Obama Roasts Catholic Cardinal
Cardinal Timothy Dolan's geniality makes him ill-suited to head up an embattled church in America — a problem that the unfolding fiasco of the Al Smith dinner illustrates.
The New York prelate's invitation to the Church's most powerful foe, President Barack Obama, has outraged Catholics across the country, who want to know from Dolan: Why would you invite our enemy to a night of merriment? Why would you honor him at an event for a charity that his contraceptive mandate will break? And why would you let him use such an occasion to dupe Catholics into voting for his reelection?
They interpret the invitation as a symbol of episcopal waffling and a worldly church's penchant for prizing prestige over principle, as if guarding the marquee status of the Al Smith dinner were more important than avoiding scandal.
Cardinal Dolan took to his blog this week to answer these critics, relying on the very shaky and threadbare Vatican II-style clichés about "civility" that exposed the Church to a liberal takeover in the first place. "[T]he teaching of the Church, so radiant in the Second Vatican Council, is that the posture of the Church towards culture, society, and government is that of engagement and dialogue," Dolan wrote. "In other words, it's better to invite than to ignore, more effective to talk together than to yell from a distance, more productive to open a door than to shut one."Continue reading at www.realclearreligion.org