Photo via Unsplash
Photo via Unsplash
Not the whole story
I’m writing to express my opinion that the recent article regarding Bishop Bransfield (8/27/20 The Evangelist) was incomplete and misleading. I refer you to an 8/20/20 article in The Washington Post for important details that are missing from the Evangelist article. Your 100-word limit prevents me from getting into detail, but I will mention that: his $441,000 repayment is far less than the $792,638 sought by the Church; he will receive a $2,250 monthly stipend despite his transgressions; and his actual wording is more a defense than an apology.
Omitting these details will allow many readers to feel that this issue has been adequately addressed and allow them to “move on.” This falls right into the category of “Keeping our hands clean” as presented so well in Michele Brown’s excellent Guest Column in that same Evangelist.
-William A. VanDeValk

A compassionate vote
Father Walsh, (St. Pius X of Loudon­ville), in his reflection of the Gospel for the 20th Sunday of Ordinary Times, posed an interesting question. “If Jesus asks you, when you meet Him face-to-face, ‘How compassionate have you been’ — then he paused — ‘to those whom I love?’ What will your answer be?” I believe this is a question anyone claiming to be a practicing Catholic needs to ask of every candidate for whom she/he casts a vote in this upcoming election. I believe our vote will be counted for or against us. We can say we are compassionate, but our vote determines if we apply compassion to “those whom I love.” Webster’s New Universal Una­bridged Dictionary defines compassion as “suffering with others; sorrow for the distress or misfortune of another with the desire to help.” It lists synonyms as “kindness, tenderness, clemency, mercy.” Our world needs these kinds of actions from its leaders. Who will you support?
-Andrea Mungas

Feeling uplifted
Thank you for publishing Michele Brown’s recent article in your Guest Column. I was blessed and uplifted by her views … and further encouraged by the fact that it appeared in The Evangelist. She has put into words what I have been feeling very intensely as of late.
-Jeanne Derwin

Holocaust headline
I must object to the headline in the 8/27 issue, regarding the Holocaust memorial. It is not supported by the facts reported in the story. The (people of) the Diocese of Albany gave the land, not the Bishop. He may have acted on our behalf, he may have made the decision all by himself, but (according to the story) the property given up belonged to the Diocese, not Bishop Scharfenberger.
The headline reminds me of the political stories which report that some Assembly member “gave” money to some organization, when it was state funds controlled by the officeholder. All designed to make the incumbent look good and ensure re-election.
And I’m proud of our support for the memorial, especially given some neighborhood opposition.
-Ted Lackner

(Editor’s Note: The property that Bishop Scharfenberger signed the title to for the Holocaust memorial was owned by Most Holy Redeemer Cemetery, an independent not-for-profit corporation. It was not a diocesan-owned property.)

After a long hiatus, Letters to the Editor returns to The Evangelist! We want to hear from you, our readers again. Letters are subject to editing and should be 100 words or less, concern topics covered in The Evangelist and include your town and telephone. Essays or opinion pieces, 700 words maximum, are also welcome. We prefer submissions by email (, or by mail (40 N. Main Ave., ­Albany 12203).