Dogma lives loudly, but bishops are silent?

By Phil Lawler (bio - articles - email) | Sep 08, 2017

The US bishops’ conference has reacted quickly and angrily to Steve Bannon’s charge that the bishops have economic motives for supporting immigration. Good.

Now can we expect an equally quick robust response to the insinuation by US Senators that a faithful Catholic cannot be allowed to serve as a federal judge?

The Wall Street Journal, unlike the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, immediately recognized the danger in the unseemly questioning of Amy Barrett, and remarked in an editorial that it was “part of a broader effort on the left to disqualify people with strong religious views from the public square.”

Which statements posed a greater danger to the religious freedom of American Catholics: the personal opinions of a highly controversial man who is now a private citizen, or the insinuations of “respectable” lawmakers that someone who upholds Catholic dogma is unfit for public office?

Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years. He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books. Founder of Catholic World News, he is the news director and lead analyst at See full bio.

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  • Posted by: jmjusa - Sep. 11, 2017 3:44 PM ET USA

    Archbishop Chaput's column covered some of this... worth reading.

  • Posted by: ahaggard138528 - Sep. 09, 2017 12:54 AM ET USA

    I heard that Fr. Richard John Neuhaus called the USCCB "the Democratic Party at prayer". Maybe he was on to something.

  • Posted by: space15796 - Sep. 08, 2017 10:05 PM ET USA

    Plus, Bannon is right. Catholic Charities is raking in federal dollars for resettling refugees, making Catholic Charities, among other groups, an agency of the federal government - follow the money. With little or no oversight and no commitment at all after 3 to 4 months. This is a very lucrative arrangement, while we taxpayers foot the bill.

  • Posted by: jackbene3651 - Sep. 08, 2017 7:48 PM ET USA

    Perhaps dogma does not live so loudly in many of our bishops.

  • Posted by: feedback - Sep. 08, 2017 11:45 AM ET USA

    I have a feeling that the USCCB's quick and angry response to Bannon (and earlier to Trump's ending of DACA) had more to do with politics than genuine moral outrage. Whatever angers or pleases the Democratic party, happens to anger or please the USCCB. It looks that way.