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Bishop Finn assails NCR

Bishop Robert W. Finn has used the occasion of the Feast of St. Francis de Sales, patron saint of journalists, to upbraid Kansas City-based National Catholic Reporter, which is located in his diocese. The critique he published in his diocesan newspaper says not a word about the important service to the church that NCR offered through courageous coverage over nearly three decades of the existence and cover-up of clergy sexual abuse.This comes as no surprise from Finn, who continues to remain as bishop even after his conviction in September, as NCR put it, of "criminally shielding a priest who was a threat to children." Bishop Finn is in no position to level accusations against NCR. It's not surprising that many have called for his resignation; his conviction makes it impossible for him to do his job credibly.

About the Author

Paul Moses, a professor of journalism at Brooklyn College/CUNY, is the author of The Saint and the Sultan: The Crusades, Islam and Francis of Assisi's Mission of Peace (Doubleday, 2009) and An Unlikely Union: The Love-Hate Story of New York's Irish and Italians (NYU Press, 2015).



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Indeed, Paul, I agree wholeheartedly. Bishop Finn should be in prison along with Cardinal Mahony and a number of other bishops (who did the same things in their dioceses). The fact that good Catholic practices like"fraternal correction" has died an unnatural death among the bishops, means that other groups, like NCR and the civil law---need to do it for them.

Finn has the gall. The guy is a *convicted criminal*, fer cryin' out loud!Bishop Robert W. Finn, of all people, has no damn business leveling accusations against others.I'd sure like to see the KC-St Joe clerics call publicly for this hierarch's removal from office.Honest to Pete, ya' can't make up this crap.Rome and its lackey bishops dish out this stuff by the shovel full!!!

I would think Matthew 18 would apply and not only big rocks, deep water, and the body parts that Jesus mentioned. I hope I do not sound facetious given the attitude of Jesus toward children.

Shows that we are still a church of dogma rather than a Church of The Way. When a priest is condemned and ousted for fostering women's ordination while a bishop (Opus Dei) remains who has allowed the further abuse of children.

In Todays reading Jesus said he has come " to bring glad tidings to the poor, liberty to captives, recovery of sight to the blind, let oppressed go free, and to proclaim a year acceptable to the Lord' Do bishops hear what they read?On Thursday I attended a ground breaking for a 9 story building housing a 'feed the poor' kitchen and will be full of many small apts for the poor and homeless in San Francisco's Tenderloin. All this done by Franciscans and Sisters of Mercy. Leader Pelosi flew in from DC and she and the SF Mayor Lee spoke at the dedication. All Board of Supervisors, Chief of Police and Fire Chief attended. Father president of USF, some principal l donors and about a 1000 people were on the closed Golden Gate street. A recovering homeless man gave a stunning speech which was commented on by all the 'professional' speakers. The Archdiocesan Chancery was a short walk, all down hill, but there was no Archbishop or neither of two auxiliary bishops or even a lay or clerical factotum from the Chancery present. A national episcopal Church meltdown is occurring in front of us.

Frank Bruni in the Sunday NYT has some comments on this sort of thing.

Here is a list of 172 accused Minnesota clerics....(updated) ---

Mahonys LegacyBy Vinnie NauheimerLets hear it for Cardinal Mahony!Never was one so full of baloney;....(more)

"Do bishops hear what they read?"No, they don't, Ed. The Gospel is read for them by whoever is performing the deacon's function while they keep an eye on the master of ceremonies to make sure their mitre arrives in time to be donned for their pontificating. The rubrics distract them from the message. Lately the message is whatever they say it is anyway.When Bishop Helmsing "formally condemned" the NCR for respectfully disagreeing with Humanae Vitae (as subsequently the Canadian, Belgian, Dutch and several other bishops' conferences did), he called first to apologize, and Msgr. (much later Cardinal) William Baum assured the editors that they could receive Communion anytime despite the action. I doubt Bishop Finn was as thoughtful, but quoting canon law in extenso pretty much exhausts a guy's thought capacities.

