Sister Carol Keehan Gives Catholic HS Speech Despite Pro-Abortion Bill Support

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Jun 7, 2010   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Sister Carol Keehan Gives Catholic HS Speech Despite Pro-Abortion Bill Support

by Steven Ertelt Editor
June 7
, 2010

Washington, DC ( — Sister Carol Keehan, the head of the Catholic Health Association, gave the commencement speech this weekend before graduating seniors at Gonzaga College High School in Washington even though the CHA’s support for the pro-abortion health care bill likely enabled its passage.

Keehan’s eleventh-hour endorsement of the bill and false pronouncement that it did not contain abortion funding, gave political cover to some pro-life Democrats who wanted to support the bill but worried of running afoul of pro-life groups and the Catholic bishops.

She earned one of the 21 pens President Barack Obama used to sign the pro-abortion health care bill into law and her decision also earned her the commencement slot at the DC-based Catholic high school.

Washington Times columnist Elias Crim noted the problems the CHA caused.

"The CHA endorsement created an impression of internal division on what many had assumed was a bedrock Catholic commitment to protect human life. In response, a cardinal and two bishops, speaking for the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, issued a statement on May 21 that rebuked the CHA," he recalled.

In fact, the Bishop William Murphy and Bishop John C. Wester held CHA responsible for sowing "confusion" and opening a "wound to Catholic unity."

"What are we to make of the jubilation expressed by Planned Parenthood and NARAL when the CHA endorsed the Obama bill – while neglecting to endorse any statement even acknowledging the bishops’ concerns? We are left to wonder about the CHA’s tactics and intentions," Crim adds.

Tom McClusky of the Family Research Council, agrees.

"Why is someone who gave the green light for the most pro-abortion piece of legislation we have seen in decades being honored at a Catholic Graduation?" he asked. "What kind of message does it send to Catholic children and their parents that she is being honored?"

Local pro-life advocates from the Restore DC Catholicism blog protested the event.

"Despite our protests and pleadings, the administration of Gonzaga (Jesuits, of course!) remained obdurate. Sister Carol Keehan did befoul the commencement with her address – however, we made very certain the truth was heard, if not embraced," they said.

"One of our number even went so far as to give to Cardinal McCarrick a very well-deserved rebuke for allowing the mess to go on," the blog added.

To the amazement of local pro-life advocates, Sister Carol’s talk was entitled "Confusion and Clutter in Today’s Society."

After her address, two women at the event were escorted out as they shouted that Keehan should not have been invited because she enabled the pro-abortion bill.

ACTION: Contact Fr Novotny at Gonzaga HS at [email protected] with your complaints.


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