The Catholicism of Joe Biden and Paul Ryan

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The differences about to be exhibited in the Vice Presidential debate between Vice President Joe Biden and Congressman Paul Ryan couldn’t be more striking, and no I don’t mean in just the political arena but in the religious realm as well. The Vice President proudly states he was never a “John Paul II guy, I was a John XXIII guy.” He relishes the fact that in class he openly doubted such central teachings of Transubstantiation during his Catholic school days. He tells us that when he went to Rome his mother told him; “don’t kiss the Pope’s ring.”  (Boy it is a good thing Mrs. Biden didn’t know my soft spoken mother, otherwise she would have received an uncharacteristic earful. Heaven help her if she met my German grandmother (my mom’s mother) who would have undoubtedly pulled a rolling pin, a frying pan and whatever else she could come after her with to put the fear of God into her.)

Congressman Ryan comes from generation John Paul II and is not afraid to tell us so. Faithful Catholics of Congressman Ryan’s age see the Joe Bidens of the world and roll their eyes. As one young woman once told me, “if they (Joe Bidens of the world) had any decency they would just tell us the truth; the only thing they believe in is their self absorbed, distorted views of their world. They should really leave since they are being disingenuous for staying in something to which they don’t believe.” she said. Well many have and the Joe Bidens of the world would have us believe that it is our fault for not “evolving.” This is a common word in Catholic liberal (and secular) parlance to describe their views on the world from abortion to same sex marriage.  In the case of the Joe Bidens of the world, if you can question the tenets of Christianity in general and Catholicism in particular, the beliefs of the Founding Fathers outlined in their landmark documents are hardly safe from revision.

In my just released book; The Catholic Tide Continues to Turn, I delve into the rise in vocations, devotions and the fast growing orthodox Catholic college campuses like Franciscan, Ave Maria, Benedictine in Kansas, Wyoming College and St. Thomas Aquinas. Folks like Joe Biden just don’t get it. To them Notre Dame is too conservative for in their view how could the university lose $120,000,000 in alumni contributions and face such opposition among student groups and the Holy Cross Seminarians concerning the controversial visit of and award given to President Barack Obama.

The Paul Ryans of the world remember Father Cool and Sister Sunshine and don’t’ want their kids to have to go through that ordeal, so they relish priests in cassocks and nuns in habit. Recently, I saw this on display with my very own eyes. One of our noted diocesan priests had made fun of the newly ordained priests in their cassocks as “not approachable.” He was a “Vatican II priest,” and a “man of the people.” Well, recently there they both were on a high school football Friday night. The “Vatican II man of the people priest” was hobnobbing with school’s more elite alumni while the young priests in their cassocks were in the student section and along the fence row visiting students, who seemed to enjoy their company.

The religious divide between Vice President Biden and Congressman Ryan isn’t so much age as it is outlook. I never forget going to lunch with one of my former colleagues who was a liberal in every respect. While at lunch an old high school classmate stopped him and tried to reminisce about the tranquility of the late 50s and early 60s.  My colleague would have none of it.  Once the man left my old work colleague practically called him a simpleton. “Now you know why we had to change society and the Church;  to save it from the likes of him.” It was very revealing exchange.

In my new book, The Catholic Tide Continues to Turn, I examine the growth in orthodoxy and how and why the Church came and still very much comes under attack from the likes of the Joe Bidens of the world.  While for the conservative minded these events may be maddening, but one should remember that there are more Paul Ryan’s than Joe Biden’s, even though the Biden’ of the world have the mainstream media and entertainment culture on their side. Check out my statistical analysis of why the Romney-Ryan ticket defeats the Obama-Biden ticket in my home state of Ohio (and probably many other Midwestern swings states as well,) and perhaps you will see what I mean. 

Though I could go on and on, the difference between the Joe Bidens of the world,who in the words of President Obama feels the need to fundamentally transform the USA, and the Paul Ryan’s of the world who do not feel such a need, all comes down to a statement given to me by Nikki Shasserre of the Catholic campus group FOCUS. Six years ago she said; “We don’t want to change the Church, we want the Church to change us.”

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  1. “When in Rome, do as the Romans do.” When I was in the USAF, I saluted the officer’s rank and authority, not the man. It was not difficult. Same same the Pope’s ring. For non-Catholics, It is being polite. For liberal simps, refusing to kiss the ring is their way of telling each other, “I’m special!”

    There is a village in Delaware that is missing its idiot.

    Is Uncle Joe liberal because he’s stupid? Or, is he stupid because he’s liberal??

  2. The priests in cassocks are protected by their garb from losing their vows to those temptations to be one of the crowd. My pastors are cassock wearing men, not very young, but very in love with the Lord.

