Catholicism Has Rules?



Christopher Johnson, a non-Catholic who has taken up the cudgels for the Church so frequently that I have name him Defender of the Faith, has a look at a “Catholic” who is outraged that teachers who teach at Catholic schools should be required to lead Catholic lives:

You know what would really be nifty, asks Christine Haider-Winnet.  If Catholic bishops would just quit running the lives of every single person in the entire world:

For several years now, we have seen a troubling trend in Catholic places of employment. Bishops are overstepping to meddle in employees’ personal lives. Firing competent, beloved teachers for same-sex marriages, requiring whole staffs to agree to statements calling contraception evil, and forbidding discussion of women’s equality in the church are now being included in morality clauses that administrators, teachers, and staff must sign.

The Reformation?  What the hell is that?

New contracts, like the most recent one in San Francisco, now govern whom one can marry, use of birth control and other reproductive choices, and in the most egregious of cases, what events one can attend and whom one can and cannot associate with. Attending your nephew’s wedding to his husband, or posting a congratulatory message on Facebook, could now cost you your job.

Hey, gang!  I heard that some German monk named Martin Luther just nailed 95 theses to the door of the Castle Church in Wittenberg, Germany.  Haven’t read ‘em yet but I hear that they’re pretty spicy.

Perhaps the most disturbing part is the hierarchy’s claim that this is for the good of children. What our children need are good teachers and safe, affirming environments in which to learn and grow. Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender role models and open, accepting communities are essential not only to the safety of our children, but to their growth and overall well-being. As research indicates, kids who are LGB or questioning their sexual orientation or gender identity are up to four times as likely to commit suicide as their straight peers. Being in a community that rejects them increases that risk astronomically.

Yeah, but here’s the thing.  The ONLY job of Catholic bishops is to tell the truth.

What are Catholic school students to think when they see a beloved teacher fired for getting married?

That they forgot to find out where he/she was registered?

Or hear she lost her job for getting pregnant using alternative methods?

That Christ and Zeitgeist are not the same thing?

When it comes to employment, should not the focus be on professional competency? If a teacher can teach, shouldn’t he or she be applauded for this dedication and quality as an educator? Sifting through one’s private life in order to gauge doctrinal orthodoxy as a measure of job performance is disturbing and dangerous. Is this what our Catholic faith has come to? Is this the precedent we wish to set?

Well, yeah, insofar as the Catholic Church


and shouldn’t be forced to employ anyone whose life choices undercut its beliefs.

Let’s go at this bass akwards there, Chrissie.  If I ever went to work for your little group, “Equally Blessed, a coalition of four Catholic organizations committed to LGBT equality,” and started writing about how homosexual activity was a sin, how long do you think that I would I keep my job?  So “morality clauses” are nothing new.

Folks just have to have the correct “morality.”


Go here to read the comments.  One of the disheartening aspects of Catholicism over the past few decades is how many people draw a check from the Church, clergy and laity, and give every sign of not believing what the Church teaches.  This of course is deeply dishonest.  As CS Lewis noted to a group of Anglican ministers:

This is your duty not specifically as Christians or as priests but as honest men. There is a danger here of the clergy developing a special professional conscience which obscures the very plain moral issue. Men who have passed beyond these boundary lines in either direction are apt to protest that they have come by their unorthodox opinions honestly. In defense of these opinions they are prepared to suffer obloquy and to forfeit professional advancement. They thus come to feel like martyrs. But this simply misses the point which so gravely scandalizes the layman. We never doubted that the unorthodox opinions were honestly held: what we complain of is your continuing you ministry after you have come to hold them. We always knew that a man who makes his living as a paid agent of the Conservative party may honestly change his views and honestly become a Communist. What we deny is that he can honestly continue to be a Conservative agent and to receive money from one party while he supports the policy of another.

People employed by the Church, especially teachers of children, should believe what the Church teaches.  If not, simple honesty requires them to earn their living elsewhere.  Clergy, or those laity in authority, who deliberately hire employees who do not embrace the teachings of the Church, are so lost to honesty that they would not know it if it came up and bit them on their bottoms.


