A couple of days ago, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops issued a letter voicing their concerns with some of the goings-on in Washington right now. You can access the letter in its entirety by clicking here. The letter is short and worth reading in full, but here is a brief excerpt:
As Catholic bishops, we lead a community that brings both moral principles and everyday experience to this discussion. We defend the unborn, feed the hungry, shelter the homeless, educate the young, welcome refugees, and care for the sick, both at home and abroad. As teachers, we offer several moral criteria to help guide difficult budgetary decisions:
- Every budget decision should be assessed by whether it protects or threatens human life and dignity.
- A central moral measure of any budget proposal is how it affects “the least of these” (Matthew 25). The needs of those who are hungry and homeless, without work or in poverty should come first.
- Government and other institutions have a shared responsibility to promote the common good of all, especially ordinary workers and families who struggle to live in dignity in difficult economic times.
A just framework for future budgets cannot rely on disproportionate cuts in essential services to poor persons. It requires shared sacrifice by all, including raising adequate revenues, eliminating unnecessary military and other spending, and addressing the long- term costs of health insurance and retirement programs fairly.
I wonder how John Boehner, himself a Roman Catholic, would respond to this?