Pope Benedict XVI's answer as to whether there should be tolerance of sacrilege and public scandal for the sake of politics is sound and simple: NO!
Mexico City's recent decision to allow abortion on demand, which depended upon the support of politicians who claim to be Catholic, elicited a papal explanation that those "Catholic" politicians had excommunicated themselves by supporting the creation of a civil right to commit a grave moral wrong and as a result should be refused Holy Communion.
LifeNews.com Editor Steven Ertelt reported the good news in a May 9, 2007 article entitled "Pro-Abortion Pols Excommunicated, No Communion."
"The Catholic Church has made it clear in the past that it strongly opposes abortion and wants pro-abortion politicians to rethink their views or consider refraining from taking communion. Pope Benedict XVI stepped up those warnings Wednesday saying pro-abortion politicians have excommunicated themselves.
"He also said he elected officials who support abortion would be prevented from receiving communion.
"The pontiff was asked about the topics in reference to a threat from the Catholic bishops in Mexico to excommunicate members of the Mexico City legislative assembly who recently voted to legalize abortion in the nation's capital.
"'Yes, this excommunication was not an arbitrary one but is allowed by Canon (church) law which says that the killing of an innocent child is incompatible with receiving communion, which is receiving the body of Christ,' he said.
"'They (Mexican Church leaders) did nothing new, surprising or arbitrary. They simply announced publicly what is contained in the law of the Church...which expresses our appreciation for life and that human individuality, human personality is present from the first moment (of life),' he added.
"The pope talked about church doctrine known as 'automatic excommunication' where someone who does something which the church considers a grave sin inflicts on themselves.
"The Pope said the legislators who voted for abortion in Mexico City have 'doubts about the value of life and the beauty of life and even a doubt about the future.' "Selfishness and fear are at the root of (pro-abortion) legislation,' he said.
“'We in the Church have a great struggle to defend life...life is a gift not a threat,' the Catholic leader said. 'The Church says life is beautiful, it is not something to doubt but it is a gift even when it is lived in difficult circumstances. It is always a gift.'
"The pope made the comments in an interview with reporters about the topic aboard the plane carrying him to Brazil, where he is expected to address the issue of abortion and other topics in a series of speeches and events."
When I first wrote articles for posting on the Internet, I wrote about religion and politics. My first article posted at www.catholiconline.com (on May 25, 2004 and entitled "Holy Communion Should Be Denied To Kerry") declared that "[t]he protection of the Holy Eucharist must be the bishops’ paramount consideration today."
Then as now, some leading politicians were posing as practicing Catholics while rejecting fundamental Church teachings.
"House Minority Leader [now Speaker]Nancy Pelosi, an ardent abortion supporter and nominal Roman Catholic, 'fully intend[s] to receive communion, one way or another,' despite Vatican opposition to the receipt of Holy Communion by persons professing to be both Catholics in a state of grace and abortion supporters.
"Ms. Pelosi explained that receiving Holy Communion is 'very important' to her. That makes good sense politically, since a Catholic who presents herself or himself for Communion thereby represents that she or he is in a state of grace and being in a state of grace (or at least appearing to be) is still a political plus.
"Will America’s Catholic bishops cooperate or chastise America’s Nancy Pelosi's, Tom Daschle's, Ted Kennedy's and John Kerry's? (Prominent nominally Catholic politicians tend to be Democrats, but there are some nominally Catholic Republicans who share their perverse priorities, such as Maine Senator Susan Collins.)
"That may depend upon which is more important to America's Catholic bishops, the Church's fundamental principles or its tax exemption.
"Canon 915 provides that '[t]hose… who obstinately persist in manifest grave sin, are not to be admitted to Holy Communion.'
"Canon 915 protects the Holy Eucharist and prevents the public scandal that would result from ineligible persons receiving Holy Communion.
"Bishops who are reluctant to embarrass prominent politicians need to recall that Jesus had no patience for those moneychangers in the Temple. Protecting the sanctity of the Temple was His paramount consideration then. The protection of the Holy Eucharist must be the bishops’ paramount consideration today.
