Archbishop misguided on immigration question

Re: “One Man’s Mission to renew America’s Soul,” OSV, 14 July 2013.

I wonder if Archbishop Jose Gomez of Los Angeles has a guilt complex due to his coming to the United States from Mexico in 1987 as a legal immigrant and then getting citizenship. It seems all he ever writes about is “amnesty, amnesty, amnesty for illegals.” I noticed that he wrongfully always refers to illegal aliens as “immigrants” when that word implies that the person followed the laws and customs of the country he is immigrating into ... illegal aliens ignore the laws and customs.

Archbishop Gomez talked about the right of all people to work. So, all the people of the world have a “right” to come to America illegally and work? That’s a ridiculous assertion by him! And apparently he wants to open our borders up to the whole world! In this article, he complained that illegal aliens cannot get a driver’s license. So? No benefits should be afforded to illegal aliens, period. With high unemployment among our own citizens, why should we just bless another 11 million to 20 million illegals to work here legally, and compete with Americans for jobs?

Effie Parsons, Fayetteville, N.C.

Troubling compromise

Re: “After rulings, it’s time to preach love, not fear” (Essay, July 14).

I agree with Melinda Selmys that providing gays with the resources to guide them toward right decisions is important, but I disagree that we must “necessarily” lose this culture war and “only by losing it will the Church be reborn ...” There is more than one way to spread the Gospel. If God is calling you to assist gays by “supplying them with physical and emotional resources,” then do that. But don’t discourage those who are fighting to defend the institution of marriage in the legal/political realm and don’t imply that this is impossible to do in a loving manner.

By taking the opportunity to inform people of the Church’s long-standing teachings regarding the purpose of marriage and sexual morality she says we are “seeking to defend Christendom rather than spread the Gospel.” What is the basis for that assertion? Allowing the institution of marriage to be compromised just so immorality is legitimized does not seem to be a loving approach to spreading the Gospel.

Glen Ernstmann, Greenwood, Mo.

Common error

Much could be said about Melinda Selmys’ essay on the response to homosexual calls for legal (and moral) parity with heterosexual marriage. I would like to comment on one analogy: that the Crusades were “motivated by fear” and an “evangelical disaster.” Selmys seems to have fallen into a common error that the Crusades were intended to convert Muslims. They weren’t. The Church has never condoned forced conversion. Protect pilgrimage routes, yes, regain the Holy Land, yes, but not convert by the sword. In fact, the story of the Children’s Crusade seems to have advocated the sort of approach Selmys would approve of, since the children set out to conquer with love. In any case, a broader acquaintance with history undermines the usual assumption that the Church’s preferred tactic in times of stress is coerced regimentation. Truly, it is only by laying aside our various fears that we can actually hear the constant call to love the sinner, if not the sin.

Carol Miller, Lloyd, Fla.

Hidden message?

Melinda Selmys’ July 14 commentary has superficial appeal because the term “love” sprinkled throughout brings to mind the joy of honest, caring and cherished relationships. The terms love and put away the sword were used tactically in an attempt to embarrass and silence those who fervently see gay marriage as a flagrant attack upon the dignity of traditional family life.

If the term “love” is used tactically it loses its beauty and brings to mind deception rather than true affection. We, of course, love our homosexual brethren, but that does not entail love of deeds or of gay marriage. Thus the basic questions are whether the commentary is a pro-gay marriage presentation and, if so, why was it given such prominent placement in a Catholic publication? Your subscribers can re-read it and decide.

David J. Young, Supply, N.C.

Song’s true meaning

Re: “Hope floats” (Catholic Journal, July 14).

What an excellent article by Robert P. Lockwood about the horrible epidemic of suicides. In my family, there have been so many men killing themselves. We have so much personal pain.

But I must point out that “Night Moves” by Bob Seger is not about suicide. It is about teenage fornication.

I am from the Detroit area, and Bob is from here.

Doreen Mueller, Clinton Township, Mich.

Teaching remains clear

“Gay marriage rulings limited, but troubling” (News Analysis, July 14).

The Church has always taught that homosexual acts are “acts of grave depravity” that “are contrary to the natural law” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, No. 2357).

The Catechism of the Catholic Church points out that “sexuality is ordered to the conjugal love of man and woman” and it has a twofold end: “the good of the spouses themselves and the transmission of life” (No. 2360-2363).

Dan Lyons, Bloomsbury, NJ.