Vatican official attacks U.S. Democrats as “party of death”

By Reuters Staff
October 1, 2008

Senator Joe Biden with Catholic priest Zhang Depu near Beijing, 10 Aug 2001/poolVatican officials seldom single out political leaders who differ with the Church on issues like abortion rights or embryonic stem cell research. But now that the Vatican’s highest court is led by an American, the former St. Louis Archbishop Raymond Burke, we can expect things to get more explicit in Vatican City — at least when when it comes to U.S. politics.

Burke, who was named prefect of the Vatican’s Supreme Court of the Apostolic Signature in June, told the Italian Catholic newspaper Avvenire that the U.S. Democratic Party risked “transforming itself definitively into a party of death for its decisions on bioethical issues.” He then attacked two of the party’s most high profile Catholics — vice presidential candidate Joe Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi — for misrepresenting Church teaching on abortion.

He said Biden and Pelosi, “while presenting themselves as good Catholics, have presented Church doctrine on abortion in a false and tendentious way.”

Nancy Pelosi kisses Pope Benedict’s ring during his U.S. visit, 16 April 2008/Larry DowningPelosi drew U.S. bishops’ scorn for saying in a television interview last month that the Church itself had long debated when human life begins. Biden is a practicing Catholic who also supports abortion rights and analysts have said he could help woo wavering Catholics into Obama’s fold. Both argue that they cannot impose their religious views on others.

Burke said pro-life Democrats were “rare” and that it saddened him that the party that helped “our immigrant parents and grandparents” prosper in America had changed so much over the years.

Burke made headlines as archbishop of St. Louis for his public attacks on public figures who strayed from Catholic teaching. He suggested during the 2004 presidential campaign that Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry, a Catholic, should be denied communion because of his views on abortion. Several bishops said at the time they would not give him communion and the media staked out churches where he attended Mass to see if he received it.

“Lately, I’ve noticed that other bishops are coming to this position,” Burke told Avvenire, which is owned by the Italian bishops’ conference.

Archbishop Raymond Burke/Archdiocese of St. LouisCardinal Joseph Ratzinger, now Pope Benedict XVI, wrote a letter in 2004 to American bishops restating the Church position that a priest must refuse to distribute communion to a Catholic politician who supported abortion rights. But Burke lamented that the letter was never distributed.

Burke’s criticism isn’t limited to Democrats. Last year, he accused singer Sheryl Crow of being “a high profile proponent of the destruction of innocent lives” for defending a woman’s right to have an abortion and for being a proponent of stem cell research. He resigned as head of a children’s medical charity that featured the singer for a benefit concert.

Pope Benedict has been encouraging Catholic bishops to speak out more openly on public policy issues to make the Church’s voice heard. Any bets on when we’ll hear from Burke next?


We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see

Oh, I see.

The Republican party’s willingness to wage *nuclear* warfare against Iran in violation of Iran’s legal right to pursue uranium enrichment for peaceful purposes (and based upon the Zionist calumny that Ahmadinejad has stated that the Israel ‘should be removed from the map’) signifies that the Republican party is the party of LIFE.

What would the political landscape in America look like if religion was totally eliminated from the discussions? Neither party is in a position to cast the first stone, but when a bishop starts throwing them, and only at one party, Houston, we have a problem!

Posted by Pat Bianculli | Report as abusive

The article is about abortion, not Iran, Michael.

Posted by Dominic | Report as abusive

Ah… so Burke isn’t a hypocrite at all? He loves life in all its manifestations. Or not.

And he’s so inclusive because he hit out with his accusations against someone other than a Democrat… he also accused some singer. Wow. That makes it all Even Steven… yeah?


The article is about the “Democrats as the ‘party of death’” (read the title), AS IF the Republicans are the “party of life”.

With regards to abortion:

A nuclear war with Iran (apparently, to the “Vatican official”, the nuclear incineration and/or slow agonizing death from radiation poisoning, starvation and disease of millions of Muslim men, women, children, infants and fetuses is not as bad as the abortion of hundreds of thousands of Christian fetuses in the United States) will be the precursor to what may very well amount to the abortion of the human *race*, if things turn out as have been widely predicted.

