Vatican helps the Catholic Left elect Democrats by creating a new ‘non-negotiable’: climate change

Vatican helps the Catholic Left elect Democrats by creating a new ‘non-negotiable’: climate change

Deal Hudson

December 16, 2016 (The Christian Review via LifeSiteNews) – The Catholic Left has been at a political disadvantage for decades. As a result, the Democratic Party has suffered the same disadvantage. As proponents of abortion on demand, the Catholic Left has struggled to influence Catholic voters, in spite of their dissent. In fact, transgressing the non-negotiable issues of the Church has become their stock in trade, now that the Catholic Left has added support for same-sex marriage.

The resulting dilemma is this: What non-negotiable can the Catholic Left hoist and wave to the Catholic voter to regain, at least, a veneer of legitimacy?

Each presidential campaign since the 1980s has pitted the pro-abortion Democratic Party against the pro-life Republicans, giving the GOP a much-needed boost with Catholic voters, who historically have leaned toward the Democrats. This boost proved decisive in 1980, 1984, 1988, 2000, 2004, and 2016, but was a consistent thorn in the flesh for the Democrats, and remains so. The Catholic Left, therefore, has long needed a non-negotiable issue of its own to regain the legitimacy it has lost since Roe vs. Wade and Bill Clinton’s veto of the Partial-Birth Abortion Ban Act in 1996. The effort to create a non-negotiable issue began with “the poor,” as sacralized in Cardinal Bernadin’s 1983 speech on the so-called “seamless garment.”

However, this appeal never convinced the majority of Catholics who were riveted by the preaching of Saint John Paul the Great on the “Gospel of Life” (1995). His twenty-seven year papacy made it clear to religiously active Catholics that abortion was not just one of many moral issues to be weighed equally against one another. In other words, a prudential matter such as social justice for the poor simply could not be regarded as a matter of non-negotiable choice. Why? Justice for the poor involves a variety of judgments and actions which may differ from person to person, community to community, but no one judgment or action trumps all others. Facing the abortion option, there is only one morally licit choice. Benedict XVI added thirteen more years of the same theological rigor on moral matters.

After the failure of seamless garment reasoning to take a firm hold among lay Catholics, the next opportunity for claiming a non-negotiable for the Catholic Left was provided by the USCCB with its “Justice for Immigrants” program. It’s fair to say, in my opinion, the US bishops have made this their first priority since the ugly immigration reform debates of 2006. (Their pastoral letter, “Welcoming the Stranger Among Us: Unity In Diversity” had been published in 2001.) No doubt the collective effort of the bishops regarding “diversity” was an aid in the election of the first African-American president, Barack Obama.

However, when the Catholic Left used immigration as a full court press against Donald Trump in the past election it failed miserably. During the campaign many bishops, priests, and Catholic pundits pounded Donald Trump for his vow to “build a WALL” along the Mexican border. Such an intention was cruel and racist, an arrow in the heart of Catholic social teaching. The Catholic Left, including its bishops and priests, felt Pope Francis had given them permission to pummel Trump. In February 2016, just as Trump was gaining momentum, Pope Francis said of him, “A person who thinks only about building walls, wherever they may be, and not building bridges, is not Christian. This is not the gospel.” The US bishops, with some notable exceptions, kept harrassing Trump about his “WALL” while remaining silent on the aggressively pro-abortion record of Hillary Clinton.

But Catholic voters in 2016 did not fall in line with the bishops immigration mantra, rather the results — 52% for Trump, 45% for Clinton, demonstrated that Catholic voters were more concerned about other matters, namely, the Supreme Court, national security, fighting terrorism, Obamacare, and abortion. Most of the bishops, like the mainstream media, were left in shock by the election outcome, but the simple fact is this: The bishops were not of the same mind of most Catholic voters on any of these issues, not merely on immigration.

Immigration failed to win Catholic voters for the Clinton/Kaine ticket in 2016, and will fail again the future, given the growing alarm in European countries such as France, Sweden, and Germany over their open borders policy. Thus, the Catholic Left, once again, has to look elsewhere for a non-negotiable they can call their own. They are in the process of appropriating an issue that had already become an arrow in the quiver of leftwing politicians — climate change. After all, the 2014 encyclical Laudato Si’ of Pope Francis provided the perfect cover, at least in ecclesial circles. Pope Francis explains why the “ecological crisis” is the purpose of his encyclical.

