1. Amy Coney Barrett’s Religiosity, By Daniel Henninger, The Wall Street Journal, October 15, 2020, Pg. A15, Opinion
Chasing Christians into the underground went out in the fourth century, but with Amy Coney Barrett’s nomination it has apparently become necessary to revive it in 21st-century America.
This isn’t just about Roe v. Wade. That subject arrives like the rain with every Republican Supreme Court nominee. What is reflected here is the profound incomprehensibility of Amy Coney Barrett to the caretakers of modern culture. There is something about her that is threateningly traditional—the big family, the unapologetic Midwestern wholesomeness, a faith that extends beyond going to church on Sunday to living her religious beliefs each day through People of Praise.
The article in the New York Times, like its companion piece in the Washington Post, is one long dog whistle. Its warning is not about Judge Barrett herself, who will fold into the life of the Supreme Court, but the possibility that others who share or are attracted to her active religiosity might be rising out there in the country to pose a threat to the secular dominance of America’s cultural mores that began some 60 years ago.

And so with this one person, a nominee to the Supreme Court, we arrive at Sen. Feinstein’s mystified assertion: The dogma lives loudly within you. That is true, senator, with one small edit. Her faith lives strongly within her. How sad if modern liberalism cannot abide the hopeful center of Amy Coney Barrett’s life.
2. Pro-lifers optimistic this year for Colorado to end abortions up to birth, By Valerie Richardson, The Washington Times, October 15, 2020, Pg. A1
Colorado pro-life activists have tried for years to place limits on abortion, without success, but they have reason to believe that this year may be different.
On the ballot is Proposition 115, which would enact a 22-week limit on abortions in Colorado, one of six states and the District of Columbia that have no restrictions on when abortions may be performed.

A Colorado Politics/9News poll released last week showed voters virtually split on Proposition 115, with 42% in favor, 45% opposed and 13% undecided.
3. Pope replaces ousted Becciu with key ally, By Elise Ann Allen, Crux, October 15, 2020
On Monday the Vatican announced several key personnel moves, the most significant of which is the appointment of Bishop Marcello Semeraro to the Vatican’s saint-making office after its former prefect, Cardinal Angelo Becciu, was fired over allegations of embezzlement.
Becciu resigned from his post as head of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints and from his rights and duties as a cardinal Sept. 24 at the request of Pope Francis, who, according to Becciu, said he had lost trust after numerous allegations of embezzlement were made. Since then, several other accusations of wrongdoing have hit Italian papers, but no formal charges against Becciu have been made.

Bishop of Albano, Semeraro has been a key player in Francis’s reform efforts since he was named secretary to the Council of Cardinals in April 2013.
4. Pope, Council of Cardinals meet online to discuss Curia reform, By Cindy Wooden, Catholic News Service, October 15, 2020
Pope Francis and his international Council of Cardinals met virtually Oct. 13, discussing the updated draft of a constitution reorganizing the Roman Curia and steps to implement it, the Vatican press office said.
The first draft of the document, provisionally titled “Praedicate evangelium” (“Preach the Gospel”), was sent to the heads of current Vatican offices, bishops’ conferences around the world and other experts in the spring of 2019.
After receiving feedback and discussing possible amendments, “during the summer months the council was able to work via internet on the text of the new apostolic constitution, the updated draft of which was presented to the Holy Father,” the Vatican said Oct. 13. “In accordance with usual praxis, the competent dicasteries are now proceeding with the reading of the text.”
5. Priest Challenging California COVID Restrictions Rips Newsom Over Lakers Celebration, Californians can gather to celebrate the Lakers, but not Mass, By Graham Piro, The Washington Free Beacon, October 14, 2020, 4:50 PM
A Catholic priest challenging California’s lockdown rules says that religious believers deserve to be treated the same as Lakers fans, thousands of whom gathered in Los Angeles following its NBA title clincher.

