Time to Communicate What Catholicism Is & Is Not
July-August 1996By Juli Loesch Wiley
Juli Loesch Wiley, of Johnson City, Tennessee, is a Contributing Editor of the NOR and a homeschooling mom.
Back in 1982 a Sister of Mercy named Agnes Mansour ran for Congress. Mansour believed in what was called political ministry. Among other things, she favored federal funding for Medicaid abortions.
Her 1982 campaign was unsuccessful, but in 1983 the Governor appointed Sister Agnes head of the (State) Department of Human Services. Part of her job involved administering the budget for deliberately killing some 13,300 children in the State of Michigan.
Myself, I thought having a Sister of Mercy running a massive abortion program was high irony like having the Little Sisters of Jesus in charge of running the electric chair, or Franciscans in the Strategic Air Command. In any case, the Archbishop of Detroit got involved, and then the Vatican. Major controversy. Sister Agnes left the Sisters of Mercy.
That year I attended a Catholic peace and justice conference at which the main speaker held up Agnes Mansour as a model for ministry. The audience roared its approval. After the speech, I, trembling with fear, approached the Audience Response microphone and questioned how we as peace and justice people could support a proabortion bureaucrat as a model for ministry.
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