" officially condemning Church teaching on the ordination of women, insistent undermining of Church teaching on artificial contraception and sexual morality in general, lionizing dissident theologies while rejecting established Magisterial teaching, and a litany of other issues."Perhaps Bishop Finn isn't in a strong position to thrown stone, but ... seems pretty accurate. If anything, he's to be commended for his understatement. Perhaps they can assail one another.

I was a little surprised to see that the website of the Kansas City diocesan paper allows dissenting comments, some of them fairly harsh.In general, when a church or any institution seeks to ban discussion of its policies, it seems like an admission that it can't defend them. It is at the very least a missed opportunity to demonstrate how robust and true its teaching is, and for the Catholic Church, with its claim of divine guidance, a chance forgone to honor the Holy Spirit, unless That Person's efforts extend only to ascertaining and proclaiming the Truth, but not to upholding it against dissent.

Wichasha, Winyan - Chinc are in harm's way! (Mother, Father - your children are in harms way!) A video look at how the Archdiocese of St. Paul & Mpls keeps Native American children in harms way: ---

To be castigated by the likes of Finn is a sign that you are doing something right! Way to go, NCR ... keep it up.A small quibble with this statment from LittleBear: "The fact that good Catholic practices likefraternal correction has died an unnatural death among the bishops, means that other groups, like NCR and the civil lawneed to do it for them."Whether there is "fraternal correction" from bishops or not, the laity have a RIGHT and OBLIGATION to speak up and call it as they see it. Expecting someone else to do it for you is simply failing to do the right thing.

Bishop Finn has quite a few defenders. Fr. Z has posted a typically nasty to NCR rant.This is the Fr. Z of the 7-day Year of Faith Retreat at Sea on a five star Ruby Princess Cruise ship during lent this year. (See flier: I may be wrong but I think that the original flier listed a Welcome Cocktail Party and has been changed to a Welcome Reception.)Sorry, folks, but the mini suite with balcony costing $1947,98 per person is now waitlisted. It includes a welcome glass of champagne, two twin beds that can be made into a queen, a separate lounging area with a sofa bed, two TVs, a refrigerator, a walk-in closet and a full bathroom with tub and message showerhead.Fr. Z periodically has rants against NCR which he refers to as fishwrap. My take is that he is scared to death that someone on the NCR staff will expose him for what he is, a priest who is not accountable to anyone but himself. Bishop Finn would be wise not to send a thank you note to Fr. Z for his support.

The NY Times today has a stunning article on the victims of child porn. judge should have given this article as an assignment to Finn as a start for reparation.

The "National CATHOLIC Reporter" commits FRAUD by using the name "Catholic". It does not adhere to the teachings of the Church as required in the "CATECHISM of the CATHOLIC CHURCH, Second Edition" - as all Catholics are required to do.While Americans cherish freedom of the press, Americans do not cherish fraud.The Reporter merely needs to change its name to: "National NON-Catholic Reporter" to stop their dishonesty and fraud.The truth of what the Church teaches is contained in the CCC: " The Catechism of the Catholic Church, which I approved ... and the publication of which I today order by virtue of my Apostolic Authority, is a statement of the Church's faith and of catholic doctrine, attested to or illumined by Sacred Scripture, the Apostolic Tradition and the Church's Magisterium. I declare it to be a sure norm for teaching the faith and thus a valid and legitimate instrument for ecclesial communion. Pope John Paul II." (CCC pg 5) Those who support the Reporter's use of the name "Catholic" - support fraud.This article is not about the sins of others - it is about the Reporter and its lies.For more info on the CCC go to: "What Catholics REALLY Believe SOURCE" at .

