The Chasm Between President and Archbishop
Though this is more than a month old, and yes, the Barack Obama Notre Dame speech is a horse which has been beaten nigh to death, the latter part of this post is relatively new to the internet. On May 16th, the day before Obama gave his speech, Archbishop John F. Donoghue, Archbishop Emeritus of Atlanta, spoke at a much smaller, much less well-known, much newer Catholic school. Located in Dawsonville, Georgia, Southern Catholic College opened its doors in 2005, and graduated its first class last month. I believe the speakers and the speeches they gave tells volumes about the differences between the institutions.
Barack Obama, addressing the 2009 graduates of Notre Dame.
“That’s when we begin to say, ‘Maybe we won’t agree on abortion, but we can still agree that this is a heart-wrenching decision for any woman to make, with both moral and spiritual dimensions. So let’s work together to reduce the number of women seeking abortions by reducing unintended pregnancies, and making adoption more available, and providing care and support for women who do carry their child to term. Let’s honor the conscience of those who disagree with abortion, and draft a sensible conscience clause, and make sure that all of our health care policies are grounded in clear ethics and sound science, as well as respect for the equality of women.'”
Archbishop Donoghue, addressing the 2009 graduates of Southern Catholic College.
“We cannot have faith in and hope for our country, unless we are devoted to the cause of life, and stand in opposition to what Pope John Paul II famously called, the ‘culture of death.’ I beg you, as the future leaders of our country, and of the world, to do whatever you can to correct this mortal fault in the soul of our country. The souls of individual men and women will not necessarily perish because our country is in a state of mortal sin – but our country well may perish because of this egregious insult to the generosity of a loving God, and to the intrinsic dignity of the human being. The flourishing of faith, hope and charity in our society, presumes an unquestioned and unwavering defense of life, especially in its most innocent and helpless state. Please – make this concern for life a daily concern of your lives, a daily prayer in your hearts, and a daily effort in all your exchanges, private and public.”
Compromise, or truth? The full text of the Archbishop’s excellent address can be found here.