"Averting public scandal is vital. As St. Thomas Aquinas long ago explained, a distinction 'must be made' between secret and open sinners, and 'Holy Communion ought not to be given to open sinners when they ask for it.'"
I pointed out that some American bishops were upholding canon law:
"Bishop William K. Weigand of Sacramento has called on pro-choice Catholic politicians to refrain from taking Holy Communion. 'As your bishop, I have to say clearly that anyone -- politician or otherwise -- who thinks it is acceptable for a Catholic to be pro-abortion is in very great error, puts his or her soul at risk, and is not in good standing with the Church. Such a person should have the integrity to acknowledge this and choose of his own volition to abstain from receiving Holy Communion until he has a change of heart,' he said.
"Last year, Archbishop Raymond Burke of St. Louis, then Bishop of La Crosse, Wisconsin, went further. He publicly decreed that Catholic legislators in his diocese who 'support procured abortion or euthanasia may not present themselves to receive Holy Communion' and are to be denied Holy Communion if they nevertheless present themselves 'until…they publicly renounce their support of these most unjust practices.' Prior private efforts to persuade had been rebuffed.
"Archbishop Burke emphasized that he did what a bishop is required to do. He explained that '[t]he duty of Catholic legislators to respect human life is….God’s law,' and that bishops who 'remain silent while the faith, in one of its most fundamental tenets, is…openly disobeyed by those who present themselves as sincere adherents of the faith, [has] failed most seriously and should be removed from office.'"
I explained that these American bishops were respecting the Roman Catholic Church's basic principles:
"As Pope John Paul II proclaimed in his 1988 Apostolic Exhortation: 'Above all, the common outcry, which is justly made on behalf of human rights -- for example, the right to health, to home, to work, to family, to culture -- is false and illusory if the right to life, the most basic and fundamental right and condition to all other personal rights, is not defended with maximum determination.'
"For what has become a scandalously long time, the Roman Catholic Church has neglected to bar from Holy Communion many prominent nominal Catholics who publicly and proudly support abortion, in blatant violation of the fundamental Church teaching that human life is sacred and begins at conception.
"John Kerry, a nominal Catholic, is the presumptive presidential candidate of the Democrat Party. He is supporting partial-birth abortion, calling abortion a woman's right and vowing to appoint only pro-abortion justices. At the dinner hosted by NARAL Pro-Choice America (formerly, the National Abortion and Reproductive Rights Action League) to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the Supreme Court’s decisions in Roe v. Wade and Doe v. Bolton, Kerry proclaimed, 'We are not going to turn back the clock. There is no overturning of Roe v. Wade. There is no packing of courts with judges who will be hostile to choice.'
"Kerry has created a public scandal by receiving Holy Communion while flagrantly rejecting fundamental Church teaching.
"In 1971, Kerry's Massachusetts colleague and fellow nominal Catholic, Ted Kennedy, wrote, 'Human life, even at its earliest stages, has a certain right which must be recognized—the right to be born, the right to love, the right to grow old.' Then Roe v. Wade was decided and political expediency prevailed over Catholic principle for many ambitious politicians.
"In 1975, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) described the right to life as 'among basic human rights.' In 1998 it issued a pastoral letter chastising Catholic politicians for supporting abortion and euthanasia. Bishop Wilton D. Gregory, its president, welcomed a Vatican doctrinal note denouncing Catholic politicians who support abortion, euthanasia, gay marriage, and human cloning. Bishop Gregory explained that 'Catholic politicians cannot subscribe to any notion which equates freedom or democracy with a moral relativism that denies these moral principles.'
"The sanctioning of Kerry and his kind is necessary. Like racism, abortion is a grave sin. Its tolerance is intolerable. Like covering up child abuse, tolerating the receipt of Holy Communion by pro-abortion politicians is an abomination."
