Correction & Apology on Caritas Haiti; D&P Still On The Mat

Shortly after the earthquake in Haiti, Socon or Bust reported that Caritas Haiti was “likely an abortion supporter” based on statements that were made on their website and other information gathered which is typically associated with anti-family activities. I later then amended my reporting and tempered my original assessment because a reader challenged me to compare my conclusion to the statements made by Caritas Haiti.

Today, another reader alerted me to a communication made by Caritas Haiti last week. Father Serge B. Chadic, the Director General of Caritas Haiti posted a denial of the allegations on their website. (The link is also located near the top of their homepage).

In regards to their statement regarding “women [who] have access to care in regard to their reproductive health and exercise control over their reproductive power“, Father Chadic responded that “this sentence listed … would highlight the natural methods of regulating birth approved by the Church and in no way implying anything else.”  He goes on to say that (roughly translated):

And on a personal level, I not only do not share the views of legal abortion, but I would never allow an institution that I manage to dispose of official doctrine of the Church. I repeat once again that one way or another, Caritas Haiti does not support artificial methods of birth control or the legalization of abortion; what we believe, we firmly believe. I hope this clarification clears all the waves of confusion that had improperly trained around the credibility and reputation of Caritas Haiti deeply rooted in the Church, committed to the cause of Christ and the poor.

In light of Caritas Haiti’s official denial and in the absence of any other information discovered, Socon or Bust withdraws any and all allegations against Caritas Haiti supporting contraception or abortion or any implication that it is not entirely faithful to the Church’s teaching. 

We apologize profusely to Caritas Haiti for the error, and we regret any harm caused to their organization. 

We also apologize to our readers for the false information that has been previously reported.

Typically, organizations which clamour for “reproductive rights”, “reproductive power” and “reproductive control” are invariably tied up in the pro-abortion, pro-contraception agenda.  This is the first time ever that I have seen such feminist euphemisms refer to Catholic teaching on reproduction.  In fact, I have never heard any Catholic organization use these terms to describe the Church’s teaching on  the dignity of women and sex.  Furthermore, Caritas Haiti’s original report went on to criticize the Catholic Church for discrimination. It was also a recipient of over $30,000 to support the “Binational March to Celebrate International Women’s Day – March 8, 2008 (a normally pro-abortion, pro-feminist activity).  All of these factors combined were suggestive enough to make the allegation of probability.

In the future, Socon or Bust recommends that Church organs be careful of supporting activities under the guise of feminist, pro-abort euphemisms, or collecting money to further causes which are internationally problematic without specifying what the money is for.  For its part, Socon or Bust will be more vigilant and cautious when reporting on apparent problematic statements by Church organizations.

Sadly, the retraction above has no substantial bearing on our allegations made about Development & Peace in Haiti or anywhere else.  A couple of weeks ago, for instance, we had reported on MPP, another pro-abort, Haitian organization which was being funded by Development & Peace. That was in addition to the first two pro-abortion Haitian organizations, Kay Fanm and Fanm Deside, which we discovered back in March of last year. Readers can learn more about them and their pro-abort activities here and here.

In their original press release on the relief efforts in Haiti, Development & Peace noted that most of their money would be going to Caritas Haiti but not all of it: 

All donations made to Development and Peace will be sent directly to its partners on the ground in Haiti, mainly Caritas Haiti.

By their own admission on their websites, at least three of Development & Peace’s other partners are pro-abortion advocates. In fact, it’s very likely indeed that not all of the $13.5M that Development & Peace has raised to date is going to go to Caritas Haiti. Why would it — when they have other partners on the ground who are in need of their support?

