Your Incompetent Host

When I created a Disqus account I misspelled my own name.  Commenters asked me to verify that is me, it is.  I will now cease commenting until I”m competent enough to fix my Disqus. 

-Maggie

NRO: The Church’s Crises of the Faith, and Mine

Nothing has changed, they tell us.

But something has changed. Pope Francis, by hand-selecting these six men to issue an unprecedented public report on a discussion in mid-process, is sending a strong if indirect signal about how Catholics and our institutions should respond, practically, to the triumph of the sexual revolution, including its latest phase, gay marriage. The synod report, if adopted by the bishops, will change Catholic witness and teaching either on marriage, or on the Eucharist, or both.

{…}Look, I am a nobody in the broader scheme of things, and I do not relate my personal troubles as if they should be of interest to anyone else, except insofar as they may inform the fathers of my Church what, pastorally, they are doing now in Rome.

The priests who martyred themselves rather than permit powerful men to remake marriage need a public apology and possibly restitution. “We should replace the feast day of St. Thomas More with the feast of St. Henry the VIII,” one wag told me privately. After all, a desire for a child is one of the very good authentic “family values” he displayed.

The faith of millions will be put at risk, and among those millions are the ones who are sustaining the Church, as even Crux noticed. (Crux urges Pope Francis to make some kind of generous gesture to the orthodox Catholic community, as if we are children seeking a pat on the head instead of those whose steadfast faith rests in the belief the Church stands for the unbroken teachings of Christ.)

I hope Cardinal Kasper is wrong. I hope he is delusional, so that I need not fear for my church or his faith, or mine.

But the combined public comments of Cardinals Burke and Kasper make the “nothing has changed, no worries” position of Catholic commenters untenable and disconnected from the truth very publicly now on display.

There is a crisis of faith taking place in public, in real time, in Rome.

When the final synod report comes out over the weekend, we will have a first glimpse of how serious and sustained that crisis is.

Read the Full Article Here

NY Times Quotes Maggie Gallagher on Chris Christie’s Social Conservative Problem

At a confidential meeting over the summer, Gov. Chris Christie of New Jersey boasted to influential evangelical leaders that he was the state’s “first pro-life governor since Roe vs. Wade,” reminded them that he had vetoed legislation allowing gays to wed and, in a knowing reference to the Gospel of Matthew, spoke of his moral obligation to help the “least of us.”

But even as Mr. Christie sought to persuade them of his conservative credentials, his own deep-seated discomfort with ideological purity kept creeping in. He suggested that if the Republican Party wanted to win back the White House, it needed to look to a candidate with broad appeal, like himself or Jeb Bush, said one attendee, Leith Anderson, president of the National Association of Evangelicals. If it instead demanded orthodoxy, Mr. Christie’s message was “they can pick somebody else and lose,” Mr. Anderson recalled.

With the contretemps over lane closings on the George Washington Bridge on the back burner for now and Mr. Christie laying groundwork for a Republican presidential run, the persistent skepticism, unease and, in some cases, distrust that he faces from social and religious conservatives may be the biggest and least understood obstacle in his path.

…“He has appointed some really terrible judges to the State Supreme Court,” said Maggie Gallagher, a prominent social conservative, writer and senior fellow at American Principles Project, a right-leaning think tank.

Read the Full Article Here

NRO: 3 Things I Will Not Fear… And 3 Things I Still Do

We live in a world where we are urged to be in a constant state of fear. Through the Internet we are bombarded with horror stories, most of which are true, but most of which we and our loved ones will also never face. Some people want us to be afraid of this or that because they want to use our fear to elect the politicians they prefer. Managing fear rationally may be the cognitive and spiritual challenge of our times.

So for now, I’ve decided on four things about which I am not going to worry:

One: Unlike 46 percent of Americans, I am not very afraid of a terrorist attack on Americans on American soil. Yes, it could happen, and in fact has, whether it was September 11 or a lone Oklahoma beheader or a jihadist attack on Fort Hood. But I am personally tired of being afraid of a bunch of ugly fanatics gripped by a culture of death whose greatest weapon to date was the use of razor blades to turn our jets into bombs to be used against us. I fly a lot, and I may go down with a plane someday, but I do not choose to worry about this. Plain and simple: I refuse to be terrorized by this kind of stupid, low-tech, hateful, temporary, small, ugly triumph. Yes, we need to take terrorism seriously, but we also need to realize that this is just not the same level of threat as a worldwide Communist empire pointing massive armies and nuclear weapons at the West. Refuse to be terrorized.

