I didn’t see Archbishop Cupich’s statement on the SCOTUS ruling until after I posted last night. Wow! And here I was complaining about McElroy’s ambiguous statement! I think I’d take that over the Cupich’s statement! It seems this Archbishop thinks a lot of his ability to send a message without really saying anything at all, and he also seems to think he’s getting the “red hat” no matter what the heck he says or doesn’t say. Where is the Catholicism in his statement (below)? I’m really going to hope and pray the “red hat” doesn’t head to Chicago anytime soon. We need a Cardinal Cordileone, not a Cardinal Cupich! We need someone who’s going to bleed Church doctrine, not one who wants to confound and confuse everyone.
So here’s Archbishop Cupich’s statement:
STATEMENT OF ARCHBISHOP BLASE J. CUPICH
ARCHBISHOP OF CHICAGO
June 28, 2015
This week the Supreme Court of the United States issued two rulings with particular meaning for the Catholic Church.
In the first, the Court preserved subsidies for the 6.4 million low-income Americans who depend on them to purchase health insurance under the Affordable Care Act. We have issues with provisions of that legislation and will continue to advocate to preserve our religious freedom. However, we understand that for millions of individuals and families, most of them the working poor, this decision preserves access to health care and the promise it offers of a healthier, longer life.
In the second decision, the United States Supreme Court has ruled that two persons of the same sex have a constitutional right to marry each other. In doing so, the Court has re-defined civil marriage. The proposed reason for the ruling is the protection of equal rights for all citizens, including those who identify themselves as gay. The rapid social changes signaled by the Court ruling call us to mature and serene reflections as we move forward together. In that process, the Catholic Church will stand ready to offer a wisdom rooted in faith and a wide range of human experience.
First of all, the Supreme Court didn’t “rule,” the Supreme Court legislated. It rewrote existing law AND it rewrote the Constitution (no amendment process needed according to them!). Sorry, Archbishop Cupich, the equal rights of all were already protected, and marriage, quite frankly, never fell under the equal rights clause. There have always been constraints on marriage, which is why we needed a license for it. There was never an open season to marry whomever you loved.
How, Archbishop, are we supposed to move forward together? “Gay marriage” is and always has been an affront to the Truth and the dignity of the person. The Supreme Court further tore the fabric of society. It’s not time for “mature and serene reflection.” It’s time for the Catholic Church to do something. Do you want us just to accept it simply “because it’s the law of the land?” Are we also just supposed to accept transsexual restrooms? Participate in gay weddings? Sorry, Archbishop, I have children, so I will fight this line of thinking tooth and nail for them. Peace in our country is out the window now just as your fellow bishops in Colorado and others have told us.
It is important to note that the Catholic Church has an abiding concern for the dignity of gay persons. In fact, the Catechism of the Catholic Church says: “They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided.” (n. 2358). This respect must be real, not rhetorical, and ever reflective of the Church’s commitment to accompanying all people. For this reason, the Church must extend support to all families, no matter their circumstances, recognizing that we are all relatives, journeying through life under the careful watch of a loving God.
Umm, we DO care about the “gay persons.” The Church has and the Church always will care about and for them. We care about their immortal souls and their temporal well-being. What you fail to clarify here is that we cannot support homosexual unions in any way, shape, or form, for the good of their soul. We must encourage them to lead a heroic life of chastity and virtue.
Let’s look at your “oh well, we all just need to get along” statement juxtaposed to Bishop Strickland’s very pastoral statement (and the statement all bishops and cardinals should be making now):
While taking a strong stand for marriage is the duty of all who call themselves Christian, every type of unjust discrimination against those with homosexual tendencies should be avoided. We must treat these individuals with loving kindness and respect based on their dignity as human persons. Christ rejects no one, but he calls all of us to be converted from our sinful inclinations and follow the truth He has revealed to us. Nevertheless, our continued commitment to the pastoral care of homosexual persons cannot and will not lead in any way to the condoning of homosexual behavior or our acceptance of the legal recognition of same-sex unions. (https://www.dioceseoftyler.org/news/2015/06/bishop-stricklands-statement-on-u-s-supreme-court-decision/)
See the difference, Archbishop Cupich?
