Pressure is being put upon San Francisco’s Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone on account of a released statement of his requiring teachers in his Catholic schools to refrain from obfuscating the Church’s teachings in the classrooms. No matter what their personal religious beliefs may be, since they represent the Church and are hired by her to impart her doctrines, they must teach Catholic truth and give witness to the same in their public lives. This directive concerns not only specifically religious doctrines of the Church which have been delineated by the Church’s magisterium, but also truths of the natural moral law. Furthermore, teachers there who are Catholics must not participate in organizations which may call themselves Catholic but do not correctly present the teachings of the Church.
The particular doctrinal issues involved are these: the belief that the Church is a divine, not a human, institution; the real Presence of Christ in the Holy Eucharist; the obligation for Catholics to attend Mass on the prescribed days; the reality of the last judgment and the existence of purgatory. Then there is the moral teaching–always the hot issues of contestation. These include the sanctity of human life; the sinfulness of masturbation, fornication, adultery, contraception, artificial means of reproduction, and homosexual acts; and the definition of marriage as the union of one man and one woman. Such a litany of grave sins would incite protest in many a place in the USA today, but in San Francisco one can only imagine the intensity of indignant reaction. Angry militants there have now called upon the Pope to remove their Archbishop, for the sole reason that he is doing what bishops are ordained to do! There have been demonstrations made and written arguments composed against the teachings being mandated by his excellency.
Cordileone’s is precisely the kind of clear, authoritative, and public voice the Church has been sorely in need of for a long time in the Catholic Church of the USA. I’d like to cast my eager though unimportant vote in support for this courageous shepherd of the Church. Saint Paul had written about such a circumstance as in San Francisco when he admonished Saint Timothy (2 Tim 4): “Preach the word (of Christ’s truth); be insistent in season and out of season; reprove, entreat, rebuke in all patience and doctrine. For there shall be a time when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires they will heap to themselves teachers having itching ears, and they will indeed turn away their hearing from the truth.” (Must have been an outbreak of ear dermatitis in Frisco...) Saint Paul said this by way of introduction to his prediction that his time for being “sacrificed” (i.e. assassinated) was getting close. People bent on immorality can bestir themselves to such a frenzy of spite and aversion to truth as to demand bloodshed. Whether or not it will come to this in SF, the good Archbishop is getting his punishment from his recalcitrant flock for speaking the truth. He deserves our prayers to continue on courageously amid such nasty opposition. I ask a prayer or two for this good shepherd who’s not running away when he sees wolves positioned to devour his flock.
The lovely month of Mary. You will notice that the Mary Altar in our church has been specially adorned for May. As has been our practice, flowers may be brought to Her via the sacristy. It’s a little way of giving visible evidence of our devotion to the holy Mother of God.
What a fine parish event last Sunday! It was a sellout and a first of its kind here. I’m referring to the Dualing Pianos Dinner and concert held in our gym. This was an imaginative way to throw a fundraiser for the parish. In all aspects it was an enjoyable afternoon spent with fellow parishioners, and with good food, jazzy music, and an auction of appealing items–all set out in our gym transformed into a handsome-looking banquet hall. My compliments and gratitude to the organizers, patrons and workers who made the day a success. Their efforts made me think of the hardworking folks who put on our annual fall benefit dinner with a like enthusiasm and involvement. Our parish is abundantly blest in many ways. I thank our Lord and our good Lady Saint Mary for the graces we receive so abundantly in Assumption Grotto Parish.