In late December, NCR named President-elect Joe Biden as our 2020 Catholic Newsmaker of the Year. In the editorial we write, "As we await his inauguration and prepare to challenge him to represent all Americans fairly, we thank Biden for what he has already done. For his character, for integrating his faith into his public life, for his ability to bring together Americans at a time of deep division and for rescuing our democracy from an era of deceit and callousness, Joe Biden is our 2020 Catholic Newsmaker of the Year." Following are letters to the editor responding to our editorial. They have been edited for length and clarity.
Thank you for focusing on what is Catholic and praiseworthy about President-elect Joe Biden. Thank you for showing that he is person who lives his faith in his daily life and is willing to share that faith in his speaking and acting.
I am confident too that if you asked him his position on abortion, he would say that he is opposed to it and hopes that his administration's programs will lead to a reduction in abortions.
Thanks for the live broadcast discussing this choice with gifted writers. Peace!
(Fr.) LOUIS ARCENEAUX, CM
New Orleans, Louisiana
You failed to mention that those are not just any rosary beads President-elect Joe Biden carries, they are Beau's rosary beads. Some of the faithful have been wondering how anyone would know what is in Biden's pocket unless he is telling everyone.
Perhaps if he meditated and truly understood, he would realize that the first two glorious mysteries teach us that there is a human life in the womb of a pregnant woman. It is important for all of us to recall the words of St. Justin Martyr who said: "Let it be understood, that those who are not found living as He taught, are not Christian — even though they profess with the lips, the teaching of Christ."
Isn't this what Pope Francis said about those who want to build walls? A better choice for "Catholic Newsmaker of the Year" would have been Justice Amy Coney Barrett. She understands, as our bishops have stated, that abortion is the preeminent issue of our time. Something Biden, sadly, fails to understand and put into practice.
MARK A. KREDER
Toms River, New Jersey
May I suggest that the worldwide health care workers who have placed themselves in danger and extreme stress to care for victims of the virus?
Thank you for registering support and clear recognition of President-elect Joe Biden. Indeed, his mission of rescuing democratic decency and solidarity from the dark tentacles of autocratic betrayal, is truly a daunting one.
The world has witnessed how the hard-won institutional achievements of post-world war struggles have been mocked; how religious bodies — including some of our Catholic organizations, have been pushed into irrelevance through intentional control of their deepest identity by a one-issue stratagem; how the power of constructive conversation has been strangled by deceitful manipulation of the public sphere, especially that of the fragile voices of those at the edges of society.
Joe Biden is one of us, one of the caring compassionate part of us.
But, if those "without flaw" are somewhere out there, what better Christian grounds for healing our wounded bodies and dreams might they possibly appeal to in late 2020?
CATHERINE HALVEY GOODWIN
Shepherdstown, West Virginia
Choosing President-elect Joe Biden as National Catholic Reporter's Newsmaker of the Year resulted in choosing the most LGBTQ-positive person elected as U.S. president in history. Biden has described transgender equality as the "civil rights issue of our time," and has been a voice for global LGBTQ human rights. By his outspoken leadership, he helped secure marriage equality in the United States, even officiating a same-gender wedding in 2016. And, when at home in Delaware, he worships at a church on New Ways Ministry's LGBTQ-friendly parishes list.
Like the majority of his fellow U.S. Catholics, the president-elect knows that supporting LGBTQ equality is entirely consistent with our faith and our commitment to social justice. Hopefully, a Biden administration will reverse the tremendous harm done these last four years, and will chart a new course to advance human rights for all.
Associate director of New Ways Ministry
Mount Rainier, Maryland
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