Catholics on watch for faith 'test' of nominee

Groups to guard against derailment of Roberts nomination
Catholic groups say they will guard against any attempt to use religious faith to derail the nomination of Judge John Roberts, a mass-going Catholic, to the U.S. Supreme Court.

They pointed to the very Constitution that Roberts would swear to uphold and its prohibition against using any type of “religious test” as a qualification for higher office.

“A person’s religious faith, and how they live that faith as an individual, has no bearing and no place in the confirmation hearing,” said Joe Cella, president of a new Catholic group, Fidelis, formed to support conservative judges.

The debate in some ways is an extension of last year’s election-year tug-of-war, focused on Democratic presidential nominee John Kerry, over what it means to be a Catholic in public life.

By all accounts, Roberts attends mass weekly at the Church of the Little Flower in Bethesda, Maryland. Growing up in Indiana, he attended a Catholic high school.


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