Bishop Conley, The Obama Administration is “Simply Wrong”

Transgenderism: The Tyranny of Tolerance

By Bishop James D. Conley, South Nebraska Register:

On Friday, May 13, the U.S. Department of Education and Department of Justice issued a joint instruction, which they called “significant guidance,” to public school districts across the country.

Bishop James D. Conley

Bishop James D. Conley, The Obama Administration is Simply Wrong

The guidance stated that in order to receive federal funds for education, every public school district must provide services, restrooms, and “equal access” to all students according to their stated gender identity.

The federal government has ordered that when any student and his parents tell the school that his “gender identity” has changed—if he was born a boy, for example, but considers himself a girl—the school must treat him, in every possible way, like an actual girl. The government declared that the boy who says he is a girl must be permitted to change in locker rooms with other girls, to stay in girls’ rooms on overnight trips, and, very often, to participate on girls’ sports teams.

The Administration is Simply Wrong

This “guidance” is deeply disturbing. In fact, the administration’s action is simply wrong. It is wrong to deny the fundamental difference between men and women; and to teach children that our identity, at its very core, is arbitrary and self-determined. God created us male and female, and policies like this deny the basic beauty of God’s creation.

Boethius, the 6th century Roman senator and Christian philosopher, was a thoughtful critic of disturbing trends he saw in Roman society. In his classic work, the Consolation of Philosophy, Boethius criticized those evil spirits “who slay the rich and fruitful harvest of Reason with the barren thorns of Passion. They habituate men to their sickness of mind instead of curing them.”

The Tyranny of Tolerance

We are living in a time when ordinary human reason is quickly being replaced by “the barren thorns of passion.” Our entire culture has been caught up in a kind of sentimentalized and relativized tyranny of tolerance: we vilify and condemn, ever more quickly, any sense of reasonable and ordered social policy. We have a vague sense that endorsing certain fashionable kindsof social and emotional disorders—including transgenderism—is a mandate of justice, or a victory for civil rights.

They Need our Help

But the real victims of our culture of relativism are those who suffer from serious problems, and who need compassionate help. Pathological confusion about one’s own identity is a kind of aillness. It brings tremendous personal and emotional difficulties. Transgenderism cries out for compassionate assistance. Pope Francis says that “acceptance of our bodies as God’s gift is vital,” and “valuing one’s own body in its femininity or masculinity is necessary” for authentic human freedom.

But, as Boethius wrote, we “habituate men to their sickness, instead of curing them.”

The Church Will Not Deny That God Created Us Male and Female

Children and parents in very difficult situations deserve compassion, sensitivity, and respect. The Church will continue to make every effort to assist those suffering gender dysphoria; in fact, we can improve our efforts in this regard in many ways. But the Church will not deny that God created us male and female. We will not confuse respect and compassion with capitulation to a tragic delusion. Our Catholic schools will continue to teach and live the truth, because of our care for every student. We can only help students grow in holiness when we help them to live in accord with the truth. We will continue to do that, no matter the cost.

The Obama administration’s directive is a sign of the brokenness of our culture; of our lost sense of the common good, of individual goodness, of true freedom, real rights, and authentic happiness. Nebraska’s Governor Ricketts pointed out earlier this week that this directive is basically a kind of coercive opinion, which does not enjoy the authority of law. It is a form of bullying and, ultimately, it is a sad sign of how much we have lost our way; how little of the Gospel’s good news forms and shapes our culture.

It is a Great Tragedy

This directive is a sign of a great tragedy: we are living in an atheocracy: a society determined to stamp out every vestige of God’s plan for mercy, and justice, and goodness. We are living in a society ensnared by the evil of relativism, to which human flourishing, in this life and the next, poses a threat.

The Gospel is a threat to the forces of this world. And in such a circumstance, there is a great temptation, for all of us, to withdraw into our families, into our Catholic community, into those places which we believe are safe, places in which we think we might be spared from the evil of this world.

But facing an evil world, Boethius wrote that “it is time for healing, not lamenting.” Boethius was right. Our culture is in need of healing. The victims of relativism’s dictatorship—those who are harmed by false compassion and tolerance for evil—need our help. Only we can be the leaders who stand up in the face of the storms. The Lord calls us to leadership, and so do the victims of the culture of death.

We Fight Evil . . . 

We are called to stand up—right now, we must be committed to carrying the healing mercy of Jesus Christ to this world. And the fight is not easy. We not will likely fight on a battlefield, in a glamorous blaze of glory. Instead we fight by claiming our nation for Christ, by forming Catholic culture that welcomes others to real freedom, by speaking—heart to heart—with those who are in need of Christ’s healing. We fight evil by praying, and hoping, to win every heart, every soul, every life, for Jesus Christ; as missionaries and disciples of mercy.

We also fight evil on our knees. We fight evil through the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary. We fight evil by invoking St. Michael the Archangel. We fight evil by consecrating our nation to the Sacred Heart of Jesus, the fount of true mercy, and true peace.

Signs of the Times . . .

