Paul Ryan has been a thorn in the side of the liberal, pro-abort, cafeteria Catholycs in Name Only for a long time. They have done everything to attack him & mislead people into thinking that his budget & other things he has pushed for are contrary to Catholic teaching & should be stopped. Yet these are the same people who claim it is OK to support abortion & still be a good Catholic. 1 of the gangs leading those attacks are the Nuns on the Bus sponsered ny NETWORK who are affiliated with the Leadership Council of Women Religious, a group that is not known for being faithful to the magestrial teachings of the Catholic Church. They forget that there is a difference between what the Catholic Church teaches is intrinsicly evil & always wrong, like abortion or its teachings on dealing with the poor which allow for prudential judgment as to what is best.
Another area they often attack him on (as do some on the right) is how he sometimes references Ayn Rand. He makes it clear however, that he doesn't blindly buy into what she says. Rather he points out what is good in her writings. As he told the National Catholic Reguister "I am by no means an objectivist; I am a Catholic, you know. I am nothing close to an objectivist, but I do think Ayn Rand did a service, did a great job of outlining the morality of capitalism, of making the moral case for freedom, free enterprise and capitalism. You don’t have to buy into all the objectivist stuff to appreciate what she did on that front
.” The irony here is that these same people on the left attacking him for this are the ones who point to Vatican II's statements on truth as a justification for their relativistic views. Yet they attack Ryan for properly following that teaching.
In the past few days, several Bishops have spoken out in defense of Paul Ryan & how he is being a faithful Catholic. Being very careful (& rightly so) to not make it sound like they are endorsing him. While they aren't endorsing him, you can be sure that the left will attack them & say they have. Yet, they applaud a Bishop or Bishop who supports their side. Can you say double standard?
The 1st Bishop to defend him was, naturally enoough, his own Bishop, Robert Morlino of Madison. (You may remember that Morlino has been making liberals in his diocese upset by working to clean up the mess in the Platteville parishes.) Last Thursday (16 Aug) Bishop Morlino published a column on the Diocese of Madison Catholic Herald
website, Subsidiarity, solidarity, and the lay mission.
In it he starts out by saying how proud he is of Ryan's accomplishments. Then he goes on to say "It is the role of bishops and priests to teach principles of our faith, such that those who seek elected offices, if they are Catholics, are to form their consciences according to these principles about particular policy issues."
The Bishop adds "However, the formation of conscience regarding particular policy issues is different depending on how fundamental to the ecology of human nature or the Catholic faith a particular issue is. Some of the most fundamental issues for the formation of a Catholic conscience are as follows: sacredness of human life from conception to natural death, marriage, religious freedom and freedom of conscience, and a right to private property.
Violations of the above involve intrinsic evil — that is, an evil which cannot be justified by any circumstances whatsoever. These evils are examples of direct pollution of the ecology of human nature and can be discerned as such by human reason alone. Thus, all people of good will who wish to follow human reason should deplore any and all violations in the above areas, without exception. The violations would be: abortion, euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide, same-sex marriage, government-coerced secularism, and socialism."
In short, all the things that Ryan does follow the teachings on by opposing & the catholycs on the left see as things that are OK to support.
Then Bishop Morlino goes in for the kill. "In these most fundamental matters, a well-formed Catholic conscience, or the well-formed conscience of a person of good will, simply follows the conclusions demanded by the ecology of human nature and the reasoning process. A Catholic conscience can never take exception to the prohibition of actions which are intrinsically evil. Nor may a conscience well-formed by reason or the Catholic faith ever choose to vote for someone who clearly, consistently, persistently promotes that which is intrinsically evil." He totally undermines all the relativistic justifacation those catholycs use to support Obama.
But the good Bishop doesn't stop there. Next he talks about a well formed conscience & how you know it is. "However, a conscience well-formed according to reason or the Catholic faith, must also make choices where intrinsic evil is not involved. How best to care for the poor is probably the finest current example of this, though another would be how best to create jobs at a time when so many are suffering from the ravages of unemployment. In matters such as these, where intrinsic evil is not involved, the rational principles of solidarity and subsidiarity come into play."
Then He goes on to explain what the authentic Catholic teaching is on subsidiary & solidarity are. Next he explains how to apply them in the examples mentioned. "As one looks at issues such as the two mentioned above and seeks to apply the principles of solidarity and subsidiarity, Catholics and others of good will can arrive at different conclusions. These are conclusions about the best means to promote the preferential option for the poor, or the best means to reach a lower percentage of unemployment throughout our country. No one is contesting here anyone’s right to the basic needs of food, clothing, shelter, healthcare, etc. Nor is anyone contesting someone’s right to work and so provide for self and family. However there can be difference according to how best to follow the principles which the Church offers."
After expanding a bit on this he goes on to defend Paul Ryan as a good Catholic. "But, as I’ve said, Vice Presidential Candidate Ryan is aware of Catholic Social Teaching and is very careful to fashion and form his conclusions in accord with the principles mentioned above. Of that I have no doubt. (I mention this matter in obedience to Church Law regarding one’s right to a good reputation.)" Not only does he defend Ryan, he points out how those attacking him by claiming he isn't a good Catholic are the ones disobeying Catholic law in the way they are doing so. This after showing several other times how they haven't been the good catholics in other ways. Bishop Morlino did so in a way that didn't point fingers, rather he held up the truth & allowed their actions to speak for themselves.
