The U.S. Conference Of Catholic Bishops' Dereliction Of Duty On Pro Life Matters



March 21, 2011 - San Francisco, CA - - As should be painfully obvious at this late date, the Catholic Church is operating in a crisis mode, largely driven by twin scandals.

The first being the matter of priestly sexual abuse, with an estimated 4,692 priests [source, John Jay /Bishop's Accountability Report, pg. 26, the John Jay Report] having been accused of this horrific offense.

Of course allegations and convictions are entirely separate matters, but here too the Church has erred in dealing with the problem in such secrecy that the process can be characterized as at best, opaque. Again, estimates vary, but the consensus seems to be that approximately $500,000,000 in settlements have been paid out so far.

The second, most recent and continuing scandal has been the USCCB's substantial funding, through its "social justice" sub-directorate, the Catholic Campaign for Human Development [CCHD], of hard-left, sometimes neo-Marxist political organizations, under the guise of outreach to the poor and disadvantaged. Some of these are nothing more than front groups, created by Saul Alinsky 1. a communist fellow traveler.

Though some of the most obvious of these abuses have been addressed by USCCB/CCHD, it was only done grudgingly, its hand forced by public outrage rather than any process of internal review.

The negative impact caused by these matters has battered both the credibility of and most importantly, the moral teaching authority that the Church had only a few generations ago.

Despite Catholicism being in such a state of tumult and increasingly rent by schismatic sectarianism, the one remaining theological anchor that unified the majority of the Catholic world was respect for the sanctity of life, with about 60% of the laity opposed to abortion [see, 2009 Gallup Poll,]. That approximately 4 out of 10 Catholics disagree with this basic faith proposition, is itself indicative of uncertainty about the authenticity of this supposedly foundational principle.

The Church's official written position on abortion is entirely unambiguous:

"At this particular time, abortion has become the fundamental human rights issue for all men and women of good will. .... For us abortion is of overriding concern because it negates two of our most fundamental moral imperatives: respect for innocent life, and preferential concern for the weak and defenseless...Among important issues involving the dignity of human life with which the Church is concerned, abortion necessarily plays a central role. Abortion, the direct killing of an innocent human being, is always gravely immoral (The Gospel of Life, no. 57); its victims are the most vulnerable and defenseless members of the human family. It is imperative that those who are called to serve the least among us give urgent attention and priority to this issue of justice." [source, USCCB website,]

Despite the USCCB making such an authoritative declaration on the matter, there now arise substantial grounds for questioning the degree to which the American Church is - at its core - genuinely pro-life and anti-abortion.

It's beyond argument that over the last few decades the Church has jumped headlong into secular political advocacy via grant-making, lobbying and other methodologies.

This was evident in the run-up to the thuggish manner in which Obamacare was rammed through Congress by a Democrat near super-majority.

Unbeknownst to many, one of the prime movers in this effort was the USCCB and its representatives.

"On Saturday, after Catholic lobbyists had finalized a deal with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the most prominent Catholic in the U.S. Government, the Politico reported that the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops had "delivered a critical endorsement" to Pelosi "by signing off on late-night agreement to grant a vote on an amendment barring insurance companies that participate in the exchange from covering abortions." The anti-abortion amendment by Rep. Bart Stupak, a Catholic Democrat, passed. Hence, the Bishops are now officially in favor of a bureaucratic plan that could spell the end to freedom of choice in health care and financially bankrupt the U.S." [source, Cliff Kincaid, Catholic Bishops Help Pass Pelosicare, Accuracy in Media, November 8, 2009,]

Of course the USCCB continues to maintain that its intervention was well intended, to make sure that the far-reaching legislation would never be used to fund abortion, but anyone familiar with the case law surrounding such matters knows that once in effect, abortion will be declared by judicial fiat, to be just another aspect of providing gender specific "women's healthcare" and will be funded...forever.

To claim otherwise doesn't pass the smell test.

