Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Deuling Catholics - Part 2

Having hoped my conversations with Jim Buck, "Catholic" past President of the Board of Directors of Ecumenical Minsitries of Oregon was over, he kept going.   Well, he started this coversation and I can do this until Doomsday.  These last emails are the most telling.  The casual put-down of Bishop Vasa proved the point so well. 
I pray our new Archbishop will cut this umbilical cord first.    We can't change Catholic hearts when we're dragging around anti-Catholic darkness (EMO). 
Here we go again:
 # 7
I would err on the side of both of us contemplating continually  whether we are right.  You are certainly more convinced of your position than I, but I don't think labeling an organization like EMO as evil gives you any credibility, not when the Catholic clergy who have served on its board or committees over the past couple of decades have done so in good conscience and with strong moral fiber.  Those I know well who have served would never join an "evil" organization and you cast aspersions on their character (individually and collectively) by so labeling the organization. 
 It is healthy to harbor some doubt about your convictions--and even more so your judgments about others.  


If I had any doubts about EMO, I wouldn't act on just a weak opinion: a doubtful conscience.   It doesn't matter how long we've belonged to EMO, to give it credibility.  Belonging to this "convental" organization is wrong for the Archdpdx. 
Belonging because of simple ignorance can be changed by leaving.  To learn and remain is "invincible ignorance", says Bishop Robert  Vasa, Diocese of Baker, OR. 

I don't have to contemplate this issue, thanks anyway.

God Bless you and Happy Advent and Merry Christmas, I really mean this.


# 8
I see a glimmer of hope in your final statement.  You are sincere without a doubt, however, ultra-orthodoxy has been historically the bane of our Church as sincere as some of its proponents were.  It was and continues to be motivated by fear and stems from darkness not the light of Christ.  Its effects on the Church were inimical with pro-life as it sowed violence, division and hatred.  Christ's admonition of love thy neighbor must take precedence in our faith and our works.  From what you write, which is an eye into the soul, I question whether this precept truly guides your work.  Your conversion I believe still lies ahead, perhaps mine as well.  I will pray for the fullness of it.

May Christ's love and internal peace become fully present this Christmas--and I do mean this also.  

(Should Bishop Vasa ever come to this Archdiocese, who knows, I may have to take up a blog site like yours.)  



In an nutshell, your final email was a statement of your ideology and not complete Catholic theology.

The dark statement about those in the pro-life movement shows why Portland's liberal "Cocoon Catholics" keep alive this lie so they can feel superior.

Getting federal grants to support EMO's survival is from the pockets of everyone, of every belief through taxes.  The other grants EMO receives are from organizations that support anti-Catholic ideals

55,000,000 innocent unborn are killed, created by a loving God. Not to be destroyed by those who act like they are and ignored by EMO.

The Archdpdx Office of Justice and Peace needs the EMO connection to stay as a budget item. They take their info and use it happily.  They have for decades.

EMO is still evil for the Archdpdx to belong to.

I won't change my mind.  Your first email didn't do anything but prove my point.

Merry Christmas,
"Any one thinking of the Holy Child as born in December would mean by it exactly what we mean by it; that Christ is not merely a summer sun of the prosperous but a winter fire for the unfortunate."
– G.K. Chesterton

Folks, please look for yourselves.   We have beem feeding this Beast with our time, talents, and treasure for long enough.  Realistically speaking this lands at the doorstep of Archbishop Vlanzy and then Mary Jo Tully (who has been on the Board for years).   http://www.emoregon.org/ 

From VOCAL 2005 Things haven't changed.          STRANGE BEDFELLOWS - ARCHDPDX & EMO

"Facts are stubborn things...our wishes, the dictates of our passions...cannot alter the facts and evidence." John Adams

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Dueling Catholics

Last week I was taken to task by an Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon board person, Jim Buck, over the term "evil" I used to describe EMO.  I stand by this "evil" description in the light of what the Church teaches.  There are many emails I have sent regarding this issue.  www.vocalnews.org  and I'll connect even more dots in a while.  There are six responses just to let you know.

