Prominent US Cardinal:
By Lauretta Brown
New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan wrote an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal Thursday with the title “The Democrats Abandon Catholics.” The archbishop of New York made the case that due to the Democratic party’s position on issues like abortion and education for low-income communities, “the party that once embraced Catholics now slams the door on us.”
Cardinal Dolan reflected that the “dignity and sanctity of human life, the importance of Catholic schools, the defense of a baby’s civil rights—were, and still are, widely embraced by Catholics. This often led Catholics to become loyal Democrats. I remember my own grandmother whispering to me, “We Catholics don’t trust those Republicans.”
He says this is “no longer the case,” and that is “a cause of sadness to many Catholics, me included.” “The needs of poor and middle-class children in Catholic schools, and the right to life of the baby in the womb—largely have been rejected by the party of our youth,” he said.
Dolan pointed out that pro-life Rep. Dan Lipinski (D-IL) “effectively was blacklisted by his own party” in his recent primary. The national Democratic party refused to back Lipinski in the primary largely due to his pro-life position.
Dolan also cited Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez, saying last year that “every Democrat, like every American, should support a woman’s right to make her own choices about her body and her health. That is not negotiable and should not change city by city or state by state.”
Cardinal Dolan pointed out that the problem of Democrats shutting out Catholics was particularly bad in New York. “In recent years, some Democrats in the New York state Assembly repeatedly blocked education tax credit legislation, which would have helped middle-class and low-income families make the choice to select Catholic or other nonpublic schools for their children,” he wrote. “More sobering,” he added, “what is already the most radical abortion license in the country may soon be even more morbidly expanded. For instance, under the proposed Reproductive Health Act, doctors would not be required to care for a baby who survives an abortion. The newborn simply would be allowed to die without any legal implications. And abortions would be legal up to the moment of birth.”
Dolan said that the once “big tent” of the Democratic Party “now seems a pup tent.” “I’ve certainly had spats and disappointments with politicians from both of America’s leading parties,” he acknowledged, “but it saddens me, and weakens the democracy millions of Americans cherish, when the party that once embraced Catholics now slams the door on us.”
Sweden’s Plans to Kill Religious Schools Infuriates local Catholics
By Joshua Gill
The Social Democratic Party in Sweden announced a plan ostensibly to combat segregation by shutting down all religious schools, to the chagrin of Catholic educators.
Catholic educators denounced the plan and called it an overt “aggressive assault” on Sweden’s Catholic community and a further breach of religious rights in the country, according to Crux Now. The Social Democratic Party (SDP), which leads a minority government and has formed a coalition with the Green Party, pledged to make the banning of religious schools a priority if they are re-elected.
“In our schools, teachers and principals should make the decisions, not priests or imams,” Minister for Upper Secondary School and Adult Education and Training Anna Ekstrom said, according to Crux.
Paddy Maguire, principal of Notre Dame Catholic School in Gothenburg, said that Ekstrom’s argument is completely unnecessary since all school administrations, religious or not, must comply with Swedish laws concerning education. “We have to (abide by) Swedish law, they don’t understand that. They just think we’re run by priests and imams, as they put it,” Maguire told Catholic News Agency (CNA).
Maguire also openly denounced the party’s plan as an attack on Catholics and asserted that their real goal was to combat problems in Islamic schools, “but they are too cowardly to say so.
Maguire argued that the segregation which the SDP pledges to fight is happening only in Islamic schools, built as a result of an influx of immigrants from Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, and Iran, which segregate students according to gender. Kristina Hellner, communications officer for the Diocese of Stockholm, told CNA that she shared that assessment. “The absolute majority of the religious schools in Sweden show excellent results but a small number of them (and these are Islamic schools) have had different kinds of problems. Instead of doing something about these specific schools, certain politicians would like to solve it by closing all religious schools,” Hellner said.
The bill is unlikely to pass, in Hellner’s estimation, since the SDP has lost a lot of political support to the Moderate Party and the balance of power in Sweden has shifted to favor right-wing parties. Still, Christian groups in Sweden are banding together with the help of Cardinal Anders Arborelius of Stockholm to oppose the plan through the Christian Council and to bring the fight all the way to the European Court of Human Rights if necessary. Meanwhile, the SDP, the Left Party, and certain members of the Liberal Party have expressed support for the plan. The Green Party, despite their coalition with the SDP, and the Centre Party remain neutral on the issue.
Sweden has 71 religious schools, 59 of which are Christian, 11 are Muslim, and one is Jewish.
Article from: From the Daily Caller News Foundation: