What Does Cdl. Dolan's Invitation to Obama Say To You?

*subhead*Stunned.*subhead*
The University of Notre Dame invited President Barack Obama and Catholics were stunned. Georgetown honored HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and Catholics everywhere were horrified.

Meghan Myers, the Executive Director of the annual fundraiser for Catholic Charities, told LifeSiteNews that U.S. President Barack Obama was invited to keynote the Al Smith dinner by New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan.

And for the life of me I can't see why Cardinal Timothy Dolan's invitation to President Obama to the Al Smith dinner is any different. I know the Church isn't honoring Obama but come on. Right on the home page of the Al Smith event is this picture:

Horrifyingly, you can go to the Al Smith foundation right from the Archdiocesan website
and then just click on "dinner" and you'll see this pic.

Why is this invitation different than Notre Dame or Georgetown's invitations? You can say that it has nothing to do with politics and that it's a fundraiser for children but didn't Georgetown and Notre Dame say that it wasn't about politics and that it was all about the students?

I've been to two religious freedom rallies with my kids in Philadelphia. I traveled down to Baltimore for the kickoff Mass of The Fortnight for Freedom with Archbishop Lori. And yeah, this ticks me off.

When millions of Catholics who prayed and protested for religious freedom see the pictures that will surely surface from the event with Cardinal Dolan and Obama how will they feel? Pray tell what will that do to the morale of millions of Catholics? What will that do to the pit of their stomachs?

It's just unserious. We can say it's all for a good cause. But its just unserious. Either those 50 million babies count as human beings or they don't. Either marriage is worth fighting for or it's not. Either religious freedom must be preserved or not. To say we're taking a "time out" from politics a few weeks before election day is just unserious. And it says to millions of Catholics that we can take a time out from those important issues to yuck it up. I hope and pray that this invitation is rescinded. I'm serious.

Comments

  1. Perhaps Cdl Dolan wants him to hear what Catholic Charities does and how many people will be hurt by the mandate.

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  2. Could Cardinal Dolan be giving Obama enough rope to hang himself?

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  3. It doesn't say anything.

    Every election year, they invite the major Presidential candidates for both parties. It's just a matter of protocol. The Republican party is NOT the Catholic Party of America. It just so happens in this case it is the lesser of two evils, the greater of which is very great indeed. They've been doing this for years...Chill.

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    1. They did not invite Bill Clinton and they did not invite John Kerry

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  4. It's difficult to say this is a matter of protocol, because this is in fact against the protocol of the dinner.

    Read the article:

    On two occasions since 1960 the presidential candidates were not invited by the Archdiocese of New York to the dinner - in 1996 (Cardinal John O’Connor), when strongly pro-abortion Bill Clinton was a candidate, and in 2004 (Cardinal Egan), during the candidacy of also strongly pro-abortion Democrat John Kerry.

    And wake up.

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  5. I can't agree with you more, Matt. Obama's attendance at the Al Smith dinner is a slap in the face to all of us who value our religious freedom and who SO BADLY want to be able to take our bishops seriously as good leaders of us in their flocks. To give this president, who disdains us Catholics so much, a platform of any kind is disgusting and undermines EVERYTHING Cardinal Dolan and his brother bishops have tried to do over the last few months. I am flabbergasted. I am sad. And I am getting very angry.

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  6. If this is not the time for the good Cardinal to draw a line in the sand, there will never be such a time. This invitation makes no sense. It is as scandalous as the Notre Dame debacle and the on-going failure of other Shepherds to publicly correct dissenting Catholic politicians. When will such practices end?

    http://harvestingthefruitsofcontemplation.blogspot.com/
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7mhS1aqdvQQ&feature=plcp

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  7. I suppose you're not surprised you're in the minority again! I agree with you. It's disappointing to be standing for truth, hard fought beliefs, Holy Mother Church and have the people who you think you're supporting do something like this. I thought Dolan was a good guy... too bad for us.

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  8. I didn't know that there were two times when presidents were not invited, and that one was very recent. I respect Cardinal Dolan's diplomatic skills and I hope hope hope he has a good reason for this (he seems to be always offering the olive branch, if for no other reason that he can say he did it) but, given that history, it is disheartening.

