Bishops, like old dogs, eschew new tricks.
The US Bishops, as a collective, had long been enablers of that wretched party. It seemed that no amount of policy minutiae was to be beyond their purview as long as it involved more government spending and less law enforcement under the pretense of social justice.
For their years of loyal service to the cause, these Shepherds and their sheep have been given the sharp end of the stick. As often is the case, the enablers eventually become the targets.
But these old dogs, it seemed, might be capable of some new tricks after all. When the Church and our God-given religious liberty became the target of that wretched party in general and its general in particular, the Bishops spoke forcefully for things long ignored. Things like the Constitution, the law, limits on government power were overnight added to the episcopal lexicon. For this, many of us are profoundly grateful.
Yet still, when Congressman Paul Ryan proposed a budget that just begins to deal with the reality of our (immoral) debt crisis, some these very same Bishops were quick to criticize. Old dogs, old tricks it seemed. But maybe not?
Joan Desmond, reporting from the U.S. bishops’ meeting in Atlanta, gives us some hope that some Bishops realize the bigger picture and even criticized the reflexive leftward knee-jerk.