May 16, 2009

About Notre Dame's arrests of Catholic priests: Do we have two churches in this country, side by side?

Since earlier this week, Fr. John Jenkins, C.S.C., who heads the University of Notre Dame, has been having his campus police arrest and jail his fellow Catholics who are pro-life.

Fr. Jenkins evidently does not like it that some of his fellow Catholics oppose his having abortion zealot Obama receive an honorary degree and give the commencement address tomorrow.

It's on Fox TV News and CNN: The arrests of small groups of pro-life Catholics who ventured onto the campus in small pro-life presences while praying the Rosary.

The pro-lifers whom Fr. Jenkins had arrested (for "trespassing") include at least two Catholic priests. The one whose name I know is Fr. Norman Weslin. He is 79.

I think I have the following information correct: Fr. Weslin is a widower and a retired Army Lt. Col. who became a priest and since then has been arrested at abortion businesses many times for saving babies with his prayerful presence outside the abortion centers.

Commenting today at a post I did on April 5, 2007 (see also my follow-up on April 7, 2007), Leo McSherry has given this testimony: "I served under Fr. Weslin when he was Capt. Weslin in the NY Air Defense Command. He was the finest officer I served under and one of the finest I ever met. He was very compassionate then and is deserving of our compassion now."

Pro-life Fr. Norman Weslin would be a far better honoree and commencement speaker at Notre Dame or any Catholic college or university than would any abortion zealot.

Question: We have one Catholic priest arresting and jailing another -- an aged priest, at that, and his brother in the priesthood of Jesus Christ -- for holding a pro-life prayer demonstration. Does that show we have two churches existing side by side in this country?

After all, how could Fr. Jenkins now show his face and concelebrate Holy Mass with aged Fr. Weslin, whom he has had arrested, handcuffed, hauled off in a blanket, booked and jailed?

Not very collegial of Fr. Jenkins. Not very pastoral. Not very tolerant. Not very inclusive.

Fr. Jenkins has claimed Obama's visit is for "dialogue." Arrests are not dialogue.

We have one bunch in the Church who love, vote for and abase themselves toward pro-abortion politicians and who despise pro-life activists. Some of them are right here in Los Angeles.

We have another group in the Church who love preborn babies and their moms and seek to protect and help them -- and who follow our Popes' teachings against abortion, against pro-abortion politicians, and against all excuses for supporting pro-abortion politicians.

Let us hope and pray that now that Notre Dame is setting the precedent that a Catholic institution can honor an abortion-zealot chief executive, no one else in the Church will do the same.

Cardinal Mahony, maybe you would never think of inviting Obama anywhere in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. I sincerely hope not.

But if by some chance you are thinking of that or if you already have invited him, please disinvite him. Think of aged Fr. Weslin in jail for the babies.


Anonymous Wynette Sills said...

California isn't far behind Notre Dame. Three of us pro-lifers were also treated very ungraciously in front of the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament on Catholic Lobby Day here in Sacramento as we tried to distribute material about Eliminating Abortion Funding from the state budget, only to be called "stupid, idiots, morons" and ordered to "get our crap out of here!" by the Cathedral staff, with the police also being called because we were allegedly "offending people" in the public square and "mis-using church property" with our signs. On the same day, the California Catholic Conference directed over 600 Catholics to lobby for legislation authored by three state politicians with 100% pro-abortion voting records, while the Church remained silent regarding the Sanctity of Life, providing tacit endorsement to this intrinsic evil.

Seeking healing and reconciliation after such mistreatment, we met with the Cathedral staff representative to explain our purpose and intent. Although this encounter was slightly more peaceful, he once again called one of us stupid, saying we should be grateful he didn't have the police arrest us for trespassing, all the while unconvincingly assuring us that everyone at the Cathedral is "sympathetic to our cause and pro-life".

In reality, Prolife Catholics are among the most oppressed and persecuted people of our day, even within our own Church and Catholic institutions.

We pray to the Lord. Have Mercy on us all, when good is called evil, and evil mistaken for good.

As far as I know, not a single California Bishop has expressed opposition to President Obama's visit to Notre Dame. The Silence of our Shepherds is complicit to the killing.

8:58 PM  
Blogger Hai said...

