Bishop Bars Rite for Killea

How ironic that on the front page we read how six Catholic priests are willing to lay down their lives in the cause of democracy in Central America, and on the same front page that an American Catholic bishop uses his holy office to punish an American for using her right of free speech in our democracy ("Pro-Choice Lawmaker Is Barred From Church Rite," Nov. 17).

As a child I remember how proud my Northern Ireland Catholic father was that a Catholic was elected President of this country, overcoming the bigoted fears of a "papist" presidency. And how well he taught me what happened in Northern Ireland when the interests of democracy were subservient to those of religious zealots. Thank God he is not alive today to see the American Catholic hierarchy repeating the terrible mistakes of the past by coercing our politicians into becoming "agents of Rome."

KEVIN P. CONROY

Los Angeles

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