U.S. Catholic leaders call for compassion and dignity for migrant ‘caravan’

Honduran migrants trying to reach the United States struggle at a border checkpoint on Oct. 19 in Ciudad Hidalgo, Mexico. (CNS photo/Edgard Garrido, Reuters)Honduran migrants trying to reach the United States struggle at a border checkpoint on Oct. 19 in Ciudad Hidalgo, Mexico. (CNS photo/Edgard Garrido, Reuters)

As U.S. Catholic leaders urged compassion and a solution to a possible collision over migration at the border that respects human dignity, Pentagon officials said today that the number of military troops deployed to the southern border could be in the thousands, not hundreds. The Wall Street Journal reports that its Pentagon sources now say the deployment could be as large as 5,000 troops, mainly military police and engineers—significantly higher than the 800 troops that the Trump administration initially suggested were on their way to the border.

But the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops pushed back against rising anti-migrant rhetoric in a joint statement the same day issued with Catholic Charities USA and Catholic Relief Services. “As Catholic agencies assisting poor and vulnerable migrants in the United States and around the world, we are deeply saddened by the violence, injustice, and deteriorating economic conditions forcing many people to flee their homes in Central America,” wrote Bishop Joe S. Vásquez of Austin, chairman of the U.S. bishops’ migration committee, in a statement also signed by Sean Callahan, president and C.E.O. of Catholic Relief Services, and Donna Markham, O.P. PhD., president and C.E.O. of Catholic Charities USA.

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“While nations have the right to protect their borders, this right comes with responsibilities: governments must enforce laws proportionately, treat all people humanely, and provide due process,” they said.

The U.S. church leaders added that “seeking asylum is not a crime.”

“As Catholic agencies assisting poor and vulnerable migrants...we are deeply saddened by the violence, injustice, and deteriorating economic conditions forcing many people to flee their homes in Central America.”

Troops deployed to the border will perform a wide variety of functions, such as transporting supplies for the Border Patrol, but it is not expected that they will engage directly with migrants seeking to cross the border from Mexico, officials said. The Pentagon decision significantly ramps up the official response to a “caravan” of migrants from Central America just as the president sought again on Oct. 29 to make the migrant group a focus before the upcoming midterm elections.

The group is still hundreds of miles from the U.S. border, but today the president used Twitter to send out an alarm: “This is an invasion of our Country and our Military is waiting for you!” he wrote.

In the same tweet, Mr. Trump charged, without providing evidence, that “Many Gang Members and some very bad people are mixed into the Caravan heading to our Southern Border.”

“Please go back,” he urged, “you will not be admitted into the United States unless you go through the legal process.”

The president’s tweets revived the issue just days after a shooting that appears to have been at least partly motivated by an “invasion” of migrants claimed 11 lives at a synagogue in Pittsburgh. Hours before he opened fire, the alleged gunman Robert Bowersposted a message on the social network Gab: “hias likes to bring invaders in that kill our people. I can’t sit by and watch my people get slaughtered. Screw your optics, I’m going in.” HIAS is the Hebrew Immigrant Aid Society, a group the gunman had rhetorically attacked previously on Gab because of its efforts to assist refugees.

With days to go before the midterms, the president appears to believe the migrant caravan is a winning campaign issue for his party as Republicans seek to maintain control of Congress. “This will be the election of the caravans, the Kavanaughs, law and order, tax cuts, and you know what else? It’s going to be the election of common sense,” Trump said at a rally in Illinois on Oct. 27.

The U.S. Catholic leadership did not directly respond to the president’s comments but urged “all governments to abide by international law and existing domestic laws that protect those seeking safe haven and ensure that all those who are returned to their home country are protected and repatriated safely.”

They added, “We strongly advocate for continued U.S. investments to address the underlying causes of violence and lack of opportunity in Central America.… An enforcement-only approach does not address nor solve the larger root causes that cause people to flee their countries in search of protection.”

