Your letters: Catholic voters and environment, Naumann and the CCHD, and LGBTQ+ clergy and religious

Letters to the Editor

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Following are NCR reader responses to recent news articles, opinion columns and theological essays with letters that have been edited for length and clarity.

Catholic voting, creation

Bingo, Michael Wright. Your essay to vote Pro-Life by voting Pro-Creation was a perfect justification to vote for Joe Biden (, June 19, 2024).

Global climate change stories continue to haunt us with deadly heat waves: 550 pilgrims to the Muslim Hajj dead in 117 degree heat. We have measured the ocean rising; we know that the massive fresh water melt of Greenland's ice sheet, which averages over a mile deep, could shut off the Gulf Stream and lower North American and Western European temperatures by 5 to 10 degrees Celsius.

The USCCB Voters Guide, Forming Consciences, in paragraphs 35 to 38, has an alternative to voting for a pro-life candidate. It provides that the voter "...may decide to vote for the candidate deemed less likely to advance such a morally flawed position and more likely to pursue other authentic human goods."

Climate Change is truly an authentic human good, for my progeny. And all your progeny.

Palo Alto, California


Letters to the Editor

CCHD crucial to bishop's credibility

I would like to express my deep concern regarding Archbishop Joseph Naumann of Kansas City, Kansas and his stance against the renewal of the Catholic Campaign for Human Development, as related in Michael Sean Winters' column, "Behind closed doors, overwhelming support for the bishops' anti-poverty program" (, June 14, 2024).

As someone who has previously chaired the USCCB's Pro Life Causes, Archbishop Naumann should understand more than most the imperative of supporting programs that uplift the poor and marginalized in our society.

The Campaign for Human Development plays a crucial role in providing a hand up, not a handout, to those in need—a mission that aligns closely with the teachings of Jesus Christ. It is disheartening that Archbishop Naumann would speak out against such a program, whose purpose is rooted in the gospel's call to serve the least among us.

This kind of hypocrisy undermines the credibility of the Catholic Church and its moral authority. It's no wonder that even conservatives have expressed skepticism about the relevance of bishops to their flock. It's clear many seem more focused on political agendas than on the gospel's message of compassion and justice.

It is essential to recall Jesus Christ's explicit teachings on caring for the marginalized. He called on his followers to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and shelter the homeless, underscoring the fundamental duty of the Church to alleviate suffering and uphold the dignity of every human being. 

I hope Pope Francis announces the next Archbishop to be someone who will actively support programs that embody the Church's commitment to social justice and human dignity.

Liberty, Missouri


Proud of LGBTQ+ priests, religious

The recent article by Jim McDermott affirmed my view that we need more queer priests and religious in the Church (, June 12, 2024). Jim provides a brilliant defense of queer pride and reminds readers that queer people should not have to live in the shadows, but rather out in the open, like all of God’s children.

I am confident that Catholics, and especially Catholic religious men and women, speaking out about LGBTQ+ issues will make a difference one day. Or rather, I live in the hope that it will ensure the issue at least remains alive in the Church.

As Bishop Kenneth Untener wrote in what is commonly known as the Romero Prayer – “We plant the seeds that one day will grow.” The brave queer priests and religious who spend their lives advocating for LGBTQ+ rights might never see the end result, but their message makes a difference, however lonely their voices may be right now. An optimist I am not, but of this I remain hopeful: that their efforts will take root, and their work today will create a more inclusive Church somewhere down the road.



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