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  9. I won't chill. A penitent is welcome; a posturing Dear Leader should not be encouraged in his persecutions.

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  10. What does it say to me? It says that the Church in America cares more about it's relationship with the Federal Government and the billions it receives from Uncle Sam than it cares about life and truth.

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  11. Church Militant.tv has a petition to ask Cardinal Dolan to rescind the invitation.

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  12. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  13. I have confidence in Cardinal Dolan. I think early on he trusted the President more than he should, but now I think he knows better. He has said we will not surrender and I believe him. I think that prior to Obama speaking, Cardinal Dolan will announce that this will be the last Al Smith Dinner. He will explain that due to the HHS mandate, Catholic Charities will either shut down or will be an outlaw organization. Then he turns the podium over to the President.

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  14. I like Ron Bowers take on this!

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  15. I think Ron Bowers is fantasizing, but that would be something all right!!!! Maybe Cardinal Dolan does have a plan. Maybe he will say, "Mr. President, I know you have a speech prepared but instead I want to ask you a few questions I'm sure Al Smith would have appreciated, and I'd like you to answer them for the crowd here." hee hee hee

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  16. I have now organized two very large rallies to stand with our bishops, and our family has given much time and effort for this cause. This feels like a huge slap in the face. I hope and pray that there is something I'm not seeing, here.

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  17. My hasband kept telling me Dolan's not the hero people want him to be. I kept telling him he's too quick to judge. I hate when he's right.

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  18. I hope that Ron is right. I hope that Laura's husband is wrong. I have my doubts.

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  19. I think that we need to withhold judgement on this until we see where it's going.
    Cardinal Dolan is a very wise man. He isn't a panderer and he isn't a doormat.
    He has said that Obama brought the fight, and that we will not comply. He hasn't said anything to the contrary anywhere that I can see.
    There is definitely something here that we aren't seeing. There are lots of things that we don't know that happen between these guys.
    This is a fight for the life of the Catholic Church in America, and I just don't see Cardinal Dolan rolling over and handing it off.
    I would be very surprised if Obama accepted.
    I am not very wise or very gentle, but I trust that Cardinal Dolan is. I don't think that he will waste any opportunity to show Catholic voters who Obama is. If he can get him to show up, it might be just the chance that he needs.

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  20. It makes my head explode. I hope the optimists here are right.

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  21. P.S. Making an invitation and then rescinding the invitation is much more visible then simply letting the invitation to go by the wayside. I believe Cardinal Dolan wants the laity to force the disinvitation...just before the election.

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  22. I would highly doubt that Obama's people would allow him to make a speech just before an election if there were not some stipulations put into place beforehand. With that being said, some of the thoughts of what might happen are good but I am not sure if they are necessarily going to occur.

    This is a "mixed signal" type of situation and we wonder why Catholics vote and support what they do. Our bishops say one thing and then do another. I am disappointed that Cardinal Dolan would invite him to this. I like Cardinal Dolan but I think this is bad for what he was just trying to do with getting Catholics rallied to vote these people out.

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  23. Forget it, I went to churchmilitant.tv and signed the petition and made a donation. This is wrong.

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  24. I'm willing to wait and see what happens at the dinner. This is, after
    all, a very public opportunity for both the Cardinal and Mr. Romney
    to direct some pointed questions to the president.

    Notre Dame was a one-sided affair, which Bishop D'Arcy boycotted.
    All voices at that fiasco were singing Obama's praises. At this upcoming
    dinner, the president will be addressed not only by Cardinal Dolan, but
    also by candidate Romney.

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  25. Like y'all, I can see the risks involved here. But remember: Cardinal Dolan isn't a craven sap like Fr. Jenkins.

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  26. It says the Cardinal and the USCCB are not really against the baby killing obamination; they are only rattling their chains and will capitulate. They continue to confuse the faithful and refuse to truly take a firm stand for CHRIST!

    Shame on them.

