The PJ Tatler

Pelosi: Bishops Don't Speak for the Catholic Church

Hilarious. If bishops don’t speak for the Catholic church in the US, who does? asked Pelosi, who is Catholic, whether she supported her church in the lawsuits it has filed, which argue that the administration’s regulation violates the freedom of religion guaranteed by the First Amendment.

“What about the 43 Catholic institutions [that] have now sued the administration over the regulation that requires them to provide contraceptives, sterilizations, and abortifacients in their health care plans?” asked. “They say that violates their religious freedom.  Do you support the Catholic Church in their lawsuits against the administration?”

“Well, I don’t think that’s the entire Catholic Church,” Pelosi responded. “Those people have a right to sue, but I don’t think they’re speaking ex cathedra for the Catholic Church.  And there are people in the Catholic Church, including some of the bishops, who have suggested that some of this may be premature,” Pelosi said.

CNS should have followed up with “Rep. Pelosi, is the pope Catholic?” Just to see what she would say.

Any Catholics want to weigh in here? As Ed says at Hot Air, Pelosi’s bringing up rare papal ex cathedra statements in this context is wildly off the mark.

As most Catholics outside of Capitol Hill know and understand, the bishops speak for the Catholic Church, quite literally within their own dioceses, and in every other way when united as a group.  They do not need an ex cathedra declaration to make decisions on public policy (and as I noted above, most of them would go a lifetime without seeing one anyway).   Furthermore, the US Conference of Catholic Bishops unanimously oppose the HHS mandate and have called for opposition to it.  That is speaking with as much unanimity as one is likely to find within the Catholic Church…

Update: Bridget posted on this yesterday. The comments came during Pelosi’s Thursday press conference. If you haven’t sat down and watched one of her priceless pressers, you really ought to. Pelosi consistently offers a goldmine of ridiculous thoughts and quotes in these conferences. And after you’ve watched one, take note of how little play they get in the so-called mainstream press.