“What part of ‘Take up your cross’ Do They Not Understand?

Mr. Kevin Williamson, writing for the National Review, gives a bluntly solid defense of San Francisco Archbishop Codileone here and here.

To summarize, His Excellency is attempting to clarify the employment rules for Catholic schools in his archdiocese, letting it be known that a condition of employment in Catholic schools is that teachers have to affirm Catholic teaching, even when it’s unpopular. Public attacks on that teaching – i.e. a teacher ‘marrying’ his boyfriend – would be grounds for dismissal.

In summary, if an organization hires you, you aren’t allowed to undermine that organization while you continue to draw a salary from it. Nor, if you are honest, would you want to.

Mr. Williamson does an excellent job of summarizing the issue and addressing the objections, pointing out that this policy would never be considered controversial in pretty much any other organization. He also gives a beautiful summary of the purpose of the First Amendment in the process.

He then responds to critics in his second article, which I think is even better. Be sure to read them both, but I would like to quote the money line from the second piece:

“The people who have the strongest feelings about Catholic teaching tend to be the people who know the least about it. That the archbishop is a fallen creature, a sinner like the rest of us, is not a challenge to Christian teaching—it is a vindication of Christian teaching. Of course the archbishop is called to a life of greater holiness—just like the rest of us—and of course he is going to fail—just like the rest of us. That’s the weird tough nut at the heart of Christianity: “Here’s an impossibility high standard that you have to try to live up to as part of a faith based on the understanding that you are not going to do that.

(That is one of the many reasons that I’ve never understood people who say that Christianity is “comforting.” What part of “Take up your cross” do they not understand?)”

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