Constitution + “Subsidiarity” + Parental Rights = Strike Three for Federal Dept. of Education

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It’s time we recognize the three strikes which have always existed against having the federal Dept. of Education and to push for its elimination.

The Constitution

“Roger Pilon, constitutional scholar has said: ‘From beginning to end the [Constitution] never mentioned the word ‘education.’”1

 “Why then was the Department of Education created? President Jimmy Carter, during whose watch the new department came into being, had promised the department to the National Education Association. Contemporary editorials in both the New York Times and the Washington Post acknowledged that the creation of the department was mainly in response to pressure from the NEA. According to Rep. Benjamin Rosenthal (DN.Y.), Congress went along with the plan out of ‘not wanting to embarrass the president.’ Also, many members of Congress had made promises to educators in their home districts to support the new department.”2

 “Subsidiarity”

This concept states that decisions should always be made at the lowest possible level, as described by:

“Excessive intervention by the state can threaten personal freedom and initiative.  The teaching of the Church has elaborated the principle of subsidiarity, according to which ‘a community of a higher order should not interfere in the internal life of a community of a lower order, depriving the latter of its functions, but rather should support it in case of need and help to co-ordinate its activity with the activities of the rest of society, always with a view to the common good.”3

 (To clarify the often misrepresented “common good”:
“The common good consists of three essential elements: respect for and promotion of the fundamental rights of the person; prosperity, or the development of the spiritual and temporal goods of society; the peace and security of the group and of its members.”4)

Parents’  Rights  with  Regard  to  Educating  Their  Children

“Parents are the principal and first educators of their children… ‘The role of parents in education is of such importance that it is almost impossible to provide an adequate substitute.’… Parents should teach their children to subordinate the ‘material and instinctual dimensions to interior and spiritual ones.’… The state may not legitimately usurp the initiative of the spouses, who have the primary responsibility for the procreation and education of their children.”5

Bishop Fulton J. Sheen: “It is a great fallacy for parents to believe that the education of their children depends on the school.  The school is not the primary educator, but the secondary; its authority to teach the children is delegated by the parents, the right inherent in the father and the mother.  Nor is the school ever a substitute for the parents.”6

Conclusion:  This is no justification for a federal department of education.  Just because this mistake is almost forty years old is not a reason for its continuation.  Decisions involving education must be kept at the state and local level so that parents’ can keep a close watch of developments as is their prerogative.  When this occurs, we don’t have to deal with intrusions like Common Core – which was not developed by the states as it claims to have been.  (See the 5-part series on Common Core published by The Ohio Conservative Review in March 2015.)

Nor will school districts which are located in areas holding true to timeless values and proven science have to defend themselves against:  “The U.S. Department of Education will tell school districts Friday that federal law requires them to allow students to use restrooms and locker rooms ‘consistent with their gender identity.’”7

These edicts are made despite:  “Dr. Paul R. McHugh, the former psychiatrist-in-chief for Johns Hopkins Hospital and its current Distinguished Service Professor of Psychiatry, said that transgenderism is a ‘mental disorder’ that merits treatment, that sex change is ‘biologically impossible,’ and that people who promote sexual reassignment surgery are collaborating with and promoting a mental disorder… he explained that transgender surgery is not the solution for people who suffer a “disorder of ‘assumption’” – the notion that their maleness or femaleness is different than what nature assigned to them biologically… Dr. McHugh further noted studies from Vanderbilt University and London’s Portman Clinic of children who had expressed transgender feelings but for whom, over time, 70%-80% “spontaneously lost those feelings.”8

The net result is: education must be kept at the state and local levels to allow decision-making by those closest to its effects, local parents and educators.  Federal control takes away accountability and has shown itself to be prone to enforcing social engineering without opposition.

 

 

1 – “Common Core: Slingshot to Progress or Spider Web? Part 5 of 5 [What slingshot? More spiders here than at the old Munsters’ house],” by Tony Rubio, http://ohioconservativereview.com/2015/03/21/common-core-slingshot-to-progress-or-spider-web-part-5-of-5-what-slingshot-more-spiders-here-than-at-the-old-munsters-house/, 3/21/2015.

2 – ”Cato Handbook for Congress, Policy Recommendations for the 108th Congress,” by the Cato Institute, http://object.cato.org/sites/cato.org/files/serials/files/cato-handbook-policymakers/2003/9/hb108-28.pdf

3 – Part of paragraph 1883 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2nd edition, Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 25th printing, November 2013.

4 – Paragraph 1925, Ibid.

5 – Excerpts from paragraphs 1653, 2221, 2223 and 2372, Ibid.

6 – The Quotable Fulton Sheen,” edited by George J. Marlin, Richard P. Rabatin and John L. Swan, Doubleday, New York, 1989.  This particular quote was taken from “Thoughts for Daily Living, Garden City, New York: Garden City, 1955.

