On September 6, Catholic News Agency — owned by EWTN — published a laudatory piece on Sen. Tim Kaine, highlighting his early connections to Liberation Theology in Honduras and how it transformed his worldview and helped kickstart his political career. Nowhere does the article mention Kaine's abortion and same-sex marriage advocacy, nor does it make clear that Liberation Theology is an ideology explicitly condemned by the Church.
Multiple commenters beneath the article expressed disbelief that EWTN would allow CNA to run such a piece praising a pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage Catholic during election season. One outraged woman wrote:
CNA, what happened to our EWTN? How could you softball a candidate with a stealth pro-abortion platform!!? How could you even CONSIDER it!?!! Who is the author of this hit piece to faithful pro-life Catholics!!?! I have been monthly donating to EWTN since the early 90s. Not any more!!
A Facebook meme was even created by a noted Catholic author mocking CNA.
Sitting in judgment from a distance is what the Pharisees did in the Gospels. Do not forget Jesus' harsh words for them.
It is actions like yours that undermines the pro-life unity of the Church. You make Christianity look harsh and judgmental because you actually act that way.
The archbishop also publicly released a false statement claiming, "Neither the World Meeting of Families—Philadelphia 2015 nor any of its leadership supports Planned Parenthood" — this in spite of the fact that he was fully aware that Pennsylvania governor Tom Wolf (whom Abp. Chaput named an honorary co-chair of the event) is hailed by Planned Parenthood CEO Cecile Richards as "[the] first governor in the history of this country who is also a former Planned Parenthood escort." Wolf also appointed a Planned Parenthood executive to his transition team and a former Planned Parenthood executive as his chief of staff.
Ken Gavin, communications director for the Philadelphia archdiocese, wrote ChurchMilitant.com Monday also disclaiming any responsibility for the CNA article while — like his ordinary — attacking ChurchMilitant.com for simply asking for comment.
We responded in part, "[Abp. Chaput] holds himself forth as a faithful Catholic and issues strong statements defending Church teaching — yet excoriates faithful Catholics while giving white-glove treatment to powerful, pro-abortion politicians. In our world, that's called a double standard."
(Note bene: After our exchange with the archbishop, CNA decided to rerun an older article critical of Tim Kaine's support for abortion and gay marriage.)
Watch the panel discuss all this in "The Download—Double Standard in Philadelphia."