by George Neumayr
One might think the Catholic Church would stand against the orgy of iconoclasm that we are witnessing across the country — toppled statues, defaced churches, and the like. But, no, the feeble voices of priests and bishops join the creepy chorus of the mob. In California, the mob has targeted statues of Junipero Serra, the saintly Franciscan who spread the faith through a system of missions. Where is the Church to protect the statues? Nowhere. In Ventura, where the mob demands the removal of a Serra statue in front of its city hall, the Church has gone along with it. The Ventura Star reports:
In a joint statement released Thursday, Ventura Mayor Matt LaVere, Father Tom Elewaut of Mission San Buenaventura and Tumamait-Stenslie say they agree the statue should be removed from the public property.
The statue is a designated historic landmark, the statement says.
“We have listened and we have heard the calls from those in the community and believe the time has come for the statue to be taken down and moved to a more appropriate non-public location,” it says.
“We all believe that the removal of the statue should be accomplished without force, without anger and … without uncivil discourse, much less vandalism,” the statement says.
According to its website, Black Lives Matter seeks to “disrupt the Western-prescribed nuclear family structure requirement by supporting each other as extended families and ‘villages’ that collectively care for one another.” It also seeks to build “a queer‐affirming network” and says, “When we gather, we do so with the intention of freeing ourselves from the tight grip of heteronormative thinking, or rather, the belief that all in the world are heterosexual (unless s/he or they disclose otherwise).” These and other odious positions, such as “defund the police,” should generate condemnations from the Church. Instead, the bishops are tripping over themselves to praise the group’s movement.
The same bishops who wouldn’t dare attend a pro-life demonstration turn up at Black Lives Matter protests. Bishop Mario Dorsonville, who used to live with the rapist Theodore McCarrick, marched in one in Washington, D.C. After El Paso Bishop Mark Seitz took a knee with Black Lives Matter, he was rewarded with a phone call from the pope, commending him for his activism. Seitz even soft-pedaled the seriousness of the mayhem that followed George Floyd’s death, saying, “My brother bishop in Chicago, Cardinal Blase Cupich, suggested we should be less quick to judge the proportionality of ‘their’ response and start talking about the proportionality of ‘ours.’ We also need to remember what Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said, that ‘a riot is the language of the unheard.’”
In this politically correct frenzy, priests are expected to ratify the lying narrative ripping the country apart. Woe to those who don’t. Witness Cardinal Sean O’Malley’s acceding to the sacking of the MIT chaplain Fr. Daniel Moloney, who failed to bow to the propaganda of Black Lives matter by writing, “In the wake of George Floyd’s death, most people in the country have framed this as an act of racism. I don’t think we know that. Many people have claimed that racism is major problem in police forces. I don’t think we know that.” He will have to be sent off to the bishops’ reeducation camp.
Under Pope Francis, the Church has a death wish, conferring its blessing upon a revolution that will consume it. In all the bishops’ blather about the “failures” of the Church, they never mention one of the failures at the root of the revolution: the Church’s inability to transmit faith and virtue to rising generations. For decades, the Church has preached politics instead of holiness, which has just added to the woes of our anti-religious age. Out of her secularized schools have come pro-abortion “Catholic” pols who de-Christianize society and poison young minds. Nancy Pelosi and company cheer on the mob as they crush the last symbols of civilization. On the toppled statues of Junipero Serra, among others, are the fingerprints of Church officials who were too cowardly or faithless to defend them. The future chroniclers of this age will find it remarkable that they came down not in spite of the Church but in part because of her.
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George Neumayr, a senior editor at The American Spectator, is co-author of No Higher Power: Obama’s War on Religious Freedom.