It is also important to stress that the Supreme Court’s redefinition of civil marriage has no bearing on the Catholic Sacrament of Matrimony, in which the marriage of man and woman is a sign of the union of Christ and the Church. In upholding our traditional concept of marriage, we are called to support those who have entered into this sacred and loving bond with God and each other.
Nice of you to note six paragraphs in that there was a redefinition of civil marriage and it doesn’t equal the Sacrament of Matrimony. There is no “traditional CONCEPT of marriage,” there is a traditional TRUTH of marriage! How about we use the actual definition used by the Church?
1601 “The matrimonial covenant, by which a man and a woman establish between themselves a partnership of the whole of life, is by its nature ordered toward the good of the spouses and the procreation and education of offspring; this covenant between baptized persons has been raised by Christ the Lord to the dignity of a sacrament.”84 (http://www.vatican.va/archive/ccc_css/archive/catechism/p2s2c3a7.htm)
There’s a lot of other good stuff there which you left out, Archbishop Cupich. You might want to give it a read. At least your flock might want to read it, because I’m not too sure they’ll ever hear it from you.
This will be especially important for the members of our own Church as we walk together, respectful not only of the political demands of equality, but above all else, guided by the higher claims of divine revelation. Our aim in all of this will be to hold fast to an authentic understanding of marriage which has been written in the human heart, consolidated in history, and confirmed by the Word of God.
What the heck does that even mean? Umm, no. I don’t have to respect the false political demands of equality. In fact, I shouldn’t. There’s only one kind of marriage, and there is NOTHING equal about it. Suffice it to say that Church teaching was rather lacking in this statement. There’s no surprise that there was not one mention of the children who are going to be harmed by this.
This isn’t the first time Archbishop Cupich has failed on this issue, though. The state of Washington voted in favor of gay marriage when he was in charge of the Diocese of Spokane. (Thank God for Bishop Daly!) His statement now was just as bad as then (http://www.dioceseofspokane.org/bjc_2012/letter-74.htm) :
A Letter to Parishioners: Referendum 74
by Bishop Blase J. Cupich
Dear Sisters and Brothers in Christ,
On Nov. 6, Washington voters will decide the fate of the law passed by our state legislature and signed by the governor, which redefined marriage to include same sex unions. If a majority of voters “approve” Referendum 74, the same-sex marriage law will go into effect on Dec. 6, 2012. If a majority votes “reject,” the law will fall, but, “registered domestic partners” will not be deprived of any of the rights granted to them in laws passed in 2008 and 2009, namely all the rights of traditional marriage. “Registered domestic partnerships” just will not be called “marriages.”
Admittedly, the conflicting positions of this issue are deeply held and passionately argued. Proponents of the redefinition of marriage are often motivated by compassion for those who have shown courage in refusing to live in the fear of being rejected for their sexual orientation. It is a compassion that is very personal, for those who have suffered and continue to suffer are close and beloved friends and family members. It is also a compassion forged in reaction to tragic national stories of violence against homosexuals, of verbal attacks that demean their human dignity, and of suicides by teens who have struggled with their sexual identity or have been bullied because of it. As a result, supporters of the referendum often speak passionately of the need to rebalance the scales of justice. This tends to frame the issue as a matter of equality in the minds of many people, a value that is deeply etched in our nation’s psyche.
Likewise, many opponents of the law redefining marriage have close friends and family members who are gay or lesbian. They too recognize the importance of creating a supporting environment in society for everyone to live a full, happy and secure life. Yet, they also have sincere concerns about what a redefinition of marriage will mean for the good of society and the family, both of which face new strains in our modern world. They are asking the public to take a serious and dispassionate look at what a radical break with centuries of marriage law and practice will mean.
My genuine hope is that we all can value the coming vote on Referendum 74 as an opportunity to have a substantial public debate regarding this critical issue, carried on with respect, honesty and conviction. When addressing issues of depth and passion – indeed, most importantly at such times – we should be committed to the proposition that our public dialogue must be marked by civility and clarity, and that it should generate light rather than heat. As a means of contributing to that effort, I ask your careful consideration of the attached reflections which outline some of the reasons for the Catholic Church’s position recommending that citizens vote “reject” on Referendum 74, and thus overturn the law that redefines marriage. I offer these thoughts with respect, but also out of a sense of duty to contribute to the debate for the good of our state.