Said “Vatican official” appears to value the life of fetuses *more* than the lives of those who are slaughtered, tortured, and maimed by warfare (who often suffer decades before dying–for example, those Muslims who were victims of chemical warfare during the war between Iraq and Iran).

There does not appear to be any consistent “pro-life” ethic involved here, suggesting a fundamental agreement with the Christo-fascist Crusade which the United States is currently waging against the Muslims.

Michael: Even if you were correct about Iran – - which you are not (and reliable world news sources, not just U.S. sources, differ completely with your conclusions) – - you would still be wrong because the article is about high-profile politicians who happen to be “Catholic” democrats who publicly on TV and in other public venues misrepresented Catholic teaching on abortion for the purpose of attempting to justify their positions on the topic, which Archbishop Burke has every right, and in fact a duty, to correct. And by the way, the Democratic Party in general is a pro-choice party – - i.e., ok to abort a baby in the womb. Imagine if your mother had thought that way, Michael? And, Pat, I agree with you that neither party is in a position to throw the first stone but Archbishop Burke is by no means casting the first stone because so- called “Catholic” politicians like Pelosi and Biden (and there are a number of others) have for years been voting on the side of abortion without a single word from the bishops. So the time has finally come (better late than never) for some of the bishops to speak out. It’s just unfortunate that it took a public misrepresentation by these politicians of the Church’s position on abortion, rather than the terrible act itself, to elicit a correction by the bishops – - but I say again better late than never!

Posted by Greg Castano | Report as abusive

Aborted fetuses, those poor days old souls, are actually lucky. They never will sin, therefore, God in his mercy brings them back into his heavenly fold. God gave us free will with the knowledge that “HE” will judge us for our sins. HE will judge, because he said not to judge unless we want to be judged by him as harshly as we judge others. Murder is murder, whether a 3 day old soul or a 20 year old soul killed in war. If your against abortion, you better be doubly against war. Warriors break the commandment “Thou shalt not kill” and they do it, they hold the gun with intent to kill their misunderstood brother of their own free will. How do you think they will be judged? We need to end all wars and jihads before we think about abortion. our priorities are messed up and backwards. When the world is no longer at war with itself, abortion will truly no longer be needed because by then we will realize the true preciousness of life.

Posted by C.D.Walker | Report as abusive

Regardless of one’s religious views on abortion, it is unethical to legislate your religion on others.

What Biden said once was “I believe life begins at conception, however I don’t feel it is my duty to legislate my faith on others.”

And it isn’t. The religious zealots in this country and others are constantly trying to shove their views and morals down everyone else’s throat.
We created a seperation of church and state for this very reason. People have different beliefs and views and no one is “right” or “wrong”. It’s simply a religious choice.
One that should NEVER EVER be forced on anyone.

Another issue I have with these pro-life folks, is that they are often the same folks who are strongly against socialized or governmental health care. Which is a double standard.

These people seek to force unwanted births on folks, and then refuse to ensure the newborns health with proper healthcare. It becomes the mother and fathers responsibilty to provide proper health coverage.

But what happens when you’re forcing those same mothers and fathers to have children they can not afford? You’re essentially forcing a life to be born into poverty and hardship.

What’s funny is I am an atheist. I have no religious affiliation at all. Period. Yet I still abhor the idea of abortion. However even when my view is not a religious formed view, it still does not give me the right to legislate my beliefs on another individual.

Each person has a freedom of choice, and the decision a pregnant woman has to struggle with about either having the baby or having an abortion, or giving it up to adoption, or etc. that choice is hers and hers alone.

Posted by Dave | Report as abusive

The Holy See never gave a damn what the laity thought, that much was evident with the way it handled the whole sex and abuse scandal, except when it was convenient for them to issue more dogma and rhetorical mind control to the faithful. They considered the abuse scandal “America’s problem”, including all the lives they help shatter. The American Dioceses did no better by protecting the violators in their ranks. Benevolence and tolerance, right? Crap. And to have the unmitigated arrogance to announce their primacy over other religions. They really need to practice what they preach and eliminate the patriarchy and Byzantine trappings but most of all shut their self-righteous mouths and stay out of politics, period.
“Beware of piety, it seeks power”.

