There is something developing within our Church. There is a
revitalization of faith. I have been here as archbishop for 12
years now. I remember in the early years, come the cold, dark
weather, for many, many weeks this cathedral would be virtually
empty. But now you are here! The spirit of God is moving among
you, God's people. This is countercultural! The culture says you
should be sleeping now. The culture says you should stay in
where it is nice and warm. The culture says this is your only
free day, enjoy yourselves. But you are here. This choir
heightens my admiration Sunday after Sunday. So many of them
come here from distances. Some of them are Catholic and some are
of other religious persuasions. They come to give us the
glorious music of this Mass. They are not supposed to do things
like that in this culture. That is countercultural. That is of
the spirit of Lent—to give, to give, to give, to deprive
From the text of Cardinal O'Connor's remarks and
homily at Sunday Mass in St. Patrick's Cathedral Feb. 18, 1997.
The entire homily may be found at /library/BISHOPS/LIFEPILG.HTM
On School Distribution of Condoms
I'm not going to argue that too many condoms are defective,
or improperly used, or induce a false sense of security, so that
kids end up with AIDS or a venereal disease or get pregnant.
Those arguments are absolutely true, but there's a much more
critical argument about pushing condoms on kids: It's wrong!
It's corrupting thousands of kids. It's telling them they have
no personal moral responsibility for their actions. It's telling
them that the only real sinners are those who deny them condoms.
It says: "It's not your fault if you get AIDS or give
someone else AIDS. It's the fault of those who try to push moral
values down your throats--those killers--those Catholic priests
and bishops, those Protestants and Jews and Muslims who believe
in Divine Law and personal responsibility.
From an article appearing in Celebrate Life March-April 1994.
The entire article may be found at /library/ISSUES/CONDOMOC.HTM
Violence at Abortion ClinicsI conclude for the record: I categorically abhor and denounce
violence. I categorically denounce the hypothesis that to kill
an abortionist is justifiable in order to save babies. I have
publicly denounced the violence of an abortion clinic bomber. I
have signed every renunciation of the use of capital punishment
published by the Roman Catholic bishops in New York and the
nation. I have publicly denounced even verbal violence in labor
negotiations and strikes. I have consistently denounced violence
against persons based on their sexual orientation. Such
denunciations and many more have been heard by thousands of
people in this cathedral, millions throughout the world. That is
a matter of record which cannot be blotted out by any efforts to
indict my pro-life efforts or those of the church as inciting
murder or other violence. Anyone who would make such charges
would have to be desperate, indeed, and has my sincere sympathy.
From a homily, 8 Jan 1994 at St. Patrick's Cathedral in New
York. The entire homily may be found at /library/BISHOPS/OCONABOR.HTM
Indeed, we thank You for choosing them from among us, so that
they understand us as we understand them, suffer with us and
rejoice with us, worry with us and trust with us, share our
beings, our lives, our faith.
We ask that You give them this day
the gift You gave Your chosen ones on the way to Emmaus: Your
presence in their hearts, Your holiness in their souls, Your joy
in their spirits. And let them see You face to face in the
breaking of the Eucharistic bread.
The entire Prayer for Priests may be found at /library/PRAYER/PRAYPRIE.HTM