7 – “Schools must allow transgender bathrooms, Department of Education says,” by Gregory Korte, http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2016/05/12/feds-schools-transgender-bathrooms-letter-title-ix/84311104/, 5/13/2016.

8 – “Johns Hopkins Psychiatrist: Transgender is ‘Mental Disorder;’ Sex Change ‘Biologically Impossible’,” by Michael W. Chapman, http://www.cnsnews.com/news/article/michael-w-chapman/johns-hopkins-psychiatrist-transgender-mental-disorder-sex-change, 6/2/2015.

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According to Progressives I am Racist, “Backward” and “Deplorable” Because, as a Catholic, I …

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  1.  Am pro-life and know that all lives matter :“Formal cooperation in an abortion constitutes a grave offense… (The Church) makes clear the gravity of the crime committed, the irreparable harm done to the innocent who is put to death, as well as to the parents and the whole of society… The inalienable right to life of every innocent human individual is a constitutive element of a civil society and its legislation… These human rights depend neither on single individuals nor on parents; nor do represent a concession made by society and the state…” 1Archbishop Charles J. Chaput of Philadelphia: ““Black lives matter because all lives matter — beginning with the poor and marginalized, but including the men and women of all races who put their lives on the line to protect the whole community.”2

  2. Want immigration policies which join compassion and common sense:

    “The more prosperous nations are obliged, to the extent they are able, to welcome the foreigner in search of the security and the means of livelihood which he cannot find in his country of origin…Political authorities, for the sake of the common good for which they are responsible, may make the exercise of the right to immigrate subject to various juridical conditions, especially with regard to the immigrants’ duties toward their country of adoption.  Immigrants are obliged to respect with gratitude the material and spiritual heritage of the country that receives them, to obey its laws and to assist in carrying civic burdens.” 3“Family‐based Immigration Reform:  It currently takes years for family members to be reunited through the family‐based legal immigration system. This leads to family breakdown and, in some cases, illegal immigration. Changes in family‐based immigration should be made to increase the number of family visas available and reduce family reunification waiting times.”4Pope Benedict XVI:  “Every state has the right to regulate migration and to enact policies dictated by the general requirements of the common good, albeit always in safeguarding respect for the dignity of each human person.”5

     

  3. Understand that marriage did not come from the state; therefore, cannot be defined by the state:

    “The parties to a marriage covenant are a baptized man and woman , free to contract marriage, who freely express their consent…”“Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, tradition has always declared that ‘homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.  They are contrary to natural law… Under no circumstances can they be approved… The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible.  This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial.  They must be accepted with respect, compassion and sensitivity… Homosexual persons are called to chastity…”6
  4. Believe that the government should only do for us what we cannot do for ourselves:

    “Excessive intervention by the state can threaten personal freedom and initiative.  The teaching of the Church has elaborated the principle of subsidiarity, according to which ‘a community of a higher order should not interfere in the internal life of a community of a lower order… The principle of subsidiarity is opposed to all forms of collectivism.  It sets limits for state intervention.”7“In effect, the federal government has underwritten massive irresponsibility on the part of low-income fathers. They don’t need to act responsibly because the federal government has woven together a massive financial assistance system for single mothers with kids. The result is that multiple generations of low-income Americans have now grown up in neighborhoods almost entirely bereft of a responsible male presence… In fact, spending on these programs has exploded over the past three decades. Ron Haskins of the Brookings Institution recently testified that spending on the ten largest federal programs for the poor increased from $126 billion in 1980 to $626 billion in 2011. That’s a $500 billion jump in spending, in real terms (after controlling for inflation). The idea that the entirety of this massive run-up in outlays is off-limits and should not be subject to budgetary scrutiny defies common sense.”8

  5. Know that freedom of religion does not mean that the practice of faith is to be held hostage inside church walls:

    “This Vatican Council declares that the human person has a right to religious freedom. This freedom means that all men are to be immune from coercion on the part of individuals or of social groups and of any human power, in such wise that no one is to be forced to act in a manner contrary to his own beliefs, whether privately or publicly, whether alone or in association with others, within due limits…”
    “Furthermore, society has the right to defend itself against possible abuses committed on the pretext of freedom of religion. It is the special duty of government to provide this protection. However, government is not to act in an arbitrary fashion or in an unfair spirit of partisanship. Its action is to be controlled by juridical norms which are in conformity with the objective moral order…”
    “Religious communities also have the right not to be hindered in their public teaching and witness to their faith, whether by the spoken or by the written word…”9


