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The Governor and the Cardinal--Buddies or Not?
Friday, January 18, 2013 - By Judie Brown

I am having a difficult time discerning exactly what it is that has Cardinal Timothy Dolan so hot under the collar when it comes to the pro-abortion inclinations of his friend, Catholic New York governor Andrew Cuomo.

We recall with sadness how CBS’ 60 Minutes showed the pomp and circumstance of a Mass presided over by the cardinal who, as he walked out of St. Patrick’s Cathedral, made it a point to smile and wave at the governor.

Prior to that, we noted that even though Cuomo should be denied the body of Christ in Holy Communion because of his public actions—which are to this day in contradiction to Catholic teaching—his own bishop, Howard Hubbard, said on the matter, “Quite frankly, there is a disagreement among bishops about using the communion line as a place for a confrontation. And I don’t think that the bishops of New York state feel that’s appropriate.”

On this question, then-Archbishop Dolan concurred!

Fast forward to today and the news headline “Cardinal Dolan Decries Proposal to Expand Abortion Access.” Now we learn that the cardinal is astounded by the governor’s plan to increase New York’s abortion rate. In fact, he defined this outrage as “scandalous.”

But the question remains: What will the cardinal and his fellow New York bishops do about this?

When the governor came out in support of homosexual marriage, canon law expert Edward Peters responded to the position of the New York bishops and their reticence about obeying canon 915 in Cuomo’s case, saying,  

“The governor, with complete freedom, is publicly acting in violation of a fundamental moral expectation of the Church. On these facts alone, his taking holy Communion is objectively sacrilegious and produces grave scandal within the faith community.”

“As long as he persists in such conduct, he should refrain from taking holy Communion in accord with Canon 916. If he approaches for holy Communion, he should be denied the august sacrament in accord with Canon 915.”

Further, CNS reported that Peters stated,

“Canon 915 requires the demonstration of certain facts in order for the obligation to withhold holy Communion from a member of the faithful to apply. Among the facts that need demonstration are that the action be objectively ‘gravely sinful’ and that the conduct be ‘obstinate.’”

“As for the objective wrongness of policies that treat homosexual unions as if they were the same thing as ‘marriage’ (whether natural or sacramental marriage, it doesn’t matter), that depends on the actual wording of the policies of course, but, in general, such policies tend to distort the character of a basic human institution and therefore damage society. . . . It is, of course, wrong for public officials to lend support to programs that damage the foundations of the very societies they govern.”

“As for whether Cuomo’s conduct is ‘obstinate,’ again, it depends on the degree of real understanding that the governor has regarding the scope of his policies—and never underestimate how little adult Catholics today know about natural law or Church teaching—but ascribing to homosexual unions the same characteristics that have long been associated only with ‘marriage’ is a pretty basic error. . . . In any case, if the governor wants a reliable refresher session on what human history and Church teaching regard as ‘marriage,’ he can easily secure one.”

The case is closed. There is no question that Cuomo should be denied the body of Christ and perhaps excommunicated. Excommunication is the separation of an individual from the Church and requires first that the individual in question is fully aware that he or she is acting against Church teaching, and in fact has probably already separated himself from the Church. Perhaps someone needs to explain these facts to Cuomo and act on them as well.

But that requires courageous leadership. We pray that Cardinal Dolan will take this step, in communion with his fellow bishops, forever clarifying the fact that defending Christ from sacrilege is far more important than appearing to tolerate the scandalous behavior of a friend. Having said that, I have my doubts based on the cardinal’s previous actions with the likes of Chris Matthews and other pro-abort Catholics. Cardinal Dolan needs to set aside the politics as well as his love affair with the media and begin being the apostle he is called to be. I realize that takes guts, but it’s time.

