Vatican objects to Obama’s controversial invites for papal visit: report

by Steve Ray on September 18, 2015

WASHINGTON, D.C., September 18, 2015 (LifeSiteNews) — The Vatican is reportedly taking offense to Barack Obama’s decision to invite a bevy of controversial guests — such as a pro-abortion nun, an openly homosexual Episcopal bishop, and gay activist Catholics — for next week’s papal visit to the White House.
The Wall Street Journal reports that an unnamed senior Vatican official said the Holy See fears that any photos of Pope Francis at next Wednesday’s White House welcoming ceremony with Obama’s guests that openly flout Church teaching could be taken as support for their actions.
Among the Obama administration invites are dissenting, activist Catholic nun Sister Simone Campbell, openly homosexual retired Episcopal bishop Gene Robinson, a transgender woman and a homosexual Catholic blogger.
Sister Campbell is executive director of the social justice group NETWORK and pro-abortion leader of the “Nuns on the Bus” campaign. She is seen as having undermined the U.S. Bishops’ concern over Obamacare’s abortion component when the controversial health care takeover was being debated five-and-a-half years ago.
Her Network organization, widely regarded as having radical feminist leanings, was investigated by the Vatican over the group’s refusal to observe Catholic teaching on abortion, human sexuality and women’s ordination. The investigation concluded earlier this year, resulting in minimal repercussions for the group.
Robinson, who “divorced” his homosexual partner last year, and is a senior fellow for the liberal think tank Center for American Progress, has been invited to religious events in the past by Obama, leading a prayer at the president’s 2009 inauguration and taking part in the 2014 National Prayer Breakfast.
Also invited are Mateo Williamson, a biological woman who identifies as a man and a former co-chair of the Transgender Caucus for the pro-homosexual activist group Dignity USA; and Aaron Ledesma, author of the blog “The Gay Catholic.”
The invitation organizer for the White House papal event is Vivian Taylor, executive director of the national LGBT advocacy arm of the Episcopal Church, and a biological male.
The unease caused by the guest list demonstrates Catholic concerns, including that of many bishops, the WSJ report said, that the Obama administration is using Pope Francis’s visit to underplay its differences with the Church on controversial issues such as homosexual “marriage,” abortion and the Obamacare contraception Mandate.
U.S. Vatican Ambassador Ken Hackett, named by Obama to his post in June 2014, said last month that Pope Francis and Obama are not going to waste time discussing any differences they may have. Rather, they will choose to focus on issues where they see eye-to-eye.
According to Hackett these areas are poverty, religious freedom, concern for persecuted Christians and minorities, and peace.
“Then climate, of course,” Hackett said.
“We agree to differ on things like gay marriage,” he said, “but really there are not a lot of other such issues.”
Pope Francis will visit the U.S for the first time September 22-27. In addition to visiting the White House, he will address a joint session of the U.S. Congress and the U.N. General Assembly, before appearing at the World Meeting of Families in Philadelphia.

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

Bill912 September 18, 2015 at 9:01 PM

A president who is persecuting Catholics (see Obamacare) is giving the Pope the finger.

Marjory McCaffery September 18, 2015 at 9:58 PM

American Catholics are waiting for the Pope to stand up for decency even if he must skip the welcoming ceremony that is designed to be unwelcoming.

Tom Govern September 18, 2015 at 10:25 PM

This is all part of the perils of the transparency this Pope is offering and his gentler approach. People like Obama will take advantage of the situation to advance their agenda. Let’s pray for the best in Pope Francis’s visit to the Americas.

Bernadette Hines September 19, 2015 at 1:06 AM

I feel the President is taunting the Pope. I feel the Pope should respectfully decline the invitation.

Daniel September 19, 2015 at 3:49 AM

America ‘wake up and Rise’ for Glory. Abide with the Lord so that you may remain glorious and be a blessing to the whole world+.
Rev. 2: 2-5 “I know your works, your labor, and your endurance, and that you cannot tolerate the wicked; you have tested those who call themselves apostles but are not, and discovered that they are impostors.
Moreover, you have endurance and have suffered for my name, and you have not grown weary.
Yet I hold this against you: you have lost the love you had at first.
Realize how far you have fallen. Repent, and do the works you did at first. Otherwise, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you repent.”

Pray, Popes visit may bring blessings on all to Glorify the Lord God and World may see Gods Kingdome, here on Earth.