Messages from our partners in Haiti January 26, 2010 Development and Peace has been involved in Haiti for over 20 years. Last year, we contributed $600,000 in funding to Haiti, which went towards four emergency relief efforts and several community development projects led by seven partners on the ground. Some of these partners are located in some of the worst hit areas of the earthquake. They include: Fanm Deside – A women’s movement in the region of Jacmel that has 400 members and coordinates 30 other women’s groups. IRATAM – An organization that provides technical support for agriculture. ITECA – An education and leadership training organization for peasants. It is one of the oldest such organizations in the country. JACHA – A youth organization in Jacmel that has some 300 members. Kay Famn – A women’s organization that has over 1,000 members. Mouvement paysan Papaye – An organization that defends the interests of peasants and represents over 60,000 Haitian men and women peasants. SAKS – A community radio station that also offers training to local groups. Many of these partners have suffered tremendous losses. Kay Famn tragically lost one of its founding members, Magallie Marcellin, a remarkable woman who advocated for the rights of Haitian women and fought to create laws to protect women against violence. With relief, and yet with great anguish as well, we have been receiving news from our partners and the absolute devastation they are faced with. Their courage and resilience is inspiring and we are committed to helping them rebuild their country. (Source)

The reader will note the three D&P partners highlighted above in their memo are the same organizations that have been identified as pro-abortion, and will likely be recipients of some of that $13.5M aid.

Can Development & Peace guarantee that NONE of the money that they collect will go to these groups or enable their obscene practices of pushing for abortion and contraception?

While Caritas Haiti appears to be a legitimate Catholic aid agency, not tied to the conventional “reproductive rights gig”, the same cannot be said for at least three of Development & Peace’s other partners. Since Development & Peace is likely collecting money on behalf of these three pro-abort partners as well, regretably we still cannot endorse any money going to Development & Peace for the Haiti relief effort even though most of it will be given to Caritas Haiti.  Socon or Bust readers should contribute to CHALICE or give directly to Caritas Haiti (thereby by-passing any redirection of funds to the pro-aborts by D&P), if possible.

 D&P ABORTION SCANDAL VIDEO & INDEX PAGE

13 thoughts on “Correction & Apology on Caritas Haiti; D&P Still On The Mat

  1. Well John, it was easy to be misled by what was written on the website. It used all the same rhetoric as pro-abort groups.

    This should serve as a warning. Pro-abort groups use that rhetoric to promote their agenda. Organizations that oppose contraception and abortion should be very specific about it. Feminists rely on ambiguity to push their agenda.

  2. Suzanne

    You write about feminism like it is a bad disease. Why do you write that way?

    Pacheco, you are finally on the right track by recanting your inaccurate statements.

    Now it would be good if you did the same for D&P.

    Seeing how you have so much time on your hands you should try something you have never done before. Contact D&P and ask for a meeting so that you actually have to have a mature discourse with staff who will be able to assure you that D&P supports women, but does not, in any way support abortion.

    Can’t see you doing this, but this is what you should do.

  3. John,
    Your honesty is commendable. It takes a big person to admit that they made a mistake, especially when it is done in the public realm.
    Your voice is important, John. You challenge your readers, and the Catholic Church, to be honest and faithful Catholics.
    As to having too much time on your hands- I have to laugh. Real Catholics are always short on time, but still manage to slip in extra prayers, visits to the sick, some spiritual reading, family time, church responsibilities, confession, extra Masses during Lent, and even, in your case, write a successful daily blog.
    I stand amazed!

  4. You write about feminism like it is a bad disease.

    Because feminism is a political ideology that as we know it is based on numerous errors and has wrought a number of social problems, including abortion and family breakdown.

    Now it would be good if you did the same for D&P.

    Are you saying that D&P is not funding abortion-supporting groups?

    Contact D&P and ask for a meeting so that you actually have to have a mature discourse with staff who will be able to assure you that D&P supports women, but does not, in any way support abortion.

    That’s not what is at stake. The argument is over support for pro-abortion groups. When you send a cheque for $1000 for a project, that pays that abortion group’s overhead and helps them live another day to push abortion.

    If you push abortion, you don’t deserve any financial support whatsoever.

    By the way, Paul, do you support fetal rights? Just asking.

  5. Actually, Suzanne, we are granting them too much. What internal controls are even in place to ensure that the funds are not actually used for pro-abort purposes? There is no way to tell. It’s not like you have an oversight committee down there, with strict accounting rules and ethics, ESPECIALLY considering their clientelle. The weaknesses and deficiencies are so huge, that it is hard to say where even to begin. As a former auditor, I’d like to get my hands on the financial records and follow the trail.