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  27. It says "confusion", "naïveté", "poor pastoral sense", "set up to be set up", "giving Obama and the Democrat propaganda machine something to use to deceive simple Catholics", "dangerous perception that Obama is not the enemy of religious freedom", "castrated shepherd", "WTF" ...

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  28. It says to me that the whole fortnight of freedom thing was hooey.

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  29. I think that this is *very* different from Notre Dame. Notre Dame came with an honorary degree. And being invited to give a commencement speech is itself an honor.

    Perhaps this is still bad, but it is very different from ND. I think this is a tremendous opportunity to lay bare the issues, and I'd rather more from a position of hope.

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  30. Wow.
    Is this still CMR?
    These comments read more like the NCR.
    It seems that a rush to judgement is unwise, and the name-calling and bad-mouthing of a Bishop, especially this Bishop, on one report, before knowing the whole story... come on.

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  31. @Laura: I love when my husband is right. Among other things, it says I made a good choice in marrying him. Concerning this, my husband and yours would get along well.

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  32. Without the Archbishop's comments, without his side of the story, how can we know for sure?

    Reserve judgment.

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  33. Look folks. We gotta stop pretending and gotta drop the gooey clericalism. This is a fundraising dinner. More properly the dinner is a roast. The President will sit next to the Cardinal as a guest of honor, if he attends, and everyone will smile and tell jokes and laugh and laugh and laugh. The reason you invite the POTUS to your fundraising dinner is because it torques the collection plate pure and simple. You could be a John Cardinal O'Connor and NOT invite the POTUS which is exactly what he did during the Clinton years but that's not what we have here.

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  34. "Maybe Cardinal Dolan does have a plan. Maybe he will say, 'Mr. President, I know you have a speech prepared but ...'"

    ... 'I'm a giant cocktail weenie and far be it from me to interfere.'"

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  35. I think Cardinal Dolan to not disinvite Obama is the upmost in hipocrosy.

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  36. This was not the time to go wobbly. Cardinal Dolan went wobbly...at the very least.

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  37. @ Jeffrey Pinyan, 9:09 PM: I wholeheartedly agree.

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  38. The photo ops for Obama will be just the ticket faux Catholics need to vote for him AGAIN. I am sick in my heart about this.

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  39. Cdl. has an openly sodomite parish in his diocese. He attended services of that parish. Why should his invitation to Barry be such a surprise? If you compromise in one area, it's going to happen somewhere else.

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  40. Mark 2:15-17

    While he was at table in his house, 9 many tax collectors and sinners sat with Jesus and his disciples; for there were many who followed him.

    Some scribes who were Pharisees saw that he was eating with sinners and tax collectors and said to his disciples, "Why does he eat with tax collectors and sinners?"

    Jesus heard this and said to them (that), "Those who are well do not need a physician, 11 but the sick do. I did not come to call the righteous but sinners."

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  41. It's dinner, folks. Not a ceremony celebrating President Obama and his ideologies. Get a grip.

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  42. Admittedly, this all makes ne nervous, but we have no place criticizing without an explanation, and as Catholics there is no room for this kind of public criticism of our most-respected shepherd in the US. Cardinal Dolan has done and said many great things in the past year and I do believe we owe it to him to wait and see what is happening with this. On the surface it feels very wrong, but our duty as the lay faithful is to trust Cardinal Dolan until this plays out.

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  43. I'm sure glad none of you people are Archbishop of New York or head of the USCCB. All I'm seeing here is pure emotionalism. Stop and think, please.

    How many people here know if Pres. Obama was even taking Card. Dolan's calls up to now? For some time relations have been freezing between the White House and the bishops - largely on the President's part, I'm sure. The ability to find a solution, to actually get the President to rescind not just the HHS mandate, but his whole definition of freedom of religion - let's not even get into the rest of his policies -- has come to a standstill. Yes, we MIGHT win in court, but probably not before the election. Obama MIGHT not be re-elected, but we can't count on that.

    Cdl. Dolan may have been hoping for an ice-breaker by extending this invitation. It might re-open communications and lead to talks.

