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placeholder November 19, 2012   •   VOL. 50, NO. 20   •   Oakland, CA
Letters from Readers
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Wise move

A wise and splendid move was made by Pope Benedict XVI on beatifying our Sts. Kateri Tekakwitha and Marianne Cope.

The Church needs modern day heroes. Our society could do with a boost in our spirits to endure the unethical actions that are running rampant in our civilization today.

Lillian Silver
Walnut Creek

Long wait

Fifty years ago my mother and I would drive from the Berkshires over to Auriesville, New York, to the National Shrine of North American Martyrs.

Kateri Tekakwitha was one of the honorees there. What took so long for her canonization? She has been dead for more than 300 years.

Mary McMahon

Contraception truth

All truth is found in Jesus and He entrusted truth to the Catholic Church. The Church teaches that contraception is wrong. The major moral problems of today — abortion and widespread acceptance of the gay lifestyle with its same-sex "marriage" — are the direct progeny of the contraceptive mentality, which has prevailed over the past 50 years. When contraception "fails," abortion is the back-up plan.

The people have elected the most abortion-friendly president in the history of our country. It is no wonder: Our priests and bishops, charged with teaching Christ's truths, have avoided teaching the truth about contraception.

Contraception is the separation of the natural law's unitive and procreative components of marriage. Contraception's widespread practice has led people to ignore the truth that marriage is for the creation, protection and support of children. When that truth is discarded, "marriage" can consist of any arrangement imaginable.

Demands for contraception and abortion have now led to government restrictions on our religious liberty, through the HHS mandate.

The Catholic Church, the only institution that has consistently upheld the full truth, holds the key to actualizing a Culture of Life with its pro-life leaders. Making that happen is in the hands of our homilists, confessors, educators and all faithful Catholics.

Jack and Judie Hockel
Walnut Creek

Good Voice

Thank you to the Voice for its recent in depth and updated coverage of Natural Family Planning. My husband and I were introduced to this method by the Diocese of Oakland in the late 1960s for which I am grateful.

We successfully practiced NFP to space our last two children. The collaboration necessary between my husband and myself in using this method actually strengthened our love and respect for one another. I had stability of mind knowing what was happening on each day of my fertility cycle.

We both were relieved not to have to introduce any artificial contraceptive means to our union.

It's wonderful to see the advances in the practice of NFP over the years. I would have welcomed the support and education now available online. The use of automatic aids for charting the cycle can only be welcomed.

Beth Wainwright
Walnut Creek

Don't dictate vote

I was handed a flyer as I exited church before the election. It was entitled "Know the Positions of the Presidential Candidates" and was published by the Florida Conference of Catholic Bishops. It purported not to support either candidate, but starting from the photos, it was clear which one they wanted us to vote for.

It continued with carefully selected topics of importance to the Catholic Church and asked that "voters inform their consciences before heading to the booth."

I totally agree we each have a responsibility to fully study where candidates stand on all the issues and I respect the Church's views on various topics. I agree we should keep the good of the population as a whole in mind when we choose a president and I applaud the Church saying it's our civic duty to be informed voters.

However, the bishops are outside their bounds in attempting to influence which candidate we choose. The clergy needs to recuse itself from partisan politics.

Rosemary Martelli

Slip into darkness

On Nov. 6 we watched America vote her morality and in doing so slip further into the darkness. The next day I began my day, like I do every day with Mass and prayer. Today I prayed for our president and his conversion, the collective leadership of the nation and the souls of the individuals who make up America. Although it is played out publicly in the political arena, our problem is not a political one, it is a spiritual one. Like the wedding in Cana this party is running out of wine.

As a Catholic I put a lot of the blame on our failure as a Church. When the counting is done it will be shown that considerably more than half of self-identified Catholics voted to formally and materially support abortion, to diminish our ability to live freely as Catholics, to further erode the family and to enslave our children to a crushing debt that will deny them a standard of living we have enjoyed. Too many are or were the recipients of bad catechesis. Too many only know of the Church what they read in the secular press. Too many believe that there are no moral absolutes as long as one remains "a good person." Too many have, without knowing it, embraced the heresy of modernism. Too often the Church hierarchy failed to lead or even speak and far too often they have embraced a modernistic approach that puts tolerance and diversity above orthodoxy and catholic (small "C" intended), and banners and balloons above Liturgy and Ritual.

We have allowed the American political system to effectively divide the Church against itself. Although the Democratic Party has increasingly aligned itself with positions that are in direct conflict with Catholic teaching, the Republican Party does not represent a strong moral alternative. One party stands timidly for life and the traditional family while demonizing social justice and the plight of the poor. The other party preaches social justice and anti-poverty while bathed in the blood of the unborn and benefiting from the demise of the family. Neither party offered a clear choice except between the speed with which we pursue our demise as the shining city on the hill. We got the government we deserve, may God have mercy on us.

Thomas Templeton

Church, and state

Though I agree with most of David Brusiee's letter (Forum, Oct. 1), there is one statement that is quite off.

He says "we all understand that our country was founded on the principle of separation of church and state." This is not true; not all of us have that misunderstanding. There is nowhere in the Constitution that this can be found.

The Constitution was founded on the principles laid out in the Declaration of Independence. The Constitution does prohibit the government from establishing a religion and also from interfering with the free exercise thereof. The ACLU has twisted this concept into "separation of church and state," but please don't drink their Kool-Aid.

Lonn Hendren

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Letters to the editor provide a forum for readers to engage in an open exchange of opinions and
concerns in a climate of respect and civil discourse. The opinions expressed are those of the
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spectrum of opinions will sometimes include those which dissent from Church teaching or
contradict the natural moral law, it is hoped that this forum will help our readers to understand
better others’ thinking on critical issues facing the Church at this time.

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