Due to this sleight of hand, the Church suffered a further loss of credibility in traditional Catholic circles over its gleeful effort to work with extreme pro-abortionists in order to nationalize healthcare, because many of these more orthodox [and more conservative] Catholics knew exactly what was taking place, despite the attempts by the USCCB to defend its actions on the grounds that universal healthcare was a legitimate part of the Church's [utopian and entirely secular] "social justice," agenda.

Setting new dynamics in place, especially on this scale at the federal level always produce unanticipated consequences.

A significant part of this blowback was that Obamacare, though still not actually in effect, proved so distasteful to Americans that voters revolted, throwing the Democrat majority out of Congress and replacing it with a much more conservative GOP majority, with an eye to killing this massive federal intrusion.

The impact of this latest Catholic "social justice" escapade has been tremendously harmful, further tarnishing the reputation of a Church already under siege.

Funding pro-abortion entities, working with politicians who have supported infanticide [witness then Illinois Senator Obama's bottling up of SB 1082], heavily lobbying to impose a system of government healthcare which ultimately will forever fund abortion - these and similar, theologically questionable, matters are forcing the faithful to ask themselves whether their Church really is pro-life.

There is a way of arriving at an answer to this thorny question. One can form a hypothesis and then test the Church's dedication to its stated position. We therefore assume, for purposes of this testing process, that the Church is genuinely pro-life to its core.

An important aspect of the new conservative majority in Congress was its rededication to ending all federal funding for abortion, which manifestly is and has been taking place for many years, though in a stealthy manner.

With the knowledge of how this shell game is being played, conservatives, primarily GOP legislators led by Congressman Mike Pence [R, IN] voted to defund the nation's largest single provider of abortion, Planned Parenthood. The group has received hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayer money over the years to perform this odious procedure.

The organization itself is ideologically rooted in its founder, Margaret Sanger's, master race theories including eugenics [the science of "improving" the human population] made infamous by the Third Reich. Sanger's goal was to remove the "undesirables," from society, which of course included, ethnic minority groups, the chronically infirm and those with subpar IQs.

Sanger's solution was simple - abort them, so they can't reproduce.

According to PP's own records, in 2009 it aborted 332,278 unborn children. [source, Planned Parenthood Annual Report,].

During that same year the group received $363,200,000 in government funding [see, Penny Starr, Planned Parenthood's Federal Funding Rose to $363.2 Million in FY 2008-2009, CNS News,]

The translation of this is chilling; the federal government was paying Planned Parenthood a bounty of about $1,000 for every life snuffed out.

With this sordid history and especially given all of the USCCB's rhetoric regarding life issues one would have presumed that they would have been in the forefront, leading the charge with Mr. Pence in order to save millions of unborns, from [an often gruesome] death.

But this was not the case. Given the opportunity to prove its true commitment to life, the U.S. Bishops ran for the hills, nowhere to be found. All that remained on the issue in the halls of the USSCB was the deafening roar of total silence - of complete abdication of responsibility.

Going through the USCCB website we were struck by the absence of any statements supporting the defunding of Planned Parenthood. This seemed very odd and we contacted the USCCB and its various ministries numerous times for comment.

At first stonewalled, we finally received the following inscrutable prose, well after deadline, from the Bishop's press office:

"The bishops have not issued a press release or formal statement re Congressional efforts to defund Planned Parenthood."

Mystified at the apparent incongruity of claiming to be pro-life but when given the opportunity, failing to lift a finger to end Planned Parenthood's abortion mill, they did nothing.

When we sought additional clarification, again, the sound of chirping crickets.

Additionally we made several inquiries to the press office of the Archdiocese of Galveston/Houston, presided over by Daniel Cardinal DiNardo, the Chairman of the USCCB's Life Committee, to see what reasoning might lie behind the Church's failure to carry out its pro-life mandate. These efforts also proved unfruitful.

Are we seeing a pattern developing here?

