Gingrich's Religious Journey

I forgot Newt Gingrich is a converted Catholic (disclosure - I am a lapsed Catholic):

Newt Gingrich sat beneath the soaring dome in the largest Roman Catholic church in North America, the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in Washington, and listened as a choir that included his wife sang at an evening vespers service for Pope Benedict XVI and 300 American bishops.

That is the moment, three years ago, that Mr. Gingrich says he decided to become a Roman Catholic, after having been born a Lutheran and joining the Southern Baptist Church in college. [. . .] Mr. Gingrich represents a new kind of Catholic [. . .] To a Kennedy-era Catholic, divorce was a sin [. . .] Mr. Gingrich is a culture wars Catholic for whom the church seems a logical home for conservative Republicans.

(Emphasis supplied.) It's really weird that Gingrich, whose personal life does not really shout out Christian virtue, is the darling of the Evangelical Right. I mean it's nothing to me, who lives in a glass house on this, but:

Gingrich is on his third marriage — this one to Callista Bisek, a former Hill staff member 22 years his junior who had been his mistress for six years.
The article does not say, but I assume Gingrich is not married in the eyes of the Catholic Church, unless he annulled his first 2 marriages (NOTE: this apparently occurred. Nice of the Church ay?) The article says "[l]ike many recent converts to the church, Mr. Gingrich is what Catholics call a “John Paul II Catholic,” those inspired by that pope to embrace traditional church teaching, eschewing calls to liberalize or modernize the faith[.]"

Except on divorce one presumes.

speaking for me only

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    Where are the John 23rd Catholics (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by jmacWA on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 11:56:39 AM EST
    The turnabout is dramatic.  I don't recognize the "John Paul II" church.  IMO John 23 would have accepted Newt as a repentant sinner, but would have abhorred his politics.  If I were still a practicing catholic, I would not be able to abide the church becoming a refuge for conservatives.  The church of my youth (12 yr. catholic education ending in 1969) was liberal... or maybe I was just young and naive.

    Your Church was my Church. My time (5.00 / 1) (#20)
    by caseyOR on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 12:21:33 PM EST
    ended in 1970. In some was it was a more liberal church, especially during and after John XXIII. Still, it had its conservative issues and its anachronistic rules. The fight over Vatican II and the subsequent rebellion in all too many parishes and dioceses over the changes that resulted from Vatican II were intense.

    I do think the Church took a more supportive stance on social justice issues in the '60s. The American church was thought by the rest of the church world to be too free and easy.  Also our time in Catholic school came before the abortion wars which, IMO, launched the Church backwards into its conservative and reactionary past.

    Still, I was taught that the Bible was not to be taken literally, that many of the stories in the Bible were just that, stories, stories that were used to explain to the masses some of the underpinnings of the faith, as well as tell people how to act in day to day life. I was taught about evolution, not creationism. And I was not in some wild-eyed liberal parish. I was in central Illinois, in a small city that was about as far from being a hotbed of liberalism as it got in those days.


    Very interesting. Lutheran church in (none / 0) (#27)
    by oculus on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 12:56:42 PM EST
    SE Iowa in the 50s never let on those were just "stories."  

    Speaking of SE Iowa... (none / 0) (#39)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:36:56 PM EST
    have you seen this?  Creating quite the stir amongst the natives.  Especially those along the eastern river cities.

    Very interesting. Over 1300 comments, (none / 0) (#54)
    by oculus on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 02:50:07 PM EST
    most dismissing the author's viewpoint re Iowa.  Lots of discussion re same sex marriage.  Nothing re ethanol--kind of surprising.  

    Teilhard de Chardin (none / 0) (#32)
    by MKS on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:11:48 PM EST
    really gave Catholics post Vatican II, after he had been taken of the banned book list, the intellectual basis to accept not only evolution but many other issues like the ones you recite.....

