At Georgetown University today, while sitting in the press section at Gaston Hall awaiting the arrival of President Obama for a "major address" on economics, I overheard a reporter discussing the advance text of the speech.
The reporter said that senior presidential adviser David Axelrod had compared Obama during his European trip to one planting seeds for a harvest. Along the same lines, he noted, in today's speech, Obama was set to use another Gospel analogy: that of the "house built upon a rock."
And so it came to pass, beneath Gaston Hall's beautiful painting of Morality, Faith, and Patriotism, with gold letters on the wall behind him spelling the Jesuit motto "Ad majorem Dei gloriam"—"To the greater glory of God"—Obama shared his prosperity gospel at the nation's oldest Catholic university.
But there was one thing missing: Jesus' name.
I'm not just talking about Obama's failing to mention Jesus—though he did pointedly fail to mention the name of the One—that is, for him, the other "One"—who first told the "parable" he shared.
No, Jesus' very name, in the form of the ancient monogram IHS, which had been in gold lettering on the wooden archway above Gaston Hall's dais, was painted over (or otherwise expertly camouflaged) prior to Obama's arrival. Apparently, the Name that is above every other name is not permitted to be above Obama.
The photo above shows the archway "before." You can see the "after" clearly in C-SPAN's video, as Georgetown President John DeGioia emerges to give his fawning introduction.
(I became aware of the cover-up after the speech, when it was pointed out by pro-life advocate Larry Cirignano in an e-mail forwarded to me. Whether Georgetown University initiated it or did it at the request of the White House is unknown at this time.)
As for Obama's address, here is how the most pro-abortion, pro-infanticide elected official in history appropriated the words of Our Saviour:
There is a parable at the end of the Sermon on the Mount that tells the story of two men. The first built his house on a pile of sand, and it was destroyed as soon as the storm hit. But the second is known as the wise man, for when "…the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house…it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock."
We cannot rebuild this economy on the same pile of sand. We must build our house upon a rock. We must lay a new foundation for growth and prosperity – a foundation that will move us from an era of borrow and spend to one where we save and invest; where we consume less at home and send more exports abroad.
No mention of Jesus. It's just a parable about a house built upon a rock.
In Obama's hands, the words of Our Lord become just another way to tell the story of the Three Little Pigs.
He resumed the analogy as he capped off his speech:
There is no doubt that times are still tough. By no means are we out of the woods just yet. But from where we stand, for the very first time, we are beginning to see glimmers of hope. And beyond that, way off in the distance, we can see a vision of an America’s future that is far different than our troubled economic past. It’s an America teeming with new industry and commerce; humming with new energy and discoveries that light the world once more. A place where anyone from anywhere with a good idea or the will to work can live the dream they’ve heard so much about.
It is that house upon the rock. Proud, sturdy, and unwavering in the face of the greatest storm. We will not finish it in one year or even many, but if we use this moment to lay that new foundation; if we come together and begin the hard work of rebuilding; if we persist and persevere against the disappointments and setbacks that will surely lie ahead, then I have no doubt that this house will stand and the dream of our founders will live on in our time[Full text here.]
When he had finished these words, the Georgetown crowd was astonished at his teaching, for he taught them as one having authority, and not as their scribes.
Gaston Hall photo found here.