I pointed out that one American bishop had excommunicated a racist, with salutary effect:
"The case of Louisiana racist Leander Perez illustrates why Communion must be denied to those who are publicly rejecting fundamental church teaching. In 1962 an exasperated Archbishop Joseph Rummel of New Orleans finally excommunicated Leander Perez for opposing desegregation in Catholic schools. Perez eventually repented (as did others of his ilk), and the school integration succeeded.
"As a state judge and political boss of Louisiana's Plaquemines Parish, Perez made the lives of African-Americans miserable. But Perez could not intimidate Archbishop Rummel, who not only knew that racial segregation was sinful, but that it needed to be ended. The Archbishop noted that 'enforced racial discrimination inflicts incalculable mental and emotional cruelty and pain, physical and social privations, educational and economic restrictions upon 16 millions of our fellow citizens, and that these discriminations are unjustifiable violations of the Christian way of life and the principles of our American heritage.'
"In 1953 the Archbishop's pastoral letter, 'Blessed Are the Peacemakers,' was read aloud in the archdiocese’s churches. It declared 'the unacceptability of racial discrimination.' Perez and his allies were unmoved. The Archbishop threatened in 1956 to excommunicate them, but they held protest rallies and withheld church contributions instead of repenting.
"Interestingly, segregationist Catholics formed the Association of Catholic Laymen of New Orleans and it 'asked the Pope (Pius XII) to stop Rummel from taking further steps to integrate white and Negro Catholics and to decree that racial segregation is not "morally wrong and sinful"' ('Morals' 36). The Vatican's response was a reminder that 'the Pope had condemned racism as a major evil, asserting "that those who enter the Church... have rights as children in the House of the Lord."'
"In 1962, the Archbishop at last acted decisively. He announced that in the fall, the city’s Catholic schools would admit black students. Perez and his allies persisted in their opposition, so the archbishop excommunicated them for continuing 'to hinder his orders or provoke the devoted people of this venerable archdiocese to disobedience or rebellion in the matter of opening our schools to all Catholic children.' They were barred from the Mass and sacraments as well as Catholic burial.
"By the fall, 104 black children were admitted to the city’s Catholic schools. By 1968, Perez repented and, after his death in 1969, was given a Catholic burial."
"The barring of John Kerry, Nancy Pelosi and other pro-abortion nominally Catholic politicians has been too long delayed. The sooner the bar is imposed, the better. Perhaps they too will repent before death and receive a Catholic burial. Jesus did not pander to politicians, much less put monetary considerations (such as tax exemption) before principle.
"Sin should be identified as such and political correctness does not excuse sin.
"A priest who knowingly gives Communion to a pro-abortion politician commits a grave sin as well as the unworthy recipient.
"Sacrilege consists in profaning or treating unworthily the sacraments and other liturgical actions, as well as persons, things, or places consecrated to God. Sacrilege is a grave sin especially when committed against the Eucharist, for in this sacrament 'the true Body of Christ is made substantially present for us.' Catechism of the Catholic Church, Section 2120.
"St. Paul was unambiguous: Whoever, therefore, eats the bread or drinks the cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of profaning the body and blood of the Lord. Let a man examine himself, and so eat of the bread and drink of the cup.' 1 Corinthians 11:27-28.
"'Anyone who desires to receive Christ in Eucharistic communion must be in a state of grace. Anyone aware of having sinned mortally must not receive communion without having received absolution in the sacrament of penance.' Catechism 1415.
"'The Eucharist is properly the sacrament of those who are in full communion with the Church.' Catechism 1395."
On June 21, 2004, in "Under Canon Law...," I reported that the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops had chosen to exalt the authority of individual bishops: "On June 18, 2004, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops declared that decisions on giving or denying 'Holy Communion to some Catholics in political life' 'rest with the individual bishop in accord with the established canonical and pastoral principles.' In support, they stated simply that '[b]ishops can legitimately make different judgments on the most prudent course of pastoral action.'"