    And let's not forget that the dinner itself is still two months away. If Obama continues to be the horse's-you-know-what that we all know he is on these matters, and things come to a head, then there is an easy solution. Cdl. Dolan can say: "Sorry, Cardinal Egan and I have just just discovered we have a previous engagement that night," and not attend the dinner, leaving the President with egg on his face - right before the election. Sort of sounds like a plan.

    By the way, has Cardinal Dolan even said that that he himself is attending the dinner?

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  44. What does it say to me? It says that the Church in America cares more about it's relationship with the Federal Government and the billions it receives from Uncle Sam than it cares about life and truth.

    Prelates and popes have always been more about associating with the powerful and expanding their secular influence than about life and truth. Just look at how the vast majority of bishops have dealt with the abortion issue. Just look at the history of the papacy.

    The only recent exception was John Paul I (Albino Luciani, not Karol Wojtyla). He was murdered. It was an inside job.

    Think about it.

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  45. Sorry, Joseph, but that is not true, and continuing to spread this conspiracy theory nonsense is scandalous. I have a nearly book-length series of posts here going into the matter in great detail.

    http://subcreators.com/blog/investigation-of-the-death-of-pope-john-paul-i/

    You might also be interested to know that there is going to be a conference in New York on October 12-13 called "The True Pope John Paul I" that will show what he was really all about.

    www.jpicentenary.org

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  46. It says 1936 and the JDL inviting Hitler to their fundraiser...

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  47. It says...

    Peter.

    only the ones being crucifed upside down may be us.

    kim

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  48. Reminds me of what my dad used to say "do as I say, not as I do"...

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  49. I would in part agree on the side of Louie Verrecchio at Catholic Lane. I think Cardinal Dolan is a smart guy. He knows who is going to the event. He has said before he would leave doors open for the president to have dialogue, this way now Cardinal can say hey we gave you the opportunity and you refused. This is a time of uncertainty in the world, and I think we shouldn't' let emotions get in the way of tactical thinking. We should trust this shepherd. I know Dolan knows that we as Catholics want answers you know.

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  50. Lori, the possibility that I might be wrong about JPI doesn't necessarily negate my statement that prelates and popes have been far more concerned about politics and maintaining their influence with politicians than with truth and life. That, sadly, has pervaded the papacy and the hierarchy for centuries.

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  51. BTW, why should we give bishops the benefit of the doubt, especially after the way most of them behaved when faced with sexual predators in their dioceses? Merely because they're bishops?
    Puh-leezze! Jesus Himself said that you shall know them by their works. Well, the American bishops' works over the past thirty years speak more loudly than anything they could ever say.

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  52. It's not that we should place our trust in the Bishops themselves but in the wisdom of God. Bishops are still human, and it's by the Grace of God they do their good works, we shouldn't discount the ability of God to instill what is needed in Dolan to has this turn out well for us. I know it's hard but here again we have to trust God above and have faith he is doing what is best for us.

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  53. Jacob:

    "Jesus heard this and said to them (that), 'Those who are well do not need a physician, 11 but the sick do. I did not come to call the righteous but sinners.'"

    It also matters what he called them, don't you think? Consider what he told the woman about to be stoned.

    "Nor do I condemn thee, but from now on, avoid this sin."

    Not exactly a back-slapping endorsement.

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  54. Joseph I didn't say a word about anything except John Paul I. I didn't deny there were and are many "political" bishops. You're mighty defensive on the subject though. Didn't the possibility occur to you that if you are wrong about the one thing (and you are), you could be wrong about others?

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  55. Lori, my main point wasn't about John Paul I. My main point was about the nature of the hierarchy, which has been revealed through centuries of recorded behavior. Given that record, I'm not wrong about my fundamental point.

    Nate, at some point, we have to look at what people do, rather than just at what they say. Anybody can say anything for any reason. But how do they live? Yes, we're all human and, yes, we all make mistakes under pressure. That doesn't mean we should sacrifice our God-given powers of discernment for some false "non-judgementality."

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  56. You didn't answer my question, which was "what if you're wrong about what they do?"

