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Cardinal Dolan responds (Al Smith Dinner) - ResiduumRevertetur - 08-14-2012

http://blog.archny.org/index.php/al-smith-dinner/


Al Smith Dinner

FEAST OF ST. MAXIMILLIAN KOLBE

Last week I was out in Anaheim for the annual Supreme Convention of the Knights of Columbus. It was, as usual, a most uplifting and inspirational event.

In his rousing address to the thousands of delegates, representing 1.8 million knights, Dr. Carl Anderson, the Supreme Knight, exhorted us to a renewed sense of faithful citizenship, encouraging us not to be shy about bringing the values of faith to the public square. This duty, he reminded us, came not just from the fact that we are Catholic, but also from the fact that we are loyal Americans.

He then went on to announce a promising initiative of the Knights of Columbus to foster civility in politics. Quoting a very recent study, he noted that over 80% of Americans are fed up with the negativity, judgmentalism, name-calling, and mudslinging of our election-year process, and eagerly want a campaign of respect, substance, amity — civility!

For seven decades, the Al Smith Dinner here in New York has been an acclaimed example of such civility in political life. As you may know, every four years, during the presidential election campaign, the Al Smith Dinner is the venue of history, as it is the only time outside of the presidential debates that the two presidential candidates come together, at the invitation of the Al Smith Foundation, through the archbishop of New York, for an evening of positive, upbeat, patriotic, enjoyable civil discourse.  This year, both President Obama and Governor Romney have accepted our invitation. I am grateful to them.

The evening has always had a special meaning, as it is named after Governor Al Smith, the first Catholic nominated, in 1928, as a candidate for president, who was viciously maligned because of his own Catholic faith.  Smith was known as The Happy Warrior, because while he fought fiercely for what he believed was right, he never sought to demonize those who opposed him.  And, the dinner named in his honor is truly life-affirming as it raises funds to help support mothers in need and their babies (both born and unborn) of any faith, or none at all.

The Al Smith Dinner has never been without controversy, since, as Carl Anderson reminded us, politics can inspire disdain and negativity as well as patriotism and civility.

This year is surely no exception: I am receiving stacks of mail protesting the invitation to President Obama (and by the way, even some objecting to the invitation to Governor Romney).

The objections are somewhat heightened this year, since the Catholic community in the United States has rightly expressed vigorous criticism of the President’s support of the abortion license, and his approval of mandates which radically intruded upon Freedom of Religion. We bishops, including yours truly, have been unrelenting in our opposition to these issues, and will continue to be.

So, my correspondents ask, how can you justify inviting the President? Let me try to explain.

For one, an invitation to the Al Smith Dinner is not an award, or the provision of a platform to expound views at odds with the Church. It is an occasion of conversation; it is personal, not partisan.

Two, the purpose of the Al Smith Dinner is to show both our country and our Church at their best: people of faith gathered in an evening of friendship, civility, and patriotism, to help those in need, not to endorse either candidate. Those who started the dinner sixty-seven years ago believed that you can accomplish a lot more by inviting folks of different political loyalties to an uplifting evening, rather than in closing the door to them.

Three, the teaching of the Church, so radiant in the Second Vatican Council, is that the posture of the Church towards culture, society, and government is that of engagement and dialogue. In other words, it’s better to invite than to ignore, more effective to talk together than to yell from a distance, more productive to open a door than to shut one. Our recent popes have been examples of this principle, receiving dozens of leaders with whom on some points they have serious disagreements. Thus did our present Holy Father graciously receive our current President of the United States.  And, in the current climate, we bishops have maintained that we are open to dialogue with the administration to try and resolve our differences.  What message would I send if I refused to meet with the President?

Finally, an invitation to the Al Smith Dinner in no way indicates a slackening in our vigorous promotion of values we Catholic bishops believe to be at the heart of both gospel and American values, particularly the defense of human dignity, fragile life, and religious freedom. In fact, one could make the case that anyone attending the dinner, even the two candidates, would, by the vibrant solidarity of the evening, be reminded that America is at her finest when people, free to exercise their religion, assemble on behalf of poor women and their babies, born and unborn, in a spirit of civility and respect.

Some have told me the invitation is a scandal. That charge weighs on me, as it would on any person of faith, but especially a pastor, who longs to give good example, never bad. So, I apologize if I have given such scandal. I suppose it’s a case of prudential judgment: would I give more scandal by inviting the two candidates, or by not inviting them?

No matter what you might think of this particular decision, might I ask your prayers for me and my brother bishops and priests who are faced with making these decisions, so that we will be wise and faithful shepherds as God calls us to be?

