The Bishops Buttonholed

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Anyone interested in following the Catholics bishops’ viewpoints on abortion and politics should check into Daniel Burke’s postings on the Religion News Service blog. To me, by far the most interesting quote thus far comes from Washington, D.C. archbishop Donald Wuerl, who is what passes for a liberal on the subject these days. Here’s his response to a question about denying communion to Vice President-elect Biden:

We have always taken the position of the majority of the bishops — that we present the teachings of the Church and the expectations on one’s conscience, and it’s up to the individual to make the judgement about their worthiness to receive Communion. As a conference we have (produced) a number of documents that detail just how significant receiving Communion is, and today we are very conscious of the fact that there is scrutiny of public figures, and so they have to be aware of their actions and obligations in the public forum.

Note that “majority of the bishops.” There’s the minority that want to bring the hammer down, and then there’s the rest of us. That’s where the battle line is, if there’s to be a battle.