Austin Ruse of the Center for Family and Human Rights (C-Fam) says the Catholic Church in America finds itself in a place it has never been before.
"We've never had a president of the United States who's both Catholic and a dissenter on fundamental teachings of the Church," Ruse tells One News Now. "So there's an awful lot of confusion out there, and the bishops are just trying to clean it up."
75% of the US bishops voted to draft a teaching document on the Eucharist, and it is expected to recommend that politicians who actively encourage the taking of preborn human life be banned from being served. But Ruse points out that the Conference cannot demand that it be so.
"The US Conference of Catholic Bishops doesn't have that kind of authority," the C-Fam president notes. “"he authority runs from the individual communicant to his bishop to the Pope."
American pro-abortion politicians are rarely turned away from the communion table, although it did happen in 2019 to then-candidate Joe Biden by a priest in Florence, South Carolina.
Ruse believes such a strong majority of bishops agreeing to address the subject might actually empower other priests to uphold this essential Catholic teaching.
"This very well could give the rest of the bishops a little bit of steely spine," he submits.
In response, 60 pro-abortion Catholic Democrats in Congress have issued a "Statement of Principles" that argues the ban would be "weaponizing the sacrament."
Ruse calls it a brazen act of defiance.
"They are directly challenging the Catholic Church about fundamental issues of human rights," he says.
When asked about the ban, Joe Biden answered, "That's a private matter, and I don't think that's going to happen."
But Ruse is looking forward to the confrontation.
"I actually am quite happy with that document," he shares. "I'm quite happy with the direct challenge that Congressman Lieu put up on social media a few days ago – absolutely right in the face of his bishop, challenging him to withhold communion."
California Congressman Ted Lieu recently called the bishops "nakedly partisan" and "hypocrites" on the issue.
"I wonder if his bishop can ignore something quite so brazen as that. Forget withholding communion; I'd like to see a bishop excommunicate one of these jokers. It's an 'I dare you' to his bishop, and I hope his bishop calls him on it," Ruse concludes.
In the nearly two-page letter, the federal legislators claim that they "work every day to advance respect for life and the dignity of every human being" and that they "agree with the Catholic Church about the value of human life" despite openly supporting policies that allow for and encourage the destruction of unborn children.