Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Communion ban on lawmakers who back abortion starts furor
Chicago Sun-Times ^ | January 11, 2004 | Juliet Williams (A.P.)

Posted on 01/11/2004 8:00:28 AM PST by Holly