With reporting from The Associated Press

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.
Michael Barberi
3 weeks 1 day ago

This article exaggerates the issue about migrants, and makes a clarion call that we must be compassionate and follow the requests of the U.S. Bishops. Below is the truth that this author does not address in his argument.

1. More than 96%-98% of all migrants who "claim asylum" never show up for a court appearance to determine if they qualify for asylum. Of the small number of migrants that do show up in court, 80% of them are denied asylum and are deported. Most immigrants enter the U.S. illegally and don't claim asylum.

2. If the argument of the author and the US Bishops is that the U.S. should accept all the migrants in our country, regardless if they qualify for asylum, then this is an argument for open borders. I do not believe the argument of the author or the US Bishops is for increasing the number of immigrants that can enter the U.S. "legally" from about 1 million per year to 2 million per year and want the U.S. to secure our borders in order to stop illegal immigrants, drugs and criminals from entering the U.S.

This article and the Catholic Church does not want to deal with the real problem, only their partial and selective view of the truth. There argument is for open borders based on a misplaced and misguided sense of mercy and compassion.

2. As for compassion, let's get real here. Most Americans have compassion for all poor people including those that migrate. Therefore, to directly or indirectly to accuse Republicans or the Trump Administration of not being compassionate or for violating Catholic Social Teachings is highly irresponsible and a false argument. The truth is this: most migrants are taking advantage of loop holes in our immigration laws that Congress (both parties) refuse to resolve. Migrants don't want to enter the U.S. legally. They want to 'claim asylum' and then disappear into the U.S. with no real intention of showing up in court to prove their claim of asylum. Others want to enter the U.S. illegally, full stop.

3. If we capitulate to our emotions and permit all migrants from Mexico and Latin America to enter the U.S. illegally, then we will invite more and more migrants to do the same. We will not be responsibly solving our immigration problem.

The answer is clear: Congress must act to responsibly change our immigration laws, increase the number of immigrants allowed each year into the U.S. legally, and secure our borders.

David Hollenshead
3 weeks 1 day ago

Michael, Please ask yourself "What Would Jesus Do ???", as you sound a lot like Donald Trump, which is not something anyone should admire. The USA, which was a participant & signatory of the 1967 Convention on Refugees, which gives the Refugees in the Caravan every right to ask for Asylum at the border. Our Nation can find room for a few thousand refugees, and I have offered a bedroom thru church...
David

J Cosgrove
3 weeks 1 day ago

We're not talking about a few thousand. We are talking about tens of millions or more. It's hard to take seriously anyone who doesn't recognize the dysfunctional nature of Latin America and its Catholic heritage and that the solution to their problems is to radically change their culture not have them all come here.

J Cosgrove
3 weeks 1 day ago

There was an article here a month or so about how dysfunctional Latin America was but it seemed the solution was to impose more of the same pious Catholic political theory to their situation without realizing Catholicism and politics should never mix. Catholicism is great morality but absolutely lousy politics.

Dionys Murphy
3 weeks 1 day ago

"who doesn't recognize the dysfunctional nature of Latin America" - Sadly most Americans don't recognize that at the heart of the dysfunction of South America lies North American influence over the past 100 years. Failed states are a direct result of American/US intervention and influence in South America. Laying it at the feet of Catholicism is disingenous at best. But that's your specialty.

Michael Barberi
3 weeks 1 day ago

David - A few thousand refugees? Get real. If we open our borders and accept 7,000 migrants, then the next wave will be 17,000 etc. You misunderstand my comments. Of course every migrant has a right to ask for asylum. I never said or implied that they did not. The point here is that very few migrants qualify for asylum. The fact and truth is that the overwhelming majority of the migrants are fleeing their countries because of economic reasons including jobs, better wages, and other quality of life opportunities. Under our current law, these migrants must apply "legally" for entrance to the U.S. If you don't like the immigration laws, then ask you Congressperson to change them.