The priest was arrested for trespassing and not because of his pro life or whatever view. Painting it in any other way would be dishonest at best

3:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

CNN is slanting this story about pro lifers.
They haven`t a clue about the Catholic faith, yet they put their uninformed ideas out there for all to belive.
This is not so much about him speaking today, it`s about him receiving an honourary doctorate degree. They won`t even go there.
We`re all spoon feed what the secular media wants us to see and believe.
The demise of the U.S. is all based on the murder of unborn babies.

4:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

very exceptional post among all the ink that's been spilled on this travesty. Yes, Christ's Body the Church in the USA, is lacerated again by the A-word. That Obama is being honored is one thing: that a priest is doing the honoring is quite another. God have Mercy on him & on us all!!

10:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I a fellow catholic, not a US Citizen but have been living in the US for about 9 year. I would ask both 'sides' to think - What would Jesus have done?

God never forces, gives us all the freedom of choice - to act on the side of love and forgiveness.

Legalizing abortion, providing education to avoid abortion are all pro-life acts. That is all Barack Obama stands for. He has never said he is pro-abortion. People need to be educated, they need to be given the tools to make the right choice. However, the choice has to be theirs. Finding common ground and consensus to work toward reducing abortion, that is more important than using divisive tactics or conflict to put forward one's own point of view.


10:57 AM  
Anonymous MATEO MIGUEL ROMERO said...

I am having trouble with how the world is protraying Obama as Catholic. Nowhere have I read that Obama has been baptized into Catholocism, made a first Communion, and underwent the right of Confirmation. Evidently he was Muslim as a child, went to Catholic school for two years but left, and then was Baptized into the Christian faith - The United Church of Christ is not a Catholic Church but is a Christian Church. I am diheartened that people, who are "not Catholic," are being honored by Catholic educational institutions.

11:11 AM  
Anonymous pearyfromatt said...

Do we have two churches in this country, side by side? No, just idiots running ND. Priests allowing other priests to be arrested and punished because of wanting to bring our attention to the lives of unborn babies? How much brotherly love is lacking in those that are running the show?


12:38 PM  
Anonymous Catherine said...

That was a thoughtful and insightful posting. As a Catholic I am more than a little concerned by Fr. Jenkins actions, in inviting and honoring Obama and even more so by his actions against pro-lifers who dared to pray for the unborn on Notre Dame property. Fr. Jenkins was given every opportunity to disinvite or at the very least not honor Obama with a law degree but declined to follow the Bishops decree. I can only imagine what his future in the Church will be like given his complete disdain for human life, his fellow priests, and his Church. We should be praying for preists like Fr. Jenkins who have lost their way, but at the same time should be calling for his removal as President of Notre Dame.

4:00 PM  
Anonymous Tom Buggeln said...

For all practical purposes, Notre Dame has been secularized since the 1967 Land O'Lakes Agreement.

The reception of Federal funds trumped faithfulness to the magisterium and "Catholic" education and culture within the university has been steadily and silently strangled for over forty years!

While I'm glad to see the current outrage, I still am somewhat perplexed. Why has everyone waited so long to expose a four decade "silent and not so silent, apostasy"

5:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


6:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I read a report, did not see the commencement, that a heckler yelled Stop killing my children. The gradurates chanted back Yes We Can? That is fruit of evil.

8:56 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have rescued with Fr. Weslin several times, and prayed outsided abortion mills with him. He is a wonderful man and would have made a much better speaker than President Obama. To have a pro abortion supported speak at a "Catholic" college left me feeling violated.

Dave Collart

10:58 AM  
Blogger Quintero said...

Dear Mrs. Sills,

Thank you so much for writing.

And thank you above all for your courageous and faithful pro-life witness and that of your family.

Sorry to hear about the way you and your pro-life friends were treated on "Catholic" Lobby Day.

Being treated that way by fellow Catholics stings, as I too know from personal experience.

You are so right about pro-life Catholics being one of the most persecuted groups today.

And you are so right about those in the Church whose silence and inaction make them complicit in aborting babies. They certainly do provide "tacit endorsement to this intrinsic evil." May they be converted and begin to love the babies and work to save them.

May it console you and your family and friends to know you're doing your best, imitating Jesus in being a sign of contradiction to the world. God bless you for championing the babies and their right to life, and for following the Way of the Cross.