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  1. For what it’s worth, I am convinced after reading the opinions of CHRISTine, that Christians in America will be driven underground. Why?
    Because she, CHRISTine is not alone in her misguided opinions, and we have to many unholy and unworthy bishops and priests who would agree with poor lil’ CHRISTine.
    btw….I wonder if she’s aware of her names origin? That figure which is at the root of her name would and has said in the past; “Your sins are forgiven. Sin no more.” Not; “LGBT communities are a bedrock of virtue, a lifestyle that should be proud and worthy to be emulated.”

    Because society wishes to believe in False Mercy the Christian Church is doomed in America. She will be driven into clandestine Masses. She will survive, but dark days are ahead for Holy Catholic Church in America.

    Father John Hardon SJ (deceased) will have predicted this unreal and unbelievable truth if CHRISTine and her minions have their way.
    God help us.

  2. “Sifting through one’s private life in order to gauge doctrinal orthodoxy as a measure of job performance is disturbing and dangerous. “
    One recalls the remark of Lord Melbourne, Queen Victoria’s first Prime Minister: “Things have come to a pretty pass, when religion is allowed to invade the sphere of private life.”

  3. The First Commandment is Rule number one for Catholicism: ” I AM the Lord thy God.” and the Second Commandment: “Thous shalt not have strange gods before me.”
    Can there be any stranger gods than a person who cannot accept God?
    “Or hear she lost her job for getting pregnant using alternative methods?”
    Science has proven that the ovum gets to choose which sperm she will allow to enter and to fertilize her. Being punctured by a hypodermic needle as an experiment and forced to accept a strange sperm is not freedom but bondage. Christ gives us freedom. The Constitution guarantees freedom of association, especially for sperm and ovum to bring forth our constitutional posterity. Rape of the ovum is not scientifically decent.

  4. One recalls the remark of Lord Melbourne, Queen Victoria’s first Prime Minister: “Things have come to a pretty pass, when religion is allowed to invade the sphere of private life.”

    Since I’m familiar neither with the saying nor the context, I guess I can only hope that Lord Melbourne was using “the sphere of private life” in much the same sense as the Clintonistas used to talk about fellatio in the Oval Office being a “private matter,” hopefully, albeit, for a less sordid reason.

  5. “I object to people losing their job as a role model of a philosophy JUST because they disagree, publicly, with that philosophy!”
    Did I miss any of it?

  6. Just the “I have a right to the job that you owe me!” bit. But that’s more implied than stated.

  7. It seems Haiter-Wincet wants to do with the Church what they did with education (private and public).

    Quoted at Instapundit, Col. Kurt Schlichter: “Understand that the purpose of modern American ‘education’ is not to educate students. It is primarily to provide cushy, subsidized sinecures for liberal administrators and faculty while, secondarily, providing a forum to indoctrinate soft young minds in the liberal fetishes du jour. Actually educating students is hard, and a meaningful education is anathema to liberalism. In the liberals’ ideal world, the universities would simply fester with leftist nonsense and not even bother with trying to teach their charges anything at all. And today, it’s pretty close to being the liberals’ ideal world.”

  8. Proposed topic for tonight’s “Various and Sundry” post: when was it, exactly, that religion was relegated to the private sphere and bedroom behavior* occuppied the public; and does that strike you as kind of topsy-turvey?
    *keepin’ it family friendly here

  9. Or maybe she’s just taken Common Core to heart

    Kids are asked to sort facts from opinions and, without fail, every value claim is labeled as an opinion. Here’s a little test devised from questions available on fact vs. opinion worksheets online: are the following facts or opinions?
    — Copying homework assignments is wrong.
    — Cursing in school is inappropriate behavior.
    — All men are created equal.
    — It is worth sacrificing some personal liberties to protect our country from terrorism.
    — It is wrong for people under the age of 21 to drink alcohol.
    — Vegetarians are healthier than people who eat meat.
    — Drug dealers belong in prison.

    The answer? In each case, the worksheets categorize these claims as opinions. The explanation on offer is that each of these claims is a value claim and value claims are not facts. This is repeated ad nauseum: any claim with good, right, wrong, etc. is not a fact.
    In summary, our public schools teach students that all claims are either facts or opinions and that all value and moral claims fall into the latter camp. The punchline: there are no moral facts. And if there are no moral facts, then there are no moral truths [emph. added].

  10. “Clergy, or those laity in authority, who deliberately hire employees who do
    not embrace the teachings of the Church, are so lost to honesty that they
    would not know it if it came up and bit them on their bottoms.”