  6. Paul,

    Why should I ask for a meeting with D&P? They won’t even admit the basic facts. That means I am not dealing with people who are willing to debate in good faith. If you won’t concede the facts, then I have really not much to say to you.

    In any case, I think I am having a “meeting” of sorts with a D&P rep. at this very moment. Did you not write this letter?

    http://www.catholic-legate.com/?p=1570

    I think you did. So, from my pespective, we’re having a nice little pow-wow right now.

    As you can see by my retraction, I am serious about getting at the truth.
    Wouldn’t it be nice if the social justice clique running D&P right now shared the same sentiment towards the truth that pro-lifers did?

    Paul, why don’t you tell us how much money your three pro-abort partners that I identified above are getting from D&P? It’s probably going to be some hefty dough, I have no doubt.

    And please, Paul, do not think I cannot get that information because I assure you I can and I will through the Access to Information Act.

    So, why don’t you be a good sport about it, and spill beans now?

    Believe me, when I do get that information, I will make the extra effort to emphasize D&P’s connection to the pro-abort groups in Haiti. Not one but at least three!

    My goodness, have you no shame?

  7. Hi John,
    It took courage and honor to retract your statements about Caritas Haiti and to apologise. To me it means you are a good hearted person; I respect that even if I don’t agree with you on all issues.
    Sadly, you bled a lot of the purity from your apology with the statement which begins, “Typically, organizations which clamour” and ends with, “what the money is for.” You sound a bit like politicians who begin to apologize and end up blaming others. Please don’t take this and what follows as an attack but merely as good information from someone who cares.
    1. You don’t like talk of “reproductive rights, power and control”. Firstly, one should always be wary of assuming that words translated from another language (in this case French) actually express the meaning intended by the original writer. When you know that you are reading a translation, you must not pluck words or phrases out of context because it is only in context that you discern intended meaning. In this case it’s clear from context that the program was meant to lift Haitian women participants to the point where they could negotiate sexual activity with their partners. Shouldn’t all women (including your wife and mine) have SOME power and control over whether or not they become pregnant? The plan did not call for absolute power and control, but that the partners negotiate sexual activity. Second, the plan did not call for “reproductive rights,” a term the Vatican definitely does not like. Finally, a relief/development “Church organ” in an impoverished nation does not have the means to ensure that every one of its statements will not be misunderstood by foreigners. It’s up to you alone to find out the real meaning before rushing to print.
    2. Both here and elsewhere you use the word “feminist” only in a derogatory way. But, “There are legitimate forms of feminism which seek to defend women’s dignity in the family.” (Vatican Document: Statement on the Family) That is clearly the ‘feminism’ of Caritas Haiti.
    3. You object to Caritas Haiti “critici(zing) the Catholic Church for discrimination.” Caritas Haiti DID NOT criticize the universal Catholic Church: It criticized the Haitian Catholic Church. Surely a Haitian organization led by Haitian bishops and priests should know what’s happening in their own church. Why can’t they point out areas for improvement? You criticize your church and in much more virulent terms than they did theirs.
    4. You assume that International Women’s Day marches in the Global South are the same as the ones you dislike in Canada and other Western nations. Women’s Day marches in general are designed to hearten women by celebrating what each group considers to be victories and pointing out areas where they think work must be done. In the Global South abortion and contraception have none of the prominence they have here. In any case, participating in such a march does not mean that you condone all the beliefs of all the other participants. The leaders of Caritas decided that much more would be gained by participating than by boycotting. You seem to think international women’s organizations are all “pro-aborts” but you should get on the Vatican website and read all the positive things Pope John Paul II wrote to them. Here’s just one sample from his letter to the Beijing Women’s Conference. “Here I cannot fail to express my admiration for those women of good will who have devoted their lives to defending the dignity of womanhood by fighting for their basic social, economic and political rights, demonstrating courageous initiative at a time when this was considered extremely inappropriate, the sign of a lack of femininity, a manifestation of exhibitionism and even a sin! In this year’s World Day of Peace message, I noted that when one looks at the great process of women’s liberation, “the journey has been a difficult and complicated one and, at times, not without its share of mistakes. But it has been substantially a positive one, even if it is still unfinished, due to the many obstacles which in various parts of the world still prevent women from being acknowledged, respected and appreciated in their own special dignity” (No. 4). This journey must go on!” This would sound like feminist rhetoric if we didn’t know the author.
    Russ Powell

  8. >>>Sadly, you bled a lot of the purity from your apology with the statement which begins, “Typically, organizations which clamour” and ends with, “what the money is for.” You sound a bit like politicians who begin to apologize and end up blaming others. Please don’t take this and what follows as an attack but merely as good information from someone who cares.

