Inside the VaticanJanuary 27, 2021
Composite photo of Pope Francis, U.S. President Joseph R. Biden, Jr., and Archbishop José H. Gomez. (Photos via Catholic News Service, photo illustration by Colleen Dulle/America Media)

Last week, the United States’ second Catholic president was sworn in. The day was tinged with controversy for some U.S. Catholics, though, when the president of the U.S. bishops’ conference, Archbishop José H. Gomez, issued a statement that was seen by the Vatican as being too confrontational towards the new president.

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This week on “Inside the Vatican,” host Colleen Dulle and veteran Vatican correspondent Gerard O’Connell look at questions that have arisen around the controversial document: Is there a precedent for this type of statement on inauguration day? Did the Vatican really intervene to stop the bishops from publishing the statement, as one outlet reported? And were the proper protocols followed to gather the bishops’ input?

Most importantly, what does the contrast between Pope Francis’ letter to President Biden and Archbishop Gomez’s statement reveal about divisions among the U.S. bishops and with the Vatican?

Colleen and Gerry also give an update on Pope Francis’ recent sciatica flare-up, which caused him to miss three events this week.

Links from the show:

Gerard O’Connell | Pope Francis sends greeting to President Biden, contrasting with sharper message from head of U.S. bishops
In rare rebuke, Cardinal Cupich criticizes USCCB president’s letter to President Biden
How Joe Biden’s Catholic faith will shape his relationship with Pope Francis—and the U.S. bishops
Gerard O’Connell | Pope Francis will miss three events this week due to painful sciatica

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