First we will do Scranton...they seem to hedge a little in their response. Included is the name and address of the person involved from the Diocese if you wish to query them on their ambiguous response. We have removed the name of the person who wrote the letter so as not to cause them any undue hardship.
Subject: re CCHD Collection
Bishop Bambera has asked me to respond to your letter regarding the Catholic Campaign for Human Development and the status of the collection in our Diocese. We appreciate that you have shared your concerns about this collection. Thank you also for providing the analysis undertaken by Mr. Marshner. Please know that we are aware of similar concerns that have been raised about CCHD’s decisions to fund certain groups and organizations. In response to these criticisms, the Bishops who oversee CCHD have undertaken a thorough review of this program. As a result of this review, CCHD has developed The Review and Renewal of CCHD. The Review and Renewal includes changes for CCHD procedures and policies. Most notable, as stated in CCHD’s Review and Renewal documents, is the implementation of “new structures to assist CCHD in applying its prohibitions on funding groups which act in conflict with Catholic social and moral teaching…, a consulting relationship with a moral theologian, a CCHD Review Board, and a staff position focused on CCHD mission and identity.” If this process results in a determination that a particular grant recipient has violated CCHD requirements, then funding is prohibited or cut off. We are confident that these changes will ensure that the funds collected through CCHD will be distributed to organizations whose work complements Catholic teaching. As such, the collection will be taken in the Diocese of Scranton in January (although many dioceses take the collection around Thanksgiving, we take ours in January). Of course, participation in this or any other collection is strictly voluntary. If you still believe that the CCHD campaign is not worthy of your support, you can certainly choose not to contribute. Be assured that making this choice will not put you in opposition to your pastor or parish.
Thank you for allowing me to explain the position of the Diocese on this matter.
Hope all is well with you...God bless,
Executive Director of Communications
Editor, The Catholic Light
Diocese of Scranton
300 Wyoming Avenue
Scranton, PA 18503
Next is Albany. Again, we have removed the name of the recipient to save them any undue hardship.
First, we will recap the letter as sent and then response. Obviously, Albany doesn't care a bit about truth or facts...that is quite evident in their very short and terse reply.
The following information was sent to me by a reader of my Blog. This is important enough to forward on to you to either print or forget about. If you choose not to print the letter, I WILL send it to the Secular newspapers in the area and I know that they will be happy to print it. We will also post it on our Blog. The following is the letter as it was sent to the Diocese of Scranton.
To: bishops-office <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Thu, Nov 3, 2011 10:57 am
Subject: CCHD Collection
Dear Mr. Genello:
I am quite concerned regarding the possible upcoming CCHD collection which is promoted in parishes each year on the last Sunday before Thanksgiving. I am asking that in the event the collection is still being considered, Bishop Bambera direct that this funding be canceled in a letter to all parishes.
You may be aware of the controversies surrounding this organization and their quite liberal use of monies collected. For the last two years many Catholics like myself have refused funding based on information we received and verified. We were elated when they recently distributed a reply to our concerns which at first seemed comforting. However, when we look at the facts we can now determine that they are engaging in even more inappropriate funding of organizations and groups which are completely contrary to Catholic Church teaching.
A gentleman by the name of W H Marshner, STD who is a professor of Theology at Christendom College in Fort Royal, VA (his full list of credentials are mentioned in the included attachment) has released a copy of the letter he sent to the CCHD in reply to their distributed claim that their money disbursement has been tracked and is now fully compliant with Catholic teaching. He volunteered his services to make sure the CCHD had in fact revamped their cash distribution procedures. According to Mr. Marshner there are very disturbing findings some of which I have listed:
* Condom distribution
* Funding for "reproductive justice" which includes contraception and abortion
* Sex-educational programs where condoms as well as IUDs are distributed
* Sexual liberation and abortion courses which encourages homosexual and trans-gendered acceptance
Please read the attached letter Mr. Marshner has sent to the CCHD. To my knowledge, the information he has provided has not been refuted. Please ask the Bishop to make sure these collections do not take place on the appointed Sunday. If he does not take this action, we will be placed in a position of opposition to our parish as well as our pastors. I think he will agree, faithful Catholics should not have to defend loyalty to our beliefs.
Thank you for all your help and I look forward to your reply.
Tue 11/08/11 3:26 PM
Thank you for your e-mail.
I am sorry that I disagree with your assessment of CCHD and the funding you believe to be credible.
The CCHD Committee has a very respectable moral theologian from St. Mary’s Seminary in Emmitsburg. He and the staff monitor very clearly the grant requests and allocations - no grants are given for the purpose you describe and if a grantee is found to violate our Catholic teaching the program is defunded.
First of all, it was not MY assessment of CCHD...it was Mr. Marshner's assessment. His credentials speak for themselves. I wonder if the Albany Diocese even knows where the grant money goes? They provided a really slick advertisement for the collection, attempting to make it sound really great, but does anyone know where their money actually goes? Maybe they should really ask the Bishop before they donate.
Jesus Is Lord!