“It is my hope that this Encyclical Letter, which is now added to the body of the Church’s social teaching, can help us to acknowledge the appeal, immensity and urgency of the challenge we face. I will begin by briefly reviewing several aspects of the present ecological crisis, with the aim of drawing on the results of the best scientific research available today, letting them touch us deeply and provide a concrete foundation for the ethical and spiritual itinerary that follows. I will then consider some principles drawn from the Judaeo-Christian tradition which can render our commitment to the environment more coherent…” (Laudato Si’ 15).

Readers may remember that forty years earlier TIME announced in 1974 that the “Earth” was headed for another “Ice Age.” With this apocalyptic warning, “global warming” was introduced to the public mind. The notion didn’t gain much popularity until the cause was taken up by former Vice President Al Gore in his 2006 film, “An Inconvenient Truth.” What Gore proclaimed as “inconvenient” has become extremely convenient for the Catholic Left because it represents a “life issue” they can embrace. After all, this was a matter of life and death, not merely of an unborn child, but of the entire human race and the whole planet. What could be more pro-life than that!

What was called global warming, however, had to be discarded for “climate change” when the bogus content of Gore’s film, and the science backing it, was disclosed. Under the brand of “climate change,” the apocalyptic message of total annihilation was given new life, and millions of dollars in grant monies flowed to university scientists willing and able to read the data in conformity with a pre-determined outcome. To be labeled a climate change “denier” not only meant no grant money, or academic future, it became a moral stigma. (Because, after all, the only previously operative use of the term “denier” was connected with the Holocaust, making it obvious to anyone that the extermination of Jews and disputing the findings of scientists are morally equivalent.)

Further legitimizing the standing of climate change as a moral issue for Catholics was the climate change conference in April 2015, hosted by Pope Francis. None of the so-called climate change deniers were allowed to attend. The Catholic journalist Elizabeth Yore who attended the conference, or I should say tried, with the scientists from the Heartland Institute, has chronicled their treatment. More importantly, Yore reveals that the Vatican’s chief “eco guru” on climate change is Jeffrey Sachs. As Yore explains, Sachs was the brain behind the UN Millennium Development Goals and a proponent of the UN Sustainable Goals, both of which rely heavily on abortion, sterilization, and contraception for its population control goals. Pope Francis, by the way, was “gratified” by the September 2015 passage of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals, though one of the 17 goals calls on member states to “ensure universal access to sexual and reproductive health” by 2030.

The logic is clear: If human beings are the cause of climate change, then having fewer people will enable the world to avoid catastrophe. It comes as no surprise, at least to me, that climate change advocacy walks hand in hand with the population controllers who kill the unborn, encourage women to undergo sterilization, and distribute contraceptives, including those using abortifacients. But why would Pope Francis invite such guests into the Vatican? Surely he knows they have more than climate change up their sleeves.

The Catholic Left has already voiced their criticism that climate change is not being embraced with the moral fervor it deserves. The outgoing president of the USCCB, Archbishop Joseph Kurtz of Louisville was accused of dragging his feet, while Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago published a Chicago Sun Times (July 24, 2015) op-ed on the “moral obligation” to address climate change and pledged “to green all 2,700 church properties in his diocese.” Now the Climate Change Covenant is taking center stage as main player in re-scripting climate change as a non-negotiable. Formed in 2006, with help from the USCCB, the CCC boasts fourteen “national partners,” which include a Who’s Who of the Catholic Left: Department of Justice, Peace and Human Development (USCCB); Migration and Refugee Services (USCCB); Catholic Charities USA; Catholic Relief Services; Catholic Health Association of the United States; Columbian Center for Advocacy and Outreach; Conference of Major Superiors of Men; Carmelite NGO; Catholic Rural Life; Franciscan Action Network; Global Catholic Climate Movement; Holy Name Province, OFM; National Council of Catholic Women; Leadership Conference of Women Religious; Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities; National Federation for Catholic Youth Ministry; Sisters of Mercy of the Americas. It’s episcopal liason is Bishop Richard Yates of Des Moines who during the election campaign published a column calling on all the candidates to address climate change and held a joint press conference with Davenport Bishop Martin Amos in front of a wind turbine, sponsored by the Climate Change Covenant.

