Tuesday, October 11, 2011

More Bishops with Backbone

Looks like a good day for bishops, internationally! (Links provided; excerpts from articles in italics)
In a Friday letter, Bishop Gerald Wiesner, O.M.I., chairman of the Catholic Organization for Life and Family (COLF), said IPPF is “the world’s largest abortion provider and promoter,” and so the government’s recently announced $6 million grant is in clear violation of its pledge not to fund abortion abroad.

“IPPF works aggressively to dismantle abortion laws in countries where abortion is prohibited and to have abortion recognized as a universal human ‘right,’” wrote the bishop, who heads the Diocese of Prince George, British Columbia.

“It would be na├»ve, therefore, to think that Canadian tax dollars will not be used by IPPF to promote abortion in Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Mali, Sudan, and Tanzania,” he continued.
“Under the guise of ‘education,’ this money will be used to advance IPPF’s fallacious claim that access to abortion is necessary in order to prevent maternal deaths and to promote women’s health,” he added.

He's telling it like it is and not pulling any punches. Good strong talk. Hopefully a "walk" will follow. I'm not really sure what bishops can do about the immoral activities of their governments. Still, where there are elected officials and votes taken on proposed laws, etc., bishops can educate their people as to the right choices. This doesn't have to be in terms of "Vote for John Doe" or "Don't Vote for Bob Smith". It can be in terms of educating the people about how their faith can inform their choices, and helping them form their consciences. Give them some good, solid catechesis, and many will make the correct choices.
The draft of the Kerala Women’s Code Bill, produced by the Commission on Rights and Welfare for Women and Children under the direction of former Supreme Court Justice V. R. Krishna Iyer, recommends punitive measures including fines of up to 10,000 rupees ($203 USD) or three months jail time for couples who have more than two children. Couples could subsequently be branded as “legally disqualified” from government services.

The proposed bill also seeks to ban religious leaders from encouraging the faithful to have more children.

The KCBC said that restricting the number of children was a violation of human rights and called the draft bill “anti-democratic and an infringement on the parental rights of the people.”

“It is the right of a couple to decide how many children they need, not the state’s. The Catholic Church cannot accept the recommendations made by the committee headed by Justice Iyer,” KCBC spokesman Fr. Stephen Alathara said when the bill was proposed in September.

The two-child policy is an ominous sign in India that things will go the way of China. These bishops are taking some action that makes their stand more visible than a letter:
Chekkontheyil said that some dioceses had organized events to honor large families in the past, “but this will be the first time that we are organizing an event on this scale to convey the message that a large family is bliss and not a burden.”

“Over 5,000 large families from dioceses across the state and from the three different rites will take part in the event,” Chekkontheyil said.

And here in the US, there's good news, too! Bishop Alex Sample of the Diocese of Marquette, Michigan, “suggested that the new English translation of the Mass was an opportune time for the Church, for us, to set about the work of renewal and reform of the Sacred Liturgy, and that this is central to the work of the New Evangelization."
“I’m following, I’m listening to Benedict XVI. I trust that the Holy Spirit guides our shepherd” Bishop Sample said.
Yes! Acknowledging the Holy Father by actually following his example! And Bishop Sample even has the guts to say the EF Mass at his Cathedral once a month. Now THAT is taking action. I hope he also institutes a policy of male-only altar servers and communion under one species.
Hope springs eternal!

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