    Now, ufortunatley, too many--like Dawkins--view Teilhard de Chardin as anti evolution because he has a role for God in the process of evolution.


    well, Dawkins . . . (5.00 / 1) (#67)
    by The Addams Family on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 05:00:05 PM EST
    Imagine someone holding forth on biology whose only knowledge of the subject is the Book of British Birds, and you have a rough idea of what it feels like to read Richard Dawkins on theology. . . . What, one wonders, are Dawkins's views on the epistemological differences between Aquinas and Duns Scotus? Has he read Eriugena on subjectivity, Rahner on grace or Moltmann on hope? Has he even heard of them? Or does he imagine like a bumptious young barrister that you can defeat the opposition while being complacently ignorant of its toughest case? Dawkins, it appears, has sometimes been told by theologians that he sets up straw men only to bowl them over, a charge he rebuts in this book; but if The God Delusion is anything to go by, they are absolutely right. As far as theology goes, Dawkins has an enormous amount in common with Ian Paisley and American TV evangelists. Both parties agree pretty much on what religion is; it's just that Dawkins rejects it while Oral Roberts and his unctuous tribe grow fat on it.

    "Lunging, Flailing, Mispunching": Dawkins's The God Delusion reviewed by Terry Eagleton, radical left-wing literary theorist & critic


    Um.... (5.00 / 1) (#76)
    by Dr Molly on Sun Dec 18, 2011 at 06:22:05 PM EST
    I don't know where this new anti-Dawkins meme disparaging his background is coming from BUT

    Dawkins was a well-known evolutionary biologist with numerous publications long before he became famous for the God Delusion book.

    He's got a PhD in animal behavior (with a famous advisor, Tinbergen), and a long list of academic accomplishments.


    Eagleton i s not (none / 0) (#78)
    by The Addams Family on Sun Dec 18, 2011 at 07:50:11 PM EST
    disparaging Dawkins's background

    he is referencing the Book of British Birds in a humorous way, to make a point: that nothing about Dawkins's background & expertise in evolutionary biology qualifies him to write about the domain of theology with any authority at all, much less with the disdainful ignorance that he brings to the topic

    Eagleton's larger point, as his review goes on to say, is that Dawkins "tends to see religion and fundamentalist religion as one and the same" and is

    like a man who equates socialism with the Gulag. Like the puritan and sex, Dawkins sees God everywhere, even where he is self-evidently absent.
    Eagleton acknowledges that
    the two most deadly texts on the planet, apart perhaps from Donald Rumsfeld's emails, are the Bible and the Koran; and Dawkins . . . has done a magnificent job over the years of speaking out against that particular strain of psychopathology known as fundamentalism, whether Texan or Taliban[,]

    but says that Dawkins is "appallingly bitchy about those of his scientific colleagues who disagree with him" and that Dawkins could have made his points against God & relgion "without being so theologically illiterate."

    i surmise that you do not believe in God, & neither do i - apparently we disagree about the intellectual caliber of The God Delusion


    That's because there is no role for God (5.00 / 0) (#77)
    by Dr Molly on Sun Dec 18, 2011 at 06:22:50 PM EST
    in modern evolutionary theory. Dawkins and most other evolutionary biologists would agree on that.

    They disappeared decades ago (none / 0) (#23)
    by Towanda on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 12:51:17 PM EST
    and many disappeared from the Catholic church rolls.

    The result, according to a dear friend, a priest who is hanging in there, is that those remaining in the church are extremely conservative and took over, attracting more of the likes of Gingrich.

    I read a good book on the John XXIII episode a while ago, and I was reminded -- as I saw in the church at that time, too -- of the tremendous resistance at the time.  Such sorts went along with the English mass and other superficial changes, but they turned to arch-conservative successors in the papacy, so that John XXIII's serious changes in the church never really "took."


    Then there are the combos (none / 0) (#25)
    by christinep on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 12:55:14 PM EST
    As a lifelong Catholic, I agree so much with your sentiment about Pope John XXIII. My Polish background, tho, makes me quite emotionally happy to have witnessed the elevation of John Paul II as well. IMO, there are many clergy within the Church who understand & adhere firmly to John 23's societal liberalism in health care, education, and modernizing accessible approaches.

