A couple of posts by Gruending give the best run-down of a story I've been following out of the corner of my eye for awhile now: the suspension of Development's And Peace's fall post card campaign after it was judged "too political" by the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB). The upshot seems to be that the Bishops value their relationship with the current federal government over the good works their church has historically been associated with. Its like what happened with Canadian Mennonite Magazine, except the Bishops skipped that part where they are threatened by an agent of the Harper Torys and went straight to self-abasement. Thank God--as it were--that a few members of the D&P youth wing are kicking up a fuss.
Gruending sums up as follows:
The same newspaper article suggests that the bishops are concerned that D and P’s fall campaign might interfere with the CCCB’s relationship with the government. Ronald Breau, president of D and P’s national council, which acceded to the bishops’ request to pull the postcard campaign, says this: “The bishops are concerned that ongoing dialogue between the Catholic church and the government of Canada on some important, timely and sensitive issues might be compromised by our [D and P] approach at this time.”
One is left to wonder what those sensitive issues might be. It is clear that the Harper government wants to embed conservative Catholics, along with certain evangelicals and Jewish people into its permanent electoral coalition. Hence the overtures to the CCCB. It is less clear how the bishops and the church will benefit from this dalliance with the Conservatives. That is an issue worth our continuing scrutiny.
What's the bishops' payoff look like, in other words.
PS. Apparently, Flanders of all people has something to do with this. That unholy rascal! I thought he'd retired.