A Bishop Who Refuses to Cower

 

Just issued by Rev. Charles Chaput, Archbishop of Philadelphia:

Archbishop-ChaputToday’s federal district court decision striking down Pennsylvania’s Defense of Marriage Act is a mistake with long-term, negative consequences. Like many other Pennsylvanians, I hope that an appeal will be made promptly. Laws that defend the traditional definition of marriage were enacted for sound reasons—namely to defend the rights of children and contribute to the well-being of the larger community.

Marriage is more than a private arrangement between two people. It’s a public commitment of love and fidelity, and it’s ordered not just to companionship but to creating and rearing new life. This is why every child deserves a mother and a father in a loving marriage, and the child is the fruit of that love.

All men and women are formed in the image of God and deserve our respect. But attempts to redefine the nature of marriage, no matter how well intentioned, damage a cornerstone of our human interaction and ultimately work against human dignity itself.

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  1. Nanda Panjandrum Member
    Nanda Panjandrum
    @

    Amen! and thank you, Peter, for posting these heartening thoughts.

    • #1
  2. Pencilvania Member
    Pencilvania
    @Pencilvania

    I so admire the Archbishop’s measured yet fervent tone! My own reaction to hearing the ruling today was at best cynical – but he inspires me to try to take a breath and respond with care.

    • #2
  3. 3rd angle projection Member
    3rd angle projection
    @

    That’s about as well put as anything I’ve read with regards to protecting marriage and in only 8 sentences. That’s well done AB Chaput! Thank you.

    • #3
  4. MJBubba Member
    MJBubba
    @MJBubba

    While we may admire the succinct way Archbishop Chaput put it, to the Federal Judge, and his peer in Arkansas, and to a majority of the Supreme Court, it sounds like nonsense.  

    Remember Justice Kennedy’s ruling?  There is “no rational basis….”

    • #4
  5. Tim H. Member
    Tim H.
    @TimH

    I’ve been saying ever since the same-sex marriage issue was first raised that, if we’re going to go down this road, “no rational basis” and all of that, that polygamy has a much better argument for itself than same-sex marriage does.  It has a long, long history, it is practiced in several countries today, it allows for natural procreation, and so on.  I’ll still issue this challenge to those who argue that bans on same-sex marriage must be overturned by the courts:  what part of your reasoning would not apply to polygamy or polyandry?

    • #5
  6. user_157053 Member
    user_157053
    @DavidKnights

    I’ll be more impressed when Archbishop Chaput makes a statement condemning the Pope’s recent statement that the state should be involved in redistributing wealth.  That would take some courage.

    • #6
  7. 3rd angle projection Member
    3rd angle projection
    @

    David Knights:

    I’ll be more impressed when Archbishop Chaput makes a statement condemning the Pope’s recent statement that the state should be involved in redistributing wealth. That would take some courage.

     Oh good Lord!

    • #7
  8. user_536506 Member
    user_536506
    @ScottWilmot

    I love Archbishop Chaput – he is one of my heroes.

    I’ve quoted him before on tolerance, and here he is again, reminding us why we shouldn’t tolerate judicial decisions such as these:

    We need to remember that tolerance is not a Christian virtue. Charity, justice, mercy, prudence, honesty — these are Christian virtues. And obviously, in a diverse community, tolerance is an important working principle. But it’s never an end itself. In fact, tolerating grave evil within a society is itself a form of serious evil. Likewise, democratic pluralism does not mean that Catholics should be quiet in public about serious moral issues because of some misguided sense of good manners. A healthy democracy requires vigorous moral debate to survive. Real pluralism demands that people of strong beliefs will advance their convictions in the public square — peacefully, legally and respectfully, but energetically and without embarrassment. Anything less is bad citizenship and a form of theft from the public conversation.

    • #8
  9. Peter Robinson Contributor
    Peter Robinson
    @PeterRobinson

    Scott Wilmot:

    I love Archbishop Chaput – he is one of my heroes.

    Mine too.

    • #9
  10. 3rd angle projection Member
    3rd angle projection
    @

    Peter Robinson:

    Scott Wilmot:

    I love Archbishop Chaput – he is one of my heroes.

    Mine too.

     I’ll third this and add Cardinal Burke.

    • #10
  11. Julia PA Member
    Julia PA
    @JulesPA

    Scott Wilmot:

    I love Archbishop Chaput – he is one of my heroes.

    I’ve quoted him before on tolerance, and here he is again, reminding us why we shouldn’t tolerate judicial decisions such as these:

    We need to remember that tolerance is not a Christian virtue. Charity, justice, mercy, prudence, honesty — these are Christian virtues. And obviously, in a diverse community, tolerance is an important working principle. But it’s never an end itself. In fact, tolerating grave evil within a society is itself a form of serious evil. Likewise, democratic pluralism does not mean that Catholics should be quiet in public about serious moral issues because of some misguided sense of good manners. A healthy democracy requires vigorous moral debate to survive. Real pluralism demands that people of strong beliefs will advance their convictions in the public square — peacefully, legally and respectfully, but energetically and without embarrassment. Anything less is bad citizenship and a form of theft from the public conversation.

