Matt C. Abbott
November 4, 2016
Illinois priest: Trump voters are 'going to hell'
By Matt C. Abbott

At least one Catholic priest in the Chicago area apparently believes that people who vote for Donald Trump will go to hell.

An acquaintance of mine, Ted (not his real name), wrote the following in an email:
    After Mass today I was praying in front of the tabernacle – I was all alone in the church – and our pastor in the back of the church said, 'I don't care who hears it. Anyone voting for Trump is going to hell. It's a mortal sin.'

    This is an absolute bush league cheap shot toward me.... I'm just going to keep praying for him.
Ted is an orthodox Catholic layman. The priest who allegedly made the remarks is Father Jack Plotkowski, pastor of Saint Zachary Parish in Des Plaines, Illinois.

Through email, I contacted Father Plotkowski – as well as the associate pastor and two officials in the Archdiocese of Chicago's communications office – to get his side of the story.

As of the time this column was submitted for publishing, there's been no response.

A priest who makes such foolish and destructive statements is, quite frankly, a danger to souls. Even if it was somehow his idea of a joke (which I sincerely doubt), it was a terrible one. A sick one.

I can only imagine the type of horrid advice he might be giving to Catholics seeking his priestly guidance on important moral matters.

Contrast what Father Plotkowski allegedly asserted with what Father Frank Pavone, national director of Priests for Life, recently asserted regarding the choice between Trump and Clinton:
    ...[T]he alternative to Trump is monumentally worse – not only in terms of the candidate personally, but of the entire army that follows him or her into so many offices like secretary of state, of HHS, surgeon general, attorney general, and thousands of other positions, not to mention the courts.

    We don't just elect an individual to the presidency; we elect an entire army of people whose worldview is marked by the party platform....

    What an incredible reparation Mr. Trump is making now for any past faults by the very fact that he is running as the Republican nominee for president and is ready to nominate the right kind of judges and sign the right kinds of legislation, which will steer our nation away from so many morally corrupt public policies. A penitent sinner could hardly have a more substantial opportunity to make reparation.
© Matt C. Abbott

 

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Matt C. Abbott

Matt C. Abbott is a Catholic commentator with a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication, media and theatre from Northeastern Illinois University. He's been interviewed on MSNBC, NPR, WLS-TV (ABC) in Chicago, WMTV (NBC) in Madison, Wis., and has been quoted in The New York Times and the Chicago Tribune. He can be reached at mattcabbott@gmail.com.


(Note: I welcome thoughtful feedback from readers. If you want our correspondence to remain confidential, please specify as such in your initial email to me. However, I reserve the right to forward and/or publish emails – complete with email addresses – that are accusatory, insulting or threatening in nature, even if those emails are marked confidential. Also, please be aware that RenewAmerica is not my website; RA's president and editor is Stephen Stone, who can be reached here. I'm just one of RA's columnists, for which I'm very grateful. I don't speak for the other RA columnists, so please don't email me to complain about what someone else has written. Thank you and God bless!)

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