As for your disingenuous question about what Jesus would do, note that I suggested that we increase the annual level of immigrants that can enter the U.S. "legally" from 1 million to 2 million. I also said we need to secure our border and stop the drug traffic, criminals and illegal immigrants from entering the U.S. and for Congress to "fix" our immigration laws. If I could wave a wand, our immigration laws would be fixed in a compassionate and dignified manner. However, we have a government and political system that is responsible for doing this. Unfortunately, the Congress is incapable of doing it.

JOHN GRONDELSKI
3 weeks 1 day ago

Even in Luke 11, where the neighbor is banging on the door in search of a loaf of bread, Jesus does not demand that the man who doesn't want to open the door move his kids over and stick the visitors in bed. Nor does he even suggest that if the man does not open the door, the visitor has a right to storm the locked entry. Jesus was a preacher; the vocation of a national leader is also to secure his country's borders, a concept to which Catholic religious leaders give nominal lip service, but never seem capable of finding any real set of conditions that they would let that principle trump an open border policy. Luckily, our President has far more trump-ability, and far more responsibility vis-a-vis his own country.

J Cosgrove
3 weeks 1 day ago

The migrants were offered asylum by Mexico and most refused. So those who continued are not asylum seekers. Notice the photo of crying children. This is inexcusable. While there may be children in the caravan the majority are not. This is a rhetorical trick to affect emotions and which the Jesuits of old would have objected to strenuously.

David Hollenshead
3 weeks 1 day ago

J. Cosgrove, And many are accepting Asylum in Mexico, and many are seeking Asylum in the US or Canada. Mexico also has a problem with the Cartels, just like Central America. The people in the caravan consist of men, women & children. While it is true that men are traveling in advance of their families, that doesn't make them all single men, who are economic migrants, which appears to be your argument.
-David

J Cosgrove
3 weeks 1 day ago

The simple fact is that the United States cannot accept everyone that wants to come here which would probably be a couple billion people if they had their choice. So there has to be a process and it exists. Over 60 million have come here since the laws were changed in 1965. There are 48 million in Central America. They all cannot come here. The humanitarian thing is to stop them. Otherwise it will be chaos.

David Hollenshead
3 weeks 1 day ago

J. Cosgrove, And many are accepting Asylum in Mexico, and many are seeking Asylum in the US or Canada. Mexico also has a problem with the Cartels, just like Central America. The people in the caravan consist of men, women & children. While it is true that men are traveling in advance of their families, that doesn't make them all single men, who are economic migrants, which appears to be your argument.
-David

Dionys Murphy
3 weeks 1 day ago

"The migrants were offered asylum by Mexico and most refused. So those who continued are not asylum seekers." - Liar. Asylum seekers/refugees are guaranteed under international law the right to choose the country where they seek asylum.

"While there may be children in the caravan the majority are not. This is a rhetorical trick" - No. You said it yourself. There are children in the caravan. That's enough. The rhetorical "trick" comes with your statement trying to minimize the fact and suggest that the adults are somehow less worthy of compassion or are somehow dangerous. Shame on you for dehumanizing Christ's people.

Connie Atkinson
3 weeks 1 day ago

I think the Catholic Church bears the brunt of responsibility for taking care of their flock, especially in the poor countries. The Church has not only failed to educate these people sufficiently so they can help to build a prosperous country but the high rate of violence and crime is evidence that the Church has failed to instill sufficient moral rectitude and live for Christ in the hearts of these tyrants who oppress their own people.

David Hollenshead
3 weeks 1 day ago

Connie, How exactly is the Catholic Church responsible for Drug Cartels, the US funding the Contras, the US funding & training of Death Squads in El Salvador, etc. etc. ??? Please take a moment to use both your brain and your heart, after you turn off the TV.
-David

Sarah Kleman
2 weeks 6 days ago

Gosh, David, you're such a smart guy. I guess that's because you turn your TV off? Good to know. It really enhances your point when you type etc. twice followed by 3 question marks. I bet everyone you know loves to talk politics with you and barely even notices when you're dismissive or condescending. I must be one of the very few that has ever noticed this. Do note that my comment to you is not dismissive or condescending but instead is sarcasm.