Those readers who think I am “crying wolf” should take note of the new Vatican guidelines concerning the education of future priests. “The Gift of the Priesthood” describes “the emerging planetary crisis” and the need for “protecting the environment and our common home – the Earth. . . . They constitute in some way the basis for a sound ecology of human relations (emphasis added). Criticizing both the skeptical and the indifferent, the document demands an “inner conversion,” specifically an “ecological conversion whereby the effects of their encounter with Jesus Christ become evident in their relationship with the world around them.” Thus, future priests will receive “requisite Magisterial and theological guidance.” Nothing is mentioned about who will supply the scientific findings the “planetary crisis” is based upon.

Regardless of the truth or falsity of the science behind climate change, it remains a prudential matter in Catholic moral teaching, with varying viewpoints informing the judgment of each individual. But the difference between this attempt to construct a non-negotiable out of a prudential matter and those of the past is this: If the Apocalypticism of climate change ideology takes root, it will take on a life vs. death character. Under this disguise, climate change could take on a non-negotiable appearance, especially when wedded to the authority of the Church.

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11 comments on “Vatican helps the Catholic Left elect Democrats by creating a new ‘non-negotiable’: climate change

  1. Still, it was kind of funny that it was Anthony Weiner’s revealing selfies that rained on the “personally opposed, but…” Lefties who had their delusional hopes set on Hillary and her totalitarian anti-life agenda, foaming with crazy post-abortion rage as she barely contained her vampire-like lust for late-term partial-birth abortions. Sort of strengthens one’s faith in the power of God to stop evil.

    The Alinsky cabals will try the same formula again in 2020.

  2. *** Fake News Alert ***

    However, this appeal never convinced the majority of Catholics who were riveted by the preaching of Saint John Paul the Great on the “Gospel of Life” (1995).

    No. This is revisionist history. Wojtyla’s encyclical actually gave support to the “Seamless Garment” by teaching against capital punishment. Yes, he held the line on abortion … well, kind of. In one way, nobody could fail to know that the Church condemned abortion. However, Wojtyla undermined the doctrine of Original Sin by putting unborn murdered babies in Heaven. In the original document, paragraph 99, he wrote:

    “You will come to understand that nothing is definitively lost and you will also be able to ask forgiveness from your child, who is now living in the Lord.”

    While that heretical line was subsequently scrubbed — after the Daughters of St. Paul sold an untold number of copies of the original — the heresy lives on. Find me a priest or bishop or pope today who holds that the unbaptized baby cannot enter Heaven, that the child is “definitively lost.” In fact, mention Limbo to any NeoCat and you’ll either be laughed out of the room or screamed at.

    • Good catch.
      I wonder why so many supposedly pro-life people believe the pious claptrap of salvation for infants who die unbaptized? My guess is that it comes from an effeminate kind of love. These people are nice, but they just aren’t thinking. Suppose that unbaptized aborted children go to heaven when they die. Then consider that the majority, and probably the large majority, of human beings go to hell. Conclusion: In principle, it is better to be aborted than to be born and live past the age of reason. Thus these pious fools actually make abortion an act which, though evil in itself, and dealing spiritual death to the perpetrator (only because it is a grave sin to arrogate to oneself the power of life and death, which belongs to God alone), it is to the “victim” actually a huge benefit. True, an aborted child could have grown up to become a much greater saint, by having the opportunity to actually merit his salvation, but that’s a highly risky business; the risk/reward ratio for an aborted child is WAY better. If you had to choose between less glorious heaven but 100% certainty of getting there, and more glorious heaven but less than 50% chance of getting there, which would you choose? Remember, you only have *one* chance at salvation, and heaven or hell endure for eternity. Thus, by the inevitable logic of things, one who murders their child is actually seen to do it a favor…and we get more abortions.
      This is a demonic deception. Take care, you sweet liberal fools. Satan plays on your nice sentiments with consummate skill and contemptuous ease, steering you to accomplish not something merely different, but the *opposite* of what your nice sentiments are yearning for.
      John Paul II was not a saint. He was a liberal, and no liberal can be a saint.
      Remember, Nice is Nasty.
      Sentiment is worse than useless unless grounded in Reality.