Two: Unlike 36 percent of Americans, I am not very worried that someone is going to take away your daughters’ contraceptives. (I personally gave up the use of artificial contraception in favor of natural family planning when I married in the Catholic faith; but fear not, the worldwide Catholic Church has no plans to invade your bedrooms and prevent you from using contraceptives if you choose.) And don’t worry that your employer is going to take away your contraceptives either. Worst-case scenario from the Hobby Lobby case, if you work for a small, privately owned family firm whose owners object to funding abortion pills, they may tell the government they object to paying for such insurance coverage. The government will inform the insurance company, which will then provide the coverage for free, because paying for birth control and/or abortifacients is cheaper than paying for babies. Don’t worry, anxious moms, you can sleep easy at night about this one.

Read the Full Article at National Review Online

Newsmax: Maggie Gallagher on Mike Huckabee Threat to Leave GOP

Matt Towery, a GOP pollster and debate expert, said that Huckabee potentially bolting from the party would “be a huge issue for Republicans.”

“They can ill-afford a very credible conservative leader shearing away any of their vote in the general election, if he were to get on the ballot in some of the states where that is an issue of significance,” he said.

But Maggie Gallagher, senior fellow of the conservative American Principles Project, said that “many ordinary voters are going to be grateful” should Huckabee strike out on his own.

“He is the kind of man who speaks from the heart, not the pundits’ polling playbook,” she said. “For the last eight years, ‘professional Republicans’ in D.C. have urged GOP candidates to remain silent on some of the core moral issues of our time.”

Read the Full Article Here

Maggie Gallagher Quoted on Synod Agenda

The current crisis in marriage and family life arises from “a cult of momentary well-being,” stated Cardinal Peter Erdö, the relator general of the 2014 Synod of the Family. In his opening speech, one which traditionally sets the tone for the whole synod, the Cardinal emphasized that “many look upon their lives not as a life-long endeavour but a series of moments in which great value is placed on feeling good … . The future appears threatening, because it may happen that in the future we will feel worse.”

This view of the current marriage crisis is shared by Maggie Gallagher, founder of the National Organization for Marriage and the Institute for Marriage and Public Policy. “Too many of us no longer believe it is possible to make a lifetime vow of love and live up to it,” so we become trapped in “alienation from our deepest longings,” she explained.

Read the Full Article at Aleteia

The Forgotten Freedom: Freedom of Association

Following a new ruling in California, religious clubs on campus cannot require their leaders to be religious. 

would prefer to be turning my gaze to a new subject, but reality keeps yanking me back.

In the last few weeks, the government of the State of California, acting through the California State University, has announced that Christian, Jewish, Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, and any other religious groups now have second-class status at public universities. All campus groups must permit any campus member into the leadership of their organizations. Jewish groups cannot require their leaders to be Jews. Christian groups cannot require that their leaders adhere to Christian beliefs.

The Supreme Court permitted public universities to declare this policy in the narrowly and wrongly decided Christian Legal Society v. Martinez, which is a cancer upon our democracy and a disgrace to our democratic ideals.

Read the full article at the National Review Online

Daily Signal on Libertarian Panel at Values Voter Summit

Adding it’s voice to the Christian Post report on the panel, the Daily Signal also covered Maggie at the Values Voter Summit.

“All of the tensions that social conservatives and libertarians have comes from the perception that social issues are holding the Republican Party back,” said Maggie Gallagher, an author and conservative commentator. “But social issues are being scapegoated. The Republicans [in 2012] had a poor economic message.”

Read the full article at the Daily Signal

Christian Post: Panel Finds Religious Freedom Can Unite Libertarians and Social Conservatives

WASHINGTON — With conservative Christians and libertarians sharing common ideologies that stand against big government and federal overreaching, the two groups’ need to put aside their few differences and unite in order to defeat a Democratic agenda that “assaults” American liberties, a panel of prominent social conservatives agreed Saturday.

Speaking at a Family Research Council panel at the Values Voters Summit in Washington D.C.,a social conservative pollster, political commentator and campaign advisor for Sen. Rand Paul, R- Ky., discussed the importance of getting the two ideological groups on the same voting path to solidify their stances against issues like big-government overeaches and infringement on personal and religious liberties.

…”For me, the separation [of the two groups] has always been a little odd,” conservative commentator Maggie Gallagher said. “A lot of the tensions that we are experiencing between social conservatives and libertarians, some of it is specific to the issue of gay marriage. A lot of it comes from the perception by many libertarian donors that social issues is what is holding the Republican Party back.”

However, Conway added that libertarians and social conservatives mostly agree on their stance against abortion. While not all libertarians are pro-life, Stafford agreed with Conway by saying that more libertarians are pro-life than people realize.

Read the Full Article Here