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James Howard | 2013-01-29 01:36:40
EXCELLENT Judy!!! I AGREE. Mario, along with Pelosi, Sebelious, Jerry Brown, mayor Viariggosa of L.A. need to be PUBLICLY EXCOMMUNICATED. They are part of the conspiracy of Evil and our church needs to throw them out. Ted Kennedy should have also been Publicly Excommunicated as well. I think Cardinal Dolan is also morally corrupt as well.
Eric M Brown | 2013-01-25 00:13:06
Don't count on modernists pseudo-bishops to act as successors of the apostles. Because they are not. Andrew Cuomo is just one of many pro-abortion, pro-contraception, pro-sodomy politicians that have been indemnified by these pseudo-bishops. Even prominent politicians like the Governors of Maryland, New York, Washington state, and the Vice President of the U.S. Timothy Dolan is the archclown on New York not the archbishop of New York. He is not taken seriously by anyone other than Vatican II conservatives. Both he and Sean O'Malley of Boston are modernist archheretics.
Mary Floeck | 2013-01-22 12:13:33
I pray that Cardinal Dolan will take a courageous stand on behalf of the Church, which is Christ Himself. Call politicians out for their sins and strongly encourage their repentance, for the sake of their souls as well as the many who have been scandalized by their words and actions. It is most difficult to do as the media demon is constantly enticing those in the limelight to do otherwise. But they must be faithful to Christ and the vows they have taken and the mission they are entrusted to carry out. Let us pray more and more for our servants, in personna Christi.
Maureen Langford | 2013-01-21 01:15:23
Joe Biden should be excommunicated also for his crimes against the church.
awohltman | 2013-01-20 18:24:44
It starts at the top. Benedict is a terrible pope....he's more worried about making buddies than he is about laying down the law and trying to convert people. Im not a sedevacantist yet, but im getting there. The more I hear the more im becoming convinced that the seat is indeed vacant.
timothy sullivan | 2013-01-20 16:45:50
I saw Card. Dolan in a video clapping for a homosexual priest after he gave a talk in a church. He sat with obammy at the Al Smith dinner, then he gets supposedly upset at obammy for obammycare. Dolan's a total fraud, probably a freemason. He won't move against Cuomo !
jack bilbee | 2013-01-19 23:24:09
The bishop, including the last two in Rome seem to talk a good game when it comes to abortion but there comes a time your words have to be backed up by action or they are meaningless and that's what's happening here. Pope John Paul II, himself, apparently administered Most Holy Communion to a pro-abortion Italian politician so its clear the problem starts at the top. Also, I personally believe the march for life should be held locally at each Bishop's diocese residence until they stop pouring Catholic Charities money into pro-abortion groups like CARE. How can Catholics point a finger at Obama and the democrats when our own Bishops, including the one here in Philly, Archbishop Chaput, continue to turn a blind eye to this travesty. Don't we all have blood on our hands for allowing to happen based on some kind of false obedience.
Rich Newhouse | 2013-01-19 18:01:27
It is beyond comprehension that Cardinal Dolan as the titular head of the Catholic Church in the United States would willfully condone the ongoing expansion of abortion provisioning as well as same sex marriage. How can the millions of Catholics in the pews be expected to do the "right thing" when our leaders have no courage or conviction of truth and our faith. These are sad and dangerous days as the progressives slowly eat away all our rights including life and religion, those most preeminent in our Constitution. Our Lord and Savior pray for us.
Michele | 2013-01-19 13:30:35
I agree, Holy Communion should not be withheld willy nilly, they should be excommunicated, and then the proper actions will occur. Our Prelates will answer to God for those Catholics and Christians they have led astray while they play Church Politics.
clementius | 2013-01-19 10:46:33
What is happening to these prelates is that they have been infected by the heresy of Modernism and sadly they don't know it, or if they do, pooh- pooh it. St. John Chrysostom and St. Athanasius commented the the floor of hell is lined with the skulls of errant bishops. God will not be mocked!
Matt | 2013-01-19 10:25:55
Isn't it ironic that the Bishops who administer the sacrament of Confirmation and confer the gifts of the Holy Spirit (including Fortitude) always appear not to possess these gifts themselves? So many of them, including Cardinal Dolan, are cowards. I'm also tired of everyone saying we have to pray for them. We have and we are, but it's time for them to act in defense of Christ or they should simply resign and go away.
Barbara Jensen | 2013-01-19 01:23:47
Cardinal Dolan is working out of the mistaken notion that having the jollies when relating to evil is being charitable. He thinks that it is bad PR to stop grinning and speak the Truth. This is indeed a false notion and has led us to the sad state of affairs in this country. The United States bishops have lost almost all credibility with their flocks because people see the cowardice and self preservation operating. I would not hold my breath waiting for Gov. Cuomo to be excommunicated.
florin | 2013-01-18 17:17:00
Jan. 18th: Card. Dolan has said that to refuse someone like Cuomo or Pelosi or Biden the Eucharist is to politicize the Eucharist. How very sad! So the Cardinal would offer the Body and Blood of Christ to those who would aggressively promote pedophilia? Probably not because that particular sin is politically incorrect and therefore it would be safe to stand publicly against it...I don't judge the Cardinal's motives but he himself stands against the Church when he refuses to follow her own guidance (and the guidance of Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI) in this matter...
Victor J. Lynch | 2013-01-18 17:00:35
I could not agree more with your assessment. I feel abandoned by the church on this issue. Jesus did so many things publicly, said so many truths, and worried less about who he might be offending in order to teach those who had ears to hear and eyes to see. The bishops should imitate Christ.
Charles N. Marrelli | 2013-01-18 16:50:28
Most of our church leaders just don't get it; it's time to climb into their martyr's robes and imitate our Christ's early apostles. They've been contaminated by an offshoot of political correctnes; they've become religiously correct.