I warned: "The bishops do have individual authority to determine prudent pastoral action, but that does not absolve them of their sacred duty to uphold and to apply canon law and to follow the Pope. The authority of the bishops 'must be exercised in communion with the whole Church under the guidance of the Pope' (The Catechism of the Catholic Church, Section 895). The bishops have 'no authority unless united with the [Pope], Peter's successor, as its head' (Catechism 883)."
"Pope John Paul II was unequivocal in Ecclesia de Eucharista: '[I]n cases of outward conduct which is seriously, clearly and steadfastly contrary to the moral norm, the Church, in her pastoral concern for the good order of the community and out of respect for the sacrament, cannot fail to feel directly involved. The Code of Canon Law refers to this situation of a manifest lack of proper moral disposition when it states that those who "obstinately persist in manifest grave sin" are not to be admitted to Eucharistic communion.'
"On April 23, 2004, Cardinal Francis Arinze, prefect of the Vatican Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of Sacraments, authoritatively explained at a press conference in Rome that unrepentant pro-abortion 'Catholic' politicians should be denied Communion. Relying on Canon 915, which specifies that '[t]hose...who obstinately persist in manifest grave sin, are not to be admitted to Holy Communion,' Cardinal Arinze put it succinctly: 'If they should not receive, then they should not be given.'
"The Roman Catholic Church is supposed to be one, holy, catholic and apostolic, according to the Nicene Creed. Bishops are not to be independent warlords, doing whatever they want within their territory, because they can. Each bishop must follow canon law, not his personal preference.
"Prudence is a valid consideration in the political context. But it is not relevant in determining what a Catholic needs to do as a matter of principal. Jesus rejected prudence and died for our sins out of love. All bishops should remember Jesus' undiplomatic warning to the complacent: 'I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold or hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth.'
"For decades, Roman Catholic priests in the United States have knowingly given Holy Communion to unrepentant, publicly known nominally Catholic abortion 'rights' and/or gay marriage 'rights' politicians. They have done so for various reasons: misguided compassion, political correctness run amok, fear of losing the Church's tax exemption and/or contributions from pro-abortion and pro-homosexual practices people, personal preference or culpable ignorance. But, in doing so, they have disregarded unambiguous canon law and committed a grave sin. They should repent, make a good act of contrition, receive absolution and then go forth and sin no more.
"Sadly, led by Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the most prominent Catholic clergyman in the United States, many (but not all) United States priests have continued to give Communion to such persons. Cardinal McCarrick publicly proclaimed that he has 'not gotten to the stage where I’m comfortable in denying the Eucharist.'
"In 1995 then Archbishop of Newark McCarrick seemed comfortable with the concept of obeying canon law. He issued a soundly reasoned, elegantly written pastoral letter on penance. The kind of letter than indicated a promotion to Cardinal was in order.
"Cardinal McCarrick rightly wrote in that letter: 'We know that anyone who is aware of having committed a grave sin may not receive Holy Communion, even if he or she experiences deep contrition, without having first received absolution in the Sacrament of Penance [footnote citing Canon 916]. This is true unless the person has a grave reason for receiving Communion and there is no possibility of going to confession, a situation which does not apply in the area of the Archdiocese of Newark.
"Canon 916 states: 'A person who is conscious of grave sin is not to celebrate Mass or to receive the Body of the Lord without prior sacramental confession unless a grave reason is present and there is no opportunity of confessing; in this case the person is to be mindful of the obligation to make an act of perfect contrition, including the intention of confessing as soon as possible.'
"Obviously pro-abortion nominally Catholic politicians such as Senators Kerry, Kennedy, Daschle, Durbin and Collins, House Minority Leader Pelosi and former Mayor Guiliani can confess if they choose.
"Significantly, Cardinal McCarrick faithfully noted in his letter that abortion is a 'grave' sin and a 'crime against innocent life.' He asserted, perhaps too generously, that '[w]e all recognize that it is a grave evil to take an innocent human life"'and astutely observed that '[w]e tend to find excuses.'