    + The apology was sincere, Russ. I’m not blaming anyone, really. I amsimply pointing out a truth. Organizations that talk about reproductive power and control are invariably pro-abort. Believe me, I know.

    >>You don’t like talk of “reproductive rights, power and control”. Firstly, one should always be wary of assuming that words translated from another language (in this case French) actually express the meaning intended by the original writer. When you know that you are reading a translation, you must not pluck words or phrases out of context because it is only in context that you discern intended meaning. In this case it’s clear from context that the program was meant to lift Haitian women participants to the point where they could negotiate sexual activity with their partners.

    + No, Russ. A bilingual reader of Socon or Bust actually tipped me off to it. The context was right within the reproductive lobby agenda on three or four separate counts. I erred, for sure. But the error was not one that was gross negligence or wilful.

    >>Shouldn’t all women (including your wife and mine) have SOME power and control over whether or not they become pregnant? The plan did not call for absolute power and control, but that the partners negotiate sexual activity. Second, the plan did not call for “reproductive rights,” a term the Vatican definitely does not like. Finally, a relief/development “Church organ” in an impoverished nation does not have the means to ensure that every one of its statements will not be misunderstood by foreigners. It’s up to you alone to find out the real meaning before rushing to print.

    + Well, that’s a fair point, but then again, on the flip side, there is the harm of perpetuating the abortion agenda when your queries go unanswered too. It’s not good enough to say, “You shouldn’t publish anything until you have the organization’s confirmation.” If that were the bar, then D&P would never have been busted because NONE of its partners or D&P itself have admitted to ANYTHING. In fact, all we have heard is denials…which only goes to prove my point. There is a balance here between the need to get at the truth and preserving an organization’s reputation. I try to ensure I stay on track…and I have for the most part.

    >>2. Both here and elsewhere you use the word “feminist” only in a derogatory way. But, “There are legitimate forms of feminism which seek to defend women’s dignity in the family.” (Vatican Document: Statement on the Family) That is clearly the ‘feminism’ of Caritas Haiti.

    + Yes, there are legitimate forms of feminism, but typically if it is expressed through sexual politics, it’s almost always the radical kind.

    >>3. You object to Caritas Haiti “critici(zing) the Catholic Church for discrimination.” Caritas Haiti DID NOT criticize the universal Catholic Church: It criticized the Haitian Catholic Church. Surely a Haitian organization led by Haitian bishops and priests should know what’s happening in their own church. Why can’t they point out areas for improvement? You criticize your church and in much more virulent terms than they did theirs.

    + I understand that, but you need to understand that criticism of the Church (even the local church) about “women’s rights” is typically tied to the radical feminist agenda.

    >>4. You assume that International Women’s Day marches in the Global South are the same as the ones you dislike in Canada and other Western nations. Women’s Day marches in general are designed to hearten women by celebrating what each group considers to be victories and pointing out areas where they think work must be done. In the Global South abortion and contraception have none of the prominence they have here. In any case, participating in such a march does not mean that you condone all the beliefs of all the other participants. The leaders of Caritas decided that much more would be gained by participating than by boycotting. You seem to think international women’s organizations are all “pro-aborts” but you should get on the Vatican website and read all the positive things Pope John Paul II wrote to them. Here’s just one sample from his letter to the Beijing Women’s Conference. “Here I cannot fail to express my admiration for those women of good will who have devoted their lives to defending the dignity of womanhood by fighting for their basic social, economic and political rights, demonstrating courageous initiative at a time when this was considered extremely inappropriate, the sign of a lack of femininity, a manifestation of exhibitionism and even a sin! In this year’s World Day of Peace message, I noted that when one looks at the great process of women’s liberation, “the journey has been a difficult and complicated one and, at times, not without its share of mistakes. But it has been substantially a positive one, even if it is still unfinished, due to the many obstacles which in various parts of the world still prevent women from being acknowledged, respected and appreciated in their own special dignity” (No. 4). This journey must go on!” This would sound like feminist rhetoric if we didn’t know the author.

