dotCommonweal

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For Further Reading

I noted yesterday that the papal nuncio had cited--not approvingly, I hasten to add--a post from DotCommonweal that addressed the issue of religious freedom as well as the relationship between the bishops and the laity with respect to matters of public policy.It occurred to me later that the Archbishop Viganmight benefit from reading other pieces in the magazine that deal with these issues, particularly Commonweal's symposium from earlier this year that responded to the U.S. bishops' statement Our First, Most Cherished Liberty. The symposium featured comments from Peter Steinfels, William Galston and Cathleen Kaveny just to name a few.I was thinking of offering some thoughts on the Archbishop's address, but I don't think I can improve on what the panel has already written. So I will refrain.

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Thank you for the link to the Commonweal Symposium, which I'd only skimmed when first published, but which I just now read carefully. What extraordinarily thoughtful positions and arguments. I have my favorites, but I'll keep them to myself right now. I wish only to express the hope that these essays are read and reconsidered by the Bishops in the aftermath of their crushing election loss. They did incalculable damage to their position as an effective voice for societal morality by outsourcing so much of "first, most cherished liberty" to partisan laity. The Bishops need to work hard to earn the trust and respect of Catholics and non-Catholics alike, no matter how it would seem that the former should be a given.Sex abuse. War on sisters. The NRA of the First Amendment, but without the political competence.

Indeed the nuncio would benefit from reading the entire Penalver piece. In his address he quotes only the title and does not mention in detail any of the points covered there. It could be, given the extreme length of his text and the details of American history contained, that someone else wrote most of the text for him.