Letters

Week of September 15, 2004

American Catholics were a persecuted minority until the Second World War. During that war, Catholic mothers who hung four, five or six service stars in their front windows, symbolizing sons in military service, demonstrated the patriotism of Catholics and their commitment to the United States. The election of John F. Kennedy to the presidency proved that Catholics had finally arrived, even though he promised no influence of his Catholicism in his service. Catholics supported Martin Luther King in the civil rights struggle and also assured equal employment rights for themselves. Vatican II liturgical and artistic reforms assured that Catholics would not be distinctive anymore and would be viewed as normal Americans. Catholics did all they could to please the world. Acceptance was assured for a while, but then came pressure to conform to new worldly standards. Now we are told that we were no longer liked and have to change again.

The resurgence of traditional Catholic practices and increasing Catholic moral pressure against the mainstream may mean that Catholics are once again outside the pale, but at least high Catholic standards will recover, and this sexual abuse will diminish further.
Mark Abeln
St. Louis

Irreverent, indecent and disgusting -- an unholy trifecta!Your display of bitterness toward Archbishop Burke reached the limit of decency in your deplorable caricature of the archbishop in your endeavor to belittle him in the eyes of your readers. Granted, you have the right to criticize, but to display all the intimate happenings serves little purpose but to arouse disgust in the minds of readers.

Your paper should be a sounding board for good happenings for St. Louis. I feel sure you have not turned many Catholics against the archbishop but have turned away many from your low-grade endeavor to smear him.

Finally, your play on words using a Catholic doctrine of the Mother of God to further insult the archbishop is a true lack of reverence for the Catholic Church.
Fr. Valentine Young, O.F.M. Cap
St. Patrick Church
St. Louis

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