    + Russ, this is all well and good, but the fact remains that the overwhelming number of “women’s groups” who are involved on the international stage are indeed rabidly pro-abort. The International March for Women was started by the Communists is indeed about promoting “reproductive rights”. Maybe it’s not there yet in Haiti, but it very well could be in the future.

    By the way, you still have not conceded that D&P is supporting abortion groups. Please respond.

  9. While I think John you should concede at least a little something to Russ — that you’ve had your own day at the mike calling for bishops to acknowledge their sins — I think Russ loses his credibility in using the ultra-modern marxist doublespeak. I’m sure his mantra for women to “negotiate sexual activity with their partners” is from a common code-book. It seeks to contort the theology of the body into a type of Hegelian dialectic — a competition between the sexual interest of men and their wives. We’ve seen so many ridiculous shoe-horned applications of Marxism over the years that it’s getting quite thin and transparent. Clearly, by implication (“shouldn’t all women have SOME power and control over whether or not they become pregnant?”) a Catholic who reads the theology of the body with a non-Marxist bent is slammed as a bigoted denier of power, namely the power of self-determination. It’s so easy for the atheistic materialist to forget that Christian couples know that the ‘control’ of fertility is gladly not theirs, but that for sufficiently dire cause (of which they are to be the judge) they turn to relatively infertile times with mutual responsibility. Yet how much support does genuine natural fertility awareness get from these activist social-gospel groups? What irks me most is why we as donors to Caritas or other Haitian relief should be presented with a “plan” that has to do with addressing fertility anyway. Were there really too many Haitians even before the quake? “The plan did not call for absolute power and control, but that the partners negotiate sexual activity”. I don’t want my support dollars going into a debate about who negotiates sexuality with whom, nor about who is supposed to be checking. If my left hand is not even checking on my right, my dollars should go to help reunite, feed, shelter and bandage people; and help them begin to rebuild their lives on their own human terms without population-control political agendas thrust in their faces. God bless, prosper and multiply those dear folks.

  10. Gary,
    You’re a bit late to the debate so this will help bring you up to speed:
    1. The plan about which John formerly objected was in existence long before the earthquake. You can be assured that Caritas Haiti is now fully focused on “reuniting, feeding, sheltering, bandaging and rebuilding without any population-control political agenda.”
    2. The outcome of the plan, if successful, would have arrived exactly where you want it ie. “natural fertility awareness”. However it first sought to address a necessary pre-requisite to NFP, that of a lack of “mutual responsibility” in the marital relations of those Haitians toward whom the plan was directed.
    3. The plan never did have a “population-control political agenda”, but since you ask whether there are “too many Haitians”, this was the situation even before the quake: Haiti is a not particularly fertile country with a population well in excess of 7 million occupying an area ½ the size of Nova Scotia. It has a failing economy, a government constantly in crisis, a breakdown in the social order, widespread extreme poverty with millions living on the edge of starvation, an AIDs epidemic and a 30 per cent population growth over the last 25 years all of which produce the highest infant mortality in the western hemisphere. I’m sure the above conditions would present many individual Haitian couples with “dire cause” to “turn to relatively infertile times” with a view to limiting their family size.
    4. The debate about “negotiating sexuality” will not dilute your suppport dollars since the debate is on the interntet and not in Haiti where your dollars will go.
    By the way, labelling me as an “ultra-modern Marxist doublespeaker” and an “atheistic materialist” is all very fine in a rant in which you seek to smash your supposed enemy. However, this approach does not lead to an honest and respectful exchange of ideas.
    Russ Powell

  11. This problem of Dev and Peace is actually so serious that one small mistake hardly a matter makes.

    I am living in NL for a few months. Folks here are very generous but so scandalized by errant clergy and bishops that they choose to give to just about anything but that which is sponsored by the Catholic Church. That is my observation .

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