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Indiana bishop criticizes Catholic Health Association, congressman’s health care vote

Catholic World News - March 30, 2010

An Indiana bishop has publicly criticized a congressman who usually votes pro-life following his vote for health care reform legislation.

“In the days leading up to the Health Care vote, statements were issued by the Catholic Health Association and Network, A National Catholic Social Justice Lobby, with signatures from many leaders of religioius women’s communities,” noted Bishop Gerald Gettelfinger of Evansville. “You need to know that the public statements of Network and the Catholic Health Association in support of the Health Care Bill before the vote were not in unity with the United States Catholic of Catholic Bishops. This raises the question for politicians: ‘Who speaks for the Catholic Church?’”

He continued:

The statements of Network and the Catholic Health Association were divisive. They either beclouded “skitterish” pro-life politicians or gave them a cloud to hide under. Those pro-life politicians, including our own Congressman [Brad] Ellsworth, were able to digress and absolve themselves from the constant position of the bishops of this country of which I am one!

In recent months I have worked very closely and personally with Congressman Ellsworth. However, he has not been in touch with me even after my effort to encourage him to “stay the course” with the USCCB on this last vote.

I am personally and greatly disappointed in Congressman Ellsworth in the published report that he, instead, “hung his apology” on the published positions of Network and the Catholic Health Association. In doing so, Congressman Ellsworth excused himself by sidestepping the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops who have worked exceedingly hard with him on these very critical moral matters.

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Show 3 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: AMDGKy - Mar. 30, 2010 9:03 PM ET USA

    That's my Bishop! You da Man! Very impressed! Good to see this turn coat get a public woopin"

  • Posted by: TheJournalist64 - Mar. 30, 2010 7:21 PM ET USA

    Good for this bishop. More need to take their congresspersons to the woodshed.

  • Posted by: New Sister - Mar. 30, 2010 6:26 PM ET USA

    Like copyrights -- defend the name or lose it.

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