I think the emails are over now and want to share with you negative "synergy" happening, something we are warned against by the Holy Father.  This is when basically we hang out with people who believe differently than us and slowly become them, losing our way.
Dueling Catholics

As a life-long Catholic I have been closely associated with EMO for the past eight years and know first-hand the positive ministries they have related to assisting the homeless, hungry, HIV patients, refugees and others.  I have met many individuals from all faiths working hand in hand through this organization.  These people are incredibly Christ-like in their concern for their brothers and sisters and are working to preserve and uplift life.  Your wholesale judgment against EMO seems contrary to what Scripture tells us about making judgments.  EMO has taken no official position supporting abortion and contrary to your website provides important help to those in need.

Anyone who communicates with this level of vehemence has other issues that should be confronted.  Yours is not a voice of love, respect or support of life as that must begin with a sincere yearning for the truth.  You don't seek truth, you seek instead to rant, judge and condemn without a factual or even remote theological basis for your actions.   You don't represent Catholic faith but are doing a good job of trying to fragment it rather than nourish it.


I appreciate your defense of EMO.  However, your credentials as a Catholic cause your opinions to be null and void.  There is no "vehemence" in my words, and I am a seeker after the Truth.  Your "theological basis" is not Catholic, unless you've changed your opinions valuing all life.

Look into EMO.  You will see factual, truthful opinions and as a practicing Catholic, I do think EMO is an alliance we should not brag about.  We have different ideas of what Christ's True Church will tolerate, the good things don't out weigh the evil.

God Bless,


Thank you for your wish of blessings my way.  God (and every one else probably) knows I could use them.  What I fail to comprehend is how you can be the judge of who has "credentials" and who doesn't  in this Church.  

Pope John Paul II talked about ecumenism as the "future of the Church" and for you to say we shouldn't be pursuing such alliances in the pursuit of a unified Church in Christ's name seems antithetical to what the popes since Vatican II have been urging.

Our own Church is not wholly innocent or omniscient in all its decisions and neither is any other church organization.  EMO's decisions since I've been associated with the organization are largely around policy issues dealing with the poor or the environment.  These typically align almost 100% with Catholic positions on the same issues.

EMO has not taken a position on abortion or even one on end of life issues that I am aware of.  If you have contrary information to share, I'd be happy to take a look at it. 

In conclusion, I'll trust some day that God will be the ultimate judge of my credentials--not only as a Catholic either.

As a Catholic are you against abortion, for parental notification, against partial birth abortion, for one woman, one man in marriage, see active homosexuality as a disorder or has Vatican II changed that too?

Here are folks that say it very succinctly.

"Whether canonical or self excommunication, out of communion is out of communion with the Church.

If not that, the Church Body becomes a community of “cafeteria Catholics”.
In actuality, protestants sitting in a Catholic Church.

Homosexual acts were not accepted by the Jews, by the Apostles or by the Early Church fathers.

Seemingly large numbers of people in our society are attempting to rewrite the meaning of Sacred Scripture.

Supporting or defending the sexual acts of homosexuals places a Catholic outside the Eucharist, outside of the teachings & traditions of the Catholic Church, and outside of Sacred Scripture.

Least we forget, as evidenced in Scripture, sexual acts between people of the same sex are mortal sins. Sins so mortal & grievous that entire cities were destroyed where these homosexual acts were exclusively practiced. 

Gay marriage is De facto support of the sexual acts of homosexuals, bisexuals, transgendered, people in various stages of re engineering their sexual organs, etc.

When a Catholic supports or defends gay marriage, the person places him/herself outside the faith practices of the Church. 

Similar yet more grievous than Catholics who support, defend or practice sexual experimentation between single people and divorced people."

Here's one on abortion. 