      The notion that one can die with original sin still on the soul, and still go to heaven, is just crazy. It’s the same as saying that you don’t have to be in a state of sanctifying grace to go to heaven, which in turn means that even actual mortal sinners can go to heaven.
      I’ve looked in Denzinger, and Ott’s Fundamentals of Catholic Dogma, but so far can only find the following:
      Dz 410: “The punishment of original sin is deprivation of the vision of God.” (letter of Innocent III, not de fide, but perfectly clear in meaning)
      Dz 493a: “It [the Roman Church] teaches that the souls who die in mortal sin, or with only original sin, descend immediately into hell; however to be punished with different penalties and in different places.” (letter of John XXII, not de fide) It’s plain that John is using the word ‘hell’ in the broadest sense, as being anyplace in the afterlife, excepting heaven. The punishment of those dying in original sin only is, as Dz 410 says, simply the deprivation of the vision of God; what we now call the limbo of the children, which is not ‘hell’ (according to current terminology which restricts that term to a place of torment), but is a place of merely natural happiness, without God.
      Dz 1526: [Condemned as falsh, rash, injurious to Catholic schools] “The doctrine which rejects as a Pelagian fable that place of the lower regions (which the faithful generally designate by the name of the limbo of the children), in which the souls of those departing with the sole guilt of original sin are punished with the punishment of the condemned, exclusive of the punishment of fire…”
      None of these condemn as actually heretical the doctrine that souls with only original sin go to heaven.
      It seems to me there must be some definitive condemnation of this error somewhere. Any curious people out there willing to investigate?

      • Here you go:

        “If anyone says that, because the Lord said ‘In My Father’s house are many mansions,’ it might be understood that in the Kingdom of Heaven there will be some middle place, or some place anywhere, where the blessed infants live who departed from this life without Baptism, without which they cannot enter into the Kingdom of Heaven which is life eternal: Let him be anathema. For when the Lord says ‘Unless one be born again of water and the Holy Ghost, he shall not enter into the Kingdom of God,’ what Catholic will doubt that one who has not deserved to be a co-heir with Christ will be a partner of the Devil?” (Pope St. Zosimus, Council of Carthage XVI, AD 418, Denzinger 102f.)


        This was easy to find in my archives. I once wrote to Fr. West, of “Priests for Life” about the fact that Fr. Pavone affirms salvation for the aborted. No response. My friend did get a response from Fr. Hogan affirming the heresy shared by Hogan and Pavone.

        This sheds light on Pavone’s perverted baby worship:

        • My first thought was: “Awesome! There’s that ‘anathema sit’, in black and white! You’ve gotta love chlarity!”…
          Uh…I meant ‘clarity’…no, I meant ‘charity’…mmmm, well, actually I meant both.
          (Full disclosure: It felt all the more awesome because it directly contradicts the anti-Catholic contentions of a certain perverted Prelate that there is no black and white, but that “we are called to ‘discern’ in the flux of life”).
          However, when I looked it up in my 1957 edition of Denzinger, there was no 102f, but only one entry under that number, and the wording was quite different; in fact addressing a different falsehood: that infants do not inherit original sin.
          Would you mind telling me what edition of Denzinger you quoted from?

          Re/ that link: What an eye opener! I feel obligated to paste here what seems to be the crunch quote:
          “This, my friends, is precisely the attitude of Pro-Lifeism; a movement wherein the human being takes priority over Christ, and the Sacrifice of the Cross plays second fiddle to the immolation that takes place via the scourge of abortion.”
          Verrecchio’s connecting of the man-centered nature of the N.O. Mass to the man-centered nature of Pro-Lifeism, and Fr. Pavone’s sacrilegious action, is a brilliant insight.
          Sidenote: Fr. Pavone is a former seminary classmate of Michael Voris, and Voris seems oblivious to the cult of Pro-Lifeism.

          • Mine is a 1955 edition, from a 1954 revision by heresiarch Karl Rahner, S.J. Obviously, Karl overlooked that, and by 1957, it went down the memory hole. The fact that it got past Rahner lets me know it’s true. If you can find the original Latin, and I’d bet you could translate it, please do.

            All books published in the past 100 years are suspect. St. Pius X warned us about the imprimatur in his own day.

            • Great, thanks.
              I’ll see if I can locate that, especially the Latin version.
              Actually, I’d have to guess that any texts that *have* been in Denzinger at any time are substantially authentic, since I can’t see any way that an entire text could be significantly falsified without someone blowing the whistle.
              I definitely concur about modern books being suspect. Even the old Catholic Encyclopedia has a few articles tainted with Modernism.

      • “If you had to choose between less glorious heaven but 100% certainty of getting there, and more glorious heaven but less than 50% chance of getting there, which would you choose? Remember, you only have *one* chance at salvation, and heaven or hell endure for eternity. Thus, by the inevitable logic of things, one who murders their child is actually seen to do it a favor…and we get more abortions. This is a demonic deception.”

