Jan 21, 2006

Father McBrien and the rest of the story

This week's issue of The Tidings runs two fine letters that criticize syndicated columnist Father Richard McBrien for attacking pro-life activists recently.

But there's more to the story. The Boston Herald reported on January 19 that the Cardinal Newman Society will ask Father McBrien's boss, University of Notre Dame President Father John Jenkins, to investigate that column for plagiarism.

You probably know that the Society is a watchdog group that promotes orthodoxy, decency and the right to life on Catholic college campuses.

Between them, the Society and the Herald say they've found nine similarities between Father McBrien's words and a December 11 Boston Globe column by Eileen McNamara as well as Globe news coverage of the December protest about which Father McBrien wrote.

The Herald says Father McBrien credited one sentence but not the other passages in question. It also says Father McBrien "conceded that he took facts from the Globe that he should have credited, but denied committing plagiarism."

One of the "facts" that Father McBrien seems to have taken is columnist Eileen McNamara's claim that pro-lifers miss the Latin Mass and miss Cardinal Law for letting pro-lifers gather at Catholic churches before rescues.

Father McBrien in the past has taken a nasty tone toward the Blessed Virgin Mary, vented his anger at pro-lifers and said the Pope should not canonize then-Blesseds Padre Pio, Josemaria Escriva and Juan Diego, whom he called "bad models for the universal Church." If The Tidings has not dumped him by now, will it do so because of a plagiarism rap, should it stick? Let's not hold our breath.


Blogger Sean Hurly said...

Well he's good at quoting heretics and Liberation Theology Acadamia too!

8:23 PM  
Blogger Quo Vadis said...

He doen't just quote heretics he is one! The fact that The Tidings publishes articles by a known heretic is itself a great scandal.


8:55 PM  
Blogger sgnofcross said...

agree with quo vadis. He is a heretic. Why hasn't this man been defrocked, excommunicated and given the boot?

9:22 PM  
Blogger eweu said...

Folks, you're letting your American desire for immediate and final justice peek through too much. That's not the Roman way. Rome does not simply "eliminate" any outcropping of offense or abuse. As it has been for centuries, these things take a great deal of time to sort out. More time than I'm certainly patient for, but this isn't just about me.

Fr. McBrien is a remnant of a cancer in the Chruch that started well before the Council. The humanist and radical feminist ideas that set seed in the late 50's brought us an entire generation of heterodoxy that no simple change of liturgy or canon law can fix overnight.

Pray, brethren. The people get the clergy they deserve. Even in the midst of the most heterodox parish, be pious. Do not cower at stares. Do not be afraid to show devotion to Christ our Lord. Do not hide away in obscurity. Stand out. You'll find more supporters than you thought existed. Be devoted to Him, not to a ritual. Only Christ can save His Church. Put your faith in Him and Him alone.

9:49 PM  
Blogger bobnd said...

We had a heretic as a pastor in my home parish the Church of Our Lady of Lourdes. I asked the pastor if the diocese ever got an orthodox bishop would he leave the priesthood. Well he left the priesthood and we did get an orthodox pastor

12:05 AM  
Blogger Clayton said...

Be devoted to Him, not to a ritual. Only Christ can save His Church.

eweu, well said!

4:55 AM  
Blogger Patrick said...

A deep breath everybody. The Cardinal Newman Society, whose aims I support, blew it on this. Despite the Very Serious Tone of the missive to the padre prez of Notre Dame, this ain't like catching Capone on tax evasion. No one in authority cares about this plagiarism business: Not McBrien's Holy Cross superior, not the local Ordinary, and certainly not the president of ND. He'll get a wink-wink slap on the wrist and be sent back to his typrewriter.

God forbid, but he'll have to be caught on video with a young boy or a goat before one finger will be lifetd against his ministry (sic).

As the eminence grise of Amchurch, Father McBrien is a politically and theologically protected commodity. Besides, there is insufficient data here on which to get any "action traction." So he borrowed some junk from some other leftist..."who cares" is the basic reaction from everyone who even hears about it, except for orthodox bloggers and the CNS.

Imagine the outcry, though, if it were a Hahn, a Weigel, or a Keating.

1:19 PM  
Blogger I dare you to deny me communion because I kneel said...

McBrien needs to go...But we all know it's not happening with Mahony in charge.

12:52 AM  

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