Posted by Mike | Report as abusive

Of course the Catholic church never killed anyone! Republicans will kill any living being on this planet and do so at every opportunity. The hypocrisy of the Catholic church is simply staggering. I’m not saying they should stop breeding all together, but at least skip a generation.

Posted by Stanley Jones-Umberger | Report as abusive

I think that it is safe to say that both main parties need to rise above the dogma and doctrine — from all sources — that prevents the world from developing into a more convivial place. We have vested a tremendous amount of power in institutions and individuals that are doing nothing but trotting out the same old ideologies. As a society, we have been on a downward slide for too long. Let’s expand our minds and contract the rhetoric.

Michael, in order to make your point, you need not misrepresent either the Archbishop or the Church – - and you are doing both. There is nothing “apparent” in what the archbishop stated that would lead one to believe that death, starvation, radiation etc., as the result of war are not serious matters. The discussion of the article is not a question of which is worse: abortion or the results of war. If you would like to discuss that aspect, I’d be glad to do that – - but let’s stick to the article. The Church has stated time and time again (and you should certainly know this if you’re a Catholic and follow what’s been going on in the world and in the Church) that the Church has always spoken out forcefully about the evils of an unjust war, and the people responsible will have to answer to God. In fact, the Church speaks out forcefully about any war, as you should know. So in an attempt to keep the discussion on the topic as my previous posting suggested, comparing abortion to war and suggesting that the this Archbishop values the lives of fetuses more than the lives of those who are slaughtered in wars is totally unjustified and as “wild” as your comments about Iran in your earlier posting. If you want a discussion on abortion, I’d be glad to take it up with you but please don’t muddy the discussion with extraneous verbiage that reminds me of politicians in both parties :). Look forward to your reply to my previous posting!

Posted by Greg Castano | Report as abusive

You must be informed that taking the life of an INNOCENT human being directly from the womb is far different than wars, the death penalty, nukes, etc.

THINK for just one moment. If you cannot get out of the womb, can you be in a war, commit a capital crime, or get vaporized by a nuke?

Once out, the rules change drastically because of man’s fallen nature – I know you don’t believe this, so babies are at risk where you are concerned – got it!



Posted by Tommy Jalisco | Report as abusive

Thank you, Greg. What some folk fail to realize is that it is the duty of clergy, ministers, and pastors to draw the line and confront hypocrites who proclaim the faith but don’t live it. It is not a Democrat versus Republican issue – it’s a human rights issue. People turn a blind eye to abortion because it’s “legal” genocide – you never see the faces of the victims.

Posted by Heidi Gouge | Report as abusive


Holy cr@p, you have to be kidding me. “These people…force unwanted births on folks”????? Yeah, Catholics and Republicans are going around impregnating people, sometimes via r@pe, sometimes via their magic powers of legislative impregnation. What the h3ll are you smoking? Pregnancy is almost always the result of two consenting adults making the conscious decision to a) not use birth control, b) not pull out, c) put themselves in that situation in the first place. Really, what percentage of people who get pregnant do you actually believe didn’t know that was a possibility beforehand?

But your follow up is priceless: “It becomes the mother and fathers responsibilty to provide proper health coverage.” It becomes their responsibility the moment the pants come off. Who the h3ll should be responsible for a pregnancy created by two other people? My God, the gall of Catholics and Republicans to expect people not only to not kill babies they created but then to expect those same people to provide for them? That’s crazy!

So, you don’t think anyone’s beliefs should be used to legislate anyone else’s actions, huh? I’m sure there are plenty of people who think murder, r@pe, assault and theft are perfectly acceptable. I’d suggest you don’t complain if any of those happen to you because then you’d be imposing your beliefs on someone else and as you stated, that’s wrong.

Posted by Matt | Report as abusive

If the Catholic Church owns property in the US (and they do) and if the Church, centrally or at the parish level, chooses to state that the members should vote for a particular candidate or party, then the Catholic Church as a whole should no longer be exempt from taxes.

Posted by Tom Bellhouse | Report as abusive

If it were up to these guys we would still follow scientific models where the sun circles the Earth.