6:18 PM  
Blogger Quintero said...

Dear Dave Collart,

Thank you very much for writing about your rescuing with Fr. Weslin and praying with him at the mills.

God reward you for saving babies and giving good example to the world!

Yes, Notre Dame's honoring of Obama has left all of us feeling let down and betrayed.

Let's all keep praying for Fr. Weslin, Joan Andrews Bell, and everyone whom Notre Dame arrested.

Thanks again for writing!

6:23 PM  
Blogger Quintero said...

Dear Hai,

Well, should Martin Luther King, Jr., have been arrested for trespassing? How about the civil rights men who conducted sit-ins at the segregated lunch counters in the South in the early 1960's?

6:25 PM  
Blogger Quintero said...

Dear DP (Anonymous 10:57 a.m.),

Jesus being the Author of Life, He would save His little babies and join with everyone who loves them enough to strive to save them.

"Legalizing abortion" is the direct opposite of being pro-life. So is "providing education to avoid abortion," because the Pill often acts after a baby is conceived, and because contraceptives fail so often.

Many or even most abortions happen to couples who are contracepting.

There cannot be a "choice" to kill the little infants just because their temporary place of residence is inside their Mommy.

Obama truly is pro-abortion. For proof, just look up his speech to Planned Parenthood in 2007.

Also look up Fr. Alphonse de Valk's recent article on all the pro-abortion appointments and policy moves that Obama made in just his first 50 days in office.

And Obama is the divisive one. In his speech at Notre Dame, he was placing a wedge between Catholics and the teaching of their Faith; between pro-lifers and other Catholics; and between Catholics and abortion-targeted babies.

6:38 PM  
Blogger Quintero said...

Dear Tom Buggeln,

Some Catholics through the years have been calling attention to the Land O'Lakes conference of 1967.

And have you heard of the late Bishop Robert Dwyer of Reno, Nevada, and then Portland, Oregon? He died back in 1974, but he left behind some great newspaper columns, including one about a Catholic college that he said should be called "Judas Iscariot University."

6:53 PM  
Blogger Quintero said...

Dear Mateo Miguel Romero,

Thank you for writing!

You're so right that Notre Dame's honoring of Obama will make a lot of people think his views and policies are in line with Catholic teaching.

We need to keep telling people that, as the pro-life slogan says, "You Can't Be Catholic and Pro-Abortion."

6:59 PM  
Blogger ~Joseph the Worker said...

Glad to have stumbled onto your blog. Good thoughts!

11:15 AM  
Blogger Quintero said...

Dear Joseph the Worker,

Thank you very much for your kind words! Sorry I'm a little late in getting back to you.

2:45 PM  
Blogger Hai said...

Well, should Martin Luther King, Jr., have been arrested for trespassing? How about the civil rights men who conducted sit-ins at the segregated lunch counters in the South in the early 1960's

Well, if he is entering my lawn without my permission and won't leave after sufficient warning, I am sure as hell will get his ass busted for trespassing.
The same is true for whoever entering a private property and has been asked to leave but won't do that.
Are you saying just because the caused is just then you can do anything that you please ?

9:36 AM  
Blogger Quintero said...

Dear Hai,

Our lawns are one thing, but a college campus is something else.

Some public access is welcomed and virtually implied, at private colleges as well as public.

Many members of the public visit college campuses to go to the bookstore, to hear a speech or a concert, to attend a rally, etc.

At Catholic colleges, some members of the public attend Mass at the college chapels.

Also, I've heard that at other times in the past, Notre Dame did not have demonstrators arrested, even ones not peaceful as were the pro-lifers.

Notre Dame could have found some way to accommodate the pro-lifers.

6:08 PM  
Anonymous MATEO MIGUEL ROMERO said...

Now I see the reason for honoring Obama - equality, honesty, and open-mindedness. Gosh, it is extremely difficult for a minority and man or woman to change minds and perceptions of other races and long held views of the majority. I am such a fool to not realize that to see Obama in a narrow minded view does nothing for religious and racial equality and tolerance. Obama is a blessing not only to the Catholic church but his own Muslim faith - thanks for helping me change my mind to be more open minded with all religions and views!

2:00 PM  

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