    My dorm roommate in my undergrad years was the childhood friend of a
    tight group of guys who were all graduates of a very expensive, very exclusive
    Jesuit high school. I recall being shocked when they told me about one
    Jesuit priest/teacher/administrator who would dismiss his classes on Fridays
    with the words “have a great weekend, and remember to wear a condom!”.
    It shouldn’t surprise anyone that every graduate of that high school that I’ve
    met is not only not a practicing Catholic, but they all seem to be uniformly
    contemptuous of the Faith. Gee, I wonder how that happened…

  11. Col. Schlichter statement from T. Shaw post is worth a second look.

    Liberal administrators and faculty have their agenda and proper education takes a second to indoctrination of Left group think. Not long ago we witnessed this from the prof. at Northwestern and the student who questioned “homosexuality and so-called same sex marriage.”

    So. What is asking too much of someone who will be working closely with the Catholic Church? Hummm.
    How about their faith?
    Their beliefs?
    Their core values?

    Discrimination or safeguarding the faith?

    When the relativism fog blinds the masses it’s time to pray for a hurricane.
    At the very least a good strong gale.

  12. Folks,
    Secular society will issue a backlash. Those working in secular occupations – especially those heavily regulated by the government (I work in such an occupation) – will soon be required to sign affirmations of belief in homosexual marriage, reproductive choice and the whole litany of liberal progressive manure. The consequence for not signing will be loss of employment and subsequent barring from the industry in which one had been employed. The reason to be given will be, “Unstable and untrustworthy individual due to intolerance and prejudice; person is an extremist and constitutes a national security risk.” This will happen. People who work in industries such as nuclear power, airlines, medical, rail road, oil refineries, etc., will be treated this way. The liberal progressives, when charged with violating people’s First Amendment rights, will respond by saying, “You did it to a homosexual teacher at your Catholic school.” Then criminal court cases for hate speech and subsequent incarceration will follow. The Nazis and the Communists forced people to go down this road in the 20th century. It has always ended in torture and death before.
    Am I paranoid? Maybe. But after how that godless man of sin and depravity has wrecked the morals of the country over the past 6 years and Congress refuses to impeach him because he is the 1st black President (oh for a Colonel Allen West or a business man Herman Cain!), what are we to think?

  13. Doubling down because of resistance to an attack is not a “backlash.”

    Backlash implies a change on the one being attacked, not a failure of a previous attack.

  14. Perhaps you are correct, Foxfire. But whatever the case may be, just as orthodox Bishops are rightly requiring employees at Catholic institutions to support Catholic principles outside the job, so also will secular institutions force their employees – Christians, Jews, or whatever (but I suspect Muslims will be exempt) – to support the homosexual and reproductive rights agenda. It is already happening.

  15. It’s been happening my entire life– they’re just getting more extreme and open, which I think is a good sign.
    I believe it’s called the march through the institutions, or some such.

  16. Ernst Schreiber wrote, “The explanation on offer is that each of these claims is a value claim and value claims are not facts.”
    This goes back to Hume, who argued that we cannot reason from a descriptive statement to a prescriptive or normative statement or, as it is usually expressed (although not by Hume) from an “is” to an “ought.” He did assert that “the distinction of vice and virtue is not founded merely on the relations of objects, nor is perceived by reason.” (Treatise on Human Nature 3. 1. 1)
    Miss Anscombe imagines a housewife, a disciple of Hume, explaining to her greengrocer: ““Truth consists in either relations of ideas, as that 20/- = £1, or matters of fact, as that I ordered potatoes, you supplied them, and you sent me a bill. So it doesn’t apply to such a proposition as that I owe you such-and-such a sum.”
    Hume’s argument opens up a whole series of questions; not only how we get from “is” to “ought,” but how we get from “is” to “owes,” or from “is” to “needs.”
    That is why Miss Anscombe maintained that “although he reaches his conclusions – with which he is in love – by sophistical methods, his considerations constantly open up very deep and important problems. It is often the case that in the act of exhibiting the sophistry one finds oneself noticing matters which deserve a lot of exploring: the obvious stands in need of investigations as a result of the points that Hume pretends to have made… hence he is a very profound and great philosopher, in spite of his sophistry.”

