Faithful need constant reminders of moral teachings

Re: “Teaching effectively” (Letters to the Editor, Aug. 18)

I agree with Marion Smyth’s letter calling for bishops and priests to “identify the Church’s teaching on abortion, provide the rationale for the teaching and expose the falsities involved in the opponents’ arguments.” I have difficulty understanding Msgr. Owen F. Campion, who has said on more than one occasion in his column that “everybody knows” the Church’s teaching on abortion, a statement also attributed to Pope Francis when asked by a reporter why he hadn’t spoken about abortion and same-sex “marriage” at World Youth Day. Perhaps people do “know” the teaching, but shouldn’t the question be one of faith rather than knowledge? Do people believe the teaching? And do they practice it? If Catholics support and practice abortion (not to mention contraception and same-sex “marriage”) in the same numbers as the rest of society, then there is a problem that needs to be addressed, no? Perhaps an analogy would help. It cannot be denied that people “know” the Church’s teaching on forgiveness. Yet priests and bishops clearly and repeatedly (and rightly) preach on the need for forgiveness. Why? Because people need to be enlightened  and reminded and encouraged about practicing a teaching they find difficult.

James Kurt, Sarasota, Fla.

Real reason

Re: “Parish the thought” (Spectator, Sept. 1).

I really appreciated Greg Erlandson’s article. It can provide us with a platform on which to stand and look at some of the feelings and questions that may arise before we attend our parish. Much of the article seems to ask questions about the outward experience of attending this or that church. Mentioning though the “Mystical Body of Christ,” Greg resonated with me as I’d like to think that is the real interior reason we all attend Mass. Ephesians 1: 3–14 is a picture that Scripture paints for me on this area of thought.

Jeffrey Doolittle, via email

Unfair assessment

Re: “Ideological divide” (Editorial, Aug. 25).

The tone of the editorial bothers me. Simply because the pro-life community questions the Church bureaucracy for giving Church funds to organizations opposed to Church teaching you label them as attacking the Church. I don’t see you using that phrase in connection with the LCWR, CHA, dissident Catholics, President Obama and the Democratic Party.

You call for the same humility and transparency from those who publicly attack the Church. The only reason they go public is because they have been repeatedly ignored and rebuffed by the bishops and their bureaucracy.

James W. Anderson, Hollis, N.H.

Gift of life

Re: “All the lonely people” (Catholic Journal, Aug. 25).

My husband and I, and a few other faithful souls, attempt to help the women who go into Planned Parenthood bent on destroying their unborn babies. It is a discouraging and almost thankless work of love, with “saved” women and babies being few and far between.

We are far from the “Red Door” of the column, but we see other groups of day care children going for their daily walks with their caregivers.

With their beautiful smiles, their waves and their little hands reaching out to touch us, those children minister to us, and our flagging spirits, in ways they will never know. We look forward to seeing them.

They don’t realize it, of course, but they are the lucky children who were saved from an unspeakable horror and allowed to BE BORN.

If only women and their parents, or the men involved with them, could look beyond their immediate “problem” and see the beautiful child God has given them to love! The “unplanned” child a woman brings to birth many times becomes her greatest blessing.

Sarah Brunn, Pittsburgh

Amnesty fallacy

Re: “One man’s mission to renew America’s soul” (News Analysis, July 14).

Los Angeles Archbishop José Gomez’s active support for amnesty is founded on an egregious false equivocation: Amnesty is “compassion.”

The archbishop exacerbates this fallacy by asserting that we have placed too much emphasis on “justice and law” rather than “compassion and common sense” in the debate over illegal aliens.

Just law, before which all men are equal, is the foundation of all societies. It is perilous to disregard laws merely because one finds them “un-compassionate” or “uncharitable” for if the precedent is set, that some laws can be willfully ignored because of this, where is the line drawn? As Sir Thomas More asks in “A Man for All Seasons,” if one cuts down all the laws, where would you hide when the devil turned upon you?

Archbishop Gomez would argue that the current immigration laws are unjust, claiming “fear” and “chauvinism” as their basis.

This is not true. The United States welcomes approximately 1 million immigrants each year; furthermore, no “immigration caps” are put on any foreign countries; instead, the laws are based on a “first come, first served” basis.

Nathan Stone, Cosby, Mo.