David Hollenshead
3 weeks 1 day ago

American Guns & Cash flow south to the Cartels, just as Drugs flow north. Add the failed Cold War Policies that had the US support the Contras [non-Nicaraguan Mercenaries], and "Police Training" for Death Squads [during the civil war in El Salvador], etc.
We have a humanitarian crisis, which tests what kind of Nation we are, as the US was a Signatory of the 1967 Convention on Refugees, and thus the people in the Caravan have every right to ask for Asylum. The US could settle a million Refugees while increasing the GNP and Tax Revenue, but Americans have deep-rooted prejudices against Latinos. Yet there are only a few thousand in the Caravan who will ask for Asylum here. This reminds me of the Voyage of the MS Saint Louis when refugees were sent back to Europe and killed in Concentration Camps.
The so-called “white genocide” that racists go on about, is because Adult Americans who are 100% of European Ancestry will be less than 50%, by 2020. This doesn’t mean that white people will be the majority, only that most Americans will have a mixed ethnicity. Being of European & First Nations Ancestry, I have noticed increased Fear & Hate, from Conservatives and Liberals alike, but mostly from the “Alt-Right Pro-Trump Crowd”. Why does diversity threaten you, as the majority of Americans will still appear either white or mostly white?
The questions we should be asking is how to help these people while making a better world for our children? Instead, we have a Racist POTUS who has lied, claiming the Refugees are “MS-13” and “ISIS”, while FOX News is claiming they carry diseases and are a threat to Americans.
If you still don’t understand my point, please ask “what would Jesus do?”. I have already offered a bedroom thru church.
David

Monica Storozuk
3 weeks 1 day ago

Great points and well said. I think those hostile to migrants and refugees need to get involved at a personal level. They likely do not have friends and acquaintances who have fled another country. Their words would carry more weight if they had direct knowledge and experience. Easy to condemn people in dire circumstances from the comfort of their homes and limited circles. Good for you for offering a bedroom in your home. And thanks for speaking up for the vulnerable.

Monica Storozuk
3 weeks 1 day ago

Great points and well said. I think those hostile to migrants and refugees need to get involved at a personal level. They likely do not have friends and acquaintances who have fled another country. Their words would carry more weight if they had direct knowledge and experience. Easy to condemn people in dire circumstances from the comfort of their homes and limited circles. Good for you for offering a bedroom in your home. And thanks for speaking up for the vulnerable.

Sarah Kleman
2 weeks 6 days ago

What bedroom thru church have you offered? Can I offer one too?

bill carson
3 weeks 1 day ago

These are people trying illegally enter this country BUT NOT ONE WORD from the Jesuits to the "migrants" telling them to obey our laws. And gee, I notice that the "migrants" have REFUSED to stay in Mexico, which offered them a place to stay.

Oh, by the way, why don't the Jesuits drain their cash reserves and spend it on the migrants as they head north. But, but, but the Jesuits have spent NOTHING on them while they're in Mexico? Gee, what a surprise!!

Sorry, but I oppose helping lawbreakers who despise this country but want to break in and steal welfare.

Dionys Murphy
3 weeks 1 day ago

These are people LEGALLY seeking asylum under international law the US signed onto, and legal under US law as well. Please don't try to misrepresent the facts. The refugees are guaranteed under international law the right to choose the country where they seek asylum, so there's no requirement they stay in Mexico.

"I oppose helping lawbreakers who despise this country but want to break in and steal welfare." - Straw man arguments are the worst. These are refugees seeking asylum. If they "break in," there is no way for them to "steal welfare." The biggest threat to America, and the biggest users of welfare are white men and corporations. Facts.

