Saturday, August 29, 2009

Kennedy funeral controversy brews

Pro-life groups have attacked the holding of a Catholic funeral for the late Senator Edward Kennedy while reports that President Barack Obama will give a eulogy at the Requiem Mass are set to raise further controversy.

The funeral will take place Saturday at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Basilica in the Mission Hill neighborhood of Boston. Kennedy will be buried the same day at Arlington National Cemetery near his slain brothers, AP reports.

But Judie Brown, president of American Life League, slammed the decision.

"The deaths of untold millions of preborn babies rested on the conscience of Ted Kennedy," Pewsitter quoted her as saying.

"There is an impending disaster about to take place at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Basilica. Senator Edward Kennedy spent the past 30 years doing all he could to advocate and support the act of procured abortion - including his divorce, remarriage, et cetera - and yet he continued to call himself Catholic," stated Brown. "These are public matters, not private."

"If we are led to assume Kennedy was remorseful of his pro-abortion past and repented, Boston Cardinal Sean O'Malley should make this known to the Catholic faithful clearly - before the media and pro-abortion politicians turn Kennedy's death and Mass honoring his memory into yet another victory," said Brown.

"If this remains unclear, what will millions of Catholic Americans be led to believe as Obama canonizes Kennedy's pro-abortion legacy on live television?"

"The truth does not change because of the respect the world is paying to this man. The Catholic principles which Cardinal Sean O'Malley has sworn to uphold have not disappeared because of Senator Kennedy's death," continued Brown.

"If this funeral Mass proceeds as planned, Sen. Edward Kennedy will have spit one more time on Christ, this time from a casket."

And in another statement, pro-life group Human Life International described Senator Kennedy as "probably the worst example of a Catholic statesman that one can think of".

"When all is said and done, he has distorted the concept of what it means to be a Catholic in public life more than anyone else in leadership today," the HLI statement said.

"Ted Kennedy's positions on a variety of issues have been a grave scandal for decades, and to honor this 'catholic' champion of the culture of death with a Catholic funeral is unjust to those who have actually paid the price of fidelity. We now find out that President Obama will eulogize the Senator at his funeral-an indignity which, following on the heels of the Notre Dame fiasco, leaves faithful Catholics feeling sullied, desecrated and dehumanized by men who seem to look for opportunities to slap the Church in the face and do so with impunity simply because they have positions of power," the statement said.

However, canon lawyer, Ed Peters, offered another view.

"Most of Teddy Kennedy's politics, and most of whatever parts of his personal life I knew through the media, angered and sometimes even disgusted me," he said in his blog reported on Catholic Online.

"But my opinions about Teddy's legacy are not at issue in assessing his right to a Catholic funeral under canon law. I trust that my writings on the proper understanding and correct application of 1983 CIC 1184 (the canon regulating the funeral rites to be accorded - or not, as the case may be - to Catholics) are reasonably well-known to readers of this blog. So let's move directly to the canonical question of Kennedy's funeral.

"Now, any man with a 100% rating from NARAL (to highlight just the tip of the iceberg of Teddy's decades-long campaign against natural rights) has, to put it mildly, the burden of proof in seeking a Catholic funeral (okay, technically, his executors have the burden of proof, but you see the point) in that notorious pro-aborts seem to be "manifest sinners who cannot be granted ecclesiastical funerals without public scandal of the faithful."

"Unless, that is, "they gave some sign of repentance before death." And there is at least some evidence that Ted Kennedy did just that.

"Now, about President Obama giving a eulogy thereat, don't even get me started," Peters said.

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Anonymous said...

I can't believe that the church can not stand up to what is right and decent in God's eyes.
The Lord must be shaking His head to see the church give Sen. Kennedy such a christian burial.
I guess if you have enough money
you can buy anything. Even the
Catholic Churche's approval
Where are the people who are going to stand up for what is

Timmy McLoone said...

Ted Kennedy was a model Catholic: he struggled in his life, was aware of his weaknesses, relied on the sacraments to provide grace,often cooperated with that grace, and believed in the mercy and love of God.

I once heard that the definition of a Saint was "a sinner who keeps trying." Thanks Ted for all you did for so many of us! I'm so glad you weren't perfect, else they'd try to canonize you for real!