inclination would never approve of homosexual sexual behavior or desire that legal recognition be given to homosexual unions because homosexual sexual behavior as well as any sexual behavior that does not respect the Dignity of the human person is demeaning and thus not an act of Love. 

If we respect and love those who suffer with a homosexual inclination we would desire that they receive the help and guidance they need to heal their wounds in order that they may develop healthy and Holy relationships grounded in authentic Love.