Letters • October 31, 2022


Disagrees with pope about traditionalism

I was saddened by the comments of Pope Francis in The CV article entitled, “Pope celebrates Mass for 60th anniversary of Vatican II” (Catholic Virginian, Oct. 17).

Though I agree with the pontiff that “progressivism lines up behind the world,” his thoughts on “traditionalism” are deeply troubling. He opines that “traditionalism longs for a bygone world,” and is “not evidence of love, but of infidelity.” He further states that, like progressivism, traditionalism is a “form of selfishness that puts our own tastes and plans above the love that pleases God.” Based on my experience, the opposite is true. Faithful Catholics, including traditionalists, line up behind God (not the secular world) and follow God’s plan above what pleases man.

On March 12, 2015, Pope Francis rightly cautioned that “there is no middle ground on the path to heaven.” This is because one CANNOT compromise with evil. In this spiritual battle, one MUST choose sides. Do you believe in the traditional writings of bygone days, such as the Catholic Catechism, the Bible and the works of the Church doctors?

Traditionalists, please take comfort in Matthew 5:10-11:

“Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of me.” – Anthony R. Russo, Chesapeake

Supports DREAM Act

Bishop Nicholas DiMarzio’s column “Why Congress should pass DREAM Act” (Catholic Virginian, Oct. 17) so eloquently explains the DACA program and builds a strong case for a pathway to citizenship for these young people who are already contributing to our nation in many ways – by completing their education even to advanced degrees, being gainfully employed, paying taxes, owning property, serving in our military and as first responders, and raising their American-born children to be proud citizens.

“Dreamers” were brought to this country as young children and “did not break the law of their own volition.” That is a very important consideration.

I would hope that our politicians who are on the fence about this issue, or who oppose the DACA program for whatever reason, will consider the benefits of full integration of the Dreamers into a society to which they are already contributing.

Congress has tried to pass the DREAM Act several times with no success. Now is the time to put politics aside and focus on a humanitarian approach toward young people who consider themselves American in every way but one. – Helen Blough, Mechanicsville

Death penalty is just, required

Mr. Greg Erlandson condemns Catholics who do not view the death penalty in the same way as they condemn abortion (Catholic Virginian, Oct. 3). How faulty!

The death penalty is defined as just and required throughout the Bible: “Whoever sheds man’s blood, by man his blood shall be shed, for in the image of God He made man” (Gn 9:6); “He who strikes man so that he dies shall surely be put to death” (Ex 21:12).

This punishment being just and required is repeated in Leviticus 24:17, Numbers 35:16-21, Proverbs 28:17, Revelation 21:8 and many other places in the Old and New Testaments. The death penalty for vicious murders is just, fair and called for by God.

His second argument, that many mistakes have been made, has no bearing on anything. You do not throw out the baby with the bath water; you fix the problems. That is being done through improved defense techniques, DNA testing and scientific processing of evidence. Conviction of murder is becoming a very fair process.

I would interject that other prisoners and guards must also be protected from these murderers who get life with no parole and have nothing to lose. Each year, a large number of guards and convicts are killed or maimed by these murderers, which would not be the case if the death penalty had been imposed.

The last fallacy is that this “James Coddington” does not represent the community of condemned murderers who, for the most part, were convicted justly and deserve the death penalty. – John J. Lo Re Jr., Richmond

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