Bishop Fulton J. Sheen: “If by ‘interference in politics’ is meant the interference by the clergy in the political realm of the State, the Church is unalterably opposed to it, for the Church teaches that the State is supreme in the temporal order.  But when politics ceases to be politics and begins to be a religion, when it claims supremacy over the soul of man, when it reduces him to a grape for the sake of the wine of Moloch, when it denied both the freedom of conscience and freedom of religion, when it competes with religion on its own ground, the immortal soul that is destined for God, then religion protests.  And when it does, its protest is not against politics but against a counter religion that is anti-religious.”10

6.  Understand that contraceptives, in vitro fertilization and human cloning are contrary to the dignity of human life because they relegate human reproduction to mere animal breeding: 

Contraception
“The regulation of births represents one of the aspects of responsible fatherhood and motherhood.  Legitimate intentions on the part of the spouses do not justify recourse to morally unacceptable means (for example, direct sterilization or contraception).11

“Another effect that gives cause for alarm is that a man who grows accustomed to the use of contraceptive methods may forget the reverence due to a woman, and, disregarding her physical and emotional equilibrium, reduce her to being a mere instrument for the satisfaction of his own desires, no longer considering her as his partner whom he should surround with care and affection… The right and lawful ordering of birth demands, first of all, that spouses fully recognize and value the true blessings of family life and that they acquire complete mastery over themselves and their emotions.  For if with the aid of reason and of free will they are to control their natural drives, there can be no doubt at all of the need for self-denial.  Only then will the expression of love, essential to married life, conform to right order. This is especially clear in the practice of periodic continence.  Self-discipline of this kind is a shining witness to the chastity of husband and wife and, far from being a hindrance to their love of one another, transforms it by giving it a more truly human character.”12

In Vitro Fertilization

“It is quite legitimate, indeed praiseworthy, to try to find ways to overcome infertility. The problem causes great pain and anguish for many married couples.  Since children are a wonderful gift of marriage, it is a good thing to try to overcome the obstacles which prevent children from being conceived and born… But the Bible tells us there are limits to acceptable methods for conceiving a child.  Recall the story of Noah’s unmarried daughters who tried to get their father drunk so that they might have children by him! Obviously not any means can be used to achieve pregnancy… Obviously, IVF eliminates the marriage act as the means of achieving pregnancy, instead of helping it achieve this natural end.  The new life is not engendered through an act of love between husband and wife, but by a laboratory procedure performed by doctors or technicians.  Husband and wife are merely sources for the “raw materials” of egg and sperm, which are later manipulated by a technician to cause the sperm to fertilize the egg.  Not infrequently, “donor” eggs or sperm are used.  This means that the genetic father or mother of the child could well be someone from outside the marriage. .. But even if the egg and sperm come from husband and wife, serious moral problems arise.  Invariably several embryos are brought into existence; only those which show the greatest promise of growing to term are implanted in the womb.  The others are simply discarded or used for experiments.  This is a terrible offense against human life.  While a little baby may ultimately be born because of this procedure, other lives are usually snuffed out in the process… Never are they to be used as a means to an end, not even to satisfy the deepest wishes of an infertile couple.  Husbands and wives “make love,” they do not “make babies.” They give expression to their love for one another, and a child may or may not be engendered by that act of love.  The marital act is not a manufacturing process, and children are not products.”13

Cloning

“There are a number of reasons why someone would try to engender a new human life through cloning. None would be morally legitimate.  For example, a couple may want to use a cell from a dying child to clone another baby as a way of perpetuating the life of the first child.  Obviously, this would not be a continuation of the dying child, but the bringing into being of a new child.  The dying child would become the “progenitor” of a new life without having agreed to it; the new child would not be treated as a unique individual with his or her own identity, but as an extension of another person.

A man or woman might also want to have a baby without getting married or involving a parent of the opposite sex.  Some homosexual people have said that cloning would be a perfect way to have children, because they would not have to marry someone of the opposite sex.  This would be terribly unfair to the child, depriving him or her of a natural father and mother… Most disturbing of all, some researchers want to use cloning to create human beings solely for experimentation and destruction.  They propose to supply genetically matched tissues for treating various diseases by making human embryos from patients’ body cells, then dissecting these developing embryos for their “spare parts.”13

7.  The first responsibility of educating children goes to the parents.  The parents allow the state to educate their children, not vice versa. Therefore, education policies should be made at the state and local level, not federal:

“Parents are the principal and first educators of their children… ‘The role of parents in education is of such importance that it is almost impossible to provide an adequate substitute.’… Parents should teach their children to subordinate the ‘material and instinctual dimensions to interior and spiritual ones.’… The state may not legitimately usurp the initiative of the spouses, who have the primary responsibility for the procreation and education of their children.” 14


“In accordance with the principle of subsidiarity, neither the state nor any larger society should substitute itself for the initiative and responsibility of individuals and intermediary bodies.”15

“Government, in consequence, must acknowledge the right of parents to make a genuinely free choice of schools and of other means of education, and the use of this freedom of choice is not to be made a reason for imposing unjust burdens on parents, whether directly or indirectly. Besides, the right of parents are violated, if their children are forced to attend lessons or instructions which are not in agreement with their religious beliefs, or if a single system of education, from which all religious formation is excluded, is imposed upon all.”16

 — Given this, the problem is not with Catholicism, but with the group more accurately called “regressive.”

