24 March 2006

Catholic Democrats' statement flawed

Fr. Thomas Williams does not think much of the Statement of Principles By Fifty-Five Catholic Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives. Although it claims to express a commitment to the dignity of life and the belief that government has a moral purpose, Fr. Williams finds it to be weak in defending the unborn. According the statement's authors, "In all these issues, we seek the Church's guidance and assistance but believe also in the primacy of conscience."

A comment and a question are in order. First, the primacy of conscience sounds more Quaker than Catholic to me. I doubt that the signatories ran this by their bishops to see whether it passed doctrinal muster. Second, to whom is this statement addressed and why? Catholic voters? Fellow members of Congress? The Catholic Church? Are they presuming to set themselves up as an alternative magisterium? Just curious.

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