|Rev. Charles Coughlin|
at the profit centers of these tax exempt organizations in his new memoir, Mom,
Sex, and God.
Schaeffer is the son of Francis and Edith Schaeffer, who established L’Abri, an evangelical community in Switzerland in
the 1960’s. The Schaeffers are considered the gold standard of this niche market: potent thoroughbred fund-raisers who built an international empire by railing against what they viewed as secular humanism.
But their son tells a different tale: his parent’s strategy that focused on cash, the high life, and access to political power. He also walked away from the dynastic feud that has damaged or destroyed the heirs of other religious empires based on family pride. We’ve seen this with Franklin Graham, Jr., and his sister, Ann Graham Lotz; the family feud involving the children of Robert H. Schuller - Robert A. Schuller and his sister, Sheila Schuller Coleman - and the bankruptcy of the their Crystal Cathedral empire; and volatile display of corruption that engulfed Richard Roberts and Oral Roberts University.
Schaeffer offers a bleak, disheartening peek at business ventures operating as church-run charities.
|Bishop Fulton J. Sheen|
The Roman Catholic Church is no stranger
to this brand of religion marketing: the
Rev. Charles Coughlin took to the airwaves in the 1930’s with his fascist rants. Bishop Fulton J. Sheen, conversely, maintained
a high standard of intellectual and academic mimicry: an entertaining quality accentuated by his Bela Lugosi demeanor, arm gestures, and the occasional flare of
The demand for content has forced EWTN to change programming, standards, and practices as it begins its fourth decade of broadcasting. For example, during the 18 August 2011 re-broadcast of a 2000 episode of Mother Angelica Live, the EWTN founder highlighted this expedient shift by stating that severe weather patterns, global warming, and related meteorological conditions in the United States are the result of abortions in America and the Supreme Court ruling Roe v. Wade. We wonder what sin was committed by the residents of Texas that has resulted into a year-long drought with less than six inches of rain since July 2010.
EWTN on-air talent Raymond Arroyo credits the actresses Stella Adler (left)
and Uta Hagen as mentors who shaped his show business career.
Mother Angelica’s advancing years and declining health also have launched a new wave of management strategy that balances in equal measures religion, politics, and fund raising with no memory of the Coughlin era. We see this in the babbling of Raymond Arroyo (his Wikipedia entry notes that he studied with Broadway legends Stella Adler and Uta Hagen) and the nattering of the archbishop of New York, Timothy M. Dolan.
Knights in the Light of Day
The Knights of Columbus
in New Haven, Conn.
In 2008, the Knights of Columbus Corporation paid chief executive officer Carl A. Anderson $1.17 million, according to some sources.
been able to determine Anderson’s salary and
The insurance company’s 2010 annual report has yet to be posted on-line for analysis. But we can assume that Mr. Anderson has a limousine and chauffeur, access to private jet service, and pied-a-terre in New York despite its proximity to New Haven. We can assume, too, that he travels with access the highest level of luxury accommodations, business or pleasure notwithstanding. Not bad for a former staff member of the Ronald Reagan White House team.
Charles J. Chaput, O.F.M., Cap.,
archbishop designate of Philadelphia,
sermonized at the opening Mass
for the Knights of Columbus
convention. Eleven cardinals
participated in the event.
of Retired Persons (AARP), the
Knights of Columbus Corporation makes no effort to support worker benefits, a living wage, or affordable healthcare for the citizens of the United States. The Socially Responsible Investment Guidelines of the USCCB seem to have little influence on the Knights as well. But, then, the USCCB link to this information connects to a non-existent webpage.
It also would be nice that the Daughters of St. Paul did not have to sue Sean Cardinal O’Malley and the Archdiocese of Boston to recoup $1.37 million from their pension fund. In March, the religious order charged that the fund’s trustees, including Cardinal O’Malley, failed to provide a full accounting of the fund.
