"...the activists--in conjunction with likeminded persons both inside and outside the Church--will try to intimidate the Church from without and undermine it from within."
We ask forebearance for rehashing old ground, but the lesson must be learned--and what actually happened in San Francisco is an important lesson. In 1997, homosexual activists in Catholic Charities, in conjunction with the City of San Francisco, worked to force "domestic partnership" benefits on the Archdiocese, and then in 2006, they forced the Archdiocese into allowing adoptions to same-sex households. The 2006 scenario was practically a carbon copy of the 1997 event, which makes sense, since it worked so well for the activists in '97.
“Undermining from within”
How did this come about? In the 1980s, Catholic Charities stepped up admirably to help those suffering from the AIDS epidemic. They continue to do good work with AIDS sufferers to this day. Since over 90% of San Franciscans suffering from the disease were men who engage in “sex” with other men, this meant that Catholic Charities would be working very closely with same-sex attracted men, and, unsurprisingly, a large number of homosexual persons ended up in the organization. From a San Francisco Examiner article of January 30, 1997:
“With strong connections to the Bay Area gay community - and with gay employees itself – the group (Catholic Charities) has struggled at times to distance itself from Catholic anti-homosexual doctrine, according to some gay Catholics. But that division has been difficult to maintain, say ex-employees, who complain they couldn't hand out condoms, discuss safe sex in an unrestricted fashion or disagree with decisions by the hierarchy….
Franco Lacayo, a former Catholic Charities AIDS case manager who resigned three years ago, said there were many gay people working at Catholic Charities. He said that when he worked at the agency he had been frustrated because he wasn't supposed to hand out condoms and because gay people were discouraged from displaying gay slogans . . . – “Catholic Charities delays AIDS event. Flap over domestic partners alienates gay employees.”-SF Examiner, January 30, 1997"
So we see that homosexual activists had infiltrated the organization no later than the early 1990’s. While those activists disagreed with the Church, they were in agreement with the government--and the government was ready to show its fist. What follows is an abbreviated version of events (for more details, go here).
By 1997 the city had passed an ordinance that required all those doing business with the city to provide domestic partner benefits to their employees--including same-sex couples. The Archdiocese refused to do this, since it is in conflict with Church teaching.
"Intimidation from Without"
So the city (which, as we pointed out yesterday, supplies Catholic Charities with the overwhelming majority of its funding) threatened to withdraw funding if the domestic partnership benefits weren't granted. After a lot of back and forth, threatened lawsuits, etc., the Archdiocese caved. A “compromise” was crafted, that allowed any person working for Catholic Charities to name any other person as a "domestic partner." And where did that "compromise" come from? According to openly lesbian Supervisor Susan Leal:
"...a representative of Catholic Charities had also floated the proposal."
Long story short: the proposal was accepted, the homosexual activists won, and Church teaching lost. After the dust settled, in an interview with “First Things,” then-Archbishop William J. Levada commented:
“It is a given in San Francisco, I am told, that politicians concerned about their future weigh very carefully the impact of their speech and actions on the gay and lesbian voters...But it would be my hope that our experience here would provide good reasons why any proposal elsewhere for similar legislation on domestic partners should be defeated."
One shares the Archbishops hope. But as the 2006 gay adoptions debacle showed, the Archdiocese had apparently learned nothing. In my opinion, it is unfair to blame Archbishop George Niederauer for this, since he was new to this hornet’s nest. Someone in the Archdiocese with some experience of the city should have tipped him off. In the event, he was blindsided by the activists.
After 2000, under the leadership of an openly homosexual director of programs and services Dr. Glenn Matula, (himself an adoptive "father") the activists inside Catholic Charities began placing children in the households of homosexual couples. Once again, an action totally in conflict with Church teaching. Once again, the Church stands up, argues for its right to be true to Catholic teaching. Once again, the city shows its fist, threatens to withhold funding. Once again, a “compromise” is crafted, this time under the “consultation” of openly homosexual supervisor Bevan Dufty, whereby Catholic Charities outsources its adoption program to “Family Builders by Adoption”, “the gayest (adoption agency) in the country”, on whose Board of Directors sat the same Dr. Glenn Matula, Director of Programs and Services at Catholic Charities. Once again, the proposal was accepted, the homosexual activists won, and Church teaching lost. It was a classic case of good cop/bad cop. The only upside is that this time our Archdiocese apparently learned something. They have cancelled Catholic Charities’ adoption program completely.
