WASHINGTON (ChurchMilitant.com) - Cardinals facing accusations of covering up sexual abuse or paying for abortions somehow still embody the spirit of the protection of the most vulnerable.
The March for Life will be held on Jan. 18, the 46th anniversary of the legalization of abortion. It was founded in 1974 by Nellie Gray, a faithful Catholic and lawyer working in Washington, D.C. Church Militant spoke with Gray on a number of occasions, and the one point that Gray made over and over about abortion was that there could be "no exceptions, no compromises."
In its early years, the marchers were primarily Catholics. Those who attended saw people carrying statues of the Blessed Mother, banners showing the Rosary or Knights of Columbus councils, large families and groups of Catholic schoolchildren.
By some estimates, 90 percent of the march was Catholic.
Gray died in 2012, and with new leadership came a new mission for the March for Life — to grow the event and to attract more people, not just Catholics. While they have succeeded in growing the March for Life into the "largest pro-life event in the world," that growth came with a price — loss of its Catholic identity and compromise.
As far back as 2016, the March for Life's lineup of speakers included people that publicly support abortion in the case of rape or incest or contraception that is not abortifacient.
While this year's lineup of speakers at the March isn't controversial, the "related events" promoted by the March for Life shows just how much those Catholic roots have died.
Although their website states that the events listed are not sponsored by the March for Life, it provides a brief description for them and says, "We wanted to make you aware of them during your trip to the Nation's Capital."
Church Militant reached out numerous times to the public relations group for the March for Life but calls and emails were ignored. Church Militant also informed them of the numerous Catholics that are disgusted by the archdiocese of Washington, D.C. putting Cdl. Donald Wuerl at the forefront of the Youth Rally and Mass for Life.
Those most angered by it feel it is disrespectful for the victims of sexual abuse — abuse Wuerl was accused of covering up. By Wuerl's very presence at the youth rally, it shows the hierarchy thinks sexual abuse is "no big deal" and they can get away with allowing it to be "swept under the rug."
Even if the March for Life leaders don't want to step into the mire of the scandal in the Church, they should have taken a deeper look into Cdl. Timothy Dolan's planned keynote address at the Cardinal O'Connor Conference on Life. The March for Life bills it as striving "to promote intellectually rigorous discourse on the sanctity of human life."
Cardinal Dolan's address is billed as "at the heart of the Conference's mission to educate" and is titled: "It all comes down to the proper understanding of the human person."
The irony of these statements is profound given the fact that both the former and current archbishop of New York, Cdl. John O'Connor and Cdl. Dolan, find it morally acceptable to pay for abortions and abortifacient contraceptives for their ArchCare employees.
In a letter from 2015, obtained by Church Militant, Cdl. Dolan noted the practice began in the 1980s under the tenure of Cdl. O'Connor, who "sought advice from several theologians specializing in moral theology" and found the system of reimbursement "acceptable."
The reimbursement system works like this: The diocese pays the union for their benefits fund, and the union uses that money to pay for the health care plan of their choice — with abortion and birth control covered. Cardinals O'Connor and Dolan claim the archdiocese is somehow free from the sin of funding the murder of innocent children while they uncharitably allow the union to pay for it.
To make matters worse, Cdl. Sean O'Malley, the archbishop of Boston, just reported Cdl. Dolan for his cover-up of an abusive priest, Fr. Donald Timone. Despite Dolan knowing of Timone's homosexual predation, Dolan allowed him to remain in active ministry and even called him "remarkably tender and holy" after learning of credible allegations of sex abuse.
The problematic connection with scandalous bishops isn't limited to the national March for Life. The March for Life Chicago's Youth Rally ends with Mass presided by the archbishop of Chicago, Cdl. Blase Cupich. That Mass is "a sending forth" to join the official March on Jan. 13.
Cupich is also one of the speakers at the March for Life rally despite the growing calls for his resignation over his involvement in the scandals and thuggery of the cover-up of sexual abuse in the Church.
At the bishops' annual meeting in Baltimore, Maryland in November, Cupich and Wuerl worked in concert to obstruct sex abuse reform during the meeting. Cupich supported both the Pope's request to block the bishops from voting on any reforms and that there would be no lay involvement in the investigation into the homosexual predation of Theodore McCarrick.
Archbishop Carlo Maria Viganò, in his explosive testimony, accused Cupich as being a member of the "homosexual current." He wrote, "The appointments of Blase Cupich to Chicago and Joseph W. Tobin to Newark were orchestrated by McCarrick, Maradiaga and Wuerl, united by a wicked pact of abuses by the first, and at least of cover-up of abuses by the other two."
Church Militant reached out to the March for Life and the March for Life Chicago but our media queries were not responded to. After we contacted them, they did remove the notice of Mass offered by a priest of the Society of St. Pius X (SSPX). The SSPX does not have faculties (although Pope Francis made a recent exception, allowing SSPX priests to hear confessions for the benefit of the faithful), and its priests do not legitimately exercise any ministry in the Church.
1/8/2019: This article was updated with a clarification about the pope's extension of faculties to the SSPX to hear confession.