Forty-eight Democrat Catholic members of the US Congress sent a letter, May 10, to Cardinal Theodore McCarrick complaining about the "threats" made by some bishops to deny communion to pro-abortion politicians, the New York Times revealed today.
The letter said the bishops are "allowing the church to be used for partisan purposes.'' They also question why these bishops made abortion a litmus test while ignoring politicians who voted counter to the church by endorsing the death penalty and the war in Iraq.
The letter was sent to Cardinal McCarrick as chairman of a bishops task force asked to devise recommendations for American bishops on relations with Catholic politicians.
Among the letter's signers are Representatives Nancy Pelosi of California, the House minority leader; Rosa L. DeLauro of Connecticut; Carolyn McCarthy and Nydia Velázquez of New York; John D. Dingell of Michigan; Edward J. Markey of Massachusetts; George Miller of California; James L. Oberstar of Minnesota; Dennis J. Kucinich of Ohio, a candidate for president; and Delegate Madeleine Z. Bordallo of Guam.
"As Catholics, we do not believe it is our role to legislate the teachings of the Catholic Church," the letter said. "Because we represent all of our constituents, we must, at times, separate our public actions from our personal beliefs."
In the letter, legislators asked to meet with Cardinal McCarrick and other members of the bishops task force.