(emphases in the above quotes were retained from the originals, not added)

1 – Excerpts from paragraphs 2272 and 2273 from the Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2nd edition, Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 25th printing, November 2013.

2 – “USCCB president says violence calls for ‘moment of national reflection’,” by Catholic News Service, http://iobserve.org/2016/07/08/usccb-president-says-violence-calls-for-moment-of-national-reflection/. 7/8/2016.

3 – Excerpt from paragraph 2241, Ibid.

4 – “Catholic Church’s Position on Immigration Reform,” Migration and Refugees Services/ Office of Migration Policy and Public Affairs of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/human-life-and-dignity/immigration/churchteachingonimmigrationreform.cfm, August 2013.

5 – “Immigration:  A Principled Catholic Approach Avoids Emotionalism,” by Samuel Gregg, http://www.ncregister.com/daily-news/immigration-a-principled-catholic-approach-avoids-emotionalism, 7/25/2014.

6 – Excerpts from paragraph 1625 and 2357-2359 from the Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2nd edition, Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 25th printing, November 2013.

7 – Excerpts from paragraphs 1883 and 1885, Ibid.

8 – “Are Catholics required to support a continually expanding welfare state?,” by Carl E. Olson, http://www.catholicworldreport.com/Blog/1341/are_catholics_required_to_support_a_continually_expanding_welfare_state.aspx, 5/11/2012.

9 – Excerpts from Sections 2, 4 and 7 of “Dignitatis Humanae” (Of Human Dignity) encyclical by Pope Paul VI, http://www.vatican.va/archive/hist_councils/ii_vatican_council/documents/vat-ii_decl_19651207_dignitatis-humanae_en.html, 12/7/1965.

10 – “The Quotable Fulton Sheen,” edited by George J. Marlin, Richard P. Rabatin and John L. Swan, Doubleday, New York, 1989.  Quote was found in “Characters of the Passion, New York.  P.J. Kenedy and Sons, 1946.

11 – Paragraph 2399 from the Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2nd edition, Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 25th printing, November 2013.

12 – From sections 17 and 21 of “Humanae Vitae” (Of Human Life) encyclical by Pope Paul VI, http://w2.vatican.va/content/paul-vi/en/encyclicals/documents/hf_p-vi_enc_25071968_humanae-vitae.html, 7/25/1968.

13 – “Begotten Not Made:  A Catholic View of Reproductive Technology,” by John M. Haas, PhD, S.T.L., http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/human-life-and-dignity/reproductive-technology/begotten-not-made-a-catholic-view-of-reproductive-technology.cfm

14 – Excerpts from paragraphs 1653, 2221, 2223 and 2372 from the Catechism of the Catholic Church, 2nd edition, Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 25th printing, November 2013.

15 – Paragraphs 1894, Ibid.

16 – Excerpt from Section 5 of “Dignitatis Humanae” (Of Human Dignity) encyclical by Pope Paul VI, http://www.vatican.va/archive/hist_councils/ii_vatican_council/documents/vat-ii_decl_19651207_dignitatis-humanae_en.html, 12/7/1965.

 

 

No Practicing Catholic Will be Fooled by Hillary Clinton’s Claim She “Has Spent Her Life Fighting for Children”1

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One of the current television ads promoting Hillary Clinton for President has her saying that she will make sure every child “has a chance to live up to his or her God-given potential.”

But, can she really expect us to believe that when she also proclaimed on January, 10, 2016:

“First of all, I will always defend Planned Parenthood, and I will say consistently and proudly, Planned Parenthood should be funded, supported, and appreciated, not undermined, misrepresented, and demonized. I believe we need to protect access to safe and legal abortion, not just in principle, but in practice.”2

We can start by recognizing the absurdity of her claim that abortions can be “safe” when 50% of the patients end up dead.  To Hillary:  How can a child realize his/ her potential if killed before birth?  Another thing, you mention is “God-given potential.”  At least you seem to understand the origins of life.  However, how can you rationalize the taking of an innocent life when only the creator of life, God, has the authority to do so?

