Phil Lawler, writing at, makes the following excellent observation in the wake of the fawning capitulation of the President of Catholic Charities USA (a priest, no less) to the “compromise” that wasn’t:

So here’s where we stand: Within hours of President Obama’s announcement, without waiting for guidance from the US bishops, the heads of the Catholic Health Association and Catholic Charities USA—two of the largest Church-related employers in the country—have announced that they are now satisfied with the plan. Their defection will make it all the more difficult for the bishops to hold the line in defense of religious freedom. 

 There is a solution ready at hand, however. The US bishops could announce that, No, Catholic Charities USA will not provide healthcare under the terms of the HHS mandate—or it will cease to be called “Catholic.” (It would be a small loss; Catholic Charities USA today is mostly a conduit for government funds, carrying out government contracts.) And No, the Catholic Health Association will not accept the Obama “accommodation,” or else its member institutions will cease to be known as “Catholic” hospitals. 

Then the institutions that truly want to be known as Catholic, and want to live in accordance with Church teachings, could fight this political battle on their own. Their numbers would be diminished, but they would be buoyed by the knowledge that they all really were fighting on the same side.

Good points, but there are more steps that need to be taken.  Any Catholic who leads or serves on the Board of any organization that defies the Bishops on the contraception mandate must be excommunicated.   Because it isn’t just the “entities” that cease to be Catholic.  Those who run them make the decisions and must face the logical consequences of their actions.

Next, any “Catholic” politician who supports abortion or the contraception mandate must, within short time after any private remonstrance, be canonically disciplined and publicly warned not to receive Holy Communion until they publicly repent of this position.  Then, the Bishops must make it known that if they receive in spite of this warning, both the recipient and the knowing distributor of Holy Communion will be excommunicated.  The spirit of aggiornamento has brought the enemy within the gates, even to the keep.  If we won’t mount a defense now, what is the point? 

The bishops must be uniform and firm on these issues to have any hope of success.  The only tools the Church has worth any salt are spiritual tools.  Either the Church’s stout defense will win the day or else at least the lines are clearly drawn, so that persecution may be more hopefully endured.