- "From time to time, I
suspect when these organizations need money, they try to stir up a
hornet’s nest or storm by attacking a Catholic organization, usually
falsely accusing them of being anti-life, pro-contraception, either pro
or soft on abortion, etc., etc., etc....It’s simply a money raising scheme with
little regard for the human lives which they allege they seek to protect
– well maybe it is only pre-born human life in which they are
interested....I am convinced that many so called Pro-Life groups are not really
pro-life but merely anti-abortion ....Many
priests grow weary of continual calls to action for legislative support
for abortion and contraception related issues"
In his critique of pro-life groups, Bishop Lynch actually only cites the "Population Research Institute" by name. Founded by the same Father Paul Marx who founded Human Life International, PRI's mission appears to flow right out of Humanae Vitae:
"Debunk the myth of overpopulation, which cheapens human life and paves the way for abusive population control programs
Expose the relentless promotion of abortion, abortifacient contraception, and chemical and surgical sterilization in misleadingly labeled 'population stabilization,' 'family planning,' and 'reproductive health' programs.
Defund these programs by exposing the coercion, deception, and racism inherent in them.
Emphasize that people are the most valuable resource on the planet, the one resource we cannot do without.
Promote pro-natal and pro-family attitudes, laws, and policies worldwide.
Encourage programs to help the poor become agents of their own development."
Just two months ago, Archbishop Joseph Fiorenza, Bishop William Skylstad, Bishop John Cummins, Bishop Thomas Gumbleton, Bishop Ricardo Ramirez, Bishop Peter Rosazza, Bishop Sylvester Ryan, the late Bishop Joseph Sullivan, Bishop John Leibrecht, and Bishop Kevin Dowling were part of a group claiming that "groups like the American Life League and the Reform CCHD Now coalition use McCarthy-era tactics to create a culture of fear around community organizing" ("Be Not Afraid?" Guilt by Association, Catholic McCarthyism and Growing Threats to the U.S. Bishops’ Anti-Poverty Mission, Faith in Public Life, June 2013). Ow!
The American Life League is led by a woman who "has served three five-year terms (1996-2011) as a member of the Pontifical Academy for Life." Reform CCHD Now notes that it tries to "to follow the guidance of Pope Paul VI, who in...'Evangelii Nuntiandi' warned against the dangers of false notions of liberation entering into the Church’s charitable works." Reform CCHD Now cautions: "Don't let YOUR money work against the Church."
As per the Catechism, "The ownership of any property makes its holder a steward of Providence, with the task of making it fruitful and communicating its benefits to others, first of all his family" (#2404). It strikes me as quite legitimate to ask whether groups, such as the Campaign for Human Development, Sister Carol Keehan's Catholic Health Association USA, and Catholic Relief Services truly embrace authentic Catholic Social Teaching. The Population Research Institute, the American Life League, and Reform CCHD Now strike me as bringing critical eyes to evaluating the recipients of Catholic charitable dollars.
Yet I am left confused - Doesn't Bishop Lynch, Archbishop Fiorenza, Bishop Skylstad, Bishop Cummins, Bishop Gumbleton, Bishop Ramirez, Bishop Rosazza, Bishop Ryan, Bishop Leibrecht, and Bishop Dowling want us to take seriously our roles as "steward of Providence"?
While the Population Research Institute, the American Life League, and Reform CCHD Now appear to be doing excellent research, they also appear to be getting hit with "detraction and calumny" from very high levels.