I cannot begin to explain the likely consequences of Marc's actions. Don't get me wrong; up until this point Marc enjoyed a solid reputation as a canon lawyer. He spent six months researching this petition, and his research, presentation, and handling of the facts and of the law is solid. Yet in terms of his future, this is the most risky venture undertaken by a canon lawyer since the eighties when Fr. Tom Doyle predicted the clergy sexual abuse crisis. Basically, Marc is putting his reputation and his livelihood on the line here.
We spoke earlier today by phone, and he is already come under heavy fire from the Democrat machine, some heavy players within the Catholic hierarchy, not a few respected canonists, and even some neo-conservative Republicans. Up until now, he's also fought much of this battle alone, against powerful enemies on several fronts, and out of his own pockets. Keep in mind that Church employees don't make a whole lot of money to begin with, and Marc has living expenses like the rest of us. As long as this canonical action is drawing public attention, despite the Church's shortage of canon lawyers, most dioceses won't touch him.
Yet Marc assured me when we spoke that the costs were worth it. He also told me that he would rather seek Kerry repent than be excommunicated, and this remains the end for which Marc hopes. Barring this happy outcome, however, Marc is ready and willing to sacrifice his future over this canonical action. Although I cringe whenever I think of what's in store for Marc, I know he is doing the right thing.
Ongoing commentary by the editors of CatholicKerryWatch
Sen. John Kerry stands with Kate Michelman (right) President of NARAL Pro-Choice America.
Since 1995, Michelman's group has given Kerry a 100% rating for his voting record to defend abortion.