“Excommunication issue. If someone rejects the teaching of the Church knowing that such a doctrine, moral or dogmatic, is the constant teaching of the Church, that person is automatically, at least materially, excommunicated.”


“Because he is no longer a Catholic?”

Yes, that is correct, that person has self excommunicated him or herself from the Church Body and the Body of Christ.

“Am I missing something here?”


“A Formal excommunication would be a public juridical act, issued by a bishop.”

Yes, normally formal excommunications are issued only after a bishop has provided proper counsel to a person in which he formally addresses their error.
(As Sacred Scripture requests should be done in Matthew 18:15 and Luke 17:3.)

As I understand it, formal excommunications are done when a person turns their private error into a public scandal. 

Recently Kathleen Sabelius’ bishop (after years of dialog with her) announced publicly that she was not to present herself for Communion until she confesses her sin and makes public changes to her voting record as it concerns abortion."

Jim, have you changed your mind on these issues from your 2004 campaign in a public sort of way?  

It would clarify your stand on life and not lead people into error as does Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon  on these subjects. No opinion on abortion for EMO?
 A look at their liberal "progressive" churches and their attitudes on the unborn would tell one otherwise.  It seems like active homosexuality is a slam dunk too.

God Bless, Carolyn


I am not sure what you mean by "active" versus inactive homosexuality, but I am against abortion, for parental notification and against partial birth abortion.  I never said anything differently in my campaign.  I refused to fill out Right to Life's forms because they didn't allow for qualifications to the answers and in other cases they simply did not transfer information carefully from the form to their media releases.  I have no faith in that organization due to its inaccuracies of dealing with information and I witnessed it first hand.  I was in favor of civil unions from a legal perspective for the protections (medical, privacy matters, etc.) it offers homosexual individuals. 

I also see a huge difference between what we practice as Catholics and what is formulated in civil law.  I fear for any theocracy that assumes government control.  The Church should have learned valuable lessons with our not so illustrious history as the Holy Roman Empire.  We need to remain a Church not a government.  Legislators are sworn to uphold the law--civil and criminal law not the laws of any particular church.  At times the civil law may conflict with our own practices as Catholics, but we can choose to act individually as the Church teaches.  That doesn't mean we should force our beliefs on everyone else as a dictatorial Church.  The Catholic Church's own standing on morality has not always been right on every issue.  The Church condoned slavery for many years as an example.  That didn't make owning slaves morally right because the church hadn't condemned it yet.

The differences some churches have with regard to homosexuality and even abortion should not sever dialogue or discussion on other points otherwise we will get no where on unification.  These differences do not diminish either the work of other churches in caring for the poor and doing Christ's work which I see occurring every day.  To label them "evil" for holding differences in belief is simply overly judgmental and, in my opinion, morally wrong.  When you slander an organization as "evil" you slander people who in good conscious are following Christ, including some or many who may agree wholeheartedly with all your preconditions;  just because as whole they all don't doesn't warrant condemnation as you summarize.  The alliance of or with EMO does not mean the Catholic Church endorses all their beliefs, but that we can meet and discuss and help each other grow in understanding.   Your judgments examine the specks and miss the whole. 

While you seem excessively concerned with homosexual acts, there are probably many Catholics engaging in sexual acts seen just as sinful according to Church teaching, but I don't see any reference to that element of sin within our own heterosexual population.  Why the focus on the homosexual population when it comes to sinful sexual behavior?  Are you saying their sin is greater than that of heterosexuals whose practices are sinful?   A partnership does not condone any particular behavior between a couple other than a commitment to love each other and be committed to their needs.  We have Catholic marriages that are celibate; how are you to know what homosexual unions are celibate? I prefer to let God be the judge of what people decide to do sexually.  The Church can teach and I value the Church as a teaching Church, but judgment is not our as individuals to make. Priests can make it in a confessional setting, but even that is limited and exercised with special care.

