I thought to watch the Kennedy funeral was too severe a penance to inflict upon myself. Ed Peters though managed it and has some comments about it. At the end he says:
The whole experience left me less hopeful about “dialogue” on life issues (not that I was very hopeful to begin with): we are, it seems clear, talking to people who have no sense of the enormity of the crimes being committed daily against the innocent. None. None.
This matches exactly my own feeling on this. That what abortion means seems to be totally lost on so many in the Church. Even among those that call themselves pro-life they have lost the horror of the murder of the unborn. It seems like the support of abortion has become to them like some unpopular zoning ordinance. Disagreeable, but don’t make too much noise about it. Don’t mention the fact that the deceased supporting sucking the brains out of a child just before being born – talking about this is bad taste, but I guess not voting for this.
Looking at what Ed Peters wrote on the funeral it is just sad that the Church is used in such a way as to promote someone who was a leader in the Culture of Death and who planned and orchestrated how to keep the Supreme Court nice and favorable to abortion. Also very sad that the only person to offer a prayer for the Senator was the President (how does that figure in his Protestantism?).
It also becomes a mockery of the Mass when the intercessions become “Intercessory Talking Points” such as praying for national health care (Oh Lord Deliver us from this). It is also quite evident that the people who talked about the Senator were irony deficient in their praise.
The purpose of a funeral Mass seems to me to pray for the departed, not ask for their intercessions. So instead we have scandal instead of asking for prayers for the late Senator. Just too bad we can’t stick to the GIRM.
From the Catholic Action League
The Catholic Action League of Massachusetts today decried the scandal which occurred this morning at Boston’s most historic Catholic shrine — the Minor Basilica of Our Lady of Perpetual Help, known as Mission Church — where a Mass of Christian Burial was used to “celebrate the life” of one of America’s most notorious opponents of Catholic morality, the late Senator Edward M. Kennedy. Senator Kennedy fought for more than three decades to keep the killing of pre-born children legal and unrestricted in the United States.
Surgical abortion has claimed more than fifty-one million human lives since 1973. The Catholic religion defines abortion as an “abominable crime”.
President Barack Obama delivered the eulogy, in which he alluded to Kennedy’s support for gay rights. One of the Prayers of the Faithful was a petition to end divisions “between gays and straights”.
Ecclesial participants included Rev. Raymond Collins, Rector of the Basilica; Rev. Mark Hession, Kennedy’s parish priest from Our Lady of Victories Church in Centerville on Cape Cod; Rev. J. Donald Monan, Chancellor of Boston College; and Sean Cardinal O’Malley, Archbishop of Boston, who thanked President Obama for his words and his presence. Both the homilist, Fr. Hession, and Cardinal O’Malley suggested that the late senator had found eternal salvation.
The Catholic Action League called the event “a tragic example of the Church’s willingness to surrender to the culture, and serve Caesar rather than Christ”.
Catholic Action League Executive Director C. J. Doyle stated: “Senator Kennedy supported legal abortion, partial-birth abortion, the public funding of Medicaid abortions, embryonic stem cell research, birth control, federal family planning programs, and so-called emergency contraception. He defended Roe v. Wade, endorsed the proposed Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA), and opposed both the Human Life Amendment and the Hyde Amendment. Kennedy maintained a 100% rating from both NARAL and Planned Parenthood. In 1993, he received the Kenneth Edelin Award from Planned Parenthood, and in 2000 received the Champions of Choice Award from NARAL Pro-Choice Massachusetts at the hands of the same Dr. Kenneth Edelin, the infamous abortionist.”
During his 1994 reelection campaign, Kennedy said ‘I wear as a badge of honor my opposition to the anti-choicers’. His successful obstruction of the nomination of Judge Robert Bork to the U.S. Supreme Court in 1987 effectively prevented the overturning of Roe v. Wade. Beyond his specific positions on human life issues, Senator Kennedy, along with the late Congressman Robert Drinan, provided the cover and the example for two generations of Catholic politicians to defect from Church teaching on the sanctity of innocent human life.”
“No rational person can reasonably be expected to take seriously Catholic opposition to abortion when a champion of the Culture of Death, who repeatedly betrayed the Faith of his baptism, is lauded and extolled by priests and prelates in a Marian basilica. This morning’s spectacle is evidence of the corruption which pervades the Catholic Church in the United States. The right to life will never be recognized by secular society if it is not first vindicated and consistently upheld within the institutions of the Church itself.”