America has long been a favorite magazine of liberal Catholics. But the Jesuits in charge are “sickened by the toxin of ideological partisanship” in American culture and, as a result, have chosen to abandon the terms “liberal” and “conservative” to describe Catholic teaching. Here is a taste of a Washington Post interview with new editor Rev. Matt Malone:
America has been known as a place hospitable to ideas that may challenge traditional church teaching. Now it wants to shed its reputation as liberal. Why?
Certainly America never called itself that or conceived of ourselves that way [as liberal]. If your mission is to the margins, and at the intersection of the church and the world, by definition you live and work in tension. . . . On one hand we are deeply committed to the church in every sense, the institutional sense, the larger theological sense, we are in and of the church. At the same time, we are missioned to the boundaries. . . . Our lived commitment to the church, it’s strong. But at the same time it can’t be uncritical.
How will this shift impact what you publish? Will you still publish pieces on controversial topics such as whether priests can marry, or female priests, or contraception?
We always tried to present multiple perspectives, but I think you’ll see an even more pronounced effort to do that. Look, if the church is the body of Christ and we are one communion, by definition as a work of the church, there can’t be an authentic Catholic voice that’s unwelcome in America. . . . When we say an “authentic” Catholic voice, we don’t mean someone baptized. When we say “faithful,” we mean someone who is engaging the tradition. . . . There are things that are fundamental, like the sanctity of human life. They aren’t up for debate in terms of their core value. How the teachings are applied with prudence, what is appropriate for the time and place when we’re living, there are a number of ways to think about that.
Tom Van Dyke says
Liberal “America” Magazine Bans Terms “Liberal” and “Conservative”
Always the first step, hide what you are. Or charitably, claim the center by rearranging the words.
As you saw the other day
the author attempts to deny the overwhelming leftist composition of the American academic establishment by re-naming the merely liberal [not far-left] as “neo-liberal, then trying to lump in as many moderate conservatives in as possible.
Voila! No liberal bias, merely a healthy balance of left, right and center!
I hope you don't fall for this “no labels” crap. It's a tool and technique of the left, no more or less.