Sunday, September 06, 2020

The Heretical Joe Biden

The National Catholic Reporter notes that Bishop Joseph Strickland of Tyler, Texas has praised a video released by Father James Altman, pastor of a Roman Catholic Church in La Crosse, Wisconsin, one which

slams Archbishop Wilton Gregory of Washington D.C., for his criticism of President Donald Trump’s photo-op and appearance at the St. John Paul II National Shrine earlier this summer. He also criticizes Jesuit Fr. James Martin and his closing prayer at the Democratic National Convention, and refers to participants in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program, which protects immigrants who entered the United States as minors from deportation, as “criminal illegal aliens” and calls climate change a hoax.

We learn also

Martin, who is known for promoting LGBTQ inclusion within the Catholic Church, did not speak and instead offered a prayer that included petitions for “the LGBT teen who is bullied” and “the unborn child in the womb,” among other vulnerable and marginalized groups.

“I guess it’s okay for James Martin to spout out for the Democrats on their national stage but God forbid a priest speak out against their godless platform,” said Altman. “Here is a memo to clueless baptized Catholics out there: you cannot be Catholic and be a Democrat. Period.”

 “The party platform absolutely is against everything the Catholic Church teaches, so just quit pretending that you’re Catholic and vote Democrat,” he continued. “Repent of your support of that party and its platform or face the fires of hell.”

Go to hell, Altman argues, for believing

Americans deserve an economy that works for everyone—not just for the wealthy and the well connected. But our system has been rigged against the American people. Democrats believe that it is a moral and an economic imperative that we support working families by rebuilding the American middle class for the 21st century, making sure this time that everyone can make it and thrive, regardless of race, gender, sexual orientation, disability status, age, or ZIP code.

 The National Catholic Reporter adds

in recent months, the faith of Democratic presidential candidate, former Vice President Joe Biden, has promoted controversial commentary from several Catholic bishops questioning the sincerity of his Catholicism.

In August, Bishop Thomas Tobin of Providence, Rhode Island, tweeted: “Biden-Harris. First time in awhile [sic] that the Democratic ticket hasn’t had a Catholic on it. Sad.”

You'll notice the nod to President Trump with inclusion of "sad," with which President Trump infamously ended many of his own tweets in the past. Tobin believes also that a presidential ticket must include someone he would consider a Catholic, which would surprise the authors of the US Constitution, who specifically ruled out a "religious test" as qualification for any political office.

The notion that Joe Biden isn't Catholic is ludicrous on its face, of course. And if Tobin thinks support for forced birth is a prerequisite for being a good Catholic, he is free to point out any passages in the Bible, from Jesus Christ or any follower of his, opposing abortion. Please- go ahead. (Video below is from 11/09.) 

Joe Biden is no more or less a Catholic than when he was competing with a myriad of non-Catholics. Nonetheless, criticism of Biden for allegedly being insufficiently Catholic was missing while he was a leading candidate for the Democratic presidential nomination, facing the other leading candidates, a Protestant senator from Massachusetts, Jewish senator from Vermont, Protestant mayor from Indiana, and a Protestant senator from Minnesota.

The criticism arises instead when the former vice-president is facing an individual who hasn't read Two Corinthians," can't cite a Biblical verse, has never been seen opening a Bible, has felt no need to ask for forgiveness from God, and on separate occasions ridiculed communion and tried to put money into a communion plate. However, he's a "baby Christian," we are assured by the President's circle of evangelical supporters. "Baby" evidently is a synonym for "phony," given that Michael

Cohen writes that before winning the presidency, Trump held a meeting at Trump Tower with prominent evangelical leaders, where they laid their hands on him in prayer. Afterward, Trump allegedly said: “Can you believe that bulls--t? Can you believe people believe that bulls--t?”

“The cosmic joke was that Trump convinced a vast swathe of working-class white folks in the Midwest that he cared about their well-being,” Cohen writes. “The truth was that he couldn’t care less.”

These extreme evangelical (Protestant) leaders are involved in a symbiotic relationship with the President, in which the latter gains politically and the ministers in some other manner, perhaps financially.  The relationship is less transactional for far-right Catholic leaders, thus a little more altruistic. Evidently, they either support the values of Donald Trump- or are really, really stupid. They are faith leaders. One hopes for the latter.

                                                       HAPPY LABOR DAY


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