The right to life is paramount.  “The inalienable right to life of every innocent human individual is a constitutive element of a civil society and its legislation… 3

Hillary Clinton’s opponent, Donald Trump, is far from ideal in proposals and character.  His ungentlemanly comments about women must be rejected outright.  (Although, it is surprising that the culture which accepts contraception and its resulting dehumanizing of women should be so holier-than-thou on this subject.  See footnote #4).  Fortunately, despite his overly assertive personality, he has enough humility to defend human life in addition to freedom of religion and other key positions which Clinton abandons.

Without this foundational attitude toward life, all other policy proposals are mere attempts to win votes and cannot be taken seriously.  Therefore, despite what data may come out of tomorrow’s election, we can be sure that few who support Hillary Clinton are practicing Catholics.

 

1 – From https://www.hillaryclinton.com/feed/hillary-clinton-has-spent-her-life-fighting-for-children-here-are-8-ways-shes-changed-their-lives/

2 – “3 Things You Need to Know About Hillary Clinton’s Record on Abortion,” by Frank Camp, http://www.dailywire.com/news/10024/3-things-you-need-know-about-hillary-clintons-frank-cam

3 – Excerpt from paragraph 2273 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, second edition, Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 25th printing, November 2013.

4https://cartaremi.wordpress.com/2013/02/03/the-pill-has-increased-women-being-treated-as-sex-objects/

Hillary Clinton’s “Freedom of Worship” Cripples Freedom of Religion

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For years, Hillary Clinton and her adversary turned accomplice with regard to religion, Barack Obama, have been attempting a slight of hand which will stifle the religious freedom our nation was founded on.  Their use of “freedom of worship” with impunity is part of their agenda to eliminate opposition to their plans.1

By restricting the freedom of religion to the tightly confined space of the four walls of religious buildings, it ceases to be truly free.  Hillary Clinton even went so far as to use this position to promote the legal form of murder known as abortion:

“Far too many women are denied access to reproductive health care and safe childbirth, and laws don’t count for much if they’re not enforced. Rights have to exist in practice — not just on paper.  Laws have to be backed up with resources and political will.  And deep-seated cultural codes, religious beliefs and structural biases have to be changed.”2

Thus, it is not surprising to hear members of her campaign staff agreeing with a supporter, John Halpin, a staffer at the Clinton allied Center for American Progress, who said of Catholics: “They must be attracted to the systematic thought and severely backwards gender relations and must be totally unaware of Christian democracy…”  Clinton spokesperson Jennifer Palmieri added, “I imagine they think it is the most socially acceptable politically conservative religion. Their rich friends wouldn’t understand if they became evangelicals.”3

This may not hurt her in the election as only 31% of Democrats attend weekly church services.  This number falls to 23% of white Democrats.

Regardless, restricting religious practices to houses of worship is a contradiction to the very nature of religion.  Hillary and most of her fellow Democrats may not believe the war against terrorism is a religious war at its roots.  However, her attempts to hold Christian religions hostage will not be as badly misinterpreted.

 

1 – “However, both the President and his Secretary of State have now replaced “freedom of religion” with “freedom of worship” too many times to seem inadvertent.”  From “Why ‘Freedom of Worship’ Is Not Enough,” by Ashley E. Samelson, https://www.firstthings.com/web-exclusives/2010/02/why-ldquofreedom-of-worshiprdquo-is-not-enough, 2/22/2010.

2 – “Hillary: ‘Deep-seated … religious beliefs’ have to be changed for abortion,” by Ed Morrissey, http://hotair.com/archives/2015/04/24/hillary-deep-seated-religious-beliefs-have-to-be-changed-for-abortion/, 4/24/2015.

3 – “Hillary Clinton Campaign Spokeswoman Mocks Catholics, Calling Catholic Faith ‘Severely Backwards’” by Steven Ertelt, http://www.lifenews.com/2016/10/12/hillary-clinton-campaign-spokeswoman-mocks-catholics-calling-catholic-faith-severely-backwards/, 10/12/2016.

4 – “Preaching to The Choir: How Church Attendance Divides the Parties,” by Ronald Brownstein, http://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2015/04/preaching-to-the-choir-how-church-attendance-divides-the-parties/431928/, 4/6/2015.

Don’t Waste Your Time With “The Tribunal” if Understanding the Catholic Annulment Process is Your Goal

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Many aspects of the Catholic faith are criticized simply because they are misunderstood.  The annulment process is one that mystifies even quite a few who say they are Catholic.

What  is  an  Annulment?

An annulment is not a “Catholic divorce.”  A divorce breaks a civil contract, which can be broken by humans.  A marriage between two baptized Christians is a covenant between them and God – something humans cannot break.  “Until death do you part” applies to all Christians despite attempts to create man-made exceptions over the last five centuries.

