TCA Podcast, – “Conversations with Consequences,” Episode 209 – Chloe Cole Tracks Deceit of Trans-Movement & Ashley McGuire Sounds Alarm on FBI Memo! As Washington state made moves this week to allow minors to obtain trans-medicine and surgeries without parental consent, de-transitioner Chloe Cole drills into the deception she endured in her own struggle with gender dysphoria, saying in the end, “puberty would’ve been the cure..” After heated house hearings on a leaked FBI memo that labeled traditional Catholics as ‘violent extremists,’ Ashley McGuire exposes the full story that most media outlets are ignoring. Father Roger Landry also offers an inspiring homily for this Sunday’s Gospel. Catch the show every Saturday at 7amET/5pmET on EWTN radio! 1. Conservative Anglicans Call for Break with Archbishop of Canterbury Over Same-Sex Blessings, African bishops have emerged as leaders of the church’s conservative wing, By Francis X. Rocca, The Wall Street Journal, April 21, 2023, 6:10 AM Conservative Anglican leaders said that their church, riven by disagreements over homosexuality, could no longer recognize England’s Archbishop of Canterbury as first among equals and called for an overhaul of how the global denomination is led.  Friday’s statement reflects a growing consensus among conservative Anglicans, most of them in Africa and elsewhere in the global South, that Archbishop Justin Welby should forfeit his world leadership role because of his support for the Church of England’s decision in February to allow the blessings of same-sex relationships “This renders his leadership role in the Anglican Communion entirely indefensible,” said the statement by the Global Anglican Future Conference, known as Gafcon, which met this week in Rwanda. 2. Sacred Music Has Come to Life Again, By Blanton Alspaugh, The Wall Street Journal, April 21, 2023, Pg. A17, Opinion By confession, I am a Presbyterian—a child of the Reformation. By profession, I am a classical-recording producer. From these melded perspectives I’ve seen an explosion of interest in sacred music in recent years. Every month I learn of a composer or choir creating extraordinary sacred music and winning plaudits for doing so.  Pope Benedict XVI’s belief that traditional forms of liturgy could cross-pollinate and renew contemporary worship appears to have been prescient. Multiple religious traditions are rediscovering the power of sacred music to form souls and move hearts. In our disenchanted age of technocracy and alienation, what we may need most is re-enchantment—to become receptive again to the transcendent. These new pieces of music, and more like them, are helping to keep the door to God open wide. Mr. Alspaugh has won 11 Grammy Awards as a producer with Boston-based Soundmirror. 3. Almost two-thirds of Americans say belief in God ‘not necessary’ for moral life, ‘good’ values: Pew, By Mark A. Kellner, The Washington Times, April 21, 2023, Pg. A6 About 65% of Americans say a belief in God is not required “in order to be moral and have good values,” according to a recent Pew Research Center survey. That figure is 10 percentage points higher than what was reported in July 2014, Pew said. It is on par with percentages reported in 2017, as well as in September 2019 and January 2020 before the pandemic. Among those surveyed, 63% to 66% agreed with that statement. According to the Pew survey, the importance of religion in a respondent’s life is one of several factors that influenced responses. Among those who said “religion is not important” in their lives, 92% said belief in God is not necessary for moral values. Among those who said they are religiously unaffiliated, 88% agreed with that statement.But 56% of Americans who claimed a religious affiliation also agreed with the “not necessary” statement, Pew noted. 4. The Paradoxes of Post-Roe Abortion Politics, Donald Trump and the future of the pro-life movement, By Matthew Continetti, The Washington Free Beacon, April 21, 2023, Opinion  As a whole, most Americans support abortion access early in a pregnancy. But they are increasingly willing to entertain restrictions on the procedure as a fetus develops—so long as exceptions are made for cases of rape, incest, and life of the mother. They also oppose taxpayer funding for abortions.  State law is lopsided. There are no-restrictions states such as California and New York, and there are no-exceptions states such as South Dakota and Idaho. Many states had “trigger laws” banning abortion that went into effect when Roe disappeared. The difference between the federal government’s mushy middle ground and state governments’ extreme landscapes is a paradox of abortion politics in America. And it’s not the only paradox. For example: If we distinguish between abortion policy at the federal and state levels, so must we also distinguish between direct democracy and representative democracy. The two systems produce divergent outcomes.  What’s going on? Where voters are given the opportunity to vote up or down, they will vote in favor of abortion access. That’s what happened with the Protasiewicz race. It’s what happened last year with ballot initiatives in six states, including in red states such as Kansas and Montana. However: When voters are asked to choose between alternative candidates, other factors come into play. Pro-choice candidates might have an advantage if, like Protasiewicz, they turn their contests into pseudo-referenda on abortion or if, like Rep. Abigail Spanberger (D., Va.), they define or expose their opponent as outside the national consensus.  On abortion, as on entitlements, Trump is closer to the center of the general electorate than is Pence, or for that matter DeSantis. What would it mean if Trump, the Republican presidential frontrunner, opposes federal abortion restrictions, or runs against the pro-life wing of his party? Which force would prove more powerful—Trump’s personality or institutional tradition? I think we know the answer. Trump has modified the GOP before. 5. Retired German archbishop gives up honor after abuse report, By Associated Press, April 21, 2023, 6:21 AM A former head of the Catholic German Bishops Conference is giving up the country’s highest honor following scathing criticism this week of his handling of clergy abuse cases during his tenure as archbishop of Freiburg and as a personnel officer in the diocese. A spokesperson for Robert Zollitsch said Friday the 84-year-old informed German President Frank-Walter Steinmeier that he is handing back the Order of Merit, which was bestowed on him in 2014, German news agency dpa reported. He didn’t specify a reason for the move. An independent report commissioned by the Freiburg archdiocese on the church’s handling of abuse cases over decades was presented on Tuesday — the latest in a string of such reports casting light on church officials’ actions, or lack thereof, in dioceses across Germany. 