In Crisis magazine appears an article by Christopher Manion on some contributions that Pope Benedict XVI has made to the future of the Church during these past eight years. Among them is the restatement of the true principles of Christian charity.
As we all know, the hierarchy of the US Church has been horribly compromised by the lure of federal money to finance its charitable outreaches. Manion points out that the Land O' Lakes statement was a colossal sell-out on the part of Catholic institutions of higher learning to grab some federal grants. Some (like me) would in fact argue that Father Hesburgh of Notre Dame deliberately intended to muffle the voice of Catholicism via Land O' Lakes; in many respects he succeeded. This blog has recited countless times that Catholic Charities and Catholic Relief Services have made fools of themselves through the debacles in which they engaged. The only reason why I didn't include the Catholic Campaign for Human Development with the other two is that I believe that the CCHD was created with the very intention of undermining the Magisterium. And of course I need not rehash how many state Catholic Conferences have muzzled their own voices so that they could win various grants and endowments for their pet progressive causes.
Read Manion's article. While it will take brave bishops and popes to clean up our charitable outreaches, it will also take the voices and activism of the Catholic laity (that's us!) to bring about these much-needed reforms.