Jewish Journal

Bishop knew about abortion for Catholic Charities ward

by Brad A. Greenberg

July 2, 2008 | 2:01 am

Two weeks ago, Julia Duin, the religion reporter for the Washington Times, dropped a bombshell: Commonwealth Catholic Charities of Richmond arranged for a 16-year-old immigrant girl in its care to receive an abortion. These action clearly violated Catholic doctrine and also possibly Virginia law. But the story didn’t end there.

Duin kept on it and Monday unloaded an even bigger shocker: Bishop Francis X. DiLorenzo knew about the plans and “did not try to prevent the procedure.”

Both DiLorenzo and the head of Catholic Charities are now scrambling and hiding behind deflected responsibilities and feigned ignorance. “It is very awkward, it is very embarrassing. A human life was taken. He certainly has not taken it lightly in any way. He is clearly opposed to abortion,” the bishop’s flak told Duin.

The public isn’t really buying it, and rightfully so. Here’s what the Crunchy Con, Rod Dreher, had to say:

Bullsh*t. A bishop of the Church is told a day in advance that an abortion is going to take place under the Church’s auspices ... and he doesn’t try his damnedest to stop it?! The director of Catholic Charities is supposedly distraught about the planned abortion because it “went against all she stood for” ... and she didn’t try to stop it?! They’re covering their butts, and doing a poor job of it.

We may never know what really happened here. The U.S. Catholic Church has proven its skillfulness at covering up its mistakes—at least for a long time, until they fester and swell and burst in a public fiasco like the clergy sex abuse scandal. Easy lessons, it seems, are hard to learn for those afraid of owning up to their mistakes.

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