The news outlets CNN, MSNBC, and the New York Times do not â€œprovide trustworthy information about religious faith,â€ said Philadelphiaâ€™s incoming Archbishop, Charles Chaput, at the Catholic World Youth Day ongoing this week in Madrid, Spain.
Chaput, the former Archbishop of Denver, made his remarks in an address on religious freedom to a group of more than 10,000 young pilgrims in Madrid on Wednesday. As initially reported in First Things, Chaput told the audience that, â€œIn the United States, our battles over abortion, family life, same-sex â€˜marriage,â€™ and other sensitive issues have led to ferocious public smears and legal threats not only against Catholics, but also against Mormons, evangelicals, and other religious believers.â€
â€œAnd with relatively few exceptions,â€ he said, â€œthe mass media tend to cover these disputed issues with a combination of ignorance, laziness, and bias against traditional Christian belief.â€
The Archbishop continued: â€œWe make a very serious mistake if we rely on media like the New York Times, Newsweek, CNN, or MSNBC for reliable news about religion. These news media simply donâ€™t provide trustworthy information about religious faith — and sometimes they canâ€™t provide it, either because of limited resources or because of their own editorial prejudices.â€
â€œThese are secular operations focused on making a profit,â€ he said.Â â€œThey have very little sympathy for the Catholic faith, and quite a lot of aggressive skepticism toward any religious community that claims to preach and teach Godâ€™s truth.â€
Archbishop Chaput noted that the media gave a lot of coverage to the so-called â€œArab Spring,â€ involving civil unrest in Egypt and other Middle Eastern countries. â€œBut very little of that coverage has mentioned that the turmoil in Muslim countries has also created a very dangerous situation for Christians and other religious minorities across North Africa and the Middle East,â€ he said.Â â€œIn Egypt, angry mobs have attacked Christian churches and monasteries, burning them to the ground and murdering the people inside.â€