Catholic Action League Blasts Cardinal at Obama Award Event, 'Betrayal of Pro-Life Movement'

By Michael W. Chapman | May 9, 2017 | 11:16am EDT

Cardinal Sean O'Malley, head of the

archdiocese of Boston.  


( -- The Catholic Action League of Massachusetts criticized Boston Cardinal Archbishop Sean O'Malley for attending the 2017 Profile in Courage Award event on Sunday, where former President Barack Obama was honored, stressing that Obama is "the most pro-abortion president" in U.S. history and that O'Malley's presence displayed an "appalling betrayal of the pro-life movement." 

In Boston, President Obama received the Profile in Courage Award, which was created in 1989 by the Kennedy family to recognize politicians who demonstrate "politically courageous leadership in the spirit of Profiles in Courage," a 1957 Pulitzer Prize winning book. Although Sen. John F. Kennedy is listed as the author of the book, most of it was ghost written by Ted Sorenson, a Kennedy speechwriter.  

During his remarks at the John F. Kennedy Library and Museum, President Obama acknowledged Cardinal O'Malley's presence. Obama spoke about how support for his Affordable Care Act ("Obamacare"), which mandates coverage for abortifacients and sterilization, as a profile in courage. 

Former President Barack Obama receives the Profile in Courage Award

at the John F. Kennedy Library and Museum in Boston. Left, Caroline 

Kennedy, right, Michelle Obama. (Screenshot: CBS Boston)

Cardinal O'Malley's attendance at the event was an "appallin betrayal of the pro-life movement, of the innocent unborn, and of those Catholics and other Christians struggling to defend First Amendment guarantees of religious liberty," said the Catholic Action Leage in a press release. 

C.J. Doyle, executive director of the Catholic Action League, said, "Barack Obama was, by any objective indicator, the most pro-abortion president in the history of this country, at least since abortion became a public issue in the 1960's. He was also, arguably, the president most hostile to the protections found in the Constitution and the Bill of Rights guaranteeing religious freedom."

"Catholic prelates ought to avoid giving scandal, and, at all times, ought to bear witness to the truth," said Doyle. "Sean O'Malley did neither last night."

"The message O'Malley sends by his attendance at this celebration of Barack Obama is that support for the mass killing of pre-born children, and attacks on the conscience rights of Christians, are morally respectable, are no obstacle to public honors, and, implicitly, are no barrier to the votes and campaign contributions of Catholics," said Doyle. 

He continued, "No rational person can reasonably be expected to take seriously Catholic opposition to abortion when the former chairman of the Pro-Life Activities Committee of the U. S. Conference of Catholic Bishops is photographed smiling at an event hailing Planned Parenthood's favorite president."

"Once again, Catholic principles are cast aside, and the whole world can see the fawning servility of the American Catholic hierarchy to wealth, celebrity, and political power," said Doyle.

Then-President Barack Obama speaks at Planned Parenthood in April 2013.  (Screenshot: YouTube)

In its press release, the Catholic Action League noted that in his 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns, Obama was endorsed by Planned Parenthood and NARAL Pro-Choice America. In an April 2013 speech, President Obama asked God to bless Planned Parenthood, the largest abortion vendor in the United States. Before leaving office in January 2017, Obama signed an executive order prohibiting states from defunding Planned Parenthood.

The Catholic Action League also noted that as an Illinois state seantor, Obama opposed (and voted against) born alive legisilation, which would have required medical care be given to children who survived an abortion. 

Further, it was the Obama administration that mandated nearly all health insurers to provide coverage for contraception, sterilization, and drugs that can induce an abortion, such as the morning-after pill. 

The use or support of abortion-inducing drugs, sterilization, and contraception is contrary to Catholic teaching. 

Limbs and body parts of an aborted baby at a Planned Parenthood office.  (Photo: Center for Medical Progress)

"Every action which, whether in anticipation of the conjugal act, or in its accomplishment, or in the development of its natural consequences, proposes, whether as an end or as a means, to render procreation impossible" is intrinsically evil, according to the Catholic Catechism.  Direct sterilization or contraception are "morally unacceptable," states the Catechism. 

On abortion, the Church teaches,  "Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable. Direct abortion, that is to say, abortion willed either as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law: You shall not kill the embryo by abortion and shall not cause the newborn to perish."

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