Virginia Catholic bishops have taken a good first step against Democrat gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe's "anti-Catholic" agenda, says David Deavel, editor of Logos: A Journal of Catholic Thought and Culture.
Deavel, who is co-director of the Terrence J. Murphy Institute for Catholic Thought, Law, and Public Policy, made his comments in a column posted by the Association of Mature American Citizens.
"He is not running away from his radical abortion support, his opposition to religious liberty, his support for what appear to be religious tests for public office that would exclude believing Catholics, nor his connections to current Virginia governor Ralph Northam, whose radicalism on abortion may surpass his own," he said.
"Though many laity had been rumbling about the self-described 'strong Catholic' and more than a few priests had begun to speak out from the pulpit about what a possible second term for McAuliffe portends for Catholic work and witness in the Commonwealth of Virginia, there had been no word from the bishops. Until now."
He cited a report in The Washington Free Beacon that the "Virginia Catholic Conference, which represents the two bishops in Virgina on public policy matters, has spoken out against McAuliffe’s plan ‘to repeal Virginia’s conscience clause, which allows religious charities to place children into foster homes and for adoption to families that share the organization’s moral convictions.’"
Deavel said the Catholic Conference maintains that the 2004 law protects religious liberty and allows the expansion of adoption in the Virgina.
"It’s a good first step for the bishops, but McAuliffe has not backed down from his false claims," he said.
And Deavel noted that on McAuliffe’s campaign website, the candidate "tells supporters that his repeal of the conscience clause 'will open up foster care and adoption to LGBTQ+ people'—as if there were no agencies that did such things—and he brags about his own officiating at a same-sex marriage and his making 'Pride Month' an official holiday and creating an LGBT+ tourism committee for the state."
Deavel added: "Perhaps another outside group will have the courage and the skills to challenge McAuliffe who claims to be a "strong Catholic" but whose own positions might better be described as anti-Catholic."
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