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  57. Joesph, I understand the need to walk the walk and talk the talk. But I think if dolan was to rescind the invitation of both candidates, all the media would see and say is that he didn't want to have a dialogue with the president. They'll push it like Dolan and the U.S bishops don't want to try and work something out and then praise the presidents "accommodation". Now if I knew that if Dolan were to not invite him and that would garner points from the secular media then I would say have at it, but this is thin ice, but also to say all is lost is not really the right attitude either. not that I think that's what your saying I'm saying in general.

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  58. Joesph, I understand the need to walk the walk and talk the talk. But I think if dolan was to rescind the invitation of both candidates, all the media would see and say is that he didn't want to have a dialogue with the president. They'll push it like Dolan and the U.S bishops don't want to try and work something out and then praise the presidents "accommodation". Now if I knew that if Dolan were to not invite him and that would garner points from the secular media then I would say have at it, but this is thin ice, but also to say all is lost is not really the right attitude either. not that I think that's what your saying I'm saying in general.

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  59. Nate, you make valid points about the situation in question. You might be right that Cdl. Dolan is considering how secular media might react. OTOH, at some point, people have to disregard what others -- even influential others -- think and do what is right (I'm speaking in general, here.). What other ways do the bishops have of holding Pres. Obama accountable concerning his administration's decisions?

    Lori, if you think I'm wrong about the hierarchy and papacy, then say so and provide examples. I would caution you, however, that I can site far more examples of high-ranking prelates who have sacrificed their spiritual patrimony on the altar of ambition, greed, political influence and a misplaced loyalty to the ecclesiastical institution as opposed to God.

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  60. I am a Catholic Charities volunteer of ten years.
    Pregnancy center work; I've had long-standing concerns about CC's federal funding. Very little support comes from the diocesan level. We've been compromised for years.
    The "two masters" problem.
    The dinner should be canceled. Else anymore talk from the church about "conscience" and "liberty" is hot air and will stink like a dog's breath.
    I,too, participated in the Fortnight for Freedom events and I, too, feel like a fool, as another commenter here indicated he did also.

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  61. Were you all this upset four years ago when Obama and McCain both attended the 2008 Al Smith Dinner? How about when Al Gore and George W. Bush attended in 2000?

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  62. @ Shirley- thanks for shedding a true light on the situation. There is a prophecy that says that when the Church and the world are one then those days are upon us. I think it was a catholic monk from way back who made the prophecy. He said God put a barrier between the two for a reason.

    As far as Christ dining with sinners...THEY REPENTED. Quite the opposite is going on here with faux Catholic liberals like Biden, Pelosi, et al...
    As far as our Muslim sympathizing president, Jesus also said to shake the dust from your feet after leaving the place of a person who won't hear the Gospel. The 'president' has never heard or accepted this message of truth and is utterly and demonically hostile to it. Any Alfred E Smith dinner should only be given to him in a to go bag

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  63. Imagine yourself back in 1961. Kennedy is President and the leading board member of USAID (the UN nonprofit agency which helps refugees). Now, USAID has a fund-raiser banquet in Switzerland and invites Mao Tse-Tungt and Khrushchev. The President will be there along with many communists and free thinkers from every nation of the world. All there to roast each other and have a laugh and a nice dinner with a cigar afterwards. It was confirmed by the White house press secretary, and everyone there is perplexed asking the question "Why are all the VFW's and the families and survivors of WW2 and the Korean War soldiers so upset? This is not an American dinner held in American, it has more than just Americans invited and after all, it is a night of jokes and fun. We are doing this as a fund raiser for the poor refugees. What is the big deal, let us show everyone in the world that we all love one another with Christian love because that is what it is all about. because “It gives us an opportunity to act as Christians, and show some love to our adversaries, and even those whose policies we consider to be immoral and oppressive.” yeah right!

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  64. I AM NOT GOING TO "Chill either. CANCEL THE DINNER. I cannot believe i wrote the below statement earlier, but i am just that mad and sick of the female faithful being silenced (or told to "chill" by men). I wrote it (though they did not allow it to be posted) in response to a CNA article on Archbishop Lori's 'explanation' of why it was 'okay' to have the dinner:

    Et tu, Brute?