"Sadly, Cardinal McCarrick has found an excuse for the sin of disregarding Canon 915 and knowingly giving Communion to pro-abortion nominally Catholic politicans: uncomfortableness.
"The Holy Father, Pope John Paul II, left no room for quibbling in Ecclesia de Eucharistia:
'The celebration of the Eucharist…cannot be the starting-point for communion; it presupposes that communion already exists, a communion which it seeks to consolidate and bring to perfection. The sacrament is an expression of this bond….both in its invisible dimension, which, in Christ and through the working of the Holy Spirit, unites us to the Father and among ourselves, and in its visible dimension, which entails communion in the teaching of the Apostles, in the sacraments and in the Church's hierarchical order….
'Keeping these invisible bonds intact is a specific moral duty incumbent upon Christians who wish to participate fully in the Eucharist by receiving the body and blood of Christ.
'However, in cases of outward conduct which is seriously, clearly and steadfastly contrary to the moral norm, the Church, in her pastoral concern for the good order of the community and out of respect for the sacrament, cannot fail to feel directly involved. The Code of Canon Law refers to this situation of a manifest lack of proper moral disposition when it states that those who “obstinately persist in manifest grave sin” are not to be admitted to Eucharistic communion.'
"Pope John Paul II could not have been clearer regarding those who 'obstinately persist in manifest grave sin' -they are NOT to be admitted to Holy Communion.
"Even before this Encyclical, the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts had issued an interpretation of Canon 915 that should have sufficed to resolve any issue. The Council, in agreement with the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and with the Congregation for Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments, declared:
'The phrase "and others who obstinately persist in manifest grave sin" is clear and must be understood in a manner that does not distort its sense so as to render the norm inapplicable. The three required conditions are:
a) grave sin, understood objectively, being that the minister of Communion would not be able to judge from subjective imputability;
b) obstinate persistence, which means the existence of an objective situation of sin that endures in time and which the will of the individual member of the faithful does not bring to an end, no other requirements (attitude of defiance, prior warning, etc.) being necessary to establish the fundamental gravity of the situation in the Church.
c) the manifest character of the situation of grave habitual sin.'
"It further declared:
'Naturally, pastoral prudence would strongly suggest the avoidance of instances of public denial of Holy Communion. Pastors must strive to explain to the concerned faithful the true ecclesial sense of the norm, in such a way that they would be able to understand it or at least respect it. In those situations, however, in which these precautionary measures have not had their effect or in which they were not possible, the minister of Communion must refuse to distribute it to those who are publicly unworthy. They are to do this with extreme charity, and are to look for the opportune moment to explain the reasons that required the refusal. They must, however, do this with firmness, conscious of the value that such signs of strength have for the good of the Church and of souls.
'The discernment of cases in which the faithful who find themselves in the described condition are to be excluded from Eucharistic Communion is the responsibility of the Priest who is responsible for the community. They are to give precise instructions to the deacon or to any extraordinary minister regarding the mode of acting in concrete situations.
'….the obligation of reiterating this impossibility of admission to the Eucharist is required for genuine pastoral care and for an authentic concern for the well-being of these faithful and of the whole Church, being that it indicates the conditions necessary for the fullness of that conversion to which all are always invited by the Lord….'
"The Declaration confirms that the reception of the Body of Christ when one is publicly unworthy constitutes an objective harm to the ecclesial communion, in that it is sinful behavior that affects the rights of the Church and of all the faithful to live in accord with the exigencies of that communion...That scandal exists even if such behavior no longer arouses surprise. Indeed, that unfortunate circumstance makes it more necessary for priests to act in defense of the Holy Eucharist and the Roman Catholic faith.
"Concerned that the priests of the Roman Catholic Church in the United States might actually follow the canon law that mandated them to prevent the sacrilegious receipt of Communion, 48 members of the House of Representatives who identify themselves as Catholic wrote to Cardinal McCarrick, ominously warning that refusing them Communion 'would be counter-productive and would bring great harm to the Church.'
