Friday, August 10, 2012

The Bishops' Blog Bugs Me

Is it just me, or does this bother anyone else?

I see on the USCCB Media Blog that Sister Mary Ann Walsh is happy to report that

U.S. Catholics’ satisfaction with bishops leaped from 51 to 70 percent in the last decade, according to the Pew Forum.

Which Catholics did they ask?! Probably the ones who voted for Obama in the last election.
Sr. Walsh has some ideas about why the bishops are receiving this surge in their approval rating:

Causes of the uptick may be many: steadfastness, action in a crisis, and the bishops’ courage to walk forth when they probably would have preferred to hide in a hole. Steadfastness in troubled times means serious leadership.

Huh? Is she talking about the same bishops I’m thinking of? The ones here in the US?
Sr. Walsh goes on to talk about the sex abuse crisis that precipitated the huge drop-off in approval in 2002, and how the bishops have acted to correct the abuse and protect our children; that, she says, has contributed to the renewal of our confidence in them. Then she adds that

Other factors fed the uptick. Though shamed by the scandal, bishops remained bishops. They faced financial crises squarely, confirmed youth in parishes, led dioceses in prayer and held the line on church teaching in the public square.

Okay, yeah, I’m sure they did perform their episcopal duties with regard to confirmation and saying Mass (albeit with a few balloons and Native American rituals thrown into the mix, but hey, what’s a little liturgical abuse among friends?).

But “held the line on church teaching in the public square”?! Come on! How about all those “Catholic” politicians receiving Holy Communion even though they hold position antithetical to Church teaching?! How about that invitation to Obama to speak at the Al Smith Dinner?!  

Heck, the bishops haven’t been upholding Church teaching in their own dioceses for decades, let alone “in the public square”. They are supposed to be the chief liturgists of their dioceses, but we all know the state of the liturgy! They were afraid to say anything against Obama just 4 years ago. They say a few words in support of Church teaching on hot topics now and then, but usually back down – as in Cardinal George’s remarks about the bullying tactics of the homosexualist camp, which caused so many hurt feelings that he had to apologize.

Hmmph. Well, back to Sister Walsh’s line:

They now maintain the high satisfaction rate despite seeming to be the sole voice for the 11 million undocumented immigrants in the nation.

The bishops have other positions that seem to please no one. For example, they still want universal health care – they’ve sought it for decades – with particular concern for the plight of the poor and protection of innocent and fragile lives. Ironically, though their quite broad positions would protect so many, their positions right now please so few.
Yeah, and there’s that concern about global warming, and the suggestion that we give up incandescent light bulbs for Lent (see what Michael Voris said about it here)…I think the bishops ought to get out of the politics business and stop taking positions on issues where Catholics are free to disagree because it’s not Church teaching.

Instead, how about taking some action on implementing – TRULY implementing – Summorum Pontificum? Or maybe they don’t believe that saving the liturgy will save the world. How about teaching about the evils of contraception? Sure would be nice to have a few more Catholics around to fill up those empty seminaries.

How about dis-inviting Obama from the Al Smith Dinner? I’ll tell you what – if Cardinal Dolan did that, I would start to think that maybe he is serious about defending the faith.  Of course, it would have been a lot better if he hadn’t invited the agent of the diabolical to the dinner in the first place.

I’m just disgusted.

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