Inside Amy Coney Barrett’s Catholic faith organization People of Praise

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U.S. Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett attends a confirmation hearing before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Capitol Hill in Washington, D.C., U.S., October 12, 2020. Photo by Shawn Thew/Pool via REUTERS

Over and over again today, Judge Amy Coney Barrett’s Catholic faith came up. Sen. Ben Sasse (R-Neb.), who’s not a Catholic, defended her, and criticized colleagues on the Senate Judiciary Committee who he says are using her faith to question her qualifications.

“This committee isn’t in the business of deciding which religious beliefs are good, and which religious beliefs are bad, and which religious beliefs are weird,” Sasse said. “And I just want to say, as somebody who’s self-consciously a Christian, we got a whole bunch more really weird beliefs. Forgiveness of sins, the Virgin Birth, resurrection from the dead, eternal life. There are a whole bunch of really, really crazy ideas that are a lot weirder than some Catholic moms giving each other advice about parenting.”

That line about Catholic moms was an oblique reference to the “People of Praise.”

It’s a Catholic spiritual group founded in South Bend, Indiana, where Judge Barrett lives and teaches at the University of Notre Dame. It’s drawn a lot of scrutiny over the past few weeks for its organizational structure, and gender roles.

Credits

Guest:
Adam Wren - contributing editor at Politico Magazine and Indianapolis Monthly

Host:
Madeleine Brand

Producers:
Sarah Sweeney, Michell Eloy, Amy Ta, Rosalie Atkinson, Brian Hardzinski, Angie Perrin, Rebecca Mooney