    The Church--like all of society0--has its conservative wing & its liberal wing. It has always dealt with the ebb & flow of emphasis. My own take (and I've actually spoken with the now Apostolic Administrator/aka Acting Archbishop here and with the Monsigneur of my parish) is that, while the focus among the American hierarchy shifted as a result of the installation of conservative Bishops named by Pope John Paul II, the emphasis on welcoming the immigrant and opposing the death penalty and providing care by the government for the poor remains. Granted, different Bishoprics reflect different degrees of emphasis...and some American bishops have gone a bit off the right-wing rails....But others haven't. The community of Catholics in the US--based upon anecdotes, polling, & personal knowledge--looks to be about as diverse as America in general on the issues of the day. The most notable difference would be in the degree of emphasis on what-have-become-known as the "life--birth & death" issues.

    Looking at the Church beyond the quick media headlines, tho, one would see that the John vis-a-vis John Paul dichotomy is a surficial & artificial distinction. The Church is--er--a Big Tent & then some.


    A Catholic friend of mine (none / 0) (#33)
    by MKS on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:13:24 PM EST
    tells me the Church is dead above the Parish level.

    As for the American hierarchy (none / 0) (#68)
    by christinep on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 05:11:33 PM EST
    ...and while my husband talks with a broad sweep as your friend...I'm not sure that it isn't more a matter of being in need of some strong doses of welcoming medicine.

    IMO, this is really a transitional time for the Church. While John Paul II had a penchant for appointing Bishops with conservative credentials, as it were, in what would be called the "life--birth & death" issues, he also had a very expansive & inclusive world approach that stands out in a long line of Popes. His role in opening up freedoms in Poland (together with Lech Walesa & Solidarnosc)led to political & religious freedoms for millions in Eastern Europe. The man was complex...a man with undeniable charisma, he was strong, intellectual, expansive, a promoter of the fine arts (ergo, the appreciation for Latin & the unity of the language); and, as with all of us, the product of his time--influenced by WWII and by the later freedom struggle in Soveit occupied Poland...life & death matters. (And, as a Polish man, one who dedicated himself to Mary...and the inextricable relationship with what has been termed the "fundamental life issue" that sets him at odds with today's progressivism.)

    I think that the patterns; the changes within the Church are complex...and the evolving process is very slow. (But, the Church had had @2000 years to grow & continue to learn.)


    In some parts of the U.S., perhaps (none / 0) (#69)
    by Towanda on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 06:57:06 PM EST
    but Rome long has looked the other way at a lot in this country, lest the church here go the way that it did in England.

    However, I suspect your friend was not speaking of the worldwide church, with its extraordinary growth and strength in some parts of the planet -- and in some parts of the U.S.  

    I would bet that Gingrich may do surprisingly well in those regions of the country that Republicans are trying to rid of many Catholics crossing the border.  Will he hem and haw on immigration?  I haven't bothered about learning his stances on issues yet but ought to watch this.

    Interestingly, although many Catholics from Mexico and the like are social conservatives agreeing, for example, with Gingrich on women's reproductive rights, they also come from the social-justice mindset of the church that had its heyday in this country in the 1950s and 1960s.  So, say my friends still in the church, it's a very complex situation at this point and perhaps too unpredictable to declare its demise or even decline.


    Have read that majority of Catholics in S. CA (none / 0) (#75)
    by oculus on Sun Dec 18, 2011 at 03:23:37 PM EST
    are Latino.  

    "It's really weird that Gingrich, (5.00 / 2) (#26)
    by Capt Howdy on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 12:55:50 PM EST
     whose personal life does not really shout out Christian virtue, is the darling of the Evangelical Right".

    weird and wonderful.  it exposes them for the soulless hypocrites they are.

    But we already knew that. (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by oculus on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:11:14 PM EST
    Doubt "they" really care deep down. Two (none / 0) (#56)
    by oculus on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 03:32:46 PM EST
    many who've been revealed as straying from the approved way.

    I consider JPII (5.00 / 1) (#51)
    by observed on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 02:36:44 PM EST
    morally culpable in part for the deaths of millions from AIDS.
    Not only did the church ban condom use by Catholics, they also used their influence to prevent condom distribution in many countries with high percentages of Catholics.
    Worst of all was the Vatican-sanctioned "condoms cause AIDS" program in Africa.