Thanks, but no thanks.

Posted by JD | Report as abusive

The article singles out two top leaders in the Democratic party, Catholics, it does not site Republicans because the ones who were involved in the discussion were not Catholic, and therefore not subject to Church Law. The Statement was issued by the Church, not one campaign or the other, go argue with the Vatican.

Posted by Michele | Report as abusive

Abortion isn’t legal genocide and should never be compared to it.
People have different views on the creation of life.

Some people believe life begins the very moment of conception, some like myself feel that true life doesn’t begin until you are born into the world.

Genocide is the deliberate and systematic extermination of a national, racial, political, or cultural group.

I’m sorry but unborn fetuses don’t fall under that definition of genocide. It would be more accurately described as a medical act.

You might not agree with abortion, but to decry it as legalized genocide and force millions of others to obey your point of view is ignorant.

People need to quit trying to legislate religious beliefs and views and keep them to discussions with your church buddies.

Posted by Dave | Report as abusive


You still don’t get it.

I don’t have ANY problem at all with the Archbishop ‘correcting’ the amoral misrepresentations of Catholic teaching by the Democrat politicians. In fact, I strongly agree with him and wonder what took him so long.

What I object to is the Archbishop’s establishing of an absolute EQUIVALENCE between a political party’s position on abortion ALONE as determining whether that party is a “party of life” or a “party of death”: in favor of abortion= “party of death”; against abortion= “party of life”–irrespective of the party’s positions which will likely lead to genocide as a result of war. [As far as I have been able to determine, the only real difference between Republicans and Democrats in the current election is the amount of TIME before the occurrence of the nuclear war: If McCain, then sooner; if Obama, then somewhat later (but probably only a few months). Their position vis-a-vis the Israel and Iran, for example is fundamentally identical.]

Furthermore, why does the Archbishop choose to make such a comment about abortion as, in some way, a *singular* evil (although I certainly sympathize with such a view), while failing to comment about the torture that has been committed by agents of the U.S. government, the ‘rendition’ of prisoners by the United States to countries that employ torture, or the slaughter of civilians in Lebanon and Gaza (by the Israel), Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan? Clearly, this “Vatican official” does not consider these subjects as being of sufficient *importance* to be able to characterize a party as being a “party of death”. (Look at the role of Condoleezza Rice, for example, in the use of torture. And NO COMMENT from the Archbishop, as far as I know.)

He is, in fact, placing a *priority* upon abortion as worse than ANY other evil if he chooses that ONE criterion to characterize a party as a “party of death”.

I can’t see how there can be any reasonable escape from this conclusion.

Now, with regards to Iran, I don’t particularly *care* (see my website) that my conclusions are not echoed by the Zionist mainstream media.

By censoring the Truth about the Doctrine of “resurrection”, the Zionist media is doing EVERYTHING it can to incite WARFARE between the United States/the Israel and Iran.

My head is spinning! Last Sunday our parish hosted a lecture on “Faithful Citizenship” based on material published by the US Catholic Bishops that enumerate a whole set of issues including not only abortion but torture, genocide and fouling the planet upon which we all must survive–and clearly states that “Catholics must NOT be ‘single-issue’ voters”.

Now, this guy gets up in front of God and everybody, with the microphone of ecclesial authority, and says this. Although the Church proudly proclaims its devine origin, sometimes it stumbles on the human frailty of its practical foundations. This would appear to be one of those times.

Posted by Art Marriott | Report as abusive

Abortion is a personal decision. And as a X Catholic, I know, the Catholic Church has never been comfortable with the concept of personal cholce and responsibility.

Posted by Blogger | Report as abusive

So, can someone remind me why the Catholic Church is still permitted to retain its non-profit status, in the face of its blatant political activity?

Posted by Doug Zeh | Report as abusive

In general abortion is an extremely gray area. In regards to Dave’s post: If the parents can’t afford to have children, then maybe they should learn a little more constraint in the bedroom, or look into other preventative measures which would in the long run be cheaper. Of course, we could always look to Mr. Swift’s solution to the problem and start eating babies after they are born. That should solve many of the world’s starvation issues. Please note: This comment is made in the same tone as the original proposal put forth by Mr. Swift.