"Moral authority is derived from upholding principle, even when principle is unpopular or upholding it is costly. It is diminished when principle is compromised, because it seems expedient to do so.
"The Catholic Church’s moral authority suffered greatly because the problem of sexual abuse of altar boys by priests was handled as secretly as possible for decades instead of acknowledged and dealt with openly.
"Will the Catholic Church’s moral authority suffer further because priests find it easier to give Communion to whomever asks for it than to follow canon law and refuse persons 'who obstinately persist in manifest grave sin'?
"In 1971, John Kerry's Massachusetts Senate colleague and fellow nominal Catholic, Ted Kennedy, wrote, 'Human life, even at its earliest stages, has a certain right which must be recognized—the right to be born, the right to love, the right to grow old.'
"Then Roe v. Wade was decided and political expediency prevailed over Catholic principle for many ambitious politicians who publicly support abortion as a legitimate choice that they personally would not make. At the same time, they claim to be practicing Catholics and line up to receive Communion as though they are fit to receive.
"Priests and bishops are obligated to uphold the tenets of their faith, to identify sin, and to rebuke sinners. St. Augustine wrote: 'Medicinal rebuke must be applied to all who sin, lest they should either themselves perish, or be the ruin of others…. Let no one, therefore, say that a man must not be rebuked when he deviates from the right way, or that his return and perseverance must only be asked from the Lord for him.'"
I also cited clear Vatican statements that those excommunicated Mexican politicians foolishly chose to disrespect:
"In 2003, the Vatican decreed that Catholic politicians 'who are directly involved in lawmaking bodies have a grave and clear obligation to oppose any law that attacks human life' and '[f]or them, as for every Catholic, it is impossible to promote such laws or to vote for them….'
"On March 25, 2004, the Vatican issued a statement specifying that 'anyone who is conscious of grave sin should not celebrate or receive the Body of the Lord without prior sacramental confession' when possible and that it is for 'the Pastors prudently and firmly to correct such an abuse' when 'Christ’s faithful approach the altar as a group indiscriminately.'"
"Unfortunately, a mixed message is being sent when complete clarity is needed. For example, Archbishop O’Malley of Boston proclaimed that '[a] Catholic politician who holds a public, pro-choice position should not be receiving Communion and should refrain from doing so.' But the Archbishop then abdicated his responsibility for protecting the Holy Eucharist by adopting a policy of leaving it 'up to the individual' to decide whether or not to receive instead of denying Communion. Even though Pope John Paul II’s Holy Thursday 2003 encyclical stated: 'In cases of outward conduct which is seriously, clearly, and steadfastly contrary to the moral norm, those who "obstinately persist in manifest grave sin" are not to be admitted to Eucharist Communion.'"
"It is for those who dispense Holy Communion to follow the mandate of Canon 915. Bishops who are reluctant to embarrass prominent politicians need to recall that Jesus had no patience for those moneychangers in the Temple. Protecting the sanctity of the Temple was His paramount consideration then. The protection of the Holy Eucharist must be the bishops’ paramount consideration today.
"Averting public scandal is vital. St. Thomas Aquinas explained that a distinction 'must be made' between secret and open sinners, and 'Holy Communion ought not to be given to open sinners when they ask for it,' because '[h]oly things are forbidden to be given to…notorious sinners….'
"A priest who knowingly gives Communion to a pro-abortion politician commits the grave sin of sacrilege as well as the unfit recipient. Neither political correctness nor political expediency excuses sin."
All that (and more) notwithstanding, Chicago's Cardinal George is permitting pro-abortion presidential aspirant Hillary Clinton to speak at a Catholic fundraiser and faithful Catholics are disgusted.