Paul Boxer September 20, 2015 at 3:58 PM

For orthodox Catholics, we “get” what this Pope is up to. He is trying to dust off the entire Catechism of the Catholic Church. He is challenging and unsettling all Catholics in order to push their faith deeper. He does not want anyone connect or complacent in their faith . . . . even rock solid orthodox Catholics. Pope Francis is epitomizing the New Evangelization by re-packaging and re-presenting the Catholic Faith, with the entirety of the Gospel, to the world, but most importantly the former Christian world that is now under the influence of consumerism, secular humanism, materialistic atheism, scientism, and hedonism. The Pope is trying to show that the Catholic Church’s social teaching is vast in depth and breadth and that we CAN find common ground with the post-Christian world who hate the Church. We can find causes that we both agree; therefore, he is re-establlishing the moral credibility of the RCC. Pope Francis is trying to “undo” a lot of the damage caused by the sex abuse scandals. In addition, his “softer” pastoral approach is trying to unify the entire church. He is saddened by the false dichotomy of “conservative” and “liberal” Catholicism. He is showing us that we can care about immigration, capital punishment, income inequality, racism, sexism, etc. AND still fight against abortion, gay marriage, and the intrinsic evils of contraception. In other words, he is teaching us to live the entire Catholic faith. Currently, the “conservative” side of Catholicism has focused on abortion and gay marriage at the expense of the other social teachings, and the “left” has neglected the church’s sexual morality and only stressed it social teaching. The “conservative Catholics” were just imbalanced in their presentation of the faith but never heretical, but the “left” Catholics have been openly heterodox and defiant. Pope Francis is teaching the left to return to the entire faith– to accept everything the church teaches, including hard teachings on contraception and gay marriage and abortion. But, he is teaching the “conservative” Catholics that can’t ignore or de-emphasize the church’s social teachings. Sadly, we conservative Catholics have neglected some of these uncomfortable social teachings because we, in America, always associate them with the radical left (capital punishment, income equality, environmental issues, immigration, etc.) In other words, the heterodox liberals have usurped these issues, and so as conservative, orthodox Catholics we have had a tendency to avoid these issues because we don’t want to get labeled a leftist, or liberal Catholic. The Pope is teaching us to embrace the entire Faith- conservatives are learning to be emphasize social teaching and “leftist” Catholics are being taught that they must reject their heretical views and rejection of critical moral and sexual doctrine. In other words, he is trying to “save the church” from collapsing form division- a house divided can’t stand. He knows that conservative Catholics want to demonize and excommunicate heterodox Catholics, yet, Pope Francis wants to draw them back into the Church to be obedient sons of the Church.
Sadly, by doing this, he comes off as someone who is easily manipulated by the mainstream media and progressives. So, yes. his handshake with these radicals with be spun and twisted to make it appear he supports heterodox views.

Paul Boxer September 20, 2015 at 10:46 PM

Since the very beginning of his presidency Obama has been strategically and clandestinely engineering a bureaucratic army of “fake” Catholics to surround himself and his Cabinet. This was all done in preparation for his attack on the church and her sexual morality that he hates with a vengeance. All secular humanist institutions know deep down inside that the only true obstacle to implementing the sexual morality of secular humanism and atheistic materialism upon the world is and always has been the Roman Catholic Church. So Obama and his democratic strategists befriended radical leftist Catholics in order to fabricate a facade of fraternal relations with the Church. And the radical, progressive leftist Catholics were more than willing to oblige. Their mutual propaganda worked. To the common, ignorant masses, he presented to them a heterodox version of Catholicism that was perceived as authentic, orthodox Catholicism. The ignorant masses know no better. He knew that the image he projected to the world through his political appointments and machinations would fool the masses of secularists and lukewarm cradle Catholics. He got in bed with the radical, leftist wing of the Church knowing full well that he would exacerbate the objections and concerns of orthodox Catholics and place a wedge between the orthodox and heterodox camps within the church and further widen the divide. He was fuming the flames of the internal war going on in the RCC since Vatican II and Humane Vitae. In other words, he would attempt to destroy the Church in two ways– attack her from the outside by creating laws that strangle her freedom and attack her from within by promoting and supporting Leftist Catholics.
This was all carefully planned. For example, Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good and speaking at Notre Dame, etc. Now he is doing it again.
Also, Leftist, radical Catholics were more than willing to cooperate with the Obama administration. Their “brand” of Catholicism was what Obama wanted and they gave it to him. Leftist, heterodox Catholicism was getting the rubber stamp of the Obama admin. Orthodox Catholicism quickly became an “extremist” wing of the RCC.
So liberals, both in the Church and in the media and politics, have been exploiting Pope Francis from day one. They arrogantly strut around like” Hah conservatives– we FINALLY GOT OUR KIND OF POPE.
But, on every key doctrinal issue– Pope Francis has come down on the side of orthodoxy- the “door is closed” on women priests, “gender theory” is incompatible with God’s plan for creation, abortion is “killing,” gay marriage is a diabolical machination that destroys the family and deprives children of their right to one father and one mother, communion for the divorced and civilly remarried is a “contradiction of the sacrament”
Time and time again– when push comes to shove- this pope has cracked the whip when it comes to doctrinal orthodoxy.
Yes, his pastoral and canonical views or more liberal, but doctrinally he hasn’t winced.

They continue to exploit and manipulate this Pope. Yes, he is pastorally more liberal, but the pendulum of papal tone and pastoral approach has always swung back and forth.
The real question– is Francis their ideological puppet? Or is the media and politicians Francis’ puppet?Since his papacy- Catholicism is regaining public ubiquity and is slowly restoring its moral authority and credibility. Is Francis “using” them???? Has he always had the upper hand when he uses ambiguous, off the cuff comments and “double speak” in order to get the world “talking Catholicism” and what it is and what it is not?? He says everything JPII and Benedict ever said, but he says it in a way that forces orthodox to step up and clarify and defend the faith. For any orthodox Catholic it is clear what he is saying, but he says thing in a manner that forces one to think about what he or she believes. Since his papacy, everyone is talking Catholicism. I have a feeling this pope is much smarter than the left gives him credit.

Tony September 22, 2015 at 8:43 PM

This is probably what the pope wants. He would be taking a page out of Jesus’ playbook. Recall, Jesus ate with the tax collectors, adulteres, and sinners. The pope is doing the same thing. The physician goes to where the sick are at, and this pope especially wants to go out and meet the sinners where they are at in order to help them.

Darrell September 22, 2015 at 10:44 PM

IsaIah 5:20

John 16:33

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