Last week those bishops caused a big stir after a “teaching document” was drafted. President Joe Biden’s detractors hoped this would be a serious rebuke. They wanted the president and other political Catholics to be banned from receiving Communion.
It all started with a draft of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (ISCCB) Q&A. The New York Times reported:
‘Biden is the United States’ second Catholic president and the country’s most religiously observant leader since Jimmy Carter Enforcing the rule to deny Communion would be up to individual bishops.’
Then, according to The Associated Press (AP):
‘One section of the document is intended to include a specific admonition to Catholic politicians and other public figures who disobey church teaching on abortion and other core doctrinal issues.’
Just four days after the vote, the USCCB released an updated clarification of the Q&A. There was no reference to President Biden, a national policy, or abortion:
USCCB spokeswoman Chieko Noguchi told Axios:
‘The document’s central goal is to educate Catholics on the Eucharist. Bishops have grown increasingly concerned about the declining belief and understanding of the Eucharist among the Catholic faithful.’
The Q&A response added:
‘The document being drafted is not meant to be disciplinary in nature, nor is it targeted at any one individual or class of persons. [The Vatican was not involved.] The question of whether or not to deny any individual or groups Holy Communion was not on the ballot.’
‘Instead, this document focused on [calling all Catholics to] support human life and dignity and other fundamental principles of Catholic moral and social teaching.’
President Biden did a smooth side-step when a reporter shouted out a question about the vote last week:
‘That’s a private matter, and I don’t think that’s going to happen.’
Featured image is a screenshot via YouTube.
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