Sean Cardinal O’Malley
identified 159 pedophile
priests 25 August 2011
in Boston whose salaries
were paid with pension
funds earmarked for the
Daughters of St. Paul.
was used to pay the salaries of pedophile priests placed on involuntary leave. An accounting study released by the archdiocese in an attempt to quell complaints concluded there were not enough records to determine how much money was used before 2000 to support priests accused of molesting children, young people, and vulnerable adults.
But we know that this unethical accounting practice is employed on a regular basis by
the American bishops. Archbishop Harry J. Flynn (ret.) of St. Paul-Minneapolis raided funds ($3.1 million) from a priest retirement account and another fund ($700,000) earmarked for charity and social services
to settle child molestation claims.
of Columbus trickled down to grass roots organizations rather than institutional recipients with narrow ideological focus. It would be nice to know, for example, that the Knights of Columbus would willingly partner with the Catholic Hospital Association and/or the National Association of Free Health Clinics to support community medical services in the United States.
Knowing the Company You Keep
A Shepherd, Not a Cop:
Bishop Thomas V. Daily,
a former top-ranking
assistant to Bernard
Cardinal Law, told
the Boston courts that
he is a shepherd
and not a cop in order
to rationalize his
decisions to protect
Mr. Anderson seems to enjoy glad-handing with the Justin Cardinal Rigali of Philadelphia, even though the Rigali case is particularly troubling. Cardinal Rigali has lied under oath to two Philadelphia grand juries. As the archbishop of St. Louis, he worked hand-in-glove with the Vatican to sequester child molesters in the diocese there. Raymond
Cardinal Burke succeeded Rigali in St. Louis,
only to expand the program he established.
Rigali exudes trust and friendliness but in fact is duplicitous as hell. Why he has not been indicted for making false statements in these legal proceedings remains a mystery. Choosing to evade, mislead, and prevaricate is a damning legacy.
Archbishop José H. Gomez
Los Angeles addressed the
Knights of Columbus
insurance agents at
their business session.
This incestuous self-dealing seems to cause no one to blush. But are we naive enough to think this is the way to conduct the business of Roman Catholic Church?
Given the nature of this event, it was no surprise to see the Knights bask in the after-glow of their own fairy godmother: Cardinal Burke, Prefect of the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatures (Chief Justice of the Vatican Supreme Court), cast these insurance agents as members of a lay religious order, engaged in evangelization, serving the poor. Nothing could be further from the truth.
Raphael Fliss (ret.),
of Superior, Wisc.,
Rev. Ryan Erickson
from the authorities
until Ryan murdered
two men to prevent
public exposure as
a child molester.
On 21 August 2002, Bishop Daily was deposed by lawyers for three men who claim they were sexually abused by the Rev. Paul Shanley at St. Jean’s parish in Newton in the 1980s. You can read more about Daily’s dismal record as a shepherd at the New York Times.
|Rev. Ryan Erickson|
It is a mystery how the Knight of Columbus determined that the average volunteer is worth $21 an hour, unless they are using executive compensation as a rule. Nonetheless we suspect that the true figure to 66 percent less. We also suspect that very little of the amounts claim actually go to charity, based on the extravagance of the convention on display at EWTN.
| St. Peter’s Square: The Knights of Columbus leadership in Rome.|
| Richard N. Jurgens|
used it non-profit status to co-opt and compromise would-be supporters. HyVee,
the Iowa based grocery chain, for example, allows the Knights of Columbus to solicit donations at various locations locally and in Missouri. HyVee executives, apparently,
have failed to vet the Knights of Columbus as an international financial services enterprise.
volunteer fire department or the community lending library. The Knights of the Columbus is not the enterprising Girl Scout who is able to stake a claim at the storefront to sell cookies by the volume. The Knights of Columbus is not the local dog pound offering abandoned pets for adoption.
Next Time: Rev. Manus P. Daly and a Boy's Life