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Local Springfield, Illinois Catholics are furious that Bishop George Lucas is celebrating the diocese's 150th anniversary by providing a forum for a pro-choice Springfield Rabbi who served on Planned
4/28/2003 10:05:00 AM -Catholic Citizens of Illinois

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Holy Ecu-mania! Springfield Bishop George Lucas has drawn fire for inviting pro-abortion 'men of God' to conference.
Local Springfield, Illinois Catholics are furious that Bishop George Lucas is celebrating the diocese's 150th anniversary by providing a forum for a pro-choice Springfield Rabbi who served on Planned Parenthood's clergy committee. CCI has included information about Rabbi Barry Marks and other speakers, as well as a Planned Parenthood newsletter "Clergy Voices" (Vol. 5 Issue 2, May 2000) with several damning quotations, so to speak.

On Thursday, May 1, 2003 at 6:30 pm, an "Interfaith Worship Service" is scheduled to be held at the "Cathedral Church of the Immaculate Conception" in Springfield, IL. The event, "Neighbors Mirroring the Image of God," is part of the diocese's Jubilee 2003 Celebration.

Speakers include "Pastor Jean Hembrough" of the Springfield Methodist Church, "Rabbi Barry Marks, of Temple Israel, Springfield," and "Chaplain Maryam Mostoufi," of the Islamic Society.

In a May 2000 Planned Parenthood article, Rabbi Barry Marks was described as expressing "his concern for preserving the gains that women have made and ensuring that comprehensive sexuality education is available." (see article below)

Steven Brady is disgusted by Marks and other pro-choice clergy who were invited, but especially aggravated that Bishop Lucas would given such clerics a forum which seemingly puts their views on par with the truths of the Catholic faith regarding the sanctity of life.

"By supporting Planned Parenthood and a 'woman's right to choose'," says Brady, "Rabbi Barry Marks has given "God's Blessing" to the murder of the unborn. Bishop George Lucas, by bringing Marks to the Cathedral to preach, has given his blessing to the pro-abortion Rabbi. All this is being done under the title: "Neighbors Mirroring the Image of God."

Bishop Lucas ought to hear from faithfull Roman Catholics who have every right (and duty) to actively opposed pseudo-Masonic interfaith conferences that undermine the faith.

To reach Bishop Lucas, write or call:

Bishop George Lucas, Catholic Pastoral Center

1615 West Washington Street, Springfield, Illinois 62708

Phone 217-698-8500 / Fax: 617-698-0802 / www.dio.or

###

FROM PLANNED PARENTHOOD WEB SITE

Clergy Voices

from www.ppfa.org/clergy/ckergy051900.html#7

Vol. 5 Issue 2, May 2000

Pro-Choice Clergy in Springfield, IL, Debut on TV

Thanks to the local community access channel, Planned Parenthood of the Springfield Area (PPSA) can now carry its message to a wider audience. In recent months, affiliate staff have discussed sexuality education, AIDS/HIV, contraception, and medical services. In February and March, PPSA's clergy committee took to the airways. Committee Chair, Rev. Walter Carlson moderated the panel of three other clergy and the legislative assistant for the Illinois Family Planning Council, Brigid Leahy, who represents all the Illinois Planned Parenthood affiliates at the state capital in Springfield. In the February program, when the panel discussed faith and reproductive, Rev. Carlson asked the panel members to explain their commitment to the Planned Parenthood mission and programs.

Rev. Donald Colman, co-president of the Illinois Religious Coalition for Choice in Chicago, recalled his days as a campus minister in Lubbock, TX, in the late 60s when he helped young women obtain safe, albeit illegal, abortions in other states. That experience convinced him that the decision to choose abortion was not made easily or lightly and that women deserved support for their choices, whether for adoption, parenthood, or abortion.

For Rev. Janet Eggleston, member of the PPSA board, the commitment to Planned Parenthood grew out her compassion for women and especially for those who do not always make the right choices. Rabbi Barry Marks, another member of the clergy committee, expressed his concern for preserving the gains that women have made and ensuring that comprehensive sexuality education is available. As he put it, young people need guidance. Teaching them to "just so no" will not provide them with the information they need to make responsible choices.

In the March program devoted to religion and politics, the clergy began by wrestling with the problem of compelling Catholic hospitals to provide rape victims with emergency contraception (EC), large-dose birth control pills that greatly reduce the risk of becoming pregnant if taken within 72 hours of unprotected sex. Rev. Eggleston pointed out the unfortunate conflict between religious conviction and the rights of the community when there is only one hospital and it refuses to provide EC or other selected reproductive health services.

The panel distinguished between the separation of church and state and their right, as citizens whose values are shaped by their faiths, to express their views on public policy. "In fact," Rev. Eggleston said, "my faith would have no meaning if it did not influence my views." The panel members stated that religious teachings have much to contribute to political debate, but they feared legislation or regulation that reflected the theology of any one religious faith. Or as Rabbi Marks neatly summed it up - "a view, not a veto."


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