There are errors in your last letter.  The first is your stand on abortion and homosexual marriage.  These are intrinsic evils for all Catholics yet, you did support them in your 2004 campaign for state representative in District 50.   You wrote :  ".....but I am against abortion, for parental notification and against partial birth abortion.  I never said anything differently in my campaign"   Please click....  Jim Buck's Moral Compass   Scroll down to District 50.  And what about Planned Parenthood's endorsement?

 Pro-Life Opposed to Legalized Abortion - NO!  Favors Parental Notification before Teenage Abortion  - NO!  Favors Marriage Definition of One Man, One Woman  -NO!  Opposed to Minority Status for Homosexuals - NO!  Opposed to Increased Taxes and Spending - NO!  Favors Education Vouchers - NO!

Your soul is your own business, but the soul of the Archdiocese of Portland is the business of all Oregon Catholics.  These are the teachings of Christ Himself, not of men.  They need to be defended against those even with good motives who don't get it.

For the Archdpdx to be involved so closely, spending limited resources to belong to Ecumenical Ministries of Oregon is ridiculous.  Can't  we have "dialog" with EMO churches who hold completely different moral beliefs on the dignity of life.  Do we need to pay for this?  What about pro-life churches?  It appears that we have no "dialog" with them and  it's free. In fact, the knowledge of EMO is well known and pro-life churches wonder why we're on the wrong team.

Being with EMO so long, you seem to have become more like them and less in love with the True Church.  What I see is "Synergy", a blending of ecumenism which melds beliefs together.  Some Catholic beliefs have been in place since Christ walked the earth and cannot change, as He cannot.  The Holy Father warns us against "synergy?   While always loving our protestant brothers and sisters in EMO, we do not change our beliefs to theirs.

"I urge you brothers to watch out for those who create dissensions and obstacles in opposition to teachings that you have learned, avoid them.  For such people do not serve our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own appetites, and by fair and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the innocent." Romans 16:17-18

Your defense of anti-Catholic beliefs of EMO and the put down of the Church is an error and shows little knowledge of Her and shows your heart.  There seems to be no balance in your attack of Church teachings.   Isn't there anything nice to say?

"For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength."
Corinthians 1:25

God Bless you,


I disagree with the characterizations of OFC based on my responses and positions then, but enough of that as I am not going to convince you and you certainly can't convince me of what my own beliefs were or are.  We clearly disagree on the boundaries of church and state.
EMO has members who are orthodox and I've been at meetings with very fundamentalist oriented churches.  I am not sure who EMO should be in dialogue with who are more pro-life than Catholics, Greek Orthodox, other middle eastern denominations, etc.  We're in consistent communication with very conservative Protestant churches as well.
Truth is not as absolute as you seem to believe.  Again EMO's energies in its ministries is caring for the most vulnerable.  It doesn't fund Planned Parenthood or other agencies supporting abortion.  It hasn't favored political positions supporting that.  It certainly doesn't deserve the descriptor as "evil" that you use.
I will continue to pray for you in hopes your words don't discourage people trying to get together across church lines to help others as Christ would like us to do.



The characterizations of you by Oregon Family Council's Voter's Guide show that you are having a hard time looking yourself in the face.  If they had been so wrong about you there would have been some complaint from you.  There was time to get corrections on this guide and answer the "orange postcard" effort to tell the truth that you weren't pro-life for the unborn.  Real pro-life John Lim won that election.  Since you were so public about your feelings, if they have changed you need to publicly let this be known.

"EMO is a covenantal membership organization dedicated to respond to God's call to the unity of all people"  The Catholic Church has a covenant with Christ not David Leslis, the EMO Director.

This is why Catholics don't belong to such as EMO, National Council of Churches, World Council of Churches etc. Those groups posted on the EMO website Ecumenical Minsitries of Oregon don't have Roman Catholic listed.  If we look at the The Pew Forum...Church Pie Chart
  Oregon Catholics are needed to fill the void of these littler churches.  We are deep pockets and plus our beliefs could meld with theirs.  It's Synergy nothing less.

