CORNWALL, Ont. – The altar rail is no place for confrontation between Catholic politicians and the clergy who want them to fall into line, Washington’s archbishop emeritus said Tuesday.
But if a politician consistently and publicly defies the church, he should be denied communion, Theodore Cardinal McCarrick told the Conference of Canadian Catholic Bishops meeting here this week.
I was pretty sure there was only one Theodore Cardinal McCarrick until I read this article. I mean is this the same Cardinal who seemed to mischaracterized the letter from then-Cardinal Ratzinger and also spent two years with a committee on this subject only to come up with for each Bishop to do their own thing?
By discussing the matter civilly, the cardinal said, ”I feel we have brought people closer to the centre … In the middle is virtue.”
Okay this is the same Cardinal. There is of course always a problem using political terms within the Church. Left, right, center just don’t equate very well. Have you ever hard of a martyr described as a centrist? Cardinal McCarrick does love talking about the middle. Truth does not lie (pun intended) between two extremes, it transcends them. Virtue is not the middle of two positions. Fr. John Hardon’s wonderful Catholic dictionary defines virtue as "A good habit that enables a person to act according to right reason enlightened by faith." Now I am not implying that the Cardinal ever means anything not orthodox, but I have called him a man of the muddle before because most of what he says that is reported seems to me to be informed more by politicalese and beltway talk than in ways that have a more Catholic heft behind them. If he would start substituting center with truth I think it would improve the little pieces of quotations we do get from the media.
The article ends with his quote "”These dialogues are not about winning votes, but saving souls.”" To which I say amen.