In the end, I’m encouraged by the example of Jesus, who was blistered by his critics for dining with those some considered sinners; and by the recognition that, if I only sat down with people who agreed with me, and I with them, or with those who were saints, I’d be taking all my meals alone.


Re: Cardinal Dolan responds (Al Smith Dinner) - Pheo - 08-14-2012

(08-14-2012, 07:55 PM)+Dolan Wrote: Three, the teaching of the Church, so radiant in the Second Vatican Council, is that the posture of the Church towards culture, society, and government is that of engagement and dialogue.

:puke:

Reason enough to repeal the council.

Quote:In the end, I’m encouraged by the example of Jesus, who was blistered by his critics for dining with those some considered sinners; and by the recognition that, if I only sat down with people who agreed with me, and I with them, or with those who were saints, I’d be taking all my meals alone.

Our Lord dined with sinners in private and called them to repent.  He didn't make a spectacle out of it for the sake of "dialogue."  What a tired comparison this is.


Re: Cardinal Dolan responds (Al Smith Dinner) - BrendanD - 08-14-2012




Re: Cardinal Dolan responds (Al Smith Dinner) - traditionalLUTHERANmom - 08-14-2012

(08-14-2012, 08:03 PM)Pheo Wrote:
(08-14-2012, 07:55 PM)+Dolan Wrote: Three, the teaching of the Church, so radiant in the Second Vatican Council, is that the posture of the Church towards culture, society, and government is that of engagement and dialogue.

:puke:

Reason enough to repeal the council.

Quote:In the end, I’m encouraged by the example of Jesus, who was blistered by his critics for dining with those some considered sinners; and by the recognition that, if I only sat down with people who agreed with me, and I with them, or with those who were saints, I’d be taking all my meals alone.

Our Lord dined with sinners in private and called them to repent.  He didn't make a spectacle out of it for the sake of "dialogue."  What a tired comparison this is.


This. I know it's disgusting. This isn't prostitutes and such this is Herod the babykiller... This reasoning is totally lukewarm. And yes Jesus said he will  :puke: them out of his mouth.


Re: Cardinal Dolan responds (Al Smith Dinner) - Dmorgan - 08-14-2012

"engagement and dialogue" Is that not the same premise that the "Nuns on a Buss" are using to ignore the Vatican's attempt to reign in the heretic sisters? On does not engage in dialogue with the devil. Engagement and dialogue is the tactic of the modernist wishing to confuse and divide. If the Cardinal wants to live up to his vows, he might consider a public rebuke, and add this for all of obama's catholic supporters:


THAT would be a good dialogue!


Re: Cardinal Dolan responds (Al Smith Dinner) - Phillipus Iacobus - 08-14-2012

Quote:Three, the teaching of the Church, so radiant in the Second Vatican Council, is that the posture of the Church towards culture, society, and government is that of engagement and dialogue.

This says everything.


Re: Cardinal Dolan responds (Al Smith Dinner) - DrBombay - 08-14-2012

Who cares?  The Al Smith Dinner is just an excuse for the two candidates to look absurd wearing white tie and tails and tell unfunny jokes.  It's meaningless. 

As an aside, it's too bad Al Smith wasn't nominated in 1932.  Hoover would've likely won re-election and we would've been spared the horrors of that fascist FDR and likely the horrors of JFK as well.  Ah, well.  The road less traveled and what-not. 


Re: Cardinal Dolan responds (Al Smith Dinner) - joe17 - 08-14-2012

VII and the its supporters have a superior way of doing things compared to before.
  I do not know about you, but if I was to have a personal conversation with a men like the two candidates, I would do what I can to explain to them that their views are against God and that they will be held accountable unless they repent before they die.
  Dolan admits that he invited, or at least had a say in it.  It vindicates Michael Voris, amongst others, who made that point when on of the Archdiocese employees wrote on its blog that it was not up to the Archdiocese who gets invited.  I am sure that there will be a retraction on that one. 
  I guess he will try to do his promise given when he took over New York that he will be a "happy bishop".  Keep praying your rosaries for all involved.

Joe


Re: Cardinal Dolan responds (Al Smith Dinner) - arashijing - 08-15-2012

I left a comment in his blog, it was under moderation, and didn't make it past the censors.

Considering the problems in the church right now, I thought it would be more important for Cardinal Dolan to make a stand and be an example to Catholics, than to reach out to one sinner and confuse the rest.

It's unfortunate.


Re: Cardinal Dolan responds (Al Smith Dinner) - Walty - 08-15-2012

Enough bull from people on this forum about how traditional someone like Cardinal Dolan is.  He's just another flavor of the same rot.