Cardinal Dolan: an influential American

Source: District of Canada

TIME magazine[1] recently named the archbishop of New York, Cardinal Timothy Dolan, as one of the “The 100 Most Influential People in the World”.

Described as “a warm prelate who leads his flock more by charm than fiat”, it is certainly true that Cardinal Dolan characterizes the typical American, and exudes a “man on the street” personality.

Perhaps (as mentioned in an earlier commentary) this likeable quality has uniquely enabled him to lead the charge against the HHS mandate. Unfortunately, the cardinal uses the liberal principle of religious liberty to defend the Catholic Church’s liberty. On this point, we hope (and pray) that eventually His Eminence will see the fallacy of this “defense”.

The TIME article brings another interesting point into view: the Catholic Church still exercises a universal influence throughout the world – particularly when a bishop has no qualms in plainly speaking to defend Holy Mother Church.

This trait of Cardinal Dolan has been noted by the media, which standing in opposition to his prelatial peers has surprised them for his candor and direct approach; to him though, this should only be natural as he explained on Face the Nation[2]:

The public square in the United States is always enriched whenever people approach it when they're inspired by their deepest-held convictions… And on the other hand... I think the public square is impoverished when people might be coerced to put a piece of duct tape over their mouth, keeping them from bringing their deepest-held convictions to the conversation."

If we identify the phrase “deepest-held convictions” as the One, True Faith, His Eminence is absolutely correct. And in this sense, Catholics should take a cue from this cardinal statement and be forces of influence for Truth, particularly as the Church’s immutable principles are publicly attacked and held to ridicule—either on the street, in the public square, or in the press.


1 Reported on the TIME website on April 18, 2012 under the title, “TIMES 100: The List”.

2 During an interview with Bob Schieffer on Easter Sunday, April 8, 2012.