America's Catholic bishops are furiously divided among themselves this week, after a liberal faction led by the Biden loyalists Cardinals Cupich of Chicago and Wilton Gregory of Washington tried to stop them discussing the question of whether the radically pro-choice president of the United States should be allowed to receive Holy Communion.
As I say in the new episode of Holy Smoke, It looks as if most of the 290 active bishops are ready to enforce such a ban – goaded by Joe Biden's increasingly hardline support for completely unrestricted abortions, and his plans to remove constitutional protection for pro-life public employees.
The controversy is particularly nerve-wracking for the US bishops because they don't know where the Pope stands on this question. Francis is a big fan of the current Argentine President, Alberto Fernandez, who has recently legalised abortion in the country. When the Pope and the President met in Rome this month, the subject apparently didn't even come up.
For more thought on the wider ramifications of this crisis – and it's a big crisis – tune in.
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