    Of course, this makes JPII (none / 0) (#53)
    by observed on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 02:42:29 PM EST
    perfect for Gingrich, who wrote his dissertation on the colonial education system under Leopold II in the Congo.

    The earlier condoms decision (none / 0) (#61)
    by christinep on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 04:15:08 PM EST
    ...prior to the modified allowance version per Pope Benedict...was very unfortunate with horrible results.  

    I am a lapsed Catholic (5.00 / 1) (#71)
    by kmblue on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 07:12:06 PM EST
    but I only have this to say about the Church.
    Priests, sexual abuse, cover ups.  So what the church thinks or does matters not to me.  Oh wait, I forgot its pressure on Obama re reproductive rights.

    Now about Newtie--he is a hypocrite of the highest order, having pilloried President Clinton for cheating on Hillary  while boinking a consenting adult outside of marriage his ownself.  (ownself, Southern expression)  God can do what she likes, but I'm not about to forgive that Gingroid.

    I wonder (5.00 / 1) (#73)
    by Ga6thDem on Sun Dec 18, 2011 at 08:17:59 AM EST
    how is daughters feel having been rolled under the bus by Gingrich by now having them declared "illegitimate" in the eyes of the Catholic Church.

    His first wife is still alive. I'm assuming that he had that marriage annulled too to become a Catholic.

    Just like Howdy above says, this just exposes Evangelicals to be a bunch of soulless freaks who really just use marriage as an excuse to "hate on gays' for whatever reason.

    In an annulment (none / 0) (#79)
    by jbindc on Mon Dec 19, 2011 at 08:00:02 AM EST
    The children are not considered to be illegitimate.

    Don't ask me the why's and wheretofors, but they are legitimate, so that's not an issue.


    No news here. Converts are always zealots. (none / 0) (#1)
    by Mr Natural on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 10:12:10 AM EST
    And fools.

    He's just a divisive user (5.00 / 2) (#4)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 10:41:18 AM EST
    And I'm sure that all the really juicy old money longs for the good old days.

    This is not a comment (none / 0) (#2)
    by Edger on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 10:14:35 AM EST
    about crucifixion.

    If my family ever practiced anything (none / 0) (#3)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 10:39:43 AM EST
    they were practicing Lutherans.  Being a Lutheran I guess was just too damned vanilla for Newt :)

    I've always enjoyed going to Catholic services though because they are pretty, flowers and pressed linen, have incense, and shiny things. I have a weakness for shiny things.  I have been urged to stop admitting this, but it is the damned truth.  I'm like a crow sometimes.  Having a new shiny faith could be like having a new bobble.  My faith is so old and everything has a patina, I haven't broken it or worn it out but maybe I need a new one :)

    Perfect. Wife #3 sings in the choir at (none / 0) (#5)
    by oculus on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 11:11:34 AM EST
    the National Shrine.  

    Visited the National Shrine (none / 0) (#42)
    by sj on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:44:01 PM EST
    for the first time this year.  It is stunningly beautiful with several chapels that would be a full on church in any other place.  And it's surprisingly globally inclusive with many side chapels dedicated to the Madonna of different countries.  

    And the mosaics!  I think New might just like bright and shiny, too.


    In an earlier life, I played an organ recital (5.00 / 1) (#44)
    by oculus on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:51:03 PM EST

    A male Madame Bovary, perhaps. (none / 0) (#62)
    by christinep on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 04:16:02 PM EST
    Pretty simple (none / 0) (#6)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 11:11:51 AM EST
    It's really weird that Gingrich, whose personal life does not really shout out Christian virtue, is the darling of the Evangelical Right. I mean it's nothing to me, who lives in a glass house on this, but:

    The evangelicals stress acknowledgement, confession and acceptance. The returned sinner is celebrated. Remember the Prodigal Son.

    On the Catholic side I think it is, "Go and sin no more."

    The divorce issue is a big issue among some denominations given that they believe that the only basis for divorce is death or unfaithfulness.
    That does not prevent the individual from being a member. But it does keep them from being officials/leaders within the church.

