For immediate release | Download the full press release
The U.S. bishops will meet in their 2021 virtual plenary assembly June 16-18. The Association of U.S. Catholic Priests issued the following statement June 9 regarding an item on the bishops’ agenda.
Bishops: Follow the pastoral example of Pope Francis
We priests of the AUSCP applaud the openness and public stance of Cardinal Wilton Gregory and more than 60 other bishops regarding the Eucharist. They are calling for a positive response to the Vatican’s recommendations to the USCCB regarding the adoption of a statement that could deny Communion to President Joe Biden and other public officials because of the responsibilities they carry regarding such public matters as abortion, gay marriage and other sensitive issues.
“Bringing the Eucharist into politics is a step disrespectful of the sacred, the social, the political, and the legal. “We are saddened by the divisions being created among the ranks of U.S. bishops by those pressing forward partisan ideas,” said Fr. Gregory Barras, chair of the leadership team of the Association of U.S. Catholic Priests. “We object to any use of the Eucharist as a political weapon whether manifest or camouflaged.”
As priests and pastors, we recommend a pastoral approach that will help this President and any other leader who faces balancing their religious convictions and the responsibilities they have as public officials. We pray that our bishops will follow the pastoral example and wisdom of Pope Francis.
“The United States is not and never has been Christendom,” said Barras. “We should not pretend that it is our role to control the nation.”
For further information, see www.auscp.org or contact the following:
Rev. Greg M. Barras, Leadership Team Chair, firstname.lastname@example.org
Rev. Kevin Clinton (Minneapolis), Chair emeritus email@example.com
Rev. Bob Bonnot, Executive Director firstname.lastname@example.org
AUSCP Office: Office@AUSCP.org, (872) 205-5862
Paul Leingang, AUSCP Communications email@example.com