On the same day Catholic Cardinal Timothy Dolan told reporters that he’s “bolstered” by Governor Andrew Cuomo’s assurances that he won’t support a bill pending in the New York Legislature that would define abortion rights (NOTE: the Governor’s Office declined comment when asked if Cuomo opposed the bill), Cuomo — who is Roman Catholic — declared this week “Timothy Cardinal Dolan Week” in New York.
“It is an honor to designate Timothy Cardinal Dolan Week in New York,” Cuomo, who met with the New York State Catholic Conference this morning, says in a statement. “Cardinal Dolan has quickly become a beloved leader in our state and it is clear that he will continue to have a tremendous impact on the next generation of Catholicism in New York and throughout the United States.”
Dolan has toed the conservative Catholic line with his opposition to abortion, and helped lead the charge against the same-sex marriage bill that Cuomo signed into law last year.
Additionally, Dolan bashed the Obama Administration’s decision to no
longer enforce the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA), which defines
marriage as only being legal if it’s between a man and a woman.
“The administration’s failure to change course on this matter will…
precipitate a national conflict between church and state of enormous
proportions and to the detriment of both institutions,” Dolan wrote in a letter to the president last year.
Dolan’s charm and conservative Catholic positions have made him somewhat of a
rock star amongst Catholics — 60 Minutes did a segment on him last
year (which you can watch below), and he was elected in 2010 to be head the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.
He’s even been dubbed “the American pope.”
Social issues aside, Dolan’s often applauded for his efforts to repair the Church’s image following seemingly endless cases of priests sexually abusing children. However, he reportedly also is urging Cuomo and state lawmakers to oppose a bill currently in the Legislature that would extend statutes of limitations for lawsuits in sexual abuse cases, saying it would “devastate parish finances.”
Dolan’s office didn’t immediately get back to us when asked to clarify the cardinal’s position on the sexual abuse bill, which you can read here.
To celebrate Dolan’s week, Cuomo says One World Trade Center will be lit in red until Sunday.