  17. Ernst Schreiber- If they have the “vegetarians are healthier” listed as an opinion, then they’re flatly wrong. It’s a statement of fact. (Most likely false, but it is a statement of fact.)
    Some of the others can be argued, but…well, let’s just say I’m glad the Navy gave me enough college credits that I’m allowed to homeschool.

  18. One of the disheartening aspects of Catholicism over the past few decades is how many people draw a check from the Church, clergy and laity, and give every sign of not believing what the Church teaches.
    –Donald R. McClarey

    Bishop means “overseer”. When such things happen, bishops aren’t doing their job. But dabbling as Social Justice Warriors is soooo much more fun! Bishops dabbling in anti-death penalty politics after failing to warn their flocks against turning America into an Obamanation is but the latest example.

  19. I agree with Philip that soon faithful Catholics will be forced to
    practice their faith in secret. However, our persecutors will be
    fanatical, modernist clergyman who are heretics, instead of the state.

    My hope, after I had been informed of Pope Benedict’s resignation, was
    that the Church would elect a no nonsense kicka__ pope, who would drive
    the Wuerls and the Bergoglios out of the Church, instead fanatical heretics
    are in control of the Church and the traditionalists are being driven out.

    I’ve heard some call Bergoglio, Hitler’s Pope. I prefer to call Bergoglio,
    Pope Hagee I.

  20. This is such a difficult debate to make any headway on. The secular side sees this as evidence of intolerance and theirs as a mission of love. The church sees this as stating the truth and proclaiming the Gospel. I don’t see any easy answers, but there is an answer… Preach the Gospel of Jesus Christ by leading with the love of Christ. Humble , gentle and with reverence This is what St Peter taught us in his letter ( 1Peter 3:15) so that when maligned, those who defame your good works in Christ will put to shame. As did St Paul, 1Cor 13, if I speak in human and angelic tongues, but have not love, I am a banging gong or a clashing cymbal. And if I have they gift of prophecy and I comprehend all mysteries and all knowledge ….but do not have love, I am nothing.

    It is the message, but also the delivery. The secular understanding of love is different, as is their understanding of marriage. Most people are sincere in their belief and it is a matter “Charity in Truth” as Pope Benedict described in his Encyclical. Sarcasm and satire have their place in this debate, certainly as a pressure release, but they do alienate those we wish to engage.

  21. Given the author’s hyphenated last name, I assume she is married. That being the case, would she see nothing wrong in hiring a nanny (hyphenates do rather tend to have nannies) who was constantly putting the moves on her husband? Rather doubt it.

  22. I agree with John Peter and thank Barbara for Pope Benedict’s opinion.
    I think that a disrespectful tone and remarks are a result of fear.
    It was for me. Oh, and also pride.

    It helps me now to see those caught in what the church considers serious sin as one of my own children. To pray for them and to be kind.
    Christ asks us to be obedient and compassionate.
    It seems so much easier to be only one or the other.
    Unless we ask His help.

  23. SouthCoast wrote, “Given the author’s hyphenated last name, I assume she is married…”
    Where I come from, hyphenated last names indicate inheritance of land or arms in the maternal, as well as the paternal line. Married couples never hyphenate each others’ names, for to do so indicates a claim by descent. A younger son marrying an heiress may sometimes apply to Lord Lyon for leave to assume his wife’s name and arms in substitution for his own, especially where her name and the name of her estate are the same e.g. Maitland living on the lands of Maitland.

  24. Hypenated last names are also used by various Hispanic groups in the Military because of a tradition of having your mother’s maiden name as an additional middle name, which gets really ridiculous for their kids. Nicknames like “N-26” are not uncommon.
    Seeing as the name in question is “Haider-Winnet,” she is unlikely to be hispanic, and she apparently lives in Berkeley, California, so she’s not working on an English title or inheritance, either.

  25. Ernst,
    I can appreciate the CC’s hypothesis, but I would be interested to know how the following would be classified:

    It is wrong to rape a child.

  26. Michael Paterson-Seymour and Foxfier, yes! yes! I know! *S* One of my hobbies is genealogy and I have Hispanic former-in-laws! But my point was, that those who see no problem with teachers in Catholic schools not adhering to Catholic standards might, paradoxically, have a problem with a close employee who did not adhere to their *own* standards. (They might, of course, argue that it is not “the same thing”. In point of fact, however, it is very *much* “the same thing”, i.e., a poisoning of one’s moral well.)

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