Friday, April 10, 2009

Archbishop Nienstedt calls Obama ‘anti-Catholic,’ vows to pull support from Notre Dame

Archbishop Nienstedt calls Obama ‘anti-Catholic,’ vows to pull support from Notre Dame - Minnesota Independent

Bishops respond to Notre Dame

The bishops and laity have a right and a duty to speak clearly on matters of morals. The fact that the Church is populated only with sinners doesn't change that duty.

If You believe the obvious -that elective abortion is the deliberate killing of innocent human life- then it's not enough simply to refrain from having an abortion. Any decent person who believes this self-evident truth will see clearly that a just society can not passively permit people to kill their children as if they were doing no more than pulling weeds from their lawn.

Elective abortion violates the most basic human right -the right to life- and those who defend the practice are guilty of defending an evil more egregious than human slavery.

Defenders of slavery in the U.S. in the 1800's often used the same logic and arguments used by defenders of abortion today. In both cases they're on the wrong side of history, the wrong side of the truth.

Bishop Nienstedt, thanks for having the guts to speak the truth!


  1. Where was the archbishop when George W. Bush gave the Notre Dame commencement speech? A president, as commander in chief, can declare war, as Bush did in Iraq, based on deeply flawed intelligence. Some estimates put the civilian death toll in Iraq at more than 200,000 people. Barack Obama has declared no wars and while he supports abortion as a reproductive health measure when selected by doctors, he has no power to overturn Roe v. Wade, a U.S. Supreme Court decision. To be clear: George W. Bush's choices resulted in the death of innocents, just as the court that decided Roe's choices did. But Barack Obama? He can't reverse a SCOTUS decision, and he hasn't declared war.

    Nienstadt can and should speak out about moral issues and Catholic doctrine. But the fact that he didn't when Bush -- or his father, who launched the first Gulf War and also gave a Notre Dame commencement speech -- addressed Notre Dame graduates speaks volumes.

    A Minnesota Catholic

  2. Dear Anonymous Minnesota Catholic,

    Thank You for Your comment.

    I don’t know where the Archbishop Nienstedt was when George Bush gave any of his speeches, but I know that is not the issue on the table. War, that bringer of tragedy and devastation, sometimes is justifiable and necessary, but the deliberate killing of the innocent unborn never is justifiable.

    Whether Archbishop Nienstedt ever shared his view on the morality of any particular war, I don’t know. But it’s certainly fitting for him to publicly denounce elective abortion and rebuke Catholics who honor those who, like President Obama, enthusiastically support its continuation, expansion, and funding with public money. The bishop would be negligent not to openly proclaim the truth on such a basic moral issue.

    The Catholic Church openly teaches regarding war, in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (, that:

    2309 The strict conditions for legitimate defense by military force require rigorous consideration. The gravity of such a decision makes it subject to rigorous conditions of moral legitimacy. At one and the same time:
    - the damage inflicted by the aggressor on the nation or community of nations must be lasting, grave, and certain;
    - all other means of putting an end to it must have been shown to be impractical or ineffective;
    - there must be serious prospects of success;
    - the use of arms must not produce evils and disorders graver than the evil to be eliminated. The power of modem means of destruction weighs very heavily in evaluating this condition.
    These are the traditional elements enumerated in what is called the "just war" doctrine.
    The evaluation of these conditions for moral legitimacy belongs to the prudential judgment of those who have responsibility for the common good.

    Therefore, it is possible for armed conflict to be morally justifiable and necessary, but only under strict criteria. Personally, I believe it is doubtful that the Second Gulf War met these requirements, and I know that Pope John Paul II strongly disapproved of that particular conflict.

    The Catechism also teaches regarding abortion (, that:


    2271 Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable. Direct abortion, that is to say, abortion willed either as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law:

    'You shall not kill the embryo by abortion and shall not cause the newborn to perish.'

    'God, the Lord of life, has entrusted to men the noble mission of safeguarding life, and men must carry it out in a manner worthy of themselves. Life must be protected with the utmost care from the moment of conception: abortion and infanticide are abominable crimes.'

    They are badly mistaken who try to draw a moral equivalence between elective abortion and war in general.


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