That being said, I will say that there are a couple of exceptions that should be made when deciding on the legality of abortion. One being impregnated by rape, another being health issues. Should a woman be raped and thereby concieve a child, it is unreasonable to as her to bear the fruits of the violation that was made against her. Also, should the life of a woman be threatened by the fetus, and the removal thereby save her life, it should be undertaken.

And I find it highly ironic that the security word that I had to type in to post this was “love”.

Posted by Jordan | Report as abusive

So, can someone remind me why the Catholic Church is still permitted to retain its non-profit status, in the face of its blatant political activity?

- Posted by Doug Zeh

Where in this article did you see anything about the church telling people how to vote? It seems you don’t believe in freedom of religion. You don’t think the church should be allowed to state its position on “Catholics” who support abortion. Biden and Pelosi can vote however they want. Your implication that that somehow means the Church has to welcome them, otherwise lose their tax-exempt status shows just how asinine most liberal thinking is.

It’s about the same as you claiming I’ve starved you because you’re allergic to everything in my pantry. I’m not forcing you to eat at my house, but if you’d like to, you’ll eat what I give you. Get it?

So should Obama’s church lose its tax exempt status or do you only spew BS like that when it’s a republican issue?

Posted by Matt | Report as abusive

The exact qoute was that the party risked “transforming itself definitively into a party of death for its decisions on bioethical issues.”
Bioethical issues would range far more than just abortion.
I think that the real issue for the bishop is the hypocrisy displayed by prominient Democratic Catholics, in that they claim to be devout Catholics, yet their policy dictates otherwise. It is unreasonable to believe that whatever eithics guide a Politician, (if any), is not in some way influenced by their personal religious choices. The bishop’s declamation of the Democrat Catholics has more to do with church politics than anything else.

Posted by Jordan | Report as abusive

Church Views were distorted by individuals in high profile lifestyles(whom entire countries hear). The Vatican corrected the erroneous views of church doctrine, because those who distorted the Church standards were not likely to give explanation if corrected. They surely wouldn’t recant as loudly as they gave their personal views. The church was wise to correct it personally and solidly. Agree or disagree with it, they have a right to correct misinformation that is aimed directly at them. “Every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment THOU shalt condemn”.

Posted by Karen A | Report as abusive

Pro-life..yeah yeah yeah…but it’s ok to support nazis, neofascists now a days, and r@pe little boys behind the altar. Oh! by the way…what happened to all the nuns who perform abortions in secret? I’m sure this is news to you.

I think many people are upset about these condescending comments by Mr. Burke because we know that the Catholic Church has no moral authority to even talk about these social issues.

Posted by mr frodo | Report as abusive

Michael, I don’t intend to repeat myself, my position re your extravagant out-of-the- ballpark postings is clear in my two previous postings. I do “get it”! Insofar as your most recent posting, let me try to make it simple so that you can “get it”. The article that started this conversation should stand on its own. Here in plain view and in context is what the article stated about Archbishop Burke (direct quotes from the article):
1. U.S. Democratic Party risked “transforming itself definitively into a party of death for its decisions on bioethical issues.”
2. He then attacked two of the party’s most high profile Catholics — vice presidential candidate Joe Biden and House Speaker Nancy Pelosi — for misrepresenting Church teaching on abortion.
3. He said Biden and Pelosi, “while presenting themselves as good Catholics, have presented Church doctrine on abortion in a false and tendentious way.”
4. Burke said pro-life Democrats were “rare” and that it saddened him that the party that helped “our immigrant parents and grandparents” prosper in America had changed so much over the years.
5. Burke’s criticism isn’t limited to Democrats. Last year, he accused singer Sheryl Crow of being “a high profile proponent of the destruction of innocent lives” for defending a woman’s right to have an abortion and for being a proponent of stem cell research. He resigned as head of a children’s medical charity that featured the singer for a benefit concert.
Now, Michael, without introducing your abortion/war arguments, just control yourself and let us know which of the 5 quotes above you don’t agree with – - (and keep in mind it is this article that we are discussing)? It’s as simple as that. As I indicated earlier, if you would like to discuss abortion vs. war, I will be happy to accommodate you. But please don’t introduce and misrepresent both the Archbishop and the Church’s statements and/or positions on abortion vs. war which are not even in the article nor do they exist. Do you get it?