California’s guidelines for combating the spread of coronavirus urged Californians to limit interactions with individuals outside of the household. It also called for mask wearing and social distancing. The state recently announced it would allow up to three families to gather together outdoors, provided the families are socially distanced and wearings masks. The governor’s office also released a four-tiered system for reopening the state county-by-county in late August.
Those rules are overly prohibitive, especially as millions of Americans in other states have returned to worship safely, according to Dr. Grazie Pozo Christie, policy adviser with the Catholic Association. She said lawmakers were overtly discriminating against believers even as they tolerate mass gatherings and even violence at secular events.
“Although church attendance has been sharply restricted, ostensibly to slow the spread of coronavirus, thousands of people were allowed to gather together after the Lakers won the championship game. The Mass is essential to people of faith and can, with appropriate precautions, be conducted safely,” Dr. Christie said. “When it comes to transmission, viruses don’t discriminate between religious and secular gatherings. Sadly, the same can’t be said for some state and local governments in California.”
6. Appeals court rules against Texas ban on ‘dismemberment abortions’, By Catholic News Agency, October 14, 2020, 4:00 PM
A three-judge appeals court panel on Tuesday struck down a Texas law that bans dilation-and-evacuation abortions.
Judge James Dennis, writing for the 2-1 majority on the 5th Circuit panel, said the Texas law “unduly burdens a woman’s constitutionally-protected right to obtain a previability abortion.”
He said the law “confers no medical benefit for women patients while forcing them to undergo unnecessary, painful, invasive, and even experimental procedures.”
The abortion rule in question bars Dilation and Evacuation (D&E) abortions, sometimes known as “dismemberment abortion,” which typically take place in the second trimester, using forceps and other instruments to remove the fetus from the womb.
7. Federal judge rules Tennessee abortion law unconstitutional, By Travis Loller, Associated Press, October 14, 2020, 1:24 PM
A federal judge on Wednesday ruled that Tennessee’s 48-hour waiting period law for abortions is unconstitutional because it serves no legitimate purpose while placing a substantial burden on women who seek abortions in Tennessee.
Tennessee’s 2015 law requires women to make two trips to an abortion clinic, first for mandatory counseling and then for the abortion at least 48 hours later.
8. Pope names new bishop for Diocese of Springfield, By Associated Press, October 14, 2020, 4:10 PM
A priest known for his YouTube series of advice and life hacks for Catholics was named by Pope Francis on Wednesday as the new bishop of the Diocese of Springfield.
The Rev. William Byrne, who most recently served as a priest in Archdiocese of Washington, D.C., will be formally installed on Dec. 14.
9. To heal America’s wounds, we need to recall that we belong to one another, By O. Carter Snead, The New York Post, October 12, 2020, 8:56 PM, Opinion
Mother Teresa said that “if we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” That’s all too true of America today. A global pandemic has upended our lives. Racial unrest convulses our cities. And our politics have devolved into blood sport, as toxic as it is tribal.
We have indeed forgotten who we are and what we owe to one another. We desperately need to remember. To do that, we need a better anthropology.

Our laws, and the anthropology that lies behind them, treat the individual as self-centered, self-seeking and self-maximizing, unburdened by unchosen obligations, detached from family and community and indifferent to the weakest among us, including children, the disabled and elderly.

We need an anthropology that recognizes that we come into the world as living bodies, embedded in families, communities, and histories that, as philosopher Michael Sandel says, we “neither summon nor command.” With these connections come unchosen obligations: Our parents expect us to care for them in their twilight years, the gift of life in the womb demands love and protection (before, during and after birth), the disabled deserve our aid and comfort and also remind us of our own vulnerability. In caring for these others we become more human.
A better anthropology and, therefore, a better politics must facilitate the creation of what the philosopher Alasdair MacIntyre calls “networks of uncalculated giving and graceful receiving,” in which we make the goods of others our own. To create and sustain such networks, we must practice the virtues of just generosity, hospitality, misericordia (accompaniment of others in their suffering), gratitude, humility, openness to the unbidden, tolerance of imperfection, solidarity, respect for dignity and honesty.
In other words, we must embrace the virtues of authentic friendship. We must remember our embodiment and what it means. And then, God willing, we will remember that we belong to one another.
O. Carter Snead is professor of law and director of the de Nicola Center for Ethics and Culture and at the University of Notre Dame. His latest book is “What It Means to be Human: The Case for the Body in Public Bioethics” (Harvard University Press), from which this column was adapted.

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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