But it is not only Bishop Morlino who has spoken out in support of Ryan. Denver Archbishop Samuel Aquila wrote in a column about Ryan
"Ryan is a Catholic and a fiscal conservative. Over the past few months he been has the subject of considerable criticism for his political views. His fiscal perspective has been roundly condemned as being somehow anti-Catholic- even by a few American bishops. At the core of this charge is the idea that Ryan is compassionless to the poor
." Archbishop Aquila looks at some of Ryan's fiscal plans. He admits that he doesn't "know whether Paul Ryan’s fiscal plans are the right plans for America’s present- or her future
."Then he goes on to say "But claims that Paul Ryan’s plan run deeply counter to Catholic social teaching are unfounded and unreasonable. Some criticisms are so insidious that one wonders whether the critics have actually read Ryan’s plans
Like Bishop Morlino, Archbishop Aquila looks at the difference between between what is non-negotionable & what requires prudential judgment. He goes on to explain how to properly debate these issues. "But a primary element of the debate for Catholics- for all reasonable adults- must be the long-term consequences of our choices. St. Thomas Aquinas’ Summa Theologica insists that strategic decisions take place in light of our end, or purpose, and the means to get there- rather than the dictates of immediate sentimental inclinations
He concludes by saying "We should have a serious debate about whether Paul Ryan’s plans- and those of his political opponents- serve our national purpose. We should discuss seriously whether they utilize just means. But we should also discuss whether his plans, and those of his opponents, prudently steward the resources we have.
Paul Ryan is concerned that America will soon be bankrupt, and so we must make hard choices. If he is right, and we ignore the message because the consequences seem compassionless, our sentimental affections may cripple the ones our Lord loves the most- our children."
These last two paragraphs make it clear that what Ryan is doing in his budget proposals is an attempt to apply authentic Catholic teaching. IMHO, he is also saying those attacking him & putting forth what they say should be done are ignoring what Ryan is following.
Next we have New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan, president of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops. He recently had praise for Ryan came in an interview with Sirius Catholic Radio wherein he noted his close personal friendship with the candidate
. That came about when Dolan was Archbishop of Milwaukee. Dolan said "I have immense regard and admiration and affection for him, just personally
Dolan went on to share some of the coversation Ryan & him have had about the budget. "He (Ryan) did say, 'I bristle when any Catholic politician who dares to suggest that we need to get our fiscal house in order, that we need to balance the budget, that we need to show some frugality and restraint, is automatically branded as anti-poor. . . . I am passionate about the poor. That, too, comes from my religious conviction. . . . Nobody suffers more from runaway deficits and a poor economy than the poor. And the best way we can help the poor is by getting our financial house in order — meaning jobs will go up, employment will go up, and they’ll be helped.'”
“And I wrote back and said, ‘You’ve got a good point.’ ‘And,’ I said, ‘let me applaud some of the things you are doing, namely your call for financial accountability and restraint and a balanced budget . . . and . . . let me also applaud your obvious solicitude for the poor.”
Dolan added “Once again it comes down to that prudential judgment. How are we going to do it?”
"He and I had a good, heated conversation and I offered some criticism which he was gracious in accepting. . . . [Ryan said he believes it is] 'probably time to ask a big question . . . whether so-called entitlement programs are the best way to help the poor. . . . I’m for the entitlement programs. We always have to have a vigorous safety net. But if we don’t do something to save them, our huge entitlement programs, like Medicare and Social Security' — to which he is committed, by the way — are going to flounder. So I’m kind of the only one saying what we’ve got to do to save them. Please don’t say to me that I’m the one about to undo them. Actually, if we don’t do this, they’re going to be undone.'”
"So I admire him. He’s honest. He’s refreshing. Do I agree with everything? No, but . . . I’m anxious to see him in action."
Ryan wrote the following to Cardinal Dolan in April: "The vast network of centralized bureaucracies under a government that grows without limits has reached the point where an increasing majority of citizens are now receiving more in government payments than they provide in revenues. We believe human dignity is undermined when citizens become passive clients living on redistributions from government bureaucracies. Twenty years ago Blessed Pope John Paul the Great identified these problems as the “Social Assistance State” in his encyclical Centesimus Annus: “By intervening directly and depriving society of its responsibility, the Social Assistance State leads to a loss of human energies and an inordinate increase of public agencies, which are dominated more by bureaucratic ways of thinking than by concern for serving their clients, and which are accompanied by an enormous increase in spending.” . . . What he warned against as a threat to human dignity is now being realized in America."
Cardinal Dolan affirmed on his radio show this week that the social-assistance state is “not the end-all, be-all. And it shouldn’t become an end in itself, and sometimes, it can become strangling.” He went on to credit Ryan with considering subsidiarity & solidarity in his approach to public policy. “It’s a both-and, not an either-or,” consideration, as most things in Catholic chemistry are.” Dolan also explained the proper application of subsidiary & solidarity. "The subsidiarity would seem to say, “Hey, we need to work at the local level: families, neighborhood, churches, volunteer associations. The closer we can get to the folks, and the more we can avoid ‘Big Brother’ government, the better off we are.” That’s subsidiarity, and that’s always been a classic part of Catholic social justice. . . . Solidarity, though, also balances it out to say, “By the way, a civil, virtuous society is going to come together to take care of those most in need.” Now, somewhere between the two — which is another great classic of Catholic social justice — usually in the middle stands virtue."
These 3 Bishops are doing what they are supposed to do, exercising their teaching ministry to show the proper way to live the teachings of the Catholic Church. They make it clear that Ryan IS doing just that, supporting the non-negotiables, like opposing abortion & gay-marriage, while trying to arrive at a prudential judgment when it comes to the budget. Ryan is being held up as an example of what a Catholic politician should be.
As time goes on, it will be interesting to see how this plays out. You can be sure the Main Stream Media will ignore these statements, or downplay them if forced to face them. But they do give Ryan plenty to use to stand up & defend himself while giving those on the other side no grounds to claim Ryan isn't a good Catholic. So, unless they want to admit that the truth is, it is they who aren't following Catholic teachings, the leftist catholycs had better shut up because the truth is NOT on their side.