Dennis Hayes
3 weeks 1 day ago

great hatred, little room

Tim Donovan
3 weeks 1 day ago

Years ago, I worked in a group home with disabled men and several of my co-workers were immigrants from Liberia. They had fled from a brutal civil war seeking a better life for themselves and their families. I live in a nursing home and many of the staff are immigrants from various African nations. I don't believe that our nation is obligated to accept unlimited numbers of immigrants. However, I believe we should be generous and humane in accepting as many immigrants as is feasible. I believe that our government should work to provide economic development in the Poor nations of Latin America. Also, the Church should do all it can through its humanitarian agencies to provide aid to reduce violence, poverty, and gang conflicts. God our loving Father taught us, "You should also love the stranger, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt" ( Deuteronomy 10: 19).

John Placette
3 weeks 1 day ago

From the CCC: 2241 The more prosperous nations are obliged, to the extent they are able, to welcome the foreigner in search of the security and the means of livelihood which he cannot find in his country of origin. Public authorities should see to it that the natural right is respected that places a guest under the protection of those who receive him.

Political authorities, for the sake of the common good for which they are responsible, may make the exercise of the right to immigrate subject to various juridical conditions, especially with regard to the immigrants' duties toward their country of adoption. Immigrants are obliged to respect with gratitude the material and spiritual heritage of the country that receives them, to obey its laws and to assist in carrying civic burdens.

Michael Barberi
3 weeks 1 day ago

The U.S. does not have a moral responsibility for solving the problems of other countries by opening our borders to all migrants and immigrants from every country for any reason. The U.S. is a generous and compassionate country. We send millions of dollars to poor countries every year only to see that these dollars enter a corrupt government and political system where few of the dollars serve the people in need.

I support increasing the annual number of immigrants that can enter the U.S. legally from 1 million to 2 million provided we responsibility vet them However, we also must secure our borders and stop the drug trafficking, criminals and others who enter the U.S. illegally. The days where anyone from any country for any reason can enter the U.S. was at time when our country was young and growing. The circumstances were very different from today.

Let's get real here. Our immigration problem lies at the feet of the Congress and both political parties. The most important thing we all must recognize is that we cannot solve our immigration problems by polarized political rhetoric and hate-filled finger pointing.

Robert Bossie
3 weeks 1 day ago

It’s important to realize that Central American refugees are fleeing the highly armed gangs and repressive governments which formed following the end of the U.S. backed “dirty wars” of the 1970-90s.

During that period, The U.S. supported ruthless dictators in El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras, and flooded those countries with U.S. weapons, and destroyed society in general. This left these countries in chaos with ineffective political, social and economic structures. Large violent gangs filled the vacuum. They are well-armed with those very same U.S. weapons. El Salvador is considered the murder capital of the world. In Honduras, for example, migrants are leaving not only because they fear gang violence, but because they are terrified of the brutal government.

These three countries – El Salvador, Guatamala and Honduras -- are now among the ten most violent countries in the world. Many persons in those countries now flee these conditions and come to the U.S. What would you do to protect your loved ones.

What is the answer then? If we really want to reduce immigration, we would be wise to welcome immigrants into our country while, at the same time, work to change the policies that drive them here in the first place.

Please, when we talk about immigration and immigrants, let us be sure to also include the these factors that “push” people out of their countries. If we don’t, we are blaming the victim, immigrants.

Pope Paul VI said, if you want peace, work for justice.

