Catholics in public office or speaking in a public venue to thousands of listeners have an obligation to avoid promoting a known heresy. Nobody today could possibly be ignorant of the Church teachings on contraception and abortion. Possible perhaps to be confused on the Church’s teaching on marriage or the 1st Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America, but NOT possible to be confused on contraception and abortion being gravely wrong, sinful, and completely contrary to Church teachings on LIFE.
Catholics no matter what vocation they have are ALL obligated to know the faith and to clearly share the teachings of the Church. There is no permission for heresies.
What Heresies you ask? (CCC=Catechism of the Catholic Church)
Heresy: that contraception is morally permissible.
CCC 2370 In contrast, “every action which, whether in anticipation of the conjugal act, or in its accomplishment, or in the development of its natural consequences, proposes, whether as an end or as a means, to render procreation impossible” is intrinsically evil:158
CCC 2399 The regulation of births represents one of the aspects of responsible fatherhood and motherhood. Legitimate intentions on the part of the spouses do not justify recourse to morally unacceptable means (for example, direct sterilization or contraception). (For More Information see: CCC 2367-2379)
Heresy: that abortion is not always gravely evil, but in fact, can be promoted with impunity.
CCC 2322 From its conception, the child has the right to life. Direct abortion, that is, abortion willed as an end or as a means, is a “criminal” practice (GS 27 # 3), gravely contrary to the moral law. the Church imposes the canonical penalty of excommunication for this crime against human life.
Encyclicals Humanae Vitae is clear, as is Evangelium vitae: the Gospel of Life, both encyclicals on the above topics. Read them, and repent if you have failed to follow the clear teaching of the Church, receive the Sacrament of Reconciliation and then do right.
A Catholic speaking as a person of authority, such as at a major event (the Democratic convention for example), or on Television, or as a politician, or other figure whose words are likely to be heard and accepted as true by the listening public uses that venue to claim authority “As a Catholic” and then promote a grave evil AS GOOD, has done an obvious wrong.
“The conversion of a soul cannot be made easy at the risk of many others possibly falling away.” –St. Josemaria Escriva, #966 THE FURROW
I would like to see ALL the Bishops in the United States AS INDIVIDUAL BISHOPS come out and reprimand these persons and state Church teaching– perhaps by making their own short encyclical letter to be read from every single pulpit at every single mass in their diocese for a month, and at every major feast day for a year. Perhaps then the Laity will become aware and convinced that these public figures claiming their Catholic baptism as a reason to believe the heresies they teach will be prevented from harming souls.
Dear Lord, please wake up our Bishops and give them the grace to courageously speak out on Church teaching. Help them to recognize the danger to souls and be zealous in making Church teaching known. Amen.