I wrote this letter to several bishops after reading the “statement of principles” signed by 60 congressional representatives. If you agree, feel free to copy all or part and send to your own or other bishops on your behalf.
May God bless you and your endeavors to maintain the teachings of the Gospel, Canon law, and Catholic social doctrine. I write this letter to you to encourage you to remain steadfast in these teachings as so many saints and fathers of the Church have throughout the last two millennia. This is an issue that is long overdue for correction and education. Sadly, as noted in the USCCB report of June 1998, too many Catholics are woefully ignorant of Catholic Social Doctrine, as is blatantly evident that about half of American Catholics voted for candidates who espoused and promoted policies contrary to basic moral principles.
The audacity of 60 Democrat Congressional representatives claiming to “work every day to advance respect for life and the dignity of every human being” while promoting extreme policies supporting abortion and removing protections such as the Hyde Amendment is an egregious violation of Catholic social doctrine and the moral law given to us by God. And it is not just the issue of abortion that is a problem. Their support of gay marriage and transgender policies are undermining the family, which is, according to the Compendium of Catholic Social Doctrine, the basic unit of society established by God as revealed in Genesis and throughout the Bible. Other problem areas include the support of socialism and assisted suicide.
Their continued and blatant denial of the integrity of the human person is in direct opposition to the teaching on those involved in political life is deserving of rebuke. “John Paul II, continuing the constant teaching of the Church, has reiterated many times that those who are directly involved in lawmaking bodies have a grave and clear obligation to oppose any law that attacks human life. For them, as for every Catholic, it is impossible to promote such laws or to vote for them.” Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CFD), Doctrinal Note on the Participation of Catholics in Political Life, 4 “Heresy is the obstinate post-baptismal denial of some truth which must be believed with divine and catholic faith.” (Catechism 2089, Canon Law 751) And so, their actions, which they try to excuse in this document, actually defines them as heretics. Heretics are supposed to be denied the Eucharist! (Canon law 915)
I am confounded by the resistance within the clergy and the episcopacy to preparing a document that clearly reiterates these basic moral precepts. Pope Francis has told us we all have a mission which C.S. Lewis stated in Mere Christianity, “…[T]he church exists for nothing else but to draw man into Christ, to make them little Christs. If they are not doing that, all the cathedrals, clergy missions, sermons, even the Bible itself are simply a waste of time.” Perhaps this lack of clear guidance and witness on the part of priests and the episcopacy partly explains the statistics that for every “new” Catholic 5-8 Catholics leave the Church.
Jesus expressed infinite mercy but always with a firm hand and with the admonition to “go and sin no more.” There is no sense of remorse or contrition in this document nor any indication that they would endeavor to avoid these sins. Rather than vote for these policies they could abstain, but, no, they actively support them and boast about it.
Please know that most Catholics who worship regularly know the importance of the Eucharist and its being the “source and summit” of our Catholic life. I am encouraged that some bishops and priests are taking the important step of denying the Eucharist to these heretics and wish that more would step up in support and defense of our Lord, Jesus Christ. I pray that the USCCB will take positive steps to educate the faithful as well as demand that those who continually profane the Blessed Sacrament repent and believe in the Gospel or otherwise not present themselves to the Eucharist.
I keep you, Archbishop Naumann, Archbishop Cordileone, Bishop Strickland and many others in my prayers that you continue to stand strong for our faith. As descendants of the Apostles and early disciples we look to you for education and guidance. God Bless You.