Jim Spangler
3 weeks ago

Unfortunately we cannot take care of our homeless and poor within our country, let alone to take in more immigrants from other countries. Do they think that since they are in such huge quantities that this will get them across the border. I'm glad that they have sent the Military to the border. I do not want any of them to enter into this country until the homeless camps are gone, everybody has a job. In case some of you don't realize that we have a tremendous homeless crisis within our country. (The USA)!!! I cook and serve at our local Salvation Army Soup Kitchen, we grow a garden 150 ft. by 75 ft. every year providing 10,000 lbs. of green produce to the local food banks. We donate thousands of dollars per month to other food banks, free health clinics, and now you want us to feel sorry for a bunch of people who we don't know a damn thing about that they can march in numbers to get across our borders, which will give the inclination to thousands of others. Like I have said before, the best thing to be done is to lay a mine field across the Mexican-U. S. border, 300 yards wide. from the Pacific to the Gulf of Mexico.

Fred Keyes
3 weeks ago

To: Michael Barberi, J Cosgrove, JOHN Grondelski, Connie Atkinson, Jim Spangler, et al. :

A request: You would be more credible if you sprinkled your opinions with quotes from Sacred Scripture, the CCC, Papal encyclicals, statements from the USCCB--you know, Catholic doctrine.

Thank you.

J Cosgrove
3 weeks ago

I make a point of keeping religion out of politics. Someone said in the past, something about rendering to Caesar. Catholic doctrine and politics has never mixed well so my recommendation would be not to quote scripture since Catholic doctrine has had an extremely negative effect politically on people. The ideal political system is Representative Democracy based on free market capitalism and guided by Catholic morality. Keep Catholic Social Teaching as far as possible from any political recommendations.

J Cosgrove
3 weeks ago

There was an article here about 2 months ago about the problems of Latin America and being poor and one of the most violent areas of the world. Is any place more Catholic than Latin America yet the bishops wanted to enforce Catholic Social Teaching as a solution. One of the more ironic gestures made by bishops ever.

J Cosgrove
3 weeks ago

I whole heartedly endorse the Love your Neighbor paradigm. But that is individualistic and not political. I suggest you watch the video https://www.youtube.com/embed/LPjzfGChGlE. Then we can have a discussion about what the best method is to love your neighbor.

J Cosgrove
2 weeks 6 days ago

First, nothing the article refutes what Beck said or proposes. The author of the article is not interested in why the people are poor and what can be done to alleviate their poverty. Beck is. The starfish example is bogus. Essentially it argues for a lottery that would go into each country of the world and pick out people randomly to win the "trip to the United States" as charity. Beck wants to save all the starfish, the author of the article wants most to die.

Second, if one is against open borders, then one is against illegal immigration. You can be for more legal immigration but must be against these caravans and illegal immigration.

Fred Keyes
2 weeks 6 days ago

Are you declaring that religion has nothing to say about politics? Here in the U.S. Caesar must stay out of religion's way. "America" magazine on the other hand is thrice protected by the Constitution: Freedom of the press, freedom of speech, and freedom to exercise its moral and spiritual role. Pray tell Cosgrove, what issue has no moral angle to it? The Bible and Tradition are so full of social justice issues that you can barely turn a page without it coming up.

J Cosgrove
2 weeks 6 days ago

Are you declaring that religion has nothing to say about politics?

Essentially, yes. Especially the Catholic religion. It has a long history of dysfunctional intrusion into politics. Point to where Catholic doctrine has led to a better political outcome? Catholic doctrine certainly leads to better personal lives for individuals. When people follow Catholic moral principles, a better society results. But don't try to turn it into political policy. It has never worked and never will.

J Cosgrove
2 weeks 6 days ago

A good example of the danger of letting Catholic thought involved in political areas is the number of Catholics such as the Jesuits recommending some form of socialism. This is truly one of the most dysfunctional recommendations ever. Socialism in any form will oppress and impoverish the people. Some forms faster than others.

Fred Keyes
2 weeks 6 days ago

Ah well OK, thanks for that clarification. You realize of course you have just defined yourself outside the gospels and the Bible. From Genesis forward the answer to Cane's question—"Am I my brother's keeper?" has always been a resounding "YES!" under the Judaeo-Christian ethic.