In further research, checking with knowledgeable sources on the Hill, we had to conclude that the USCCB isn't interested - and indeed may be hostile - to defunding Planned Parenthood, which nonetheless passed the first hurdle, the February vote in the House of Representatives with 11 Democrats joining in the lopsided 240-185 vote, to pull Planned Parenthood off Uncle Sam's teat.

We must assume that they can be counted on to bravely provide this same level of non-assistance now that the matter has moved over to the Senate.

Unfortunately the aforementioned hypothesis - is the USCCB genuinely pro-life? - must be answered in the negative. Our research seems to prove that on this core element in Catholic theology - the sanctity of life - the distressing truth is that the USCCB talks a really good game, but when the chips are down, heads for the exits, jealous of preserving its incestuous relationship with the pro-abortion Democrat party.

In a colloquialism possibly familiar to Galveston's Cardinal DiNardo, on the life issue, the official governing body of the American Catholic Church, the USCCB is all hat and no cattle.

In a major expose, just published, this writer exhaustively investigated the hard-left/progressive/neo-Marxist drift of the Catholic Church. Developing over the last century, it has greatly accelerated since the 60s and Vatican II.

From the piece:

"...In short, the American Catholic Church has been taken over by the left. It has been systematically conquered from within...This institutionalized leftism is strewn across nearly all of the American Church's social justice positions, with the single exception being the issue of abortion and we see in that matter the CCHD has consistently funded dozens of activist groups, many of which support the pro-abortion agenda, that goes with this ideological territory. The fact is that the USCCB/CCHD has failed to at the most basic level to defend the Church's pro-life position...

By a variety of theological twists, revisions and maneuvers since Rerum Novarum, a system has been established that indulges the personal political ideology of very liberal Church elders who have succeeded in pushing the limits of faith far outside the traditional boundaries of Catholicism. This change has produced a Church that is far more worldly and materialistic, one preoccupied with pushing an extremist legislative agenda, all the while disingenuously claiming that its activities are faith justified, much to the detriment of the Church's traditional role as guardian of Christ's spiritual message..." [source, William Mayer, Bitter Harvest: How Marxist "Progressives"Have Infiltrated the American Catholic Church, The Religious Left Exposed]

We believe this current writing serves somewhat as a coda, providing important additional perspective in support of the larger thesis [already being characterized as an "explosive investigation"] which concludes that Catholicism is on the verge, if it has not already crossed the threshold, of becoming so thoroughly secularized along socialist ideological lines that it might as well be a political appendage of the DNC.

When Church elders ask why their pews are becoming increasingly bereft of parishioners, they now have the answer. This Church left Catholicism a long time ago and will not return without a major reformation.

End Notes:

1. Saul Alinsky started his work in Chicago, Ill, allying himself with idealistic Catholic priests. This provided him entre into the Church and its eventual support. One of the seminal Alinsky groups, the Industrial Areas Foundation [IAF] was created in 1940 and was partially funded by the Diocese of Chicago. Today IAF works primarily in a stealth mode, using fraudulent faith based dissimulation to convince the public into believing that the organization has an authentic religious foundation. There are approximately 50 of these groups operating around the country, often in alliance with church affiliates.

One of the Alinskyite spin-off's, which received massive funding from the CCHD was ACORN, the now defunct, corrupt creation of Wade Rathke, a former member of the Marxist, Student's for a Democratic Society [SDS]. It is admitted by Church spokesmen that ACORN was given in excess of $7,300,000 in support. [see, Dennis Sadowski, CCHD ends funding to ACORN over financial irregularities, Catholic News Service,].

ACORN functioned as a voter registration machine for the Democrat party and was involved in numerous prosecutions for voter fraud.

©2011 LLC, William Mayer. All rights reserved. Excerpts from Bitter Harvest: How Marxist "Progressives" Have Infiltrated the American Catholic Church ©2011 The Religious Left Exposed, published with permission.