Sunday, October 07, 2007

Some Recent Letters to the Editor re: Archbishop Burke

Below are five Letters to the Editor (Post-Dispatch)
Archbishop and politicans: Is it his duty to speak out?
The Post-Dispatch recently printed a question asking if readers "agreed" with Archbishop Raymond Burke's comments regarding withholding holy communion from politicians who, by their demonstrated actions, are public mortal sinners. Asking whether Catholics "agree" with any basic moral teachings and laws of the church is an affront to Catholicism and reflects an anti-Catholic bias. The question posed by the Post-Dispatch apparently is directed to Catholics since non-Catholics are free to form their own opinions, which are irrelevant to the situation anyway since they do not adhere to the Catholic faith.

Archbishop Burke is not stating a personal opinion. The archbishop, who is a canon lawyer, merely is doing his duty as a shepherd by stating important Catholic doctrine in keeping with the church's magisterium. The Catholic Church never was meant to be a democracy. Therefore, basic doctrines of the church are not open to any individual's disagreements. The question of whether or not one "agrees" with the archbishop should not be asked and is not open to discussion. Dissenters are de-facto non-Catholics and are free to leave the church quietly and quickly.

Thomas S. Gates
Thumbs Up for TG! He nails it!

Include all sinners
Is it possible that Archbishop Raymond Burke has introduced a partial pro-life theology? When will he deny communion to all who support the culture of death that exists in the current White House?

In recent years, we have witnessed the deaths of thousands in the Iraq war, based on fraud and deceit, the torture of prisoners, our soldiers fighting a war with inadequate body and vehicle armor, death by starvation in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, and the numerous deaths of our police officers because of the repeal of a ban on the assault weapons.

President James Madison once referenced the "indolence in the clergy." A century later, Mark Twain mused: "Do I seem to be preaching? I only do it because the clergy seem to be on vacation." Let us pray that the solemn silence of Archbishop Burke is not due to indolence.

Donald Lundgren
Osage Beach, Mo.
Clueless...Attempting to respond to people like this is an exercise in futiliy...

Speaking out
Archbishop Raymond Burke is a pastor and administrator of the Catholic Church. He is not a theologian.

As Daniel C. Maguire has written, "He needs to study and teach the works of Sts. Augustine and Thomas Aquinas. St. Thomas Aquinas said, the 'wise legislator' is imitating God who, though all powerful and supremely good, tolerates certain evils lest greater evils ensue."

Archbishop Burke must stop harassing Catholic candidates. He needs to get "religion out of politics and get politics out of religion," as was said in Rex Humbard's obituary.

I do not hear him speaking out on the war, the veto of the State Children's Health Insurance Program or the homeless.

Ann Marie Barry
Only a fool would rely on Maguire...she's like the one who would grab an anchor of a sinking ship hoping to be saved...

The courage of his convictions
The Oct. 3 front page asked readers if they agree with Archbishop Raymond Burke's position on denying communion to Catholics whose political actions defy church doctrine. As a former Catholic, I only can admire Archbishop Burke for having the courage of his convictions.

Contrary to today's spineless, politically correct culture, which condemns objective truth and standards of any kind as intolerant and discriminatory, the Roman Catholic Church stands for something (at least in the case of Archbishop Burke.)

The old adage "If you don't stand for something, you will fall for anything" epitomizes today's politically correct secular culture that stands for anything and everything but truth and is, therefore, corrupt to the core and getting worse every day.

Archbishop Burke will be labeled as intolerant, bigoted, self-righteous, hypocritical and the other standard liberal labels reserved for those politically incorrect conservatives whom liberals love to hate. The phony separation-of-church-and-state argument will be applied to him. If it's any consolation to the archbishop, we evangelical Christians respect his stand and his integrity.

David Floyd
Maryland Heights
A man who sees this situation clearly...

Soul of the issue
Shouldn't Rudolph Giuliani's stand on abortion be a moot point? I mean, he is a twice-divorced and thrice-married Catholic. Last time I checked my catechism, that was grounds for withholding the sacrament. I wish that Archbishop Raymond Burke would focus on the whole picture of Catholicism rather than just life. There isn't a qualification put on mortal sins that says one is worse than the other. A public figure leading a lifestyle that is contrary to the church is just as bad as a public figure espousing beliefs that are contrary. Unless I am mistaken, abortion and remarriage both land you in Hell (unless the sins are reconciled). So why not say that his remarriage (sans annulment) and his pro-choice beliefs would cause him to be denied the sacrament?

I guess it could be concern over clouding the issue. But isn't the issue the soul? It is. And the soul is harmed by all sin. The world is in crisis over the loss of the sanctity of marriage. So is the Catholic Church. Why not castigate the man for receiving communion while in a state of sin? Mortal sin at that? No one is perfect, but the church should try to get us closer in all ways.

I agree with the archbishop's position. I wish that the Catholic Church as a whole would be as brazen about the other moral issues of our time. Life always should be paramount, but other issues involving sin also should be recognized.

Patrick Erstmann
St. Louis
One might conclude that Guiliani is living in a sinful relationship due to his numerous divorces, but this could be an erroneous presumption. Few would know of his status in the Church if it has not been made public. And again, while it may be probable that he cannot be a practicing Catholic because of his marital status, we should recognize that his views and support of abortion are public and very well known.

And the archbishop was asked questions concerning his article, "The Discipline Regarding the Denial of Holy Communion to Those Obstinately Persevering in Manifest Grave Sin" in the publication, Periodica De Re Canonica. "Reporters" provoked the Guiliani questions in an effort to see how Archbishop Burke would react. They've wrongly assumed that he was promoting some candidates over others.

The media tries to manufacture 'news', especially that type which is controversial...they do a grave disservice to the public and should be held accountable.
Source of the Letters to the Editor.

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