Elmhurst Pub Roundtable

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Thursday, March 02, 2006

Anti-Catholic Sentiments

I picked up the Boston Globe today and on the cover was a story about how 7 members on the Board for the Catholic Charities of Bostn have resigned after Archbishop Sean O'Malley stated he did not want to allow for gay parents to adopt from Catholic organizations. First, I don't know why I continue to get the Globe. The paper has gone so liberal in its news coverage that it makes my stomach turn. I'm not a rabid conservative, but as a Catholic, I have my principles and certainly believe in more of the tenets of the religion than I disagree with. The story in itself then should not have surprised me. For the most part, it was actually presented in an unbiased manner, stating facts and not really offering an opinion. A difficult task for this paper, let me assure you. In that sense, it was interesting to read. Governor Romney has stated he believes there may need to be legislation that protects Catholic agencies (as well as other religions) from state anti-discrimination laws under the grounds of religious freedom. A member of the judiciary committee stated there would be no such appetite for that on the Hill. Romeny stopped short of opposing gay adoption by saying that he feels the best environment is that with a mother and father. So those are the basic facts. Check out Boston.com for the full text.

But why does this bother me? Simple. The anti-Catholic sentiment in the media is at unheard of levels. Members of print, television, and radio outlets continue to bash the stance taken by the Church on any issue that does not currently agree with liberal thoughts. Catholics view homosexual relationships as wrong, so they get blasted for it. But there are many religions that feel this way. We just don't hear about them for one reason or another. The Episcopal Church recently had a gay bishop installed (maybe last spring/summer). They are hailed for being progressive, despite the fact his appointment basically divided the church. And let's also not discuss the tight reigns in which he has been placed so as not to upset the apple cart. He's there, that's all that matters apparently. Catholic doctrine, which has been re-written over the years for certain but never re-interpreted, is clear on how the faith views family in every sense. Instructions are explicit on what a family is in the eyes of the Church. If it's what you believe, you don't like seeing it taken to task every night on the 6 o'clock news. And this has become a regular issue in Boston.

Starting with a scandal that, admittedly, Cardinal Law handled miserably, the Catholic Church has taken beating after beating. Even following it, when the Church was finding a way to pay victims, it was blasted for closing parishes. Seriously, we can't have this both ways. There are scandals in other religions that are never talked about. There are other churches that oppose abortion, gay marriages, the death penalty, pick a topic. We hear about the Catholics because our leaders are more prominent, from the Pope to archdiocese bishops, to our own parish priests. With some of this comes a degree of public image and all that comes with it. But, let's look back here. I know this part sounds like a soapbox but it remains true: People came to this country, in part, for freedom of religious expression. It is not for anyone in any walk of life to criticize or chastise the beliefs of any other. Hell, George Carlin gave up Catholicism to worship Joe Pesci. That's his prerogative. It's time the media let religions have their beliefs without constantly questioning their political correctness. It can be said that people come out of such instances stronger. I think that will be true of the Church in the end.


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