Through his perennially troubled Catholic Social Action office, Archbishop Schnurr of Cincinnati has seen fit to re-promulgate his predecessor’s scoldish election-year “GUIDELINES FOR CHURCH INVOLVEMENT IN POLITICAL ISSUES.”  Here are a couple of pertinent paragraphs:

6. Special care should be exercised in distributing materials which attempt to report candidates’ stands on specific issues. Before permission to distribute such materials is given, the materials must be reviewed for political comment that constitutes endorsement. Offices, parishes, schools, institutions, and agencies should not distribute voter education materials that are not authorized and distributed by the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, the State Catholic Conference or the National Bishops’ Conference.

7. A Christian’s social concern should extend to the entire spectrum of social issues. While some concerns may be weightier than others, citizens should nevertheless be encouraged to inform themselves of a candidate’s stand on all issues before making a final judgment. It would be a disservice to encourage citizens to take an overly simplistic “single issue” approach.

According to paragraph 6, the USCCB’s non-authoritative, poorly reasoned critique of the “Ryan Budget” would pass muster, while the Holy Father’s rightly famous address to the European People’s Party about the Church’s “not negotiable” principles for the public square would not. Disservice indeed.