Subterfuge in Florida: Catholic League is Right, Catholics for Choice Lies
'Catholics for Choice' is neither Catholic nor supportive of authentic human choice
People like Jon O'Brien of "Catholics for Choice" spread confusion about conscience in order to promote their own deadly agenda. Not only do our consciences need to be formed, they can become deformed.
Not only does every procured abortion kill an innocent child, it hurts women who have been lied to by the opponents of the Right to Life
WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - One of the privileges I have as Editor in Chief of Catholic Online is working with Catholic men and women who love the Lord and His Church and want to defend her in the public square. They realize that we are in a new missionary age and that the Church is under ferocious assault because she is the pillar and bulwark of the truth. (1 Tim. 3:15) Recently, one of our writers, Billy Atwell, said "yes" to another invitation to serve. He became the Director of Communications for the Diocese of Venice in Florida and no longer writes for us so that he can offer his gifts to the Diocese.
I thought about Billy during the Easter Vigil when 30 men and women entered into full communion with the Church in my parish. This was multiplied by hundreds of thousands around the globe. Many who were received in my parish were young - and they all are eager to defend the Catholic faith, just like Billy. I prayed for Billy and his family at the Vigil as I knelt beside our priest at the moment of consecration. The Diocese of Venice received a gift, a seed of the New Springtime. Then, Monday morning I came across the following Press Release from the Diocese of Venice in Florida, from Billy Atwell, Director of Communications:
Statement Regarding "Catholics for Choice"
Despite that we are heading into the holiest week in the Church's calendar, it is important to address an issue of immediate concern. In our diocese, it is sad to say, there is an attempt to distort Catholic teaching to advance a particular agenda that is offensive to Catholics and likeminded people of good will. So-called "Catholics for Choice" seeks to mislead the public by displaying advertisements about an upcoming workshop.
The workshop, which is scheduled to be held in Collier County, purports to do the impossible to bridge the gap between the Catholic teaching that all human life is sacred and worthy of protection, and the notion that abortion, the deliberate killing of unwanted human life, "can be a moral choice," as the group states. The Catholic Church is unquestionably clear in Her teaching that, "direct abortion, that is, abortion willed as an end or as a means, always constitutes a grave moral disorder, since it is the deliberate killing of an innocent human being. This doctrine is based upon the natural law and upon the written Word of God, is transmitted by the Church's Tradition and taught by the ordinary and universal Magisterium (Evangelium Vitae, § 62)."
While praying for the unborn children who are killed through abortion, the Church also prays for and reaches out to women who have had abortions. It is hoped that families impacted by the scourge of abortion may receive the healing they need. For this reason the Diocese of Venice supports an after birth home for mothers and their children, and a post-abortion healing outreach and helpline. It is our prayer that the members of this organization reconcile their position with that of the Catholic Church, rather than promote a belief contrary to the Faith they claim to profess. This statement is made for the sake of clarity and honesty in understanding the teachings of the Catholic Church.
Well done, Billy! The statement is clear, compassionate, strong and loving. You are right where you belong.
Since I can editorialize a bit, I will. This group called "Catholics for Choice" is neither Catholic nor supportive of authentic human choice. There are some choices which are always and everywhere wrong such as the taking of innocent human life. I am very familiar with this group. I remember when their "foundress", Francis Kissling retired at the beginning of 2008. Her retirement would have been welcome news but for the fact that she replaced herself with an equally notorious dissident named Jon O'Brien.
O'Brien came to the organization from the International Planned Parenthood Federation's European Bureau in London. Archbishop Charles Chaput once rightly said of this nefarious organization that it is "a tool to use against the Catholic Church, nothing more". Kissling retired after 25 years of opposing the Catholic Church leading an organization that has the audacity to actually use the name "Catholic" in its title. This anti-Catholic, anti-choice, anti-freedom, and anti-life group has been openly and repeatedly renounced by the Catholic Church.
O'Brien called Kissling a "a prophetic voice," in an article he wrote in 2007 entitled "How Catholics for a Free Choice Saved Civilization." In 2008, in an opinion piece in the San Francisco Chronicle entitled "Pelosi views on abortion in synch with most Catholics" he wrote, "The U.S. bishops are erroneous in not reflecting the fullness of Catholic teaching on abortion nor what the majority of Catholics nationwide believe." He compounded his lack of integrity with this claim, "It is telling that the ...
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