Most faithful Catholics in the pews know there's a place for social justice -- the "preferential option for the poor" instantly recognized in persons such as Mother Teresa or Pope John Paul II vs. the preferential option for the state so cherished by needless bureaucrats and six-figure directors who hold the poor of our society hostage for greater government funding.
So is it any small wonder that with a dour economy and just a tiny bit of sunlight from organizations such as Societas and the Reform CCHD Now Coalition, that the entire rotten edifice is falling down?
I continue to write about this for one reason alone: Catholicism shouldn't be wedded to political ideology -- ever. Yet time and time again, we see members embedded in the Catholic social justice movement pulling the wool over the eyes of faithful Catholics, priests, and bishops... and sometimes, cranking out one or two members who arguably do more damage to the standing of the Catholic Church in America than any other modern politician.
Case in point? Barack Obama.
In the 1980’s, Barack Obama entered the world of community organizing through the CCHD-sponsored Gamaliel Foundation. From 1985 to 1988, Obama worked for the Developing Communities Project, which is an affiliate of Gamaliel.
So, it’s only natural that when Obama ran for Senate and subsequently for president of the United States, the Gamaliel Foundation was his biggest cheerleader.
...and after all, why not?
They trained him.
They built him up.
It only makes sense that they would do their best to send him to the most powerful seat in the world.
Strange as it may have been, I suppose we shouldn’t even be all that surprised that Gamaliel organizers even “prayed” to Obama to create universal health care with the response “Hear Our Cry, Obama!”
Now if you skipped over this, click on the YouTube video and let it run in the background.
"Deliver us, Obama!"
If you're Catholic... you hear something oddly liturgical about that?
It's called the General Intercessions or Prayers of the Faithful. An intention is mentioned after the homily (sermon) such as "for the an end to abortion" and the response is "Deliver us, O Lord..."
...or deliver us, Obama.
No, I don't think they're talking about pizzas here.
So what's the big deal about Gamaliel's Obama-worship?
As a long-time grant recipient of the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, the Gamaliel Foundation received reimbursements specifically for Obama’s training at Saul Alinsky’s Industrial Areas Foundation.
In short, unbeknownst to the Catholic faithful, this radical arm of the Catholic Church actually paid for Obama’s training.
Given the fact that Barack Obama is well known for his sidestepping of the truth, such as:
...when he said that Obamacare would not cover abortions (it does),
...that the HHS mandate would not force religious institutions to disobey their consciences (they do),
...or how the White House has flat out lied about the terrorist attacks in Libya (it was),
...one has to wonder if lying was a part of the training he received while working for Gamaliel.
After all, Saul Alinsky’s Rules for Radicals -- which would have been required reading for a young Barack Obama -- states emphatically that “(e)thical standards must be elastic to stretch with the times.”
Sound Catholic to you? Probably not...
And so it seems that ethical standards are indeed elastic with the Gamaliel Foundation when it comes to addressing concerns about its relationship with an organization committed to destroying the basic building block of society -- a family.
According to a recent statement by the Reform CCHD Now coalition (RCN), a collection of concerned Catholic organizations investigating the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD), the Gamaliel Foundation provided a falsified letter to the National CCHD office in Washington, D.C.
Turns out that Gamaliel didn’t want the CCHD to know about its relationship with the Fair Immigration Reform Movement.
Because as a CCHD recipient, Gamaliel is forbidden from being a member of a coalition that has taken organizational positions in opposition to the Catholic Church.
Reform CCHD Now indicates that in addition to being a founding member of FIRM, the Gamaliel Foundation is a long-term member of FIRM’s organizing committee.
As FIRM indicated on the “Who We Are” page of its website, “The organizing committee is the governing body of FIRM.” This means that Gamaliel would have had a hand in FIRM’s decision to publicly support the Uniting American Families Act, which is a back-door way of recognizing same-sex marriage.
When RCN presented this information to the CCHD, the response was that Gamaliel provided the CCHD with a copy of a letter it allegedly sent to FIRM in May of 2010, severing all ties.
Here’s where those elastic ethics come in, because RCN took a deeper look at Gamaliel’s website and found a file folder marked “FIRM Strategy Session.” In that folder were four files dated “2011”; files that indicate that Gamaliel was a member of FIRM in 2011, on its executive committee in 2011, and that Gamaliel’s president is a contact.
Even more interestingly, RCN discovered meeting minutes for a FIRM conference call which took place on December 9, 2011. The minutes not only list Ana Garcia-Ashley (Gamaliel’s president) as a participant on the call, but indicate that Gamaliel was nominated again for membership on FIRM’s executive committee for 2012.
This is not a matter of confusion, folks. Gamaliel delivered a letter to the CCHD dated May 2010, claiming to sever ties with FIRM, but all indicators are that this relationship has not ended.
On top of that, both Gamaliel and FIRM attempted to strip their websites of the evidence RCN found, proving this ongoing relationship.
In short, Gamaliel attempted to hide the evidence in order to preserve the siphoning of funds from the Catholic Campaign for Human Development.
The interesting twist to the story is that after RNC presented this information to the CCHD, Ralph McCloud, the executive director for the CCHD cancelled a scheduled meeting with the Reform CCHD Now Coalition, claiming that “we see no reason to meet at this time.”
Refusing to answer any questions about Gamaliel’s misleading information to him, it seems that there are some -- McCloud included? -- who are hoping Gamaliel will all blow over, and that Gamaliel’s funding status won’t be affected.
Yet in 2008, McCloud participated in Gamaliel’s “Realizing the Promise” forum, which declared that “today, community organizing has arrived in Washington D.C.”
At the forum, McCloud said of “this day,” referring to Obama’s election to the presidency:
...as we proceed on this day, on this day, a good day, a great day, we draw upon that faith, knowing that because of our efforts, because of our shared mission, that soon, and very soon, we will see a new Jerusalem, and we will be able to see and witness justice rolling down like waters and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream, and the lion will lay down with the lamb.
Sounds fairly pot committed to this reader.
Given such a statement at this Gamaliel event, it would appear that the truth regarding this situation will not find an ally in McCloud or the Catholic Campaign which he leads. Who then will weed out the institutional rot?
Catholics must take back their parishes from the politically charged -isms and the darker fifth columns embedded in our institutions. The late Fr. Richard John Neuhaus was right: "Fidelity! Fidelity! Fidelity!" -- and until we see greater fidelity within the Catholic Church here in the United States, how will Americans ever be able to participate in the New Evangelization we are called to participate in?
Obama, hear our cry?
Somehow, that just doesn't quite seem to fit.