You're statement "Truth is not as absolute as you seem to believe."  Shows how blended you are, or poorly cathecised.  It's like the Mission of the Atonment, a blending of Catholic and Lutherans at Sunday services.

You have one foot planted in mid-air and the other on a slippery rock.  There IS absoute Truth: Christ, yesterday, today and tomorrow.

Being on the Board of EMO could be a good political move for a Democrat like you but, it's not wise for you to say you're  Catholic and  throw overboard the True Church and Her Teachings.

God Bless,

Your accuracy in what you write is about as bad as some organizations I have criticized when evidence clearly points to just the opposite.  EMO lists "Roman Catholic" in the first sentence on their home page regarding what groups constitute their organization.   The "Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Portland" is shown under their "membership" listing  in the category of "About Us" if you click on that button.   How can you then say that "Roman Catholic" isn't represented on their website or isn't a member of the organization when it's there in black and white?    How can you have credibility when you can't even get these simple facts straights?

My dictionary shows "covenantal" in the "ecclesiastical" definition as follows:
"Ecclesiastical . a solemn agreement between the members of a church to act together in harmony with the precepts ofthe gospel.

This in no way impinges on our covenant with God as a Church.  How you can construe it otherwise again only testifies to the spirit you bring to the work.  I trust in divine judgment and I am convinced there will be a reckoning for those who believe they are the ultimate judges here on earth for what is righteous.



Hold on...why would I be concerned that the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Portland get OUT of EMO, if they weren't represented on their web page and PART of IT?  You are the one not making any sense.  Think about it.

"Ecclesiastical - A solemn agreement between members of a church.....acting in harmony with the precepts of the gospel"
Okay, that's why we don't enter a "solemn agreement" with EMO, National Council of Church, Church Women United, World Council of Churches..and other blended groups.  I have a real problem with the Metropolitan Community of Churches, which is homosexually oriented and Catholics can't be in a solemn agreement with them.  Pure and simple.

These people are not Catholics for a reason.  We are needed for credibility, connections and money not our religious views on moral issues we hold dear.  We can't be part of them as their group.  I repeat, David Leslie, executive director of EMO is NOT the Pope.

It seems like you are confused as to what a Roman Catholic is...it's much easier for me,  a convert with many spiritual experiences to compare what you're going through as a cradle Catholic.

The Catholics involved in EMO might get a swift kick in the pants when the new Archbishop comes.  Symbolic, of course.


You wrote:  "Those posted on the EMO website Ecumenical Minsitries of Oregon don't have Roman Catholic listed. "  You preceded that by writing  that Catholics don't belong to such as EMO. . . "    The statements did not appear to me to be accurate.  Clearly, Catholics can "belong" to EMO if our Archdiocese already is a member.  I was taking what your wrote as a statement of fact.  If you meant something other than you wrote literally, you might have clarified it.
You don't see eye to eye with our current archbishop from the content I reviewed on your website.  I guess it's only fair to say some won't see eye with the next one either.  I don't see any real problem with that.  Many issues are not simply black and white--there should be room for dialogue on them.
My definition of a "Catholic" is without a doubt different from yours.  You are entitled to your opinion, but unless your theological training and moral leadership are superior to the Archbishop I will defer to his judgment on the issue.



Any Bishop does not trump the teachings of the Catholic church. Ours is not on board 100% with EMO and acts on a doubtful conscience.

EMO is light years away from where the Roman Catholic Church is going.   They are into more than doing good works.  I'm sure that there are many well meaning people in EMO.

You need to re-read what I've said in my last letter.  I know EMO has Roman Catholic listed on their website.  I repeat...why in the world would I complain about the Archpdx in EMO if we weren't listed on the EMO website.

All through the years, it's been repeated over and over again.  Get the Archdpdx out of EMO.  Out means OUT.

Yes, in my opinion EMO is evil.

If you're right,  I'll be an alarmist, crazed lunatic.  What if I'm right?

God Bless,

Hopefully this is over.