Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Bishop Paprocki on the Trib's Anti-Catholicism

Chicago Auxiliary Bishop Thomas Paprocki writes to the Chicago Tribune today lamenting the paper's anti-Catholicism and naming the strategy employed not only by the press, but increasingly by politicians, emphases mine:
The Chicago Tribune became known for its anti-Catholic bias when it frequently ran xenophobic editorials that criticized foreigners and Roman Catholics as long ago as 1853. Apparently not much has changed, as the Chicago Tribune published an editorial on April 3 attacking Cardinal Francis George as being "deeply out of line" for upholding church teaching, and ran on March 31 an opinion piece by Don Wycliff, a former Tribune editor, urging the University of Notre Dame to "stick to their resolve" in defying Catholic bishops.

The twist in the Tribune's 21st Century approach seems to be to enlist dissenting Catholics to be the mouthpiece of the newspaper's attacks against the church's teaching authority, such as William Daley's column on April 3 asserting that Cardinal George's position on the Notre Dame commencement "continues a worrisome pattern in which the Catholic hierarchy in America is mixing religion with politics."

Similarly, in the front-page story "Faith or family? Some Catholic couples seeking kids struggle with church doctrine" (Page 1, April 5), the Tribune features Catholics who have acted against Catholic Church teaching on in-vitro fertilization.

I don't recall the Chicago Tribune ever running such stories and editorials against any other church or religion, let alone with such frequency or invective, so I can only conclude that the know-nothing views of the Chicago Tribune have not changed.

I am reminded, however, of Jesus' words as he was crucified:

"Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do."