Monday, November 23, 2009

Open Letter to Bishop Thomas Tobin

Dear Bishop Tobin: I read with enormous dismay recent articles in the news about your dispute with Rep. Patrick Kennedy.

I am an American Catholic born in New York City and raised in a large Italian-Irish family (how more Catholic can you get?).

The Associated Press article reported the following here:

  • You asked Rep. Kennedy not to receive Holy Communion because of his political views on abortion
  • You did an interview with the AP in which the subject of Rep. Kennedy's past substance abuse was raised and in which you described him as acting "erratically." Then, you claimed you "don't go out picking these fights."
  • You questioned Kennedy's faith
  • You instructed diocesan priests not to give Kennedy Communion

How dare you?

How dare you question someone's faith?

How dare you engage in character assassination?

How dare you impose yourself between a congregant and his God? Your job as bishop is to help shepherd His flock, not to assume the role of the Lord Almighty and to presume to know a man's conscience.

Your arrogance and presumption offend me. I suggest you remember James 4:6: Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble.

And Luke 4:23: Physician, heal thyself.


Sharon said...

I am not Catholic. I agree with everything you said, which I think only has an impact if it comes from people who are Catholic. I hope others step forward and speak their mind as well.

Maya Reynolds said...

Thanks, Sharon. I hesitated to use my blog in this manner, but then I decided it's MY blog.

I am Catholic down to my DNA, but that doesn't mean I cannot recognize when the leaders of my church are in the wrong.

Bishop Tobin WAS in the wrong when he decided to discuss this matter in public. I don't care if Patrick Kennedy fired the first salvo. The bishop had NO business discussing the state of his congregant's soul in public. Talk about a privacy violation.

This was PURE D pride speaking. Bishop Tobin was using a specific congregant to further his own political agenda.

Whether or not he acknowledges it, I am ashamed for him.