But, I also want to be very clear that in stating our position the Catholic Church has no tolerance for the misuse of this moment to incite hostility towards homosexual persons or promote an agenda that is hateful and disrespectful of their human dignity. As the 2006 statement, Ministry to Persons with a Homosexual Inclination, of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops unequivocally states:
All people are created in the image and likeness of God and thus possess an innate human dignity that must be acknowledged and respected. In keeping with this conviction, the Church teaches that persons with a homosexual inclination “must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, no. 2358). We recognize that these persons have been, and often continue to be, objects of scorn, hatred, and even violence in some sectors of our society. Sometimes this hatred is manifested clearly; other times, it is masked and gives rise to more disguised forms of hatred. “It is deplorable that homosexual persons have been and are the object of violent malice in speech or in action. Such treatment deserves condemnation from the Church’s pastors wherever it occurs” (Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, On the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons, Oct. 1, 1986, no. 10.)
In the peace of Christ,
Most Reverend Blase J. Cupich Bishop of Spokane
Did that make you as nauseated as I am? The only Church teaching he managed to muster again and again and again was how we cannot treat homosexual people in an un-Christian manner. Duh! Did you have large numbers of your flock doing this, Archbishop? I missed all those news stories on how wholesale violence against homosexuals is occurring in progressive Washington State. Why is it you think you’ve done such a poor job with your flock that they’d be anything less than charitable towards their homosexual brethren? Why is it that you equate being against homosexual acts and the homosexual lifestyle with hate? I might remind you that the Church calls homosexual acts sinful. Is that hate?
Look, I’m not sure if you think we’re all living in some sort of ivory tower, but we don’t. We have homosexual family members, co-workers, customers and fellow parishioners. Our kids go to school with children of homosexuals. We coach our teams with homosexual families, etc., etc., etc. We probably know far more, as Catholics, about how to live and interact with homosexuals than you ever will. It’s a day-to-day thing for us. It’s not a platitude or photo-op for us. It is life and it didn’t just start on Friday, June 26, 2015. We don’t need the lecture. We need authentic Catholicism where we’re taught about sin, how to deal with it, and how to overcome it in our lives.
Hey, here’s a novel idea! How about a quoting the full Church teaching on homosexuality to help those suffering with homosexual inclinations? That was absent from both of your missives. Maybe you could prevent things like souls being lost to their sins? Wow, what a concept!
It was at least nice that Archbishop Cupich attached Church teachings on the issue to the Referendum 74 letter. That’s more than he did on the recent SCOTUS ruling. That said, it might have been really nice if he actually taught the Church teachings rather than including them as an aside to “contribute to the debate” though.
Before someone asks, no, I can’t read the Archbishop’s mind, but I can tell you that he is not communicating the Church teachings on lovingly ministering to his flock with the homosexual inclination. His lack of clarity on Church teaching is deafening. I don’t know if he just doesn’t want to feel uncomfortable or if he actually thinks the Church is wrong on homosexual acts. My guess has to be the latter because I’ve yet to see him talk about sin or those in jeopardy of losing their immortal soul. I’m hardly alone in that guess. I mean, he can’t even quote Church teaching on it! Bishop Strickland has shown more compassion, wisdom, and love to the homosexuals in his flock than Archbishop Cupich has EVER shown. But Archbishop Cupich has made it clear the “positions of this issue are deeply held and passionately argued.” The phrase “Thanks, Captain Obvious” comes to mind. Too bad we’re just not sure where the heck he stands on homosexual acts after all the ink spilled. It would seem they are just fine with him as long as we don’t call it marriage!
I was really hoping Archbishop Cupich was going to rise to his new station. Sadly, it doesn’t appear this is going to be the case. All he’s done is to continue to dilute Catholic teachings (or at best, just act like they’re a guide to further the discussion) for our brethren with homosexual inclinations and those living in adultery (in case you didn’t know, he wants to give Communion to the divorced and remarried). There doesn’t seem to be anything resembling an effort to get them to lead a life of heroic virtue. There only seems to be an attempt to make them feel comfy. I hope the “red hat” is going to go to someone who supports the Holy Father’s desire to truly minister to those with homosexual inclinations and who will truly defend marriage and the family. This is about far more than “deeply held positions”, Archbishop Cupich. This is about Truth and people’s immortal souls.