Friday 28 October 2011

Fr Leon Pereira stands up to pro-abortion Jon Cruddas MP

Fr Leon Pereira O.P.
Fr Leon Pereira (pictured at a 40 Days for Life London vigil), a Dominican priest, has spoken out against the invitation to Dr Jon Cruddas, the pro-abortion MP, to speak at a Catholic conference at Blackfriars, the Dominican hall at Oxford university tomorrow. You can read Fr Pereira's letter on the blog Catholics: Called to be faithful, not compromise. I quote some key extracts from Fr Pereira's excellent letter below.

According to an email from Fr Richard Finn O.P. of the Las Casas Institute (the conference organisers) to Daniel Blackman, Dr Cruddas is now unable to attend the conference (Fr Finn did not cite the reason for this). Nonetheless, my son Paul and other faithful pro-life/pro-family Catholics will be going ahead with a prayer vigil of reparation for the invitation to Dr Cruddas outside Blackfriars tomorrow. There is no indication that either Las Casas or Blackfriars cancelled Dr Cruddas' appearance, and therefore the purpose of praying in reparation for their invitation to Dr Cruddas remains.

From Fr Leon Pereira's letter:
"Dr Cruddas’ voting record as an MP on abortion and same sex unions is not in keeping with the teaching or mind of the Catholic Church. This matters all the more because I am given to understand that Dr Cruddas describes himself as a ‘practising Catholic’ - a designation at odds with his actions as an MP. His actions appropriate the dimension of scandal precisely because he is a public figure. Therefore what he says and does in public which is contrary to Catholic faith and morals, all the while describing himself as a ‘practising Catholic’, are a scandal to the Faithful and prone to reinforce the assumption that perhaps these things (abortion, same sex unions, etc) do not matter, and that Catholics may reasonably conform their mind to that of the age, and still somehow (mysteriously!) remain fully Catholic without incurring any penalties whatsoever. That is a grave wrong wrought against God and His Church.
"The invitation, although not an awards ceremony, nevertheless takes on the air of an accolade ... Is it inconceivable that he or his supporters may say that he was honoured by an invitation to Blackfriars...?"
"There seems to be an assumption in this country that to be Catholic is to be Labour. This naivete reached a nadir in the fawning displayed by our Church over that most reprehensible couple Tony and Cherie Blair. In Mr Blair’s case, I cannot understand how he could be received into the Church without a public abjuration of his erroneous beliefs and practices - for example, his own voting record on abortion. These were errors he committed before he became a Catholic, but they were in the public sphere, and his reception as a Catholic without any recantation is a continuing scandal."
"The great irony is that Dr Cruddas (who has woefully failed to stand up for the Catholic teaching on abortion by his voting) has been invited by an institute committed to ‘justice and peace’ (our normal shorthand for Catholic Social Doctrine) when the single greatest justice and peace issue in our country is abortion!"
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