    Others treat divorce much like they address the issue of homosexuality. They condemn the act but love the person, leaving judgement where it should be, with God.

    Has the Catholic Church, i.e., the Pope, (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by oculus on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 11:17:18 AM EST
    changed policy to permit a divorced person (with un-annulled previous marriage) to become Catholic?  

    Looks Like His Previous Marriages were Nullified (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by Dan the Man on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 11:35:36 AM EST

    "Gingrich converted to Catholicism in March 2009, in part due to his third wife's faith and Mass attendance. Along with his conversion, he formally requested that the Catholic Church nullify his marriage to Ginther."


    Dud they annull it? (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 11:53:40 AM EST
    And what of the other marriage?

    And what were the grounds for the annullment? Because if it is "irreconcilable differences,": then the Church's rule on divorce is rather nonsensical no?

    I mean so much for strict adherence right? I'm just laughing at the whole thing myself.


    Anullment of a marriage in which (5.00 / 2) (#16)
    by oculus on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 12:10:48 PM EST
    the couple have children:  a true farce.  

    Catholic annulment is very weird. (none / 0) (#15)
    by caseyOR on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 12:08:45 PM EST
    With an annulment the Church declares that the marriage in question never happened.

    Geez, the Kennedys have a tried for couple of annulments, the most recent being Joe Kennnedy II's attempted annulment of his first marriage to Sheila Rauch. That was interesting because his first wife, who is the mother of Joe's sons, challenged the annulment in Canonical court. She was not too keen on having the Church declare that her marriage had never existed, which is what an annulment does. The annulment was initially granted. Rauch appealed,and the annulment was overturned.

    Rauch details her side of the things in her book Shattered Faith.


    A friend consulted her priest about challenging (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by oculus on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 12:12:03 PM EST
    the annulment of her marriage.  Priest:  forget it.  Move on.  

    Your friend is not (none / 0) (#50)
    by Zorba on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 02:30:42 PM EST
    a former Kennedy, known to news organizations, and able to get "air time" when going public about something.  (Gee, is that cynical of me?)

    Pretty sure it was annuled (none / 0) (#37)
    by Yman on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:34:17 PM EST
    The first marriage could be annulled based on the fact that his first wife was dead.  As far as the Church is concerned, the second marriage was considered null under ligamen grounds because she had been married previously.

    Hilarious - the third wife's "faith." (5.00 / 1) (#58)
    by Anne on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 03:38:37 PM EST
    As an Episcopalian, not versed in the tenets of the Catholic Church, I do have to wonder if it's even possible that the Church viewed Calista as a Catholic-in-good-standing during the years she was having an affair with Gingrich, a married man.

    The other night, I was cooking dinner while the news was on, and I heard a reporter say that Calista Gingrich is never far from Newt's side - and I laughed and said to my husband, "if my husband was a serial cheater, I'd probably not let him out of my sight, either!"


    I, too, had trouble with the (none / 0) (#63)
    by KeysDan on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 04:16:04 PM EST
    correct way to spell Mrs. Gingrich's name: Calista or Callista.  A  mnemonic I am happy to share is: two 'l's' as in Camilla Parker Bowles, mistress/spouse to Charles.  

    I do not know enough about the (none / 0) (#8)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 11:19:58 AM EST
    Catholic church to answer the question.

    No (5.00 / 2) (#12)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 11:53:57 AM EST
    You don't.

    Ha (none / 0) (#18)
    by oculus on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 12:12:34 PM EST
    Never said I did. (none / 0) (#52)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 02:40:12 PM EST
    Unless Gingrich (none / 0) (#10)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 11:51:28 AM EST
    got his first 2 marriages annulled, he's sinning every day.

    It's pretty simple really.


    He was sinning till they were annulled (none / 0) (#14)
    by Big Tent Democrat on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 12:01:39 PM EST
    which I discovered occurred.

    When is not clear.


    Really? I read that the second wife (none / 0) (#19)
    by Towanda on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 12:20:35 PM EST
    just laughed at the request for nullification.  And that was in a fairly recent interview.  I wonder why she caved.