A “declaration of nullity” by the Catholic Church simply means that all of the necessary conditions for a sacramental union were not present at the time of the wedding vows.1  This statement does not in any way change the legitimacy status of the children.2

The  Movie’s  Theme

The story involves a previously married Protestant man (Joseph) who wishes to marry a Catholic woman who has never been married (Emily).  Since “until death do you part” clearly applies here, they can only be married in the Church if his first marriage did not exist sacramentally.  Otherwise, he is still married in the eyes of God.  The tribunal must determine whether any spiritual, psychological or physical impediments to marriage existed at the time those vows were taken.  So, how well did the movie portray the process?

Critique

  • The setting: It was a “court” arrangement where the petitioner and respondent3 were present along with the advocate and defender of the bond.In many dioceses, the petitioner, respondent and witnesses only have to submit written testimonies to the tribunal and are not required to make personal appearances.  There was a small disclaimer in the movie’s credits at the end, but it would have been far more effective if it had been mentioned verbally at the beginning.  Small point, and not critical.
  • Prevailing action: What brings this movie down to a “not recommended” rating is that it spent an inordinate amount of time showing a PG-13 version of Emily and her battles with temptations of fornication with the two men involved, sometimes successful sometimes not.  Her level of holiness has absolutely no bearing on the marriage being reviewed.

The director could argue that he wanted to show the reason for Tony’s emotional tug-           of-war resulting from his helping a rival to possibly marry his beloved.  But this                     could have been accomplished with a simple monologue from him explaining his                   moral dilemma.  Filling the movie with her activities was essentially for a soap opera             effect – not at all helpful or appropriate when attempting to explain the annulment               process.

  • Joseph’s irrelevant promises to be a good husband: Near the end, Joseph expressed his fervent intentions to be a loyal and attentive husband.  That’s all well and good, but the tribunal is not assessing his suitability to be a husband again, but to determine whether his first marriage was sacramental and, therefore, exists to the exclusion of another wife.
  • Emily’s feelings and maturity:  Also near the end, she made a case for herself before the tribunal that she possessed the necessary character traits to be a good wife.  Wonderful, but this has nothing to do with the validity of a marriage she was not involved with.  Incidentally, neither Joseph’s nor Emily’s personal evaluation of their current state of maturity and resolve would have been included in any written responses for either forms of the tribunal process.
  • Defender of the bond: He was given the opportunity to display an eruption of anger certainly not typical of people in this process.  The director must have wanted Hollywood more than accuracy.
  • Starting the engagement relationship with deliberate deception: Before the decision of the tribunal was known, Tony offered Joseph the engagement ring he had bought for Emily some time ago.  After he convinced Joseph to accept it, they agreed that if Emily were to ask how he obtained that ring, Joseph was to say he bought it on the internet.  He probably shouldn’t have used the ring in the first place and then he violated the trust that must exist between husband and wife by lying about its origins.  This is funny only to the secular crowd which views life as a sitcom.
  • Proceeding down the aisle with Saturday Night Live irreverence: The lack of respect for marriage continued to the end of the movie when Tony and Emily’s best friend, Amana, were seen going down the aisle together in the wedding procession.  They were giggling and having a great time as they made only slightly veiled comments about hooking up later.

Movies which inform a misguided society about Catholic beliefs and practices are needed.  Unfortunately, “The Tribunal” does much more damage than good.  Reading about annulments on the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ site or the Catechism of the Catechism would be a much better choice.

1 – “’Annulment’ is an unfortunate word that is sometimes used to refer to a Catholic ‘declaration of nullity.’ Actually, nothing is made null through the process. Rather, a Church tribunal (a Catholic Church court) declares that a marriage thought to be valid according to Church law actually fell short of at least one of the essential elements required for a binding union.”

“For a Catholic marriage to be valid, it is required that: (1) the spouses are free to marry; (2) they are capable of giving their consent to marry; (3) they freely exchange their consent; (4) in consenting to marry, they have the intention to marry for life, to be faithful to one another and be open to children; (5) they intend the good of each other; and (6) their consent is given in the presence of two witnesses and before a properly authorized Church minister. Exceptions to the last requirement must be approved by Church authority.”  http://www.foryourmarriage.org/catholic-marriage/church-teachings/annulments/

2 – “A declaration of nullity has no effect on the legitimacy of children who were born of the union following the wedding day, since the child’s mother and father were presumed to be married at the time that the child was born. Parental obligations remain after a marriage may be declared null.”  http://www.foryourmarriage.org/catholic-marriage/church-teachings/annulments/

3 – “The person who is asking for the declaration of nullity – the petitioner – submits written testimony about the marriage and a list of persons who are familiar with the marriage. These people must be willing to answer questions about the spouses and the marriage. If the other spouse did not co-sign the petition, the tribunal will contact that spouse – the respondent – who has a right to be involved. In some cases the respondent does not wish to become involved; the case can still move forward.”  http://www.foryourmarriage.org/catholic-marriage/church-teachings/annulments/

4 – “Each party may also appoint a Church advocate to represent him or her before the tribunal. A representative for the Church, called the defender of the bond, will argue for the validity of the marriage.”  http://www.foryourmarriage.org/catholic-marriage/church-teachings/annulments/

“Catholic” VP Candidate Kaine Doesn’t Understand Church’s Doctrine on Marriage, the Book of Genesis and Pope’s Statement

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In his desire to remain relevant in a capricious society, Tim Kaine said the Catholic Church may one day allow same-sex “marriages.”