        Point well taken. On the other hand, if one paints a picture of hopeless doom for unborn babies who die without baptism you run the risk of falling into a quasi-Manichean heresy, whereby procreation is to be feared, and to be avoided at all costs, lest any soul be created that cannot attain to the Beatific Vision.

        In actuality, many live births in a family can often be accompanied by numerous miscarriages.
        Limbo offers a reasonable solution, inasmuch the soul of the unborn child who dies without water baptism still enjoys the protection of the Creator, while also possessing the good of existence.

        • As to the first point, it is certainly possible to fall to either side of the knife edge. The reminder is apropos.

          As to the second, agreed also. If one wants to (and one must) uphold the justness of God, limbo of the children is a sort of theological necessity.

  3. Ok, I could not find the 1954 Latin edition, but I did find a couple of older editions of Dz in Latin: the original 1854, and the 1911 edition by Bannwart.
    They both say the same thing.

    “Additur hic in quibusdam codicibus:
    Can. 3 Item placuit, ut si quis dicit, ideo dixisse Dominum: In domo Patris mei mansiones multae sunt, ut intelligatur, quia in regno caelorum erit aliquis medius, aut ullus alicubi locus, ubi beate vivant parvuli, qui sine baptismo ex hac vita migrarunt, sine quo in regnum caelorum, quod est vita aeterna, intrare non possunt, anathema sit. Nam cum Dominus dicat: Nisi quis renatus fuerit ex aqua et Spiritu Sancto, non intrabit in regnum caelorum; quis Catholicus dubitet participem fieri diaboli eum, qui cohaeres esse non meruit Christi? Qui enim dextra caret, sinistram procul dubio partem incurret.”

    My translation:
    “Here, in some codices, is added:
    Can. 3 Likewise it has pleased [the council], if anyone says that thus said the Lord: “In the house of my Father there are many mansions”, that it may be understood that in the kingdom of heaven there will be some middle place, or any place anywhere, where children may live blessedly who pass out of this life without baptism, without which, into the kingdom of heaven, which is eternal life, they cannot enter, let him be anathema. For when the Lord says: “Unless someone has been reborn from water and the Holy Spirit, he will not enter into the kingdom of heaven”, what Catholic may doubt that he is made a partaker of the devil who has not merited to be a coheir of Christ? For he who is missing on the right side will doubtless incur the left.”

    Unfortunately, Denzinger says nothing about why some codices are missing this Canon 3 text. There remains therefore some doubt as to whether it is genuine. And not knowing where Denzinger’s sources might be accessed, I can’t see a way to resolve the issue.
    Assuming the quote is accurate (which I hardly doubt, given the +160 years that Denzinger has been circulating), and that it really was part of Pope Zosimus’ decree (which is the real question), it is clear that some might take this text to be an assertion that unbaptized children without actual mortal sin on their souls go to that same hell where Satan lives. That however, I think would be a false judgment, the reason being that one must strive to reconcile it with other Church teachings, for instance, these I quoted above:
    Dz 410: “The punishment of original sin is deprivation of the vision of God.” (letter of Innocent III, not de fide, but perfectly clear in meaning)
    Dz 493a: “It [the Roman Church] teaches that the souls who die in mortal sin, or with only original sin, descend immediately into hell; however to be punished with different penalties and in different places.”
    Zosimus’ decree can be reconciled easily:
    Children without actual mortal sin on their soul, but who are not baptized, and thus still in a state of original sin, definitely do not go to heaven (the “right side”).
    But though they go to the left side, this is hell understood in the ancient, wide sense, as being anyplace in the afterlife which is NOT heaven.
    The limbo of the children qualifies as such a place. And even if this limbo is a place where there is no punishment for actual sin, but is even rather a place of natural happiness, still, in comparison to that beatitude which God intended for Adam and his progeny, the deprivation of the vision of God can be called a punishment, and those going there can be said to be of the devil’s part, so far as the essence of Satan’s punishment was precisely to be cast out from any chance of the divine vision.

    • Thanks for digging that out. I concur. The case for Limbo is well developed. There can be no torments for those who do not commit actual sin, but Original Sin deprives one of Heaven and the beatific vision. While deprivation is a torment for adults, I don’t think it is the same for the unborn as they had no knowledge of God.

      It’s not permitted to us to know what the existence of these souls will be like. But I suspect we’ll marvel at God’s mercy and justice when we (if I) get to see it. I recall that St. Augustine said something to the effect that if we look for the rewards, we can’t see them, but when we come to see the mercies, that will be wonderful.

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