TO THE EDITOR:
Regarding Bishop Tobin’s rebuke of last week’s “religious pro-choice” demonstration at the Statehouse, he is entitled and right to question the faith leaders that assembled there. How does one advocate the death of the unwanted unborn — even in the lofty name of “conscience” — and yet also present oneself as representing the Author of Life?
A good question I heard no one answer directly. There’s a substantial difference between a pained or brokered resignation to a “necessary evil” — flawed as that resignation might be — and open advocacy of the same. Bishop Tobin rightly delegitimized the “Catholic” contingent that regrettably joined in with these “pro-choice” demonstrators— in the middle of Lent, no less. The bishop has the ultimate authority to adjudicate the use of the word “Catholic” by groups in the diocese.
To appear in public, claiming to represent the Catholic faith, and openly defy the teaching magisterium of the Church is the definition of the word “scandal.” He not only has the right to call them out as apostate in their position, he has a duty to. Good for Bishop Tobin — and better still for the practicing Catholics of Rhode Island that they have a shepherd watching for this sort of misguided and misleading “catholic” activity in the public square.
No matter how thorny one considers the subject of abortion, it is anathema to the faith to call one’s self a “pro-choice” Catholic, no matter how many of our political leaders do, and the bishop is right and just to correct anyone making that mistake.
Ken Vaudrain, Putnam, Connecticut