“Kaine, who attends a primarily African-American Catholic parish in Richmond, Virginia, acknowledged that his “’unconditional support for marriage equality is at odds with the current doctrine of the church I still attend.’…”

The Democratic VP candidate, a self- proclaimed Catholic, not only approves of such impossible unions, but he doesn’t understand the basics of his faith as evidenced by:

“’But I think that’s going to change, too,’ he said to applause, invoking both the Bible and Pope Francis as reasons why he thinks the church could alter its doctrine on marriage.”1

But  Church  Doctrine  Can’t  Change

But, Mr. Kaine, doctrine is in unchangeable.  Practices may change over the years, but doctrine is permanent.

For example, the doctrine of Jesus’ “hypostatic union”2 of the divine and human has always been true despite the Arian heresy (arising around AD 300) which “was willing to grant Out Lord every kind of honor and majesty just short of the full nature of the Godhead… He was granted, one might say (paradoxically), all the divine attributes – except divinity.”3

Also, the Church knows that Jesus is present body, soul and divinity in the Eucharist4 starting with the Last Supper and no Christian revolution can change that reality.5

Doctrine is in unchangeable.6

The same goes for marriage.  That it can only be between one man and one woman goes back to its very beginning.  It was not invented by humans and thus cannot be redefined by humans.

Kaine  Forgets  About  the  Reality  of  Sin  as  well  as  the  Definition  of  a  Family

” ‘I think it’s going to change because my church also teaches me about a creator in the first chapter of Genesis who surveys the entire world including mankind and said it is very good, it is very good,’ he said.”1

Yes, God saw that His creation was good.  Then, two human beings threw a wrench into this wonderful situation by introducing sin into the world.  Some sins are “disordered behavior”7 and homosexual acts are in this category.  God’s creation is good, but some human actions are not.

Like most errors, Kaine took a verse from Genesis out of context in order  to justify his acceptance of same-sex “marriage” plus the way he came to that conclusion: “‘My three children helped me see the issue of marriage equality as what it was really about, treating every family equally under the law,’ he said.1

He summarized with: “‘To that I want to add, who am I to challenge God for the beautiful diversity of the human family?’ Kaine asked. ‘I think we’re supposed to celebrate it, not challenge it.’“1

The family, a very nice sentiment.  However, to suggest that we can invent a family headed by two homosexual men or women is flawed because the “arrangements of two men or two women are incapable of such witness and present motherhood and fatherhood as disposable.”  [ For the complete answer to the question of single parents vs. two homosexual heads of household, see footnote 8]

Kaine,  Like  Many  Others,  Takes  “Who  am  I  to  judge?”  Out  of  Context

He concluded his argument for same-sex marriage by saying, “Pope Francis famously said, ‘Who am I to judge? ‘ Kaine continued, referencing the pope’s 2013 comment when asked about gay priests in the church.”

One would expect the secular new media to take comments from a religious leader out of context, but a self-proclaimed Catholic like Tim Kaine?

Here’s a good summary of the issue: “When the Pope said, ‘Who am I to Judge’, he was not talking about a situation where an active and unrepentant homosexual was the subject of discussion. In the Pope’s own words, he was talking about a person who had, ‘experienced a conversion’, has gone to confession and ‘seeks the Lord’… “

“When they cannot take one of his statements out of context and when they cannot twist their interpretation to somehow support progressivism, they ignore it completely. This is why you do not see major news outlets reporting that Pope Francis calls on Catholics to defend marriage as a relationship between one man and one woman….”

“You will not see the NBC Nightly News reporting the Pope’s recent speeches and homilies in the Philippines, such as:

‘The family is also threatened by growing efforts on the part of some to redefine the very institution of marriage, by relativism, by the culture of the ephemeral, by a lack of openness to life.’9

Case closed.

Conclusion

This much can be said about Tim Kaine.  If he were to be elected Vice-President, there is no doubt he could continue the error-riddled legacy of the current pseudo-Catholic in that same office, Joe Biden.

If Kaine believes the Church will someday change the definition of marriage, he needs to be prepared for an endless wait!