The Catholic Citizens of Illinois Board of Directors explained why in a letter to Cardinal George, the text of which follows:
"We are outraged and dismayed that you would permit the Mercy Home for Boys & Girls to invite Hillary Clinton to speak at their fundraiser. The newspapers and various internet sites report that you questioned it but were satisfied that it was not be a political event. You can't possibly believe that. We can only hope that your comments were misrepresented by the media.
"Hillary Clinton is running for President. Any appearance or speech she gives is a political event. Mrs. Clinton opposes the moral teachings of the Church on abortion, stem cell research, the morality of homosexual acts and the defense of marriage. She has spoken to the Human Rights Campaign, the major homosexual organization in the country and promised that she will advance their agenda 'when she becomes president.'
"Hillary Clinton's appearance at a fundraiser for Mercy Home is a disgrace for the Church and a scandal to the faithful. It is a disheartening affront to the pro-life movement that fights on a daily basis for the lives of the innocent unborn and other vulnerable members of our society. It is in direct opposition to the Bishops statement opposing awards, honors, or platforms for those who oppose the fundamental moral principals of the Church. No wonder Catholics think it is okay to vote for pro-abortion candidates!
"Before long you will be taking the leadership of the USCCB. Is this what we have to look forward to? We have already experienced the weakness and indifference of the USCCB on major moral issues. If only all of the bishops would follow the lead of those courageous ones who are willing to take a public stand against such speakers on Catholic property. Is it too much to ask the leaders of the church Militant to do what they ask us to do - stand firm in defending the faith? Is compromise and accommodation what defines us and if so, is now the time to just submit?"
Pope Benedict XVI's answer as to whether there should be tolerance of sacrilege and public scandal for the sake of politics is sound and simple: NO!
The Mexican bishops "get it."
Will all of the American bishops finally "get it"?
Please pray that it will be so...and that Cardinal George tells Hillary that her appearance at that fundraiser is a no-go, because she's an abortion friend instead of an abortion foe and the Catholic Church will not send out a mixed message about the horror resulting from Roe.
Michael J. Gaynor has been practicing law in New York since 1973. A former partner at Fulton, Duncombe & Rowe and Gaynor & Bass, he is a solo practitioner admitted to practice in New York state and federal courts and an Association of the Bar of the City of New York member.
Gaynor graduated magna cum laude, with Honors in Social Science, from Hofstra University's New College, and received his J.D. degree from St. John's Law School, where he won the American Jurisprudence Award in Evidence and served as an editor of the Law Review and the St. Thomas More Institute for Legal Research. He wrote on the Pentagon Papers case for the Review and obscenity law for The Catholic Lawyer and edited the Law Review's commentary on significant developments in New York law.
The day after graduating, Gaynor joined the Fulton firm, where he focused on litigation and corporate law. In 1997 Gaynor and Emily Bass formed Gaynor & Bass and then conducted a general legal practice, emphasizing litigation, and represented corporations, individuals and a New York City labor union. Notably, Gaynor & Bass prevailed in the Second Circuit in a seminal copyright infringement case, Tasini v. New York Times, against newspaper and magazine publishers and Lexis-Nexis. The U.S. Supreme Court affirmed, 7 to 2, holding that the copyrights of freelance writers had been infringed when their work was put online without permission or compensation.
Gaynor currently contributes regularly to www.MichNews.com, www.RenewAmerica.com, www.WebCommentary.com, www.PostChronicle.com and www.therealitycheck.org and has contributed to many other websites. He has written extensively on political and religious issues, notably the Terry Schiavo case, the Duke "no rape" case, ACORN and canon law, and appeared as a guest on television and radio. He was acknowledged in Until Proven Innocent, by Stuart Taylor and KC Johnson, and Culture of Corruption, by Michelle Malkin. He appeared on "Your World With Cavuto" to promote an eBay boycott that he initiated and "The World Over With Raymond Arroyo" (EWTN) to discuss the legal implications of the Schiavo case. On October 22, 2008, Gaynor was the first to report that The New York Times had killed an Obama/ACORN expose on which a Times reporter had been working with ACORN whistleblower Anita MonCrief.