In response to Cardinal Timothy Dolan’s closing prayers at the Democrat and Republican National Conventions the following viral image is making the rounds on facebook:
Now, since Cardinal Dolan said the closing prayer for both conventions and the above image does not specify which one that it is talking about interpretation is left to the viewer and, because most of my friends are conservative Catholics, everyone I know has interpreted it as directed towards the Democrats. And they are right; After all, Cardinal Dolan’s closing prayer at the DNC included the following
“Thus do we praise you for the gift of life. Grant us the courage to defend it, life, without which no other rights are secure. We ask your benediction on those waiting to be born, that they may be welcomed and protected.”
However, what many conservative Catholics don’t seem to consider is that this meme applies to the Republican party as well. When Cardinal Dolan prayed, “We ask for the grace to stand in solidarity with all those who suffer. May we strive to include your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, in the production and prosperity of a people so richly blessed.” He denounced Romney’s long history of acting on political expedience and leaving the disenfranchised out in the cold while helping the rich and powerful first just as much as he denounced Obama’s pro-abortion platform.
Catholic Republicans would do well to remember that the Democratic Party is not the root of all evil and that the Republican Party is not without blemish. Cardinal Dolan is not secretly on Romney and Ryan’s side or the side of the GOP. He is very publicly on the side of the Catholic Church and as Catholics we are called to follow our Cardinal’s example and do the same.
Cardinal Dolan is not a partisan Catholic who is “taking one for the team” in order to stick it to the Democrats. He is not trying to “beat Obama at all costs” like many Republican Catholics have demanded that I do without even stopping to consider what those costs might be. He is a non-partisan Catholic who stands up for life, liberty and virtue despite both parties’ rejection of all three in their own particular way. Cardinal Dolan sets an excellent example of being in the world of politics but not of it and it is an example that we as lay Catholics are called to follow.