I’ve been writing here and elsewhere over the last five years** about the Catholic Church and its many affiliated organizations dipping into the federal treasury to do their “charitable” work, and this past week maybe, just maybe, some in the church leadership have come to understand that those 30 pieces of silver aren’t worth the price.
Readers may recall this post I wrote a couple of weeks ago in which I linked the present problems to the Church’s history with Saul Alinsky beginning in 1940, however author Paul Rahe tells us that they went astray a few years earlier—during the New Deal era.
This ‘pact with the devil’ article is long but well worth the time to read it. Here is one comment from a reader to give you an incentive to read the entire brilliant report on the Church. (Hat tip: Judy)
The Catholic ox is finally being gored. Six decades of kissing the socialist ring is finally, to use a phrase, coming home to roost. Raycon, a reader
Excerpt from ‘American Catholicism’s Pact with the Devil’* by Paul A.Rahe published at Ricochet (emphasis mine):
….In the 1930s, the majority of the bishops, priests, and nuns sold their souls to the devil, and they did so with the best of intentions. In their concern for the suffering of those out of work and destitute, they wholeheartedly embraced the New Deal. They gloried in the fact that Franklin Delano Roosevelt made Frances Perkins – a devout Anglo-Catholic laywoman who belonged to the Episcopalian Church but retreated on occasion to a Catholic convent – Secretary of Labor and the first member of her sex to be awarded a cabinet post. And they welcomed Social Security – which was her handiwork. They did not stop to ponder whether public provision in this regard would subvert the moral principle that children are responsible for the well-being of their parents. They did not stop to consider whether this measure would reduce the incentives for procreation and nourish the temptation to think of sexual intercourse as an indoor sport. They did not stop to think.
In the process, the leaders of the American Catholic Church fell prey to a conceit that had long before ensnared a great many mainstream Protestants in the United States – the notion that public provision is somehow akin to charity – and so they fostered state paternalism and undermined what they professed to teach: that charity is an individual responsibility and that it is appropriate that the laity join together under the leadership of the Church to alleviate the suffering of the poor. In its place, they helped establish the Machiavellian principle that underpins modern liberalism – the notion that it is our Christian duty to confiscate other people’s money and redistribute it.
At every turn in American politics since that time, you will find the hierarchy assisting the Democratic Party and promoting the growth of the administrative entitlements state. At no point have its members evidenced any concern for sustaining limited government and protecting the rights of individuals. It did not cross the minds of these prelates that the liberty of conscience which they had grown to cherish is part of a larger package – that the paternalistic state, which recognizes no legitimate limits on its power and scope, that they had embraced would someday turn on the Church and seek to dictate whom it chose to teach its doctrines and how, more generally, it would conduct its affairs.
I would submit that the bishops, nuns, and priests now screaming bloody murder have gotten what they asked for. The weapon that Barack Obama has directed at the Church was fashioned to a considerable degree by Catholic churchmen. They welcomed Obamacare. They encouraged Senators and Congressmen who professed to be Catholics to vote for it.
I do not mean to say that I would prefer that the bishops, nuns, and priests sit down and shut up. Barack Obama has once again done the friends of liberty a favor by forcing the friends of the administrative entitlements state to contemplate what they have wrought. Whether those brought up on the heresy that public provision is akin to charity will prove capable of thinking through what they have done remains unclear. But there is now a chance that this will take place, and there was a time – long ago, to be sure, but for an institution with the longevity possessed by the Catholic Church long ago was just yesterday – when the Church played an honorable role in hemming in the authority of magistrates and in promoting not only its own liberty as an institution but that of others similarly intent on managing their own affairs as individuals and as members of subpolitical communities.
In my lifetime, to my increasing regret, the Roman Catholic Church in the United States has lost much of its moral authority.
Please read the whole article.
**Endnote: I went to look up some posts I’ve written on the Catholic Bishops promoting a political agenda (with your money!)—including encouraging illegal immigration, funding CASA de Maryland, promoting the global warming myth, and generally lobbying for redistribution of money from one group of citizens to another and discovered that this post from almost one year ago has been visited by scores of readers today for some reason.