Many people involved in the pro-life movement have been scandalized by the silence of many Catholic bishops who have failed to compliment President Donald Trump for the concrete pro-life and religious freedom initiatives he has undertaken during his time in office.
In light of the number of U.S. bishops who appear willing to administer Holy Communion to Catholic politicians with pro-abortion records, one should not be surprised to read, "Catholic Bishop Falsely Claims President Trump is Not-Pro-Life." The ordinary in question, Lexington bishop John Stowe, is the same prelate who not only falsely accused Nick Sandmann of being a racist and disrespecting a Native American in Washington, D.C., but who also refused to apologize for his unjust criticism even after Sandmann proved his innocence and won huge lawsuits against CNN and The Washington Post.
It was at the time of Sandmann's participation in the annual March for Life during which President Trump delivered the first presidential address in person that Bp. Stowe downplayed abortion and argued that "Pro-life is about the dignity and reverence for the human person." It was reported that, from his perspective, being pro-life involves reverencing "lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people." According to the interview he gave to the National Catholic Reporter, Stowe attributes his pro-life perspective to the late Chicago cardinal Joseph Bernardin.
After arguing that abortion is "just one of many" life issues, Bernardin's "seamless garment" position was eclipsed at the end of his life by abuse allegations involving seminarians. One of those seminarians was Steven Cook, who accused Bernardin of abusing him when he was in a high school seminary.
James Grein, whose testimony led to the laicization of ex-Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, also reported that he was abused by Bernardin at Lake Geneva in Wisconsin. According to Grein, McCarrick pulled down his swimsuit and Bernardin groped him. Just as the diocese of Metuchen and the archdiocese of Newark secretly paid financial settlements in the amount of $180,000 to two former priests who had accused McCarrick of sexually abusing them, so too did the archdiocese of Chicago keep quiet a confidential settlement agreement with Cook in the $3 million range.
The archdiocese employed a public relations firm that led many to believe that Cook recanted his accusation before dying of AIDS. If that were true, however, why would Cook have been awarded such a large out-of-court, confidential settlement? Richard Sipe, the noted expert on celibacy and clergy sexual abuse, reported, "Several priests who were associates of Bernardin prior to his move to Chicago revealed that they had 'partied' together; they talked about their visits to the Josephinum to socialize with seminarians. It is a fact that Bernardin's accuser did not ever retract his allegations of abuse by anyone's account other than Bernardin's."
Father Frank Pavone, the prominent pro-life leader who heads Priests for Life, has come to realize that a number of bishops in the U.S. hierarchy are not very outspoken when it comes to either promoting the Church's teaching on respect for human life or exposing what many view as "the most radically anti-life presidential ticket in U.S. history."
An investigation of prelates who appear inclined to give Holy Communion to pro-abortion politicians reveals that many are either perceived to be homosexuals or known to be strong LGBT supporters. Hence, a debatable effect that gay clergy may be having in the Church involves their negative impact on the Church's efforts in promoting respect for life from conception to natural death.
Insofar as closeted homosexual clergy do not have any psychological desire to have a wife and children, some believe homosexual bishops and priests cannot feel the same way about how the lives of unborn children are threatened by abortion as heterosexual clerics who truly have sacrificed having families of their own to follow Christ.
The fact that many homosexuals believe "LGBT rights and abortion rights are inseparable" helps explain why pro-LGBT clergy are less inclined than heterosexual clergy to attend pro-life Rosary rallies, to pray outside of abortion mills, or to participate in other pro-life events. Consequently, it is not at all unusual to find clergy believed to be homosexually orientated to be more concerned about issues like the environment, interreligious dialogue and ministering to gays and lesbians than addressing human life issues like abortion and euthanasia.
It did not come as a surprise to some that pro-LGBT prelates like Cdl. Blase Cupich and Bp. Robert McElroy, along with 67 other U.S. prelates, opposed a draft of a document at the November 2019 meeting of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) that read: "The threat of abortion remains our pre-eminent priority because it directly attacks life itself."
It is interesting to note too how not one pro-LGBT prelate has joined pro-life advocates in lauding President Donald Trump for his leadership in protecting unborn babies and their mothers from abortion.
Though the first lady, Melania Trump, and former vice president Joe Biden both identify themselves as Catholics, Biden's claim is called into question by the fact he has consistently supported Roe v. Wade; supports taxpayer funding of abortions; insisted that the Little Sisters of the Poor be forced to provide contraceptives, including abortifacient drugs to their employees; favors federal funding for Planned Parenthood, the largest single provider of abortion in the United States; and is opposed to notifying parents of minors who get out-of-state abortions.
In light of the LGBT rights and abortion rights connection, and judging from the oral and written statements of pro-LGBT prelates (Cdls. Timothy Dolan, Blase Cupich, Edwin O'Brien and Joseph Tobin; Abps. Wilton Gregory and John Nienstedt; Bps. Joseph Bambera, James Checchio, Robert McElroy, Arthur Serratelli, J. Mark Spalding, Michael Olson, and John Stowe; Aux. Bps. John Dolan and Michael Saporito), it appears there is a connection between pro-LGBT prelates and those who said they would not deny giving Communion to politicians who support abortion.
In keeping with canon 915 ("Those who persist in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to Holy Communion"), a number of bishops have barred pro-abortion legislators from receiving Communion "for the salvation of their souls" and the salvation of those who are scandalized by their actions.
In the course of a papal visit to Brazil in 2007, former Pope Benedict XVI said that Roman Catholic politicians who support legislation allowing women to have abortions should not receive Communion.
Unlike Cdl. Raymond Burke, who argued that pro-abortion legislators "may not present themselves to Holy Communion because they are not in communion with Christ," recognized pro-LGBT prelates like Cdls. Timothy Dolan and Blase Cupich have made it clear they would not deny Holy Communion to known pro-abortion politicians like Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.
Father Robert E. Morey, the priest of the Charleston diocese who denied Biden communion in October of 2019, was following the diocesan directive that states, "Catholic public officials who consistently support abortion on demand are cooperating with evil in a public manner. By supporting pro-abortion legislation they participate in manifest grave sin, a condition which excludes them from admission to Holy Communion as long as they persist in the pro-abortion stance."
Fortunately, there are still some U.S. bishops in office today who are truly pro-life and who did not enter the seminary in order to hide their sexual orientation. One cannot expect a gay bishop, priest or seminarian to question the candidacy of Joe Biden or his running mate Kamala Harris as Tyler bishop Joseph Strickland has done.
Gay bishops and priests have made sure their Knights of Columbus (KofC) councils have kept quiet about how Kamala Harris questioned if Brian Buescher could serve as a judge because of his membership in what she views as the "racist" and "sexist" KofC. Insofar as most of the clerical sex abuse cases that have involved mainly teenage boys have been covered up in most cases by homosexually oriented bishops, one can understand why many of these bishops would support a candidate like Kamala Harris, who notoriously failed to prosecute sexually abusive priests when she was the San Francisco district attorney.
Planned Parenthood-backed politicians like Joe Biden, Nancy Pelosi, Andrew Cuomo and others who claim to be Catholic and yet support pro-abortion legislation have little to fear from many of the homosexually oriented prelates who make up the U.S. Catholic hierarchy.
Homosexual bishops who lack moral credibility after having covered up the rape and abuse of thousands of innocent children, young people and seminarians may feel very little distress when a politician signs legislation allowing unborn children to be killed up to the very moment of their birth. Psychologically, the plight of unborn children does not appear to be a priority for homosexual clerics like it is for heterosexual seminarians, priests and bishops.