    Archbishop Lori, you of all people? Please Archbishop Lori, I know you are a good man, but please see that others are not, and I am closer to believing that C. Dolan is not. His inviting Obama is just another display of his flippant attitude towards women, he is a borderline misogynist! He is certainly no scholar, a poor speaker, and when in his presence, there is nothing genuine about him. (Unlike you!)

    Please see this brilliant discussion by Gloria Purvis on the mandate and how demeaning it is to women (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UvoBPVsjdog&feature=related) and please start to see how the young, faithful women feel. They are out there, tens of thousands of them, but they are silenced by the ugly pervasive shadow of BITTER OLD SPINSTER ACADEMICS and OLD LIBERAL CONFUSED 'Nuns'.

    @Freda
    “It is a matter of real fear and concern.. The institutional c[h]urch has a year — but not the laity.”

    Freda – thank you for stating this. C. Dolan has NO IDEA (whether he intentionally ignores faithful women’s concerns or is just so out of touch with reality here on the ground for faithful women) how the young, gifted, educated women are faced with leaving professions in health care after years invested in their education and residency now knowing it is not long before they are forced out by old white women and old white men bent on making them perform abortions (not to mention provide abortifacients) and now their OWN CHURCH hierarchy is expediting the process? SHAME on you C. Dolan! CANCEL THE DINNER, please!

    @joxxer
    “Actions speak louder than words. The message that this invitation will send to Catholics ignorant of Obama’s policies— is a message of approval”
    -I submit to you that THIS IS C. Dolan’s sole intention! If R&R win, his limelight FADES A BIT, doesn’t it? Think about it.

    The only other explanation that flies is they have something on him, and if this is so, please C. Dolan, just set us free and leave, and go preach in a country like Syria where your presence can’t hurt young women any more than they are already being hurt there.

    I pray that through the intercession of Our Lady of Guadalupe that the true, good shepherds are strengthened, and that she assist in exposing those that are not. Archbishop Lori, I know you are one of the good ones. While I apologize for the intensity and crudeness of the above statements, I urge you to please, please, consider them, and reconsider your approval of this repugnant affront to women and the faithful laity. Please.

    For the love of God and His Church, CANCEL THE DINNER. You have already lost the lefty women (buh-bye anyhow) but now you want to drive a wedge between the young women faithful and the USCCB? Really?

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  65. What this says to me is that Tim Dolan understands that just because someone is a political opponent does not make him your enemy. There was a time when members of different political parties could excoriate each other in the legislative chamber and then walk to the bar across the street and have a beer together. The Cardinal is sane enough to realize that disagreement does not have to mean hatred. If Romney were not invited too there would be grounds for concern, but that is not the case. If there were some honor attached I might understand the hoopla. This is a social occasion where the speeches are supposed to be funny. Obama played by those understood rules in 2008 and there is no reason to believe he will not this time. I will gladly join you in the fight against President Obama's policies but I am not going to pretend that I am so pure or he is so horrible that he is beneath my dignity and refuse to eat with the man. This is a light hearted social event, not the Notre Dame commencement.

    By the standards being applied to Obama, I am not sure Al Smith could get invited to the Al Smith dinner. He was quite the Progressive in his day and he could as easily be a Pelosi Catholic not a Boehner Catholic if he were alive now.

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  66. My head is getting ready to explode!!

    I am beyond angry or disappointed. I am ENRAGED.

    Ann Barnhardt (http://barnhardt.biz) is right: The Catholic Church in America has been deeply, heavily infiltrated by Marxists. It is our duty as faithful Catholics to expose the wolves amongst the flock. Cardinal Dolan may well be one of them. Pray for him, yes, but rebuke him, as the Bible instructs us to do. Dolan is ENDANGERING SOULS. There is no excuse for that, and it is not "Christian" or "charitable" on our part to overlook it.

    St. Catherine of Siena, pray for us, strengthen us to confront the bad shepherds in our midst and defend Jesus' Holy Church against their smooth glib words, seductive false arguments, and cowardly infidelities!

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  67. "What does Cdl. Dolan's invitation to Obama say to you?"

    Uh, that he's a dumbass?

    Then again, I knew that beforehand... ;)

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