TCA Podcast, – “Conversations with Consequences,” Episode 115 – Father Thomas Petri On Eucharistic Coherence & Mary Fiorito Talks Mississippi Abortion Ban
As the US Bishops work to create a document on the Eucharist, we talk with Father Thomas Petri about Eucharistic coherence and the miraculous moment all of us can witness and take part in every day at Mass. Father also talks about the Real Presence breaking down what the Catechism truly means by Body, Blood, Soul, and Divinity. At the bottom of the hour, TCA co-host Maureen Ferguson also joins as Mary Fiorito of the Ethics and Public Policy Center offers a preview of the Mississippi abortion ban case as it heads to the Supreme Court this Fall. Father Roger Landry also offers a thought-provoking homily for your 4th of July weekend! Catch the show every Saturday at 7amET/5pmET on EWTN radio!
1. The Bishops, Biden and Communion, It’s the secular left, not the church, that is using the sacrament as a political weapon., By Ryan T. Anderson, The Wall Street Journal, July 2, 2021, Pg. A13, Opinion
The Catholic Church, recognizing that science reveals the child in the womb is a human being, teaches that he or she possesses the same dignity and value as the person reading these words. Every class of humanity deserves equal protection of the law—regardless of skin color, age, size or stage of development. This is a simple moral truth with profound spiritual consequences.

Failure to call abortion-supporting public Catholics to account has broader pastoral implications. Even many Mass-attending Catholics lack faith in the real presence of Christ in the Eucharist. Treating the Mass as a social function—and reception of communion as a routine, self-determined matter—has weakened reverence for the body and blood, soul and divinity of Christ in the Eucharist. Public support of abortion is only one of many sins that should prevent one from going forward to receive communion. Yet countless Catholics continue to receive the sacrament outside a state of grace.
In another world, this would present an earnest opportunity to teach wayward Catholics that denying Christ’s Eucharistic presence and flouting his commandments separate one from his body, the church. Instead this all gets turned upside down. Progressives and their surrogates accuse the bishops of “politicizing” and “weaponizing” the Eucharist. They claim to be devout while denying a class of human beings legal protections—all while daring the bishops to do something about it.

Clarity on sacramental and moral theology can be viewed as politicization by politicians and the millions of Americans they represent only because two generations of Americans have been poorly catechized. The task for the bishops is to rebuild basic moral and sacramental coherence among the faithful. This is a tall order, but looking to the past brings reason for hope.
Mr. Anderson is president of the Ethics and Public Policy Center
2. California’s Growing Cultural Blacklist, The state expands its Texas sanctions to Florida and others, By The Wall Street Journal, July 2, 2021, Pg. A14, Editorial
In a little-noticed but significant decision in April, the Supreme Court refused to hear a case involving California’s ban on state-funded travel to Texas and 11 other red states. Sacramento’s culture warriors heard the message and this week extended their blacklist.
Soon, the California Attorney General announced, public funds also can’t be used for travel to Arkansas, Florida, Montana, North Dakota and West Virginia. California’s expanding regime of political sanctions will surely be reciprocated.
California justified its travel ban against Texas because the state’s religious-freedom legislation allows religious foster-care providers to decline to place children with same-sex couples. In Fulton v. Philadelphia, decided last month, the Justices ruled 9-0 against government efforts to coerce a Catholic foster care agency with a similar policy.
No matter the constitutionality of diverse state policies, California’s Legislature wants to impose economic costs on the residents of states that disagree with it. More than 35% of Americans outside California now live in one of the boycotted states. Four of the five states added this week were targeted because of policies on transgender athletes in school sports.

Representatives interested in calming the culture wars should look at ways to use their Commerce Clause or spending powers to prohibit or deter interstate government boycotts.
3. Donor Privacy and the First Amendment, The Justices strike down a broad demand for nonprofit donor lists, By The Wall Street Journal, July 2, 2021, Pg. A14, Editorial
Americans who give money to any polarizing cause—say, gun rights, abortion or religious liberty—can sleep a little easier tonight thanks to the Supreme Court’s 6-3 ruling on Thursday in defense of donor privacy. Given the threat lately of being publicly canceled for having the wrong views, it’s vital that the First Amendment protect anonymity.
For years California has told nonprofits they must hand over lists of their major donors, simply as a condition of doing business in the state. That’s unconstitutional, Chief Justice John Roberts writes for the majority in Americans for Prosperity Foundation v. Bonta. “The upshot,” he says, “is that California casts a dragnet for sensitive donor information from tens of thousands of charities each year.”

California pledged to keep the information private, but it manifestly failed. During the litigation, thousands of pages of supposedly confidential documents were found publicly available online.

