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Thursday, October 25, 2012

Our Shepherds Speak: Cardinal Dolan

Shepherds Speak:
Cardinal Dolan

The following is part of the text of the keynote address Cardinal Timothy Dolan gave at the States Dinner during the Knights Of Columbus 130th Supreme Convention August 7.

We Catholics are hopeless romantics, you know, when it comes to married love.
Against all odds, we still believe that when a man and woman vow that they will love and honor each other “for better or worse, in sickness and in health, for richer or poorer, until death do us part,” they really do mean it.  We still hold fast to the teaching of the Bible that God so esteems marriage that he compared his personal, passionate, eternal love for Israel to that between a husband and a wife.  St. Paul likewise tells us that the love of Jesus for us, his Church, is just like that of a groom for his bride.
We still have in our gut the Church’s timeless “Valentine’s Day card”: that the love between a husband and a wife has the same characteristics as the love that God has for us.  It is faithful; it is forever; and it brings about new life in children.
We are such hopeless romantics that we contend that the best way to get a hint of how God loves us now, and in eternity, is to look at how you, married couples, love one another.  “The love of a man and woman is made holy in the sacrament of marriage and becomes the mirror of your everlasting love,” chants the Preface in the nuptial Mass…
In the noble American project of ordered virtuous democracy, government exists not to invent, define, grant or impede genuine freedom – the “first and most cherished” being freedom of religion – but to protect liberties that come not from any human whim but from the Creator.  That’s about as American as Yankee Stadium; and a government that presumes to redefine marriage is perilously close to considering not God, but itself, as “the Almighty.”…
The most effective guarantee of a civilization of love, rather than the survival of the fittest; the culture of life over the culture of death; the law of the gift rather than the law of the “get;” and solidarity rather than selfishness, is precisely traditional marriage and family.  When that goes, we all go.