Saturday, April 11, 2015

Truth in Charity vs. Zero Tolerance

I am very glad that Patricia Jannuzzi, the New Jersey Catholic school teacher who appeared for a few weeks there to have been thrown under the bus by her bishop for comments made about same-sex “marriage” on her Facebook page, was reinstated to her position. Finally, a victory for the right side!

The Catholic blogosphere, who appropriately flew to her defense with posts and petitions, is cheering!

But I have to wonder about the understanding that was reached.

Initially Bishop Bootkoski said her comments “were disturbing and do not reflect the Church’s teachings of acceptance.” Now the letter just sent to parents states, “It is the School’s position that a Catholic school teacher must always communicate the faith in a way that is positive and never hurtful. Tone and choice of words matter and I trust Mrs. Jannuzzi’s stated promise to strive always to teach in a spirit of truth and charity.”

Well, I suppose that her original post could have been a tad more charitable.

One can immediately see that she should have left out the expletive “bologna”. But I’m not sure what other words she should have chosen or how she could have softened her tone, yet still make the same point.

First Things pointed out that she was in some pretty good company. In 2010, then-Cardinal Bergoglio had this to say about same-sex “marriage” legislation in Argentina, “Let us not be naive: this is not simply a political struggle, but it is an attempt to destroy God’s plan. It is not just a bill (a mere instrument) but a ‘move’ of the father of lies who seeks to confuse and deceive the children of God,”

Look, we all need to strive to deliver the truth in charity.

At the same time, we need to understand that the militant homosexual activists in this country do have some critical mass of popular support. So much so that they no longer has any use for tolerance. No matter what words we choose, no matter the tone, if the content of our speech dares to call a spade a spade in matters concerning marriage, the sixth commandment, natural law or aberrations thereof, they would have us punished for our words. Our truth-telling words. They would have us silenced. It's very plausible to think that in the future, these truth-containing words will be classified as hate-speech. Let's not hasten that date by silencing ourselves.

I wonder, was silence part of the understanding with Mrs. Jannuzzi?

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