The Heritage Foundation awarded our governor a Conservative Leadership Award last week. It was bestowed for signing HB 1523 into law in April of this year.
The Heritage Foundation is a conservative non-profit think tank based in Washington DC. It gives Conservative Leadership Awards each year to “conservative leaders who have persevered in the face of the liberal machine.” While there is no doubt that the governor did accomplish the signing of HB 1523, it seems tongue-in-cheek to suggest that he persevered in the face of the liberal machine. I don’t think there is a liberal machine in Mississippi. I believe that Governor Bryant was simply going with the flow.
Governor Bryant was gracious: “I was humbled to receive the Conservative Leadership Award from the Heritage Foundation…I was joined in this class by Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC) and Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT). [It was a] great honor for Mississippi and all those who believe in our religious freedoms as provided in the Constitution.”
When I was a law student, I had the pleasure of meeting Senator Biden (a very young senator at the time). He spoke at my law school and I was quite impressed with him.
I remain impressed.
In August, Biden, a Catholic, officiated at a same-sex marriage of two White House staffers.
There was push-back.
The US Conference of Catholic Bishops issued a statement that did not mention Biden, per se, but noted that “[w]hen a prominent Catholic politician publicly and voluntarily officiates at a ceremony to solemnize the relationship of two people of the same-sex (sic), confusion arises regarding Catholic teaching on marriage and the corresponding moral obligation of Catholics.” The Conference also suggested that this prominent Catholic politician presents to the world “a counter witness, instead of a faithful one founded in the truth.”
My theory is that Vice President Biden put his money where true faith is: “…and the second [commandment] is like unto it. Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself.”
Edward Peters, a canon lawyer at Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit says that officiating a same-sex wedding is not an excommunicable offense, although it could become one. Peters suggested that any official punishment coming from the Church would be through an action of D. C. Cardinal Donald Wuerl. Peters said that a most appropriate punishment, should Cardinal Wuerl, choose to reprimand the Vice President, would be to deny him communion. Denial of communion in the Catholic church is called for when an individual “obstinately perserveres in manifest grave sin.”
Thank you, Vice President Biden, for being the Christian that you are.
Warren Hall is a priest who was fired in 2015 from his position as chaplain at Seton Hall University after he posted support online for a group supporting marriage equality. Thereafter, he was appointed to a parish in Hoboken. Two days ago he was suspended from this position by the Newark Archbishop John Myers. The reason, according to the Archbishop’s spokesman, that Hall is “not allowed to function as a priest in any way” is because all priests promise “reverence and obedience” to their bishops and support of church teachings.
Hall attributed his firing from Seton Hall to be a result of a photo he posted on his Facebook page which supported the NOH8 campaign, supporting “marriage, gender and human equality.” He then publicly announced he was gay and furthermore that he has kept his vow of celibacy. The Archbishop’s spokesman indicated that the matter at Seton Hall was resolved when Hall removed the post from his page.
Where does one go in life as one called to the priesthood and a lifelong Catholic? The Episcopal Church welcomes you.