Judging by the surge in visitors to Socon or Bust in the last week surrounding the Fr. Arriaga controversy, our readers are genuinely concerned for the unborn, Development and Peace, as well as the Catholic Church.
As such, I’m sure you’re very proud of Archbishop Prendergast for cancelling Fr. Arriaga’s talks. Some of you have said as much in your comments. I would urge you to now take a moment to thank the good Archbishop by email at email@example.com. While the Archbishop cannot reply to each individual email due to the high volume, I’ve been assured by his office that each email is brought to his personal attention.
While the cancellation of the talks was the obvious decision from a moral standpoint, the consequences for the Archbishop will be severe. Think about it. Fr. Arriaga’s tour of the Archdiocese was organized and sponsored by Development and Peace. By cancelling the talks and issuing a strong statement about Fr. Arriaga’s involvement in abortion advocacy, the Archbishop is stating that at a minimum, D&P exercised very poor judgment in this case and at worst, its commitment to Catholic values is suspect.
He has as implicitly issued a vote of non-confidence against the infamous whitewash report issued by the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops in 2009. You’ll recall that the CCCB’s “investigation” of five D&P’s Mexican partners included the organization headed by Fr. Arriaga, which was given a clean bill of health by the CCCB. Archbishop Prendergast’s actions essentially say that his brother bishops were wrong. This calls into question the entire credibility of the report and of subsequent statements made by the CCCB on D&P.
The Archbishop’s actions also implicitly question the credibility of the Catholic media that lavished bleach all over D&P in the last two years.
I’m sure the good Archbishop received some angry phone calls today. He will continue to feel heat from D&P, various bishops and Catholic media in the coming weeks and months. This is the price he’s willing to pay for the unborn. It’s a very real form of persecution from within the Church.
At this time, more than ever, we need to express our thanks to the Archbishop as well as our willingness to stand shoulder-to-shoulder with him during these trying times.
We need to pray for him everyday.
We need to watch his back and come to his defense when he’s attacked.
Let him know that he’s not alone, that we’ll go to bat for him.