Posted by Greg Castano | Report as abusive

This is just a ridiculous abuse of religious power. This person isn’t even IN the United States of America. How does he get off bashing American politicians? They never made an oath to preach the gospel of the Catholic Church in their position of political authority. Please. This is just utter ridiculousness.

Posted by ProudProtestant | Report as abusive

I agree with the vatican the democrats are evil demons that steal cheat and lie to get away with murder.

Posted by tammy | Report as abusive

I agree with the vatican the democrats are evil demons that steal cheat and lie to get away with murder.

- Posted by tammy

Finally, someone who gets it.

Posted by Matt | Report as abusive

Dear ProudProtestant,
The bishop is from St. Louis, i.e.: a United States city.

And Tammy dear, take a look at the Catholic Church’s own history. Try at about 1100 AD through the Reformation. Very interesting politics, with many a murder and intrique, all bent on increasing the power and wealth of the Church. Not to mention the Babalonian Captivity, as well as that little period in which there were three popes all trying to wrest power from the others.

Posted by Jordan | Report as abusive

The Margaret Sanger project was indeed genocide. You need to do your research. In case you haven’t noticed, white people don’t murder as many of their offspring as other colors. See Planned Parenthood’s own numbers – obvious!


Posted by Tommy Jalisco | Report as abusive

Speaking of Sarah Palin, there are two questions I’d like to see put to Ms. Palin during Thursday’s V.P. debate, or in her next interview (if she ever has another).

Actually, Gibson or Couric (let’s forget Murdoch’s “hired-hand Hannity”) should have already asked these questions:

1.) Why did you as mayor of Wasilla force female rape-victims reporting the crime to pay out of their own pocket for the forensic-kit and exam needed in the work-up (see NYT 9/26/08)?

2.) Was your policy of requiring rape-victims to pay for their own forensic exams a result of your publicly stated belief that even women who become pregnant as a result of rape should be required to carry that pregnancy to full term and birth?

I see no reason why Palin, as candidate for the office of Vice President of the USA, and with a 1 in 3 chance of taking over as President in the next 4 years, should continue to be shielded from answering these questions publicly.

I’d also be interested in Archbishop Raymond Burke’s position on these two questions.

His intervention for the Republican Party in this election reminded me of another Church figure, Cardinal Spellman, who in the early 1960′s put pressure on politicians to back the corrupt Diem Regime in South Vietnam with more troops. That advice was followed, and ultimately resulted in the loss of tens of thousands of American lives, and hundreds of thousands of Vietnamese lives.

How many lives will be lost when McCain bombs Iran, and with what will follow that action?

Respect for life – really? Hardly.

I’m not even Catholic but i ssy right on here’s about time a staunch approach is taken against the party that would like to see America brought to its knees.

Posted by Mark | Report as abusive

I’m sorry. Well not really. But if you believe that life truly begins at birth, then you must think it’s o.k. to kill a baby while the mother is in labor right? Isn’t that right Dave? Which is it? A fetus? Or a 7 pound, 8 ounce baby in the birth canal? It’s o.k. to murder them?

If you want, we can nevermind religion for a moment. How about basic morality that you may have been associated with (giving the benefit of the doubt here) at an early age and now have obviously dismissed as irrational? I’m curious.

Posted by NorEEzta | Report as abusive

Not only are the Democrats the party of death and in bed with planned parenthood, all you pro-choice Catholic Democrats need to look into the history of planned parenthood and it’s founder association with the KKK (she spoke at a KKK rally) Don’t take my word for it, read and educate youself left-wing moonbats. Democrats crack me up as they try to paint Repubs as not caring for the poor, yet they continue to condone infanticide of millions (15 million and counting since roe v wade)of innocent defenseless unborn babies. Is there anything sicker than this?

