Is demonstrated neatly in this FoxNews.com article from Monday.
It is not enough for Senator Kerry to flaunt Church teaching on abortion by swearing everlasting fealty to Moloch, defending Partial-Birth Abortion, and voting against the "Born-Alive Infants" act. It is not enough for Kerry to have a 100% pro-abort rating with NARAL and NOW.
No, Senator Kerry goes beyond that to distort Catholic teaching, asserting a non-existent "freedom of conscience" which supposedly allows him to be a "good Catholic" while thumbing his nose at Church teaching.
Last week I suggested that one could charitably consider Kerry "befuddled and confused" in his understanding of Church teaching on abortion and his reponsibility as a legislator. But the fact is, Kerry and other Catholic politicians have been challenged on this account, and have been publicly corrected, and he persists in holding on to his erroneous and destructive position. It is becoming increasingly and rapidly impossible to avoid the conclusion that Kerry is obstinately and manifestly persisting in grave error, is challenging the teaching authority of the bishops, and is attempting to align himself and those in agreement with him as obedient to some sort of alternative magisterium.
What has emboldened Kerry and other "Catholic" pro-abortion politicians to adopt this position?
Well, look no farther than priests like Fr. Robert Drinan, who teaches at Georgetown University Law Center. Fr. Drinan was a Democratic congressman from Massachusetts for a few years, until the Holy See forced the Jesuits to order him to step down. As a congressman and as a priest, Fr. Drinan has been an object lesson in the "progressive" Catholic's simple method of resolving conflicts between the teachings of the Faith and the dictates of the Democratic party: Any time Fr. Drinan is forced to choose between the two, he invariably and unhesitatingly jettisons Church teaching in favor of Democratic politics. He was also one of the Jesuits in at the ground floor of the push to legitimize abortion among Catholics. His comment on Senator Kerry's problem with Church teaching:
"I'd like to think that religion is not a big factor these days. I think people will say whatever religion he has, that's his," said Rev. Robert F. Drinan, a Catholic priest and former Democratic congressman from Massachusetts.
With priests advocating religious indifferentism, and embracing the Kennedy-esque privatization of religion, it's no wonder Kerry and his cohorts see the way clear for themselves.
And the official spokesperson for the U.S. Conference of Bishops, Mary Ann Walsh, offered this bold witness to Catholic truth:
"There is no candidate that is in agreement with the church on all issues," she said.
Thanks, Mary Ann! Great work, there! That's just the kind of clarification of Church teaching that politicians need so as to form their consciences. And that sort of statement is so helpful to Catholics who are deliberating how they should vote. We need more of that.
The bishops are now deliberating what to do about so-called Catholic politicians like Kerry. Archbishop O'Malley in Boston has said that pro-abort Catholic politicians "shouldn't dare" to present themselves for communion, but is reluctant to impose any disciplinary measures. Cardinal George in Chicago, disappointingly, has indicated that he too will not exercise any disciplinary authority. Archbishop Burke in St. Louis and Bishop Bruskewitz seem to understand the gravity of the situation, as both have taken strong stands that they will deny communion to pro-abort Catholic politicians. While the bishops certainly need to act in a measured and prudent way, the time for mild, inoffensive statements and other half-measures is at an end.
The Kerry problem, as this story at Catholic World News reveals, is the result of nothing less than a deliberate and calculated betrayal from within the Church. This betrayal was led by priests like Fr. Robert Drinan, Fr. Richard McCormick, and Fr. Charles Curran, who, as early as 1964, were instructing the Kennedys and other Catholic politicians in how to subvert Catholic moral teaching.
How many bishops knew about these kinds of goings-on and either looked the other way or actually countenanced them? It is inconceivable that none knew about it at the time. It's certainly known now. Has anything been done to discipline these traitorous priests? No. Every one of the priests mentioned in the article as participants in the betrayal, who are still living, should be suspended a divinis, as they have persisted in publicly advocating their false and deadly doctrines.
The bishops have been proceeding with seeming unawareness of the gravity of the situation. Two generations of Catholics have been allowed to wander in a desert of error and confusion. The result is the Culture of Death, which, we now see, has been in large part the result of active Catholic collaboration. The Kennedys and Kerrys, as well as Frs. Curran, McCormick, and Drinan, are complicit in the extension of the abortion license.