It’s good to have the Supreme Court looking at forced disclosures with an increasingly skeptical eye. “Today’s analysis,” Justice Sotomayor laments, “marks reporting and disclosure requirements with a bull’s-eye.” Let’s hope so.
4. Vatican seeks all-out effort to combat vaccine hesitancy, By Nicole Winfield, Associated Press, July 2, 2021, 8:07 AM
The Vatican’s bioethics academy and the World Medical Association called Friday for an all-out effort to combat vaccine hesitancy and correct the “myths and disinformation” that are slowing the fight against the coronavirus.
In a joint statement, the groups said some vaccine reluctance in poorer countries is rooted in historical inequalities and suspicions of Western pharmaceutical companies. But they said “a more pernicious form” of hesitancy is being driven by fake news, myths and disinformation about vaccine safety, including among religious groups and some in the medical community.
They demanded that “all relevant stakeholders exhaust all efforts to … confront vaccine hesitancy by sending a clear message about the safety and necessity of vaccines and counteracting vaccine myths and disinformation.”
5. Take-aways on report of Vatican official on payroll of Swiss banking giant, By John L. Allen Jr., Crux, July 2, 2021, Opinion
A remarkable report in a leading Italian newspaper Tuesday indicated that while he was an investment manager working in the Vatican’s Secretary of State, Italian layman Fabrizio Tirabassi, also had a contract with Swiss banking giant UBS paying him a 0.5 percent commission on every Vatican deposit, and also for deposits by new clients recruited by Tirabassi.
According to the report in Corriere della Sera, Italy’s most respected daily newspaper, the deal dated to 2004 and remained in place until Tirabassi was suspended from his Vatican post in 2019 amid investigations of the unfolding London property scandal.

Assuming the facts as presented are correct, four early take-aways suggest themselves.
First, the financial reform of the Vatican launched by Pope emeritus Benedict XVI and accelerated under Francis, while it’s made undeniable headway, remains a work in progress.

Second, it’s worth underlining that the fund Tirabassi directed, and which was at the heart of the London scandal, included the Peter’s Pence income. That’s relevant because it was only through the scandal that ordinary Catholics around the world learned that, according to the statutes of the fund, their donations don’t just go to papal charities, but to whichever ends the pope decides to put them – which can include covering deficits, routine administration, and investment activity, as well as feeding the hungry and housing the homeless.

Third, the Tirabassi story also illustrates a persistent Vatican “talent problem.”

Fourth, if the Vatican’s old guard actually held club meetings, Tirabassi would be a good candidate for an officer — not the president, as that would be reserved for a cleric, but maybe recording secretary. He was shaped by the pre-reform Vatican way of doing things, and it’s plausible that even if he really did have this deal with UBS, he may not have believed there was anything wrong with it.
6. Catholic bishop of Syracuse decries Doctrine of Discovery, suggests pope do the same, By Jack Jenkins, Religion News Service, July 1, 2021, 3:43 PM
The Catholic bishop of Syracuse, New York, is speaking out against the Doctrine of Discovery and revealing plans to ask Pope Francis to repudiate theological teachings used for centuries to justify the subjugation of Indigenous peoples.
In an interview with Religion News Service on Wednesday (June 30), Bishop Douglas J. Lucia explained he is exploring a possible meeting with the Holy See to discuss a series of 15th-century papal bulls, or decrees, used by European Christians to rationalize colonizing Indigenous people and their land.
“Since they were papal bulls in the beginning,” Lucia said, there should be “a public acknowledgment from the Holy Father of the harm these bulls have done to the Indigenous population” as well as some kind of statement “to repudiate” the Doctrine of Discovery.
7. Kentucky’s contract with children’s agency remains in limbo, By Bruce Schreiner and Piper Hudspeth Blackburn, Associated Press, July 1, 2021, 3:04 PM
Kentucky’s contract renewal with a Baptist-affiliated children’s agency remains in limbo, but the state is continuing to place youngsters in its care, Gov. Andy Beshear said Thursday.
The monthslong dispute revolved around a clause in a new contract with the state that banned discrimination based on sexual orientation and that Sunrise Children’s Services refused to sign.

Sunrise officials say the disputed clause would have compelled them to violate deeply held religious principles by sponsoring same-sex couples as foster or adoptive parents. Sunrise is affiliated with the Kentucky Baptist Convention, consisting of nearly 2,400 churches with a total membership of about 600,000 people. The faith views homosexuality as a sin.

TCA Media Monitoring provides a snapshot from national newspapers and major Catholic press outlets of coverage regarding significant Catholic Church news and current issues with which the Catholic Church is traditionally or prominently engaged. The opinions and views expressed in the articles do not necessarily reflect the views of The Catholic Association.
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