Amy provides a good round-up of the first day’s discussions at the USCCB fall meeting. I generally avoid watching any of it because it is dull, dry stuff and hardly any of it is actually edifying. That said, she has tidbits about the various statements, including those on the reception of Communion as well as the statement on homosexuality.
Interesting that several bishops have challenged the assumptions underlying the homosexuality document and were able to elicit an admission that this was seen as replacing “Always Our Children,” which was itself a product of one committee, mainly USCCBureaucracy staff members and not bishops. The current document would at least be voted on by the conference. They also said that the genesis of the document was a response to deficiencies in certain diocesan ministries to homosexuals *cough*Memphisandothers*cough*. However, it seems that the people behind those ministries have their fingers in this pie as well. Still, Bishop Fabian Bruskewitz of Lincoln, Nebraska, and Bishop Robert Vasa of Bend, Oregon, were able to register some objections. Bruskewitz wanted emphasis on the fact that it does not have magisterial authority and Vasa said it made certain assumptions advanced by the secular crowd, for example, that “homosexuals are victims of scorn, of more violence than other segments of the community.” This is an assertion without actual evidence.
Unfortunately, what you will find reported in the mainstream media will likely bear little resemblance to the actual events, if Amy’s account of the press conference is accurate (and I have no doubt it is.) As usual, with a very few notable exceptions, the media sent reporters who (a) didn’t seem familiar with Catholic issues and (b) were looking for soundbites to fit their pre-written stories.
I wonder if the rest of the week will be just as riveting. I’ll stay tuned ... if I can stay awake.
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