All of us can read the signs of the times. We are living through a great trial and a great tragedy. Real people, about whom we care very much, are gravely harmed by the infiltration of evil in our world. We know that Christ will be victorious in the end. But we also know how urgently Christ is needed in this world. Only we can entrust this nation to Jesus Christ—especially his Sacred Heart– in our prayers. And only we can choose, in response to the urgency of the moment, to be active, joyful, faithful missionaries of Jesus Christ—declaring the Gospel, and inviting the world to mercy.

We live in a grave and serious time in history. But now is time for healing, not for lamenting.

Slight Editing with Headlines and Emphasis:


Bishop James D. Conley


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8 comments to Bishop Conley, The Obama Administration is “Simply Wrong”

  • Lynn Fiedler

    Thank you Bishop Conley for standing up for the Truth and for being a ‘courageous priest’s. God bless the Catholic Church!

  • Clara Estela Vitale

    The fact that one does not belong to the holy People does not prevent one from serving the Lord. Because the time has come when all frontiers of the Earth disappear before the Only King, the King of all kings and peoples, the King who gathers all peoples into one only to make it His new People. That people from which only those will be excluded who try to deceive the Lord with false obedience to His Decalogue, which all men of good will can follow, whether they are Jews, Gentiles or idolaters. Because where there is good will, there is natural inclination to justice,

    Maria Valtorta, received from Jesus.

  • Ellen Tierney

    Social Security has paid benefits for transgenders also known as gender confusion disorder ! They can and do receive 6or700.00 a month to treat their mental illness. They get paid Doctor and mental health benefits….For many years this has been treated as mental disorder ,!
    Please these poor souls need help not acceptance for their problems..

  • Roseann Tauriello

    Thank you, Bishop Conley!!! You are a true “Man and Servant of God!” You have the courage to stand up, and tell Your flock what is right from wrong…and you teach us the “One True Faith,” that Our Blessed Lord gave us and …Jesus died so that we could live the Gospel!!! Thank you for telling us the TRUTH and not the lies that are now being fed to the young…who sometimes do not know any better!!!!
    Praying for you…and for more Priests like you to come forward and LEAD us to Heaven!!!!
    May our loving and merciful God bless You always …and fill you constantly with His Holy Spirit…and continue to give you the courage and the stamina, perseverance, and all the Gifts of the Holy Spirit we receive from the Sacrament of Confirmation…and all the Graces and Gifts you received when you received the Sacrament of Holy Orders!!! May God continually bless you and renew you each and every day!!!
    All our prayers and love goes with you and you wonderful work!!!! My husband and I, and also our grown children, and grandchildren are so happy to know that our Church has you as a leader!!!
    May God bless you always!
    Ron and Roseann and family.

  • Linda

    God will Bless you, dear Bishop Conley for speaking out and teaching us The Truth!! With all this nonsense that is being forced upon us, this is truly a breath of fresh air!

  • Suzan

    Thank you, Bishop Conley, for declaring publicly the obvious. Sadly, this takes courage, for which I thank the Holy Spirit for giving you this gift in abundance! Also, if I may, I would respectfully suggest that we not use the term “transgender”. We shouldn’t allow the opposition to define the terminology.

  • Mariann

    Thank God for Bishop Conley! Thank you so much — you, dear Bishop are Courageous!

    Wouldn’t it be so like the Holy Spirit to have a total consensus of U.S. Bishops to proclaim loud and clear exactly Bishop Conley’s Article! Unite USCCB with verity, charity and clarity!

  • NYer

    In 2005, (then) Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger, in his capacity as Dean of the College of Cardinals, delivered the homily at the Pro Eligendo Pontiice Mass before the cardinals were sequestered in the conclave that elected him as the next pontiff. Cardinal Ratzinger, reflecting on Eph 4: 14, dare I say “prophetically” saw the future. He said: How many winds of doctrine have we known in recent decades, how many ideological currents, how many ways of thinking. The small boat of the thought of many Christians has often been tossed about by these waves – flung from one extreme to another: from Marxism to liberalism, even to libertinism; from collectivism to radical individualism; from atheism to a vague religious mysticism; from agnosticism to syncretism and so forth. Every day new sects spring up, and what St Paul says about human deception and the trickery that strives to entice people into error (cf. Eph 4: 14) comes true.

    Today, having a clear faith based on the Creed of the Church is often labeled as fundamentalism. Whereas relativism, that is, letting oneself be “tossed here and there, carried about by every wind of doctrine”, seems the only attitude that can cope with modern times. We are building a dictatorship of relativism that does not recognize anything as definitive and whose ultimate goal consists solely of one’s own ego and desires.

    We, however, have a different goal: the Son of God, the true man. He is the measure of true humanism. An “adult” faith is not a faith that follows the trends of fashion and the latest novelty; a mature adult faith is deeply rooted in friendship with Christ. It is this friendship that opens us up to all that is good and gives us a criterion by which to distinguish the true from the false, and deceipt from truth.

    We must develop this adult faith; we must guide the flock of Christ to this faith. And it is this faith – only faith – that creates unity and is fulfilled in love. Read the entire homily at the Vatican link:

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