Last Saturday, President Trump received a letter of support from the former Vatican ambassador to the U.S., Archbishop Carlo-Maria Vigano, and Tweeted about it gratefully, setting off a flurry of outrage among left-wing Catholics—who have routinely vilified both Trump and Vigano.
So honored by Archbishop Viganò’s incredible letter to me. I hope everyone, religious or not, reads it! https://t.co/fVhkCz89g5
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 10, 2020
Vigano’s statement is powerful for Catholics well-informed about the Church. But I fear that the President (like most Americans) might find its language and references a little puzzling. So let me unpack it in terms that will make sense to everyone.
There are two Catholic churches in America. One is rich, bloated, corrupt, and worships the World. Like the Sadducees of old, it cringes at Caesar’s whim, lest it lose its privileges. (For instance, consider the fact that 66% of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ revenue comes from federal contracts). Doing works of mercy with government money isn’t really Christian charity, but it does give the bishops an empire of non-profit employees who overwhelmingly lean to the left. Indeed, these bishops’ income depends on social dysfunction increasing—for instance, on the constant influx of low-skilled immigrants, and big federal budgets of the kind Democrats support.
This false church is indistinguishable from any dying, Mainline Protestant denomination. It has abandoned the historic, “hard” teachings of Christianity on sexual morals and personal responsibility. It sees itself as a tax-free NGO whose job is to promote “social justice” as defined by secular elites. So it bangs the drum about “racism”—defined not in Christian, but Marxist terms: only whites can be “racist,” since only whites have power, according to this simplistic logic, encouraging racial groupthink and condescending to non-whites.
Wilton Gregory, Archbishop of Washington, D.C., is the de facto leader of this church. His track record on actual morality is appalling, as Complicit Clergy documents. Most famously, he colluded with child-rapist Theodore McCarrick in 2002 to exempt bishops from any church penalties for raping kids, or hiding child-rapists from the police.
But those who reek of personal sin often seek public absolution by assailing the “social sins” of others. And that’s precisely what Gregory did when he denounced the Knights of Columbus and the St. John Paul II Shrine for welcoming President Trump last week. Gregory did it again when he “invited” all the priests whose salaries and living conditions he controls personally to protest against Donald Trump.
This anti-church is what Archbishop Vigano identifies and condemns in his letter to Donald Trump, calling it the stooge of the Deep State. And Vigano is absolutely right. As Fox News reports, the Archbishop was unsparing in his language:
“For the first time, the United States has in you a President who courageously defends the right to life, who is not ashamed to denounce the persecution of Christians throughout the world, who speaks of Jesus Christ and the right of citizens to freedom of worship,” Vigano wrote, adding, “And I dare to believe that both of us are on the same side in this battle, albeit with different weapons.”
Vigano believes Americans “are mature and have now understood how much the mainstream media does not want to spread the truth but seeks to silence and distort it, spreading the lie that is useful for the purposes of their masters.”
But if the president is concerned about the political implications of Gregory’s various stunts, he shouldn’t be. The really devoted members of this Anti-Church would never vote for him anyway. They know that congressional Democrats will boost the Anti-Church’s contracts, and flood the country with more immigrants to (briefly) fill the pews and attract still more federal money. They’ve already replaced any efforts at personal holiness with woke virtue-signaling. Their states are mostly deep blue, and they already have their reward.
REAL CATHOLICS CAN HELP TRUMP, AND VICE VERSA
The Catholic voters whom President Trump can win, however, belong to another Church altogether. They hold different beliefs and pursue different priorities. They are patriotic, hard-working, and baffled by the chaos which Democrats have unleashed and their bishops are praising.
Candidate Donald Trump became President Donald Trump directly by winning Pennsylvania, Michigan and Wisconsin. Trump finished with 306 electoral college votes. Combined, those three states gave Trump 46 of his 306. A candidate needs 270 to win. Without those states, Trump falls short by 10. And Trump not only broke the Democratic stranglehold on those three states—part of the so-called Blue Wall thought impenetrable—but he snatched back Obama’s Ohio and Iowa as well … In Iowa, 25% of voters are Catholics. In Ohio, it’s just a hair shy at 19%. And then you have the big three: Pennsylvania is 28%, Michigan is 21% and Wisconsin is 25%. Given the narrow margins of victory in the big three, if Trump secured a majority of Catholic voters in those states, which exit polling from 2016 seems to indicate he did, then it’s lights out for the Dems.
President Trump won’t lose these voters because of the antics of abuse-tainted shills like Gregory—liberal Democrats in pointy hats whom no one really respects. He can, and should, shore up his support among these Catholic swing voters he needs. And he can do that by regularly citing St. John Paul II, who represented the genuine Catholic tradition now under assault, and by amping up his defense of unborn life, religious liberty, and orderly, lawful, limited immigration.
He can’t heal the chasm that separates the Church from the Anti-Church. That’s not his job. But he can and must win the upcoming election. And real Catholics can help.
Then after the election, the President could reward real Catholics by helping us. We desperately need the Dept. of Justice to launch a RICO investigation of our bishops, who have for decades swapped sex abusers across state lines. Such a federal probe would disqualify fake “Catholic” agencies from bidding for federal contracts. At one stroke, it would cut off the vast funds that the Anti-Church receives from Caesar, which tie it to the Deep State and the Abortion Party. That would help every Catholic in America, and pro-life candidates nationwide.
It’s something to pray for, anyway.