    What are the chances His Grace, The Most Reverend Charles Chaput, Archbishop of Philadelphia, would join the Philly meet-up on June 4? 

    • #11
  12. 3rd angle projection Member
    3rd angle projection
    @

    Julia PA:

    Scott Wilmot:

    I love Archbishop Chaput – he is one of my heroes.

    I’ve quoted him before on tolerance, and here he is again, reminding us why we shouldn’t tolerate judicial decisions such as these:

    We need to remember that tolerance is not a Christian virtue. Charity, justice, mercy, prudence, honesty — these are Christian virtues. And obviously, in a diverse community, tolerance is an important working principle. But it’s never an end itself. In fact, tolerating grave evil within a society is itself a form of serious evil. Likewise, democratic pluralism does not mean that Catholics should be quiet in public about serious moral issues because of some misguided sense of good manners. A healthy democracy requires vigorous moral debate to survive. Real pluralism demands that people of strong beliefs will advance their convictions in the public square — peacefully, legally and respectfully, but energetically and without embarrassment. Anything less is bad citizenship and a form of theft from the public conversation.

    What are the chances His Grace, The Most Reverend Charles Chaput, Archbishop of Philadelphia, would join the Philly meet-up on June 4?

     You never know. I would definitely invite him and see how he responds. Of course, it never hurts to name drop, if you know what I mean. “Tear down this wall between you and Ricochet….” Something like that.

    • #12
  13. mask Member
    mask
    @mask

    Well said

    • #13
  14. raycon and lindacon Member
    raycon and lindacon
    @rayconandlindacon

    Perhaps not since the late Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen has there been a public figure who speaks so clearly for the Catholic Church that we protestants are left with a sense of fellowship that transcends the shallow movements called ecumenicalism.

    • #14
  15. douglaswatt25@yahoo.com Moderator
    douglaswatt25@yahoo.com
    @DougWatt

    Archbishop Chaput is not afraid to confront the state on morality. He speaks with clarity to Catholics who might be wavering under the onslaught of popular cultural opinion. He provides  affirmation to Catholics who are fighting the cultural battles. He presents a consistent view of Catholic belief to non-Catholics that are engaged in the culture wars. There is much to admire and to emulate in Archbishop Chaput.

    • #15
  16. Sisyphus Member
    Sisyphus
    @Sisyphus

    There is a day coming soon when the Left steps up the harassment and slander of any religious institution that refuses to ignore the Word and “consecrate” same sex marriages as if they were supported by scripture. The refusal by Justice Kennedy, Obama, and others to recognize the Word in considering these critical 1st Amendment issues is leading us further into a Constitutional crisis and a suppression reminiscent of Roman times.

    I am happy to see Archbishop Chaput holding the line, thanks for sharing.

    • #16
  17. MJBubba Member
    MJBubba
    @MJBubba

    We don’t need Justice Kennedy to “recognize the Word,” we just needed for Justice Kennedy to acknowledge that followers of the Word are not irrational, and to recognize that there are logical reasons not based in the Word that also are not irrational.

    A majority on our Supreme Court signed onto Kennedy’s decision that says both conservative Christians and political conservatives are irrational and can be neglected when considering Constitutional matters.

    • #17
  18. Fredösphere Member
    Fredösphere
    @Fredosphere

    Tim H.:

    I’ve been saying ever since the same-sex marriage issue was first raised that, if we’re going to go down this road, “no rational basis” and all of that, that polygamy has a much better argument for itself than same-sex marriage does. It has a long, long history, it is practiced in several countries today, it allows for natural procreation, and so on. I’ll still issue this challenge to those who argue that bans on same-sex marriage must be overturned by the courts: what part of your reasoning would not apply to polygamy or polyandry?

     Last time I mentioned that to a gay marriage supporter, I got an eye roll. Students of rhetoric and logic will recognize that as a failed argument.

    • #18
  19. user_428379 Thatcher
    user_428379
    @AlSparks

    I read the headline, and after I read the actual post, I thought it was embellishment.

    When I read a headline like that, I figure it means we have a bishop that is perhaps:

    Standing up to the Vatican
    Is in danger of going to jail for his convictions
    Standing up to influential parishioners
    Taking an unpopular moral stand against his parishioners

    The first is obviously untrue, since he’s taking a stand consistent with Vatican policy.  The second is currently untrue, though maybe in another 10 years….. still it seems unlikely.  So that leaves the rest.

    So maybe Peter or someone else can explain to us whether he’s getting significant pressure from his parishioners over this.  Perhaps donations are down as a result.

    There are bishops in other countries that risk torture or their lives if they stand up to the government, and to me a headline like that implies that this is the situation here, which it isn’t.

    By all means, express your admiration for Archbishop Chaput’s stand.  But don’t make it more than it is.

    • #19
  20. virgil15marlow@yahoo.com Member
    virgil15marlow@yahoo.com
    @Manny

    Last year I was hoping that Archbishop Chaput would have been the one elected Pope.  I know, he’s not a cardinal and didn’t even participate in the decision.  But I was looking for a miracle.  He would have made a great Pope.

    • #20

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