For you to be such a strong critic of what it is Christianity should stand for makes the things you say anti-Christian and anti-Catholic.

I'm curious though, where did you get your definition of Christianity as merely an aid to personal piety?

J Cosgrove
2 weeks 5 days ago

you have just defined yourself outside the gospels and the Bible.

I am always glad to hear from my moral superiors. Especially those who denounce others as being less Catholic or Christian. I will quote scripture. Luke 18:11 .

Irony - my proposals will help my brother when your proposals will not.

Fred Keyes
2 weeks 5 days ago

Come on now Cosgrove, taking insult when none was given or intended is not something I'd expect from you. Nor do I claim in any way to be your moral superior. Better to stick to the subject of your theories and methods. So let's leave any *ad hominem* out of this, agreed?

Once more then: What is your rationale for declaring that the Church ought to stay out of political matters? Where is the drawing line between political issues and moral issues?

J Cosgrove
2 weeks 5 days ago

Where is the drawing line between political issues and moral issues?

Easy, Christ came for salvation not a perfect world. Moral issues apply to individuals not societies. You have 10,000 years of immoral societies and when the Church arose this did not change. Over 95% of the world has starved or been near starvation since man arose. Then along comes something to change that. And a lot of the Catholic Church fights this. Yes, they are dysfunctional on politics.

J Cosgrove
2 weeks 5 days ago

If the individuals within a society that is thriving are moral, then the society will become moral. The Jesuits and a lot of commenters don't seem to realize that. You can not force people to be moral. You can not create a moral society by legislating it or dictating it. You end up creating a dysfunctional society.

Fred Keyes
2 weeks 5 days ago

And how do you explain the Old Testament where God treats his people *as a people* (i.e. a society) and not as individuals? How do you explain Acts 2:42ff? Community is at the heart of the Judaeo-Christian ethic.

Cosgrove, can you quote a credible Catholic theologian who supports your thesis? Or are you pushing a theology based on a Tea Party and Trumpian point of view?

J Cosgrove
2 weeks 4 days ago

I said nothing against community. Community is essential to human flourishing but not forced or arbitrary community. It is interesting how you end up supporting everything I say by not addressing my points and then making up stuff and trying to bring in completely irrelevant ideas.

J Cosgrove
2 weeks 4 days ago

The Catholic Church has a horrendous record of trying to affect political outcomes. I cannot not think of any positive one. The Church's objective was always for individual salvation, as many as possible not a heaven on earth. But starting almost 300 years ago a system succeeded in changing the world economically. Before free market capitalism arose in England and Holland and then the colonies, most of the world was starving. The Church had zero to do with it and often fights it.

Fred Keyes
2 weeks 4 days ago

All right then, so you reject the many papal encyclicals and the statements in our country by the USCCB, which are part of the ordinary teaching Magisterium of the Church. So you oppose encyclicals like Leo XIII's Rerum Novarum and many more since then? Those encyclicals lean heavily on the gospels--add nothing to the gospels but explain their meaning--a role the Church has had since Day 1. If you are Catholic (are you?), you have a very heavy burden in proving the Church is wrong. If you are not Catholic, well, I understand; you are free to protest, but at least I know where you're coming from.

J Cosgrove
2 weeks 4 days ago

I am a Catholic and have 16 years of Catholic education including graduating from a Jesuit college. In none of this education was there anything about obligations on how a Catholic should act politically or any political recommendations. So it is those who want to make the Church a political factor that are deviating from Catholic doctrine. Again thanks for supporting my point of view as you continually digress in obscure irrelevant directions.

tacronicus.cornelius@gmail.com
2 weeks 4 days ago

Hey bishops: How 'bout a little "compassion and dignity" for the victims of the ongoing abuse crisis? And how about a little "compassion and dignity" for parishioners who want full transparency from their bishops when it comes to honestly responding to the root cause of the scandal? (Hint: it ain't "clericalism")

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