  3. Gosh, God bless our popes. to me John 23, Francis of Assisi, angels — are ones who have been softened, misinterpreted to the point of disregard. People think of angels as pretty little girls in rose colored robes with golden hair – some people think children who die as children become angels. Francis has been relegated to a nice hippie environmentalist nature lover who hated corporations and wanted people to compromise for the sake of peace–they write his efforts to convert a sultan as a good example of peacemaking for us– not noticing that Francis did not make peace– he told the truth, he was spared but the franciscan protomartyrs were not– francis was brave and thoughtful– Not a sap. and John the 23’s life is similarly misunderstood– people take what they want to take, to prove their own points.
    Joe Biden should read more and think more deeply about his faith and our popes.

  4. I like what Anzlyn pointed out about St. Francis confronting that Islamic sultan. A few years ago I had to endure a presentation on peace and social justice by a liberal Franciscan cleric who used the story of St. Francis’ encounter with that sultan to criticize the war on terror as a war against Muslims. Of course I spoke up to explain that the Koran specifically requires its adherents to subject Christians and Jews to Dhimmitude which St. Francis never once advocated or even accepted, and that is exactly what precipitated the war on terror. He had no response, and went on to some other topic. I despise and loathe liberalism, political and religious. It’s always the same: peace at any price, especially if you and I are the ones paying the price. I go by what Jesus said in Luke 22:36, “And let him who has no sword sell his cloak and buy one.”

  5. I’ll be praying the Chaplet of Mercy for Paul Ryan tonight. Let’s hope this night will be another nail in Obama’s coffin, but in all things, God’s will be done.

  6. I just hope we don’t get over confident. Uncle Joe may be he national clown, as Donald M. says, but he does have decades of debating experience, and supposedly Paul Ryan is weak in foreign policy knowledge. I too will pray for Ryan’s victory, but I won’t watch the debate. I don’t need the anxiety. Voluntas Dei fiat.

  7. “but he does have decades of debating experience”

    No he really doesn’t. He hadn’t had a serious challenge for his Senate after he won it in 1972. He had a disastrous run for President in 1988. In his 2008 run he dropped out fairly quickly and his debate performance could be considered undistinguished. Palin beat him in their one and only debate and Biden fell back on his preferred strategy when cornered: make things up.

  8. The archbishop of Denver processed the Sacred Species through the streets of town 2 days before the first debate, and O was speechless. Yesterday was the first day of the Year of Faith, and Ryan schooled Joe on what a Catholic believes when it comes to taking care of the least among us. What is in store for the next debate? How will God work his Will into the outcome? Pray, people, pray. Prayer changes things.

  9. Joe “The Plagiarist” Biden couldn’t find his rear end with both hands if you spotted him nine fingers.

  10. I was struck by the comment the “Vatican II priest” made about the young priests in cassocks not being approachable. I heard a similar comment from an elderly religious sister explaining why her order’s abandonment of their habit. I don’t think that the habit made these sisters unapproachable, it was their demeanor. I was recently working with some of the Sisters of Life in the Archdiocese of New York. These sisters wear a very distinct habit. They are some of the most approachable people I have ever met, because of the joy that radiates from them due to their love of the Lord.

    I think our “Vatican II priests and religious” might have something to learn from the John Paul II generation.

  11. Catholic Democrats use “caring for the poor” as their reason to remain Democrats even though the Democrat Party is solely responsible for the continued murder of unborn babies now at 52,000,000 dead. And to “care for the poor” they support sinning against the 10th Commandment; they support “coveting their neighbors’ goods.” And Catholic Democrat legislators like Biden, Pelosi, and Durbin are in the lead promoting that morally warped thinking which enables them to sin even more by “slandering their opponents” claiming they don’t care about the poor and want to “do them harm.” And that position enables the lay and clergy Catholic Democrats to commit “the sin of pride thinking they are ‘better,” than their political opponents.

    I’m so glad the Holy Spirit led me out of that sinful party a long time ago. I have never heard anyone in the party I eventually joined ever speak and act that way towards Democrats. In fact, it is said the main difference between the two major parties is that “Democrats think Republicans are evil; Republicans think the Democrats are just wrong.”

    The Democrat Party survives on the psychological illness of “projection;” which is “the attribution of one’s own ideas, feelings, or attitudes to other people, especially the externalization of blame, guilt or responsibility as a defense against anxiety.”

  12. Obama/Biden (far left policies) have created more poor people. O/B will continue to create poverty.

    Romney/Ryan will work to restore prosperity to more Americans.

  13. true you T. Shaw- that lie from college professor catholics
    (about poverty > abortion and obama being anti poverty hence working against abortion) is even more egregious if possible because they (those who justify their margins to the left) are actually causing poverty.
    Obama is bought and paid for by planned parenthood. And planned parenthood is not about poverty.

  14. I am glad you spoke up defending the Catholicism of Saint Francis Paul Primavera! Just this last St Francis day I heard again about how he was about compromise and he taught us to compromise. This seems to be the interpretation of today’s Catholics still loyal to the Democratic party.
    Just as it says in the story of the Fall of Man– the devil is very subtle (cunning)

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