Posted by Rick Garnett | Report as abusive

One only needs to read the comments posted here to have a clear understanding of everything that is amiss in the world today. It is mindblowing that so many people can actually compare the brutal slaughter of innocent children to any kind of war. But, just for the sake of argument, lets go with that for a moment. Using this logic, executing innocent children would still be wrong because in the United States alone, there have been more deaths from executing children (49 million plus) than from all of the world’s wars combined! Which just goes to show that it’s not about what is right, and it never has been, it is about men and women humping like animals in a free and unrestrained manner – with no consequences for their sin.

Posted by Ray Bowman | Report as abusive

Thank God somebody in the Catholic church is speaking up about this issue! What they should do is publicly excommunicate every prochoice politician.

The Catholic church has the worst leadership of any organization I know of. They need to stop being so timid and do their job and their main job is to defend the faith. For a start reissue that letter written by pope Benedict.

Posted by John Biggins | Report as abusive

Where’s the call to take away the tax exempt status of say the Black Churches when they express their political beliefs? The Catholic Church has just as much right to preach to its members as any other organization has to preach to its members. Has Tom Bellhouse, above, complained about the revolt of the Pastors who are defying the IRS by exercising their Freedom of Speech? I don’t know what it is about the Catholic Church, but people will go absolutely bonkers when the Church speaks up about anything. Like in the detective programs on TV – the guilty ones are the ones who yell their innocence the loudest. Hey, the pro choice would like to make everyone pro choice so what’s wrong with the pro lifers wanting to make everyone pro lifers?

Posted by George D | Report as abusive

It speaks about the misinterpretation of catholic belief by some-one who claims themselves as true catholics or representatives of catholics .There is nothing wrong in archbishop Burke coming out strongly against these people,who support stem cell research and abortion.

Posted by Paul Dominic | Report as abusive

Ummmm anyone who says “the poor people who are forced to take care of this kid they never wanted” don’t seem to understand…IF YOU DON’T WANT A CHILD AND CAN’T AFFORD TO TAKE CARE OF ONE, DON’T HAVE SEX!!!! How idiotic do you hav to be? SEX=KID. Even with condoms, the pill, the nuva ring, pull and pray…you can still have a kid. If you aren’t ready for a kid, and cant afford to have a kid, don’t have sex. Simple. Short. Consise. The choice to have sex, comes with the possible outcome of having a kid. Biology, learn it and live it.

Posted by Nate | Report as abusive

Mother Church has a problem with war too if you’d care to study the issue prior to handing down your diatribes. This article simply focuses on the abortion issue. Have you not heard of “Just War Theory” and the Church’s denunciation of the Bush Doctrine? The difference is that the abortion issue touches upon the dogmatic whereas the just war issue touches upon the mere personal philosophy of the Pope.

And really… Is there truly a comparison to be made between Radical Antisemitism at the Nation-State level and the fate of an unborn child..? Who needs more protection..? Why Iran of course (sic).


Posted by Sean | Report as abusive

The article is about abortion not nuclear war. Well over a million have been killed by abortion. If I’m not mistaken the demos dropped the bombs on Japan(nuclear), started WWII, Korean, and Vietnam Wars. I know we didn’t actually start WWII, Korea, Or Vietnam but the demos seem to forget who was in power. As a former demo I remember and if our current history books were accurate we would all remember.

In reply to tommy when will the obama man actually have to answer questions. The only questions he answers are softball questions from friendly newspeople. Even O’Reily was kind to him–I guess you have to take his affirmative action education into account. You don’t get to yell racist at the world when the going gets tough.

The whole, then don’t have kids debate is non-sensical and only applies to those who were irresponsible in their lives.

It completely leaves out rape victims, instances where the birth could lead to the death of the mother, and yes accidents DO happen and there in lies my point.

If a woman and man choose to have sex, do so with protection, and yet still end up pregnant it is an accident. Should they be forced to bear this child that they had attempted to prevent from happening in the first place?
Is it your or anyone else’s choice what that woman decides to do in her life?

Is it not she and she alone who must deal with her decision and the reprecussions of said decision?

Nate, acting like those who don’t want kids should never have sex in the first place is idiotic. That thinking will NEVER work. It’s the whole abstinence argument all over again. We are human, we enjoy sex and we will continue to enjoy and have it and it will never be something that is ONLY for procreation. It’s admirable if you live that way, however it’s ignorant to expect the billions of other humans to follow your example.