San Francisco and Connecticut
But as we said yesterday, there is an irreconcilable conflict between what the homosexual activists want and the teaching of our Church. Today the government of San Francisco, controlled by homosexual activists, has moved far beyond the bludgeon of program defunding. In payback for our Church’s defense of natural marriage, they are now trying a new interpretation of the tax code to punish the Church. That is very similar what happened earlier this year in Connecticut.
For now, it appears that the two homosexual activist legislators in Connecticut have overplayed their hand--for now. As Jack Smith (and others) have pointed out Connecticut Bill #1098 was nearly identical to a proposal put forward by members of "Voice of the Faithful," and its most vocal exponent was Professor Paul Lakeland. We know of Professor Lakeland in San Francisco: On Sunday June, 15, 2008 "Voice of the Faithful of Northern California" sponsored an address of his on “How the Laity Can Save the Church” at, where else, the (Jesuit) University of San Francisco. For some reason that is no longer on the VOTF website, but we PDF’d it:
Shadow Power Structures
But let’s suppose that in Connecticut, Bill #1098 had passed, and that the activists had succeeded in restructuring the administration of parishes in that state. Who would have taken over? Are there any power structures being developed in or around the Church who could have stepped in? A power structure is simply a group of persons organized for common action. The homosexual activists we have described are one such power structure. In addition to corrupting Catholic Charities, they have completely taken over Most Holy Redeemer parish in San Francisco. “Voice of the Faithful” is another such power structure--and, not coincidentally, two of the “Voice of the Faithful Northern California” leaders are also members of Most Holy Redeemer. Other power structures, potentially far more powerful, exist as well.
One of the recent developments in church life is the appearance of local “organizing committees” who work with groups of parishes. In the San Francisco Bay Area there are three: the “Bay Area Organizing Committee,” the “Marin Organizing Committee” and the “North Bay Sponsoring Committee.” In Los Angeles the organization is called “One LA.” They exist all over the country, including Connecticut.
They charge a fee, not small, for a parish to join. As it happens, I have some experience with one such group. In 2000, my parish signed up with the Bay Area Organizing Committee. We held some meetings. I, and a lot of the more active parishioners, were invited. I asked the leader of the BAOC what we were going to try and accomplish. The answer was that we were going to join together for common action. But for what aim? I asked. He responded that we were going to try and build an organization that would work on issues affecting the community. In other words, I got no answer. (Read this page from the “One LA” website to see what I mean.) This left me suspicious. Anyway, our relationship with the BAOC soon ended, because Fr. Malloy came in as Pastor the next year, and his idea was that the Catholic Church is all the organization you need.
What I did not know back in 2000, but I know now, is that every one of these "organizating committees" are all part of the Industrial Areas Foundation, an umbrella organization founded by the famous community organizer Saul Alinsky.
Certainly, some of the things the IAF pushes may be good, but so what? Remember that homosexual activism at Catholic Charities was a result of the organization’s admirable response to the AIDS epidemic. That response was a good thing too, but it also resulted in the development of an alternative power structure within the Archdiocese that has been a disaster.
Those activists did not want the Church to go away--they wanted to use it for their own ends. They had allies in government who could pressure the Archdiocese in such a way so that the activists seemed to be the ones able to offer a way out--thus strengthening their position. They were working together. The IAF affiliates are even more dangerous, because they are about developing power structures pure and simple. And nobody has any idea what they will use their power for.
Today, in Connecticut and San Francisco, we are seeing more government intimidation against our Church than ever before in American history. They won't try to get rid of the Church. They know that is impossible. What they will try to do is find allies within the Church who share their vision. Then they will use the power of government to help those allies create an institution more to their taste.
Posted by Gibbons J. Cooney