 

 

 1 – “VP Candidate Tim Kaine Says Catholic Church Will Accept Marriage Equality,” from “Bondings 2.0” reposting a newwaysministryblog, https://wordpress.com/read/blogs/29908851/posts/38582

2 – “The union in one person, or hypostasis, of the divine and human natures. Jesus Christ is both God and man in virtue of the hypostatic union, a mystery of faith in the strict sense… Although he is God and man, he is not two but one Christ. And he is one, not because his divinity was changed into flesh, but because His humanity was assumed to God. He is one, not at all because of a mingling of substances, but because he is one person…”  From New Catholic Encyclopedia, copyright 2003, http://www.encyclopedia.com/article-1G2-3407705521/hypostatic-union.html

3 – “The Great Heresies,” by Hilaire Belloc, TAN Books and Publishers, Inc.; Rockford, Illinois, republished in 1991 (first published in 1938 by Sheed and Ward, London).

 4 –“The Eucharistic presence of Christ begins at the moment of the consecration and endures as long as the Eucharistic species subsist.  Christ is present whole and entire in each of the species and whole and entire in each of their parts, in such a way that the breaking of the bread does not divide Christ.”  Paragraph 1377 of the Catechism of the Catholic Church, second edition, Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 25th printing; November , 2013.

5 – “It was above all on ‘the first day of the week,’ Sunday, the day of Jesus resurrection, that the Christians met ‘to break bread.’From that time on down to our own day the celebration of the Eucharist has been continued so that today we encounter it everywhere in the Church with the same fundamental structure.  It remains the center of the Church’s life.”  Paragraph 1343, Ibid.  A – Acts 20:7.

6 – “In catechesis, ‘Christ, the Incarnate Word and Son of God,…is taught – everything else is taught with reference to him – and it is Christ alone who teaches – anyone else teaches to the extent that he is Christ’s spokeman, enabling Christ to teach with his lips… Every catechist should be able to apply to himself the mysterious words of Christ: ‘My teaching is not mine, bu his who sent me.’”  Paragraph 427, Ibid.

7 – “… Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravityB, tradition has always declared that ‘homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.’C  They are contrary to the natural law… Under no circumstances can they be approved.”  Sections of Paragraph 2357, Ibid.

8 – “What about single parents? These families lack a father or a mother, just like households headed by two men or two women.
A child is meant to be raised by his or her own, married father and mother. But there are times when, due to family tragedies or other unfortunate circumstances, this ideal cannot be realized. The Church acknowledges the difficulties faced by single parents and seeks to support them in their often heroic response to meet the needs of their children. There is a big difference, however, between dealing with the unintended reality of single parenthood and approving the formation of “alternative families” that deliberately deprive a child of a father or a mother, such as arrangements headed by two men or two women. Undesired single parenthood can still witness to the importance of sexual difference by acknowledging the challenges faced by single parents and their children due to the lack of a father or mother. In contrast, arrangements of two men or two women are incapable of such witness and present motherhood and fatherhood as disposable. These arrangements of themselves contradict the conjugal and generative reality of marriage and are never acceptable. Children deserve to have their need for a father and a mother respected and protected in law.”  http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/marriage-and-family/marriage/promotion-and-defense-of-marriage/frequently-asked-questions-on-defense-of-marriage.cfm

9 – “Did You Hear What Pope Francis Said?” by Bob Sullivan, http://bsullivan.org/did-you-hear-what-pope-francis-said/

Parallel: Overlooking a Candidate’s Stand on Abortion or Concentration Camps

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“Litmus test” issues have been denigrated by the press for so long that most citizens are reluctant to suggest that some legitimate ones exist.

There is one foundational right without which all other rights cannot emanate.  It is one which the Supreme Court tied itself in knots in 1973 using bizarre logic regarding privacy to take away the Right to Life and legalize abortion.

Without protecting life at its very beginning, every other cause is irrelevant.

“It is impossible to further the common good without acknowledging and defending the right to life, upon which all the other inalienable rights of individuals are founded and from which they develop.” –Pope John Paul II, The Gospel of Life1

A certain way to raise a liberal’s ire is to say a particular judge should not be considered for the Supreme Court unless he/ she is pro-life.  They would rail against such a “litmus test.”

But suppose a candidate for Congress was asked for an opinion about the concentration camps in Germany during World War II.  What would the Left say if that individual passed on that by saying those killing camps were the business of the Germans and we should not have taken a stance at that time because their legal system allowed it?  Would the secular news channels have enough hours in a broadcasting day to declare that this candidate was unqualified?

Both the right to life and concentration camp issues are legitimate “litmus tests.”  It defies logic that only the second one is acceptable.  The only conclusion which can be drawn is that, to most “progressives”, all lives are not created equal.

 

1http://www.usccb.org/issues-and-action/human-life-and-dignity/abortion/living-the-gospel-of-life.cfm