I myself had a child very young that I was unprepared for and had no intentions of having at the time. The condom broke and now he’s 8. We made a choice to live with our mistake. That was our choice to make though, and not something I would have wanted forced on us.

Just as we chose to have the baby, another couple may choose to have an abortion or to give the baby up for adoption. That is their right to make that choice and no one should force any one decision on them.

Posted by Dave | Report as abusive

OK Dave,

So if I come over to your house and shoot you in the head, that’s ok right – because we wouldn’t want to impose the ‘religious’ view that murder is not ok on anyone.

Last time I checked most people I know were firmly in favor of having laws against murder, and abortion is absolutely the physical act of murder of a defenseless child.

Posted by Claudia | Report as abusive

First, There are those who say you should not mix religion with politics or you should not force your religious/political views on person. The irony in this does not go unnoticed. Religion is the biggest contributing factor to shaping a persons opinion. Allow me to repeat that, “Religion is the biggest contributing factor to shaping a persons opinion.” Should I do as several people state and refrain from voicing my religious beliefs then I also refrain from voicing my opinion. I am also being asked not to vote, but yet if I don’t vote then I would be told to shut-up because I did not vote; essentially placing me in a Catch-22. The irony is that those who tell me to keep my religion, or beliefs, to myself are the very ones forcing their belief, or religion, on me. In other words you wish for me to remain silent while you shout from the top of the hills your beliefs, because you fear opposition, to lazy to take a stand, or possible fear your whole world will crumble if you discover the information you have is unable to stand using logic.

Second, There seem to be a lot of people that are experts on Catholicism; but hardly any who actually practice the faith. So many people here are up in arms and spewing unintelligent, misinformed information about the Catholic Faith, Christianities oldest denomination (read your history if you doubt this). The Church holds that ALL life is precious, just like God does, and that everyone is capable of redemption no matter how serious the sin is, just like God does. My thoughts were like many of those who think they know Catholicism, and all those thoughts were developed from people who were not Catholic or had some kind of selfish grudge against the Church; but it was not until I met a Catholic who really understood their faith and patiently explained it to me. Through my process of converting and even to this day I experience a lot of pain and suffering, but I have yet to find anything that is as comforting, beautiful, and peaceful as what has been passed from our Lord to His Church. Please, speak with an educated mind and not one that is derived from idiocy.

Third, Abortion is the action of taking a human life. If you can not see this then it is because you chosen a selfish nature for sexual pleasure. Whether it is for yourself or the couple that already has four kids and can not afford a fifth one. The true is abortion is being used as a means of birth control so people can have sex without worrying about the consequences of their action. Besides the religious reasons, a person should abstain from sex if they are unwilling to accept the responsibilities of raising a child. It is through lust, that a person cultivates and feeds, a person becomes a slave to the sexual impulses. You say kill the baby that is growing inside the woman because you are unable to except the what you helped create; I say abstain from sex so the choice does not need to be made. For those who say that life does not begin until after birth I would love to sit down discuss why you have chosen this position, to hear what you have to say and try to understand why you think that way, for what how has the baby changed from the time before birth to the time after birth?

Fourth, Should tax exemption be revoked from religious organization? No, It is called the first amendment for it allows the freedom of speech and religion. In the case described in this article the Church has performed the correct action. The politicians that claim to be Catholic but continue to speak publicly against the doctrines of the their faith should be corrected, and efforts were made to correct them in private as well as general statements made public by the Vatican regarding the Churches stance. These same people that claim to be Catholic simple do so receive the votes of Catholics; therefore, the Church has a duty to call out publicly those that are misleading the faithful without recourse.

Remember if there is no God then how can person claim to be an atheist for an atheist denies the existence of God, so God has to exist in order for an atheist to deny His existence.

Posted by Ralph | Report as abusive

It is so predictable to see people change the subject when abortion is the issue. You wonder why they need to do that. My theory is that they vote for “pro-choice” candidates and have a hard time rationalizing their vote with their religious beliefs.

Posted by freeyourmind | Report as abusive