6. Hong Kong bishop invites head of China’s state-backed church, By Kanis Leung, Associated Press, April 21, 2023, 7:31 AM Hong Kong’s Roman Catholic bishop on Friday said he had invited the state-appointed archbishop of Beijing to visit his city, in a symbolic gesture that experts said could strengthen the fragile relationship between China and the Vatican. Bishop Stephen Chow said Joseph Li, who is the leader of the mainland’s Communist Party-sponsored version of the Catholic church, appeared to be “quite positive” about the invitation. The report gave no indication when Li might visit. Chow announced the invitation on the last day of a five-day trip to Beijing, the first by a bishop of Hong Kong in nearly three decades. Chow’s trip followed a year of strained relations, in which Beijing unilaterally appointed two church leaders and Hong Kong arrested a cardinal. 7. Sri Lankan protesters demand justice for 2019 Easter attacks, By Bharatha Mallawarachi, Associated Press, April 21, 2023, 4:58 AM Thousands of Sri Lankans held a protest in the capital on Friday, demanding justice for the victims of the 2019 Easter Sunday bomb attacks that killed nearly 270 people. The protesters demanded that the government uncover who they said were the real conspirators behind the attacks on three churches — two Catholic and one Protestant — that included simultaneous suicide bombings during Easter celebrations on April 21, 2019. Three tourist hotels were also targeted, killing 42 foreigners from 14 countries. Thousands of people including Catholic clergy on Friday lined up for a silent protest on both sides of the main road connecting the capital, Colombo, with the country’s international airport. They blamed the government for not taking adequate measures to deliver justice for the victims of the bombings and punish those responsible. 8. Pope’s cathedral ‘regrets’ Anglican ceremony on main altar, By Associated Press, April 20, 2023, 11:52 AM The pope’s cathedral in Rome, St. John Lateran Basilica, acknowledged Thursday that an Anglican bishop and 50 priests celebrated an Anglican service on the main altar and blamed the “unfortunate” incident on a miscommunication. A statement from the office of the archpriest of the basilica expressed “profound regret” and said the Anglican celebration Tuesday in the Catholic basilica violated canonical norms. As the seat of the pope in his capacity of bishop of Rome, St. John Lateran ranks highest among the four Vatican basilicas in Rome. 9. Anti-abortion group blasts Trump over federal ban comments, By Meg Kinnard, Associated Press, April 20, 2023, 8:32 PM A major anti-abortion group blasted former President Donald Trump on the issue Thursday, saying his contention that abortion restrictions should be left up to individual states, not the federal government, is a “morally indefensible position for a self-proclaimed pro-life presidential candidate.” The Susan B. Anthony Pro-Life America group was responding to a statement by Trump campaign spokesperson Steven Cheung for a Washington Post story about division among the 2024 GOP presidential field on abortion-related issues. The group has said it would not support any White House candidate who did not at a minimum support a 15-week federal abortion ban. “The Supreme Court made clear in its decision that it was returning the issue to the people to decide through their elected representatives in the states and in Congress,” the group’s president, Marjorie Dannenfelser, said in a news release. “Holding to the position that it is exclusively up to the states is an abdication of responsibility by anyone elected to federal office.” 10. Mississippi to implement new pro-family measures after governor signs bills, By Jonah McKeown, Catholic News Agency, April 20, 2023, 1:20 PM Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves this week signed into law several pieces of pro-life and pro-family legislation, including the expansion of tax credits for pro-life pregnancy centers and adoption expenses.  In an April 19 press release announcing the new laws, Reeves said they are part of a “New Pro-life Agenda” that Mississippi is pushing following the overturning of Roe v. Wade last year.  “The legislation I signed today is further proof that when it comes to protecting life, Mississippi isn’t just talking the talk — we’re walking the walk,” the Republican Reeves said. 11. U.S. bishops: Senate vote keeping abortion in veteran health benefits is a ‘gross failure’, By Kevin J. Jones, Catholic News Agency, April 20, 2023, 4:00 PM The U.S. Senate on Wednesday voted not to overturn a new rule adding abortion to the health benefits of veterans and their dependents, prompting objections from leaders of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), who called the vote “a gross failure.” “Our heroes and their dependents deserve quality health care services instead of policies to end the lives of their own children,” read a joint statement Thursday from the USCCB’s president, Archbishop Timothy Broglio, and Bishop Michael Burbidge, chair of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities. The bishops said it is “inhumane” to provide taxpayer-funded abortion as “a so-called solution to pregnancy” and not “resources needed to welcome a child and flourish as a family.” “We continue to urge Congress to prevent implementation of this harmful policy and to provide instead real support for our military veterans and their loved ones,” Broglio and Burbidge said.

TCA Media Monitoring provides a snapshot from national newspapers and major Catholic press outlets of coverage regarding significant Catholic Church news and current issues with which the Catholic Church is traditionally or prominently engaged. The opinions and views expressed in the articles do not necessarily reflect the views of The Catholic Association.
Subscribe to the TCA podcast!
“Conversations with Consequences” is a new audio program from The Catholic Association. We’ll bring you thoughtful dialogue with the leading thinkers of our time on the most consequential issues of our day. Subscribe today or listen online and enjoy our entertaining and informative weekly episodes.