    She can laugh all she wants. But, unfortunately, (none / 0) (#24)
    by oculus on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 12:54:31 PM EST
    the annulment usually follows.  Actually, no dog in this fight.  Just sympathy for my friend.

    I've read the horror stories (5.00 / 2) (#38)
    by Towanda on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:36:39 PM EST
    of the Catholic hierarchy approving annulments without even letting the wives know.

    But I've never read of the hierarchy approving an annulment without letting the husband know.

    The church remains medieval toward women in so many ways.


    Rumor has it (none / 0) (#47)
    by NYShooter on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:56:46 PM EST
    that Neuter had an erection lasting more than four hours.

    Another aspect (none / 0) (#21)
    by christinep on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 12:34:10 PM EST
    Having been married earlier outside the Church is not recognized...so, while there may have been an "annulment," the proceeding would only be declaring that the "marriages" --in the eyes of the Church--were not valid ab initio. I'm guessing that that would be the canonical reasoning.

    In any event, everyone knows or will know before voting about the three marriages--in the eyes of the civil authorities & general society--as well as the apparent nasty circumstances surrounding his method of divorcing #1 & #2.


    Not applicable, as Newt applied (none / 0) (#40)
    by Towanda on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:38:53 PM EST
    for the annulment of marriage #2 -- years after marriage #3, by the way.

    There seems to still be a mystery about whether he even sought an annulment of marriage #1, the one to his high school teacher with whom he had an affair since he was her student.  These days, Fox News loves those stories, but . . . nada re Newt.


    Applicable because... (none / 0) (#64)
    by christinep on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 04:20:58 PM EST
    the finding of nullity is quite easy if one was never before in the Church nor married in it (wives #1 & #2.) Sounds goofy, I know...but the peculiarities of any Church law can really result in these procedural peculiarities.

    Annulments are much more common (none / 0) (#34)
    by MKS on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:14:33 PM EST

    As would wife #3... (none / 0) (#22)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 12:43:03 PM EST
    especially if she was receiving the sacraments.  No annulment, no marriage in the eyes of the church.

    Similarly, if your spouse was previously married and has not received an Decree of Invalidity from a Tribunal, there is a problem.  In such circumstances, you may not partake of the sacraments, including the reception of Holy Communion.  We respect all marriages, even those which have ended in a civil divorce.  Every prior marriage must be examined, since each is presumed to be valid with a lasting and lifelong commitment.  Until it is shown otherwise through the ministry of the Tribunal, no person is free to enter into another marriage without the appearance or occasion of serious sin.

    it still doesnt (none / 0) (#28)
    by Capt Howdy on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 12:57:39 PM EST
    explain her plastic cartoon hair with that strange "woop" on the side that never goes away and never EVER moves.

    Aforementioned (none / 0) (#29)
    by Capt Howdy on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:06:39 PM EST
    Ha. Styling plus jel and hairspray? (none / 0) (#30)
    by oculus on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:10:33 PM EST
    Kevlar (5.00 / 2) (#35)
    by Edger on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:17:14 PM EST
    Shhh (none / 0) (#36)
    by MKS on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:23:23 PM EST
    Lay off Newt...he is taking too many hits right now....

    But, then again, better get your shots in before he totally implodes like Cain.


    Rumor has it... (none / 0) (#41)
    by MileHi Hawkeye on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:41:42 PM EST
    that he's tanking real bad in Iowa due to the lack of local campaign organization.  Hard to win in Iowa without a ground game.  

    His latest explanation for where those Freddie (none / 0) (#45)
    by oculus on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:53:37 PM EST
    lobbying funds went is humorous.  Pd. the overhead, not me.  

    A bit harsh, Donald...tho with good points (none / 0) (#66)
    by christinep on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 04:43:47 PM EST
    IMO, any institution or organization exhibits "corrupting practices" at times. The historical Church was wont to enter into alliances with various countries & their leaders for all kinds of reasons--ranging from preservation to power lust--as I'm sure you know. And, as in any Church (or other institution) the humans involved periodically seem to mistake their own power lust or agenda as a prayed for response from the Almighty.  Can't prove that, of course; but, I assume that the Inquisition or the Cardinal Richlieu time or the rampaging of the Conquistadores against the South American natives, etc. etc. did not come from prayer and humility. It may be that history reveals times when Church personnel confused themselves with Caesar.