Oh. Then we don't need to discuss anything

"on his doctoral thesis (for the Angelicum?)"Augustinianum

Frist of all, Jim McCrea----you are quite right. It is up to all of us to engage in Fraternal Correction of the Bishops, if their fellow members at the USCCB are too timid to do so.Now I would like to respond to MIKE----who is accusing the NCR of fraud. The NCR is doing nothing that is not permissable in Canon Law. And I would like to cite those basic rights that all Catholics (including the NCR) have.1) All Catholics have the right to follow their informed consciences in all matters. (Canon 748.1)2) Officers of the Church have the right to teach on all matters both of private and public morality ONLY {emphasis is mine] after wide consultation with the faithful prior to the formulation. Canons 212, 747, 749, 752, 774.13) All Catholics have the right to engage in any activity that does not infringe on the rights of others; e.g. they have the right to freedom of speech, freedom of the press and freedom of association. Canons 212, 215, 223.4) All Catholics have the right of access to all information possessed by Church authorities concerning the former's spiritual and temporal welfare, provided such access does not infringe on the rights of others. Canons 218, 221, 223, 5375) All Catholics have the right to a voice in all decisions that affect them including the choosing of their leaders. Canon 2186) All Catholics have the right to have their leaders accountable to them. Canons 492, 12877) All Catholics have the right to form voluntary associations to pursue Catholic aims, including the right to worship together: such associaions have the right to decide on their own rules of governance. Canons 215, 299, 300, 305, 3098) All Catholics have the right to express publicly their dissent in regard to decisions made by church authorities. Canons 212, 218, 7539) All Catholics have the right while being mindful of Gospel norms to follow whatever paths will enhance their life in Christ; that is their self-realization as unique human beings created by God. They also have the right to guidance that will foster authentic human living both on a personal level and in relation to their communities and the world. Canon 21310) All Catholics regardless of race, age, nationality, sex and sexual orientation, state of life or social position have the right to receive all the sacraments for which they are adequately prepared. Canons 213, 84311) All Catholics have the right to have church office-holders foster a sense of community. Canon 369Canon Law is the law of the Church---not the CCC----and dear Bishop Finn knows it.

MIKE:+ Are you a high school senior or a college freshman?+ If the latter, Ave Maria University or Steubenville?By the way, most of Rome's teaching is non-infallible in nature. Thus, most of the CCC's content is not at all infallible.Good try, but no cigar.

Mike's screed was published without poapparent scrutiny and mine is now "awaiting moderation?"Gracious, me. Me ... moderate? Not on your tintype!

To give equal time to His Excellentness ....

Re Fraternal Correction: Theologica > Second Part of the Second Part > Question 33 Article 4. Whether a man is bound to correct his prelate?Snip:"I answer that, A subject is not competent to administer to his prelate the correction which is an act of justice through the coercive nature of punishment: but the fraternal correction which is an act of charity is within the competency of everyone in respect of any person towards whom he is bound by charity, provided there be something in that person which requires correction."

Thanks a bunch, Little Bear. Are those laws from the Canon Law revisions after Vatican II?I notice that many of the crucial ones -- like the right to dissent -- are numbered in the low numbers, e.g., 212. Does that indicate that they have a long history in the Church or are they new developments? (I wouldn't put it past the bishops not to tell the faithful what our rights in the Church are.)Any Canon Lawyers on this list?

Ann: For the first time in history, the revised Code of Canon Law has a section giving "The obligations and rights of all Christians" (cc. 208-223," which is followed by another on "The obligations and rights of lay Christians" (cc. 224-231). The numbers have nothing to do with the history of canonical legislation; it's a matter of how the Code is organized. It is significant that, as in the Council's Constitution on the Church, the sections on differentiated groups within the Church are preceded by sections on what all Christians have in common by way of rights and obligations.

JAK ==Thanks for the info.

Ann, sorry this is getting to you late. Yes, one Canon Lawyer who has worked on this list is James A. Coriden. There is a list similar to this in his book "Canon Law As Ministry: Freedom and Good Order for the Church". It was published by Paulist Press in 2000.

Thanks, Little Bear. Amazon had a few left:-)

Bishop Finn should probably be removed from office. But why does he bother some here, so much more than Cardinal Mahony ever seemed to?

"But why does [Finn] bother some here, so much more than Cardinal Mahony ever seemed to?"I can't speak for others, but if you look at the comments at, it would appear that this newspaper's more liberal readership is blasting the good cardinal's behavior.

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