In an article published by Real Clear Politics, TCA’s Ashley McGuire sheds light on what the outdated “conservative Catholic” label means and how these faithful Catholics in America are driving Church growth. So why is the Pope criticizing them? In her article titled, “Why is Pope Francis Criticizing Catholic Conservatives? she writes:

“I had spent the prior several days defending unpopular church dogma on every television station, a task which has earned me the label of ‘conservative Catholic.’ It’s an American political term that doesn’t fit a global Church with one billion members, but it’s the press’ best attempt at ‘orthodox’ or ‘faithful’.

“It’s a label I usually shrug off, and yet 2013 me would not have expected 2024 me to see Pope Francis, my spiritual father and the purported emblem of Christian unity, on ‘60 Minutes’ taking the political bait and calling ‘conservative’ Catholics ‘suicidal’ and stuck in ‘a dogmatic box.’

“This is not only unfairly harsh, but it simply isn’t true….The American Church — which for reasons that elude many earns the seemingly regular rebuke of the Holy Father — is far from suicidal, and neither are the Catholics that fill her pews.

“…The labels are so old. What’s not is the actual work of the Church. It’s her schools, which were bursting during the pandemic when public schools were closed. It’s her charities that nourish millions of the hungry. It’s her hospitals that provide one in seven hospital beds to a disproportionately indigent community. It’s that part of the Church that embodies that “freshness and fragrance of the Gospel” that Pope Francis so famously called us to, back when his words inspired instead of insulted.

“The American Church has continued to forge ahead and thrive despite a decade of confusion and division from afar.” 

Read more of Ashley McGuire’s article here.