    Yet, I separate the actions, misfeasance, and human error from faith. They are not, and never have been, the same. And, I say that knowing that those who have suffered at the hands of Church officials have often been horribly hurt, wrongfully hurt. I also suspect that you now know that your grandmother did not need that type of person in the clothes of a priest to intervene for her with God...sounds like her life did it for her. But, yes...everyone I know in the Church, including myself, have hurtful experiences similar to what you describe...sometimes they are resolved & sometimes not.

    As for Newt: In matters of spirituality, I don't judge. But, my guess is that his "in" with top Church officials will be limited. Lots of rumor, no doubt. Anything other than puff, we'll see.



    Newt married Callista in (none / 0) (#43)
    by KeysDan on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:50:13 PM EST
    a civil ceremony in Alexandria, VA,  August 18, 2000.  The hotel was the Marriott Courtyard, although the Willard would have added a nice edge.  And, he became a Catholic in 2009.  Two years after that third marriage (2002) he asked for an annulment of the second marriage to Marianne Ginther (a marriage that took place in a Lutheran Church, not in a civil ceremony, hence it was valid in the eyes of the Church).

    Apparently, the basis was a "Ligamen Annulment", which asserts that there was an impediment to the marriage--Marianne had been married before she married Newton.   Reports are that this annulment was granted, but the dates and  annulment  of the first marriage to Jackie Battley and its canonical basis is not clear. If all the previous marriages were annulled, it would be likely that Newt and Callista would be married (again) in a Catholic ceremony.  Although technically this would be the fourth time Newt took the marriage vows,  it probably does not really count as a fourth marriage. At least I, for one, would give him that.

    Newt is presenting himself to Evangelicals and other voters as having been the beneficiary of God's forgiving nature.   But he must  also try not to repeat his confessed sins,  so it is expected that he will not place himself in an "occasion for that sin". Newt has blamed his straying, in part, on his feeling too passionate about his country and working too hard--hence, a mistress and all the rest.    Perhaps, Newt should stay out of politics since this seems to be bad for his soul.  

    Note: The first wife, Jackie Battley (none / 0) (#46)
    by KeysDan on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 01:55:38 PM EST
    is deceased, so no annulment is needed for the first marriage.

    I'm not sure that's correct (5.00 / 1) (#65)
    by Towanda on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 04:26:09 PM EST
    as even if a spouse is dead, the marriage then existed.  I suppose Newt argues that he is now a widower from the first marriage . . . or not, as noted below.  Do we foresee an implosion soon?

    Actually, I don't think that an anullment (none / 0) (#48)
    by desertswine on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 02:02:51 PM EST
    is necessary in order to marry one of those Twilight Zone type D androids.

    Actually, there is some question (none / 0) (#49)
    by KeysDan on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 02:18:04 PM EST
    about whether the first Mrs. Gingrich is still with us.  So stay tuned.

    The First Mrs. Gingrich is indeed alive (none / 0) (#72)
    by womanwarrior on Sat Dec 17, 2011 at 11:20:03 PM EST
    if you believe news articles that come up when you google her.  So I think it will be very interesting to see if the now religious Catholic Gingrich receives communion.  Not allowed from someone who is divorced and remarried, as I recall the rules.  Will our press tell us?  

    Usually, I am all for accepting repentance, but you know, I just do not believe the Newt.  


    Kerry/communion in Catholic Church: (none / 0) (#74)
    by oculus on Sun Dec 18, 2011 at 03:20:36 PM EST

    At least one bishop already knows how he should deal with Kerry. Archbishop Raymond Burke of St. Louis warned the candidate when he campaigned earlier this year in Missouri "not to present himself for communion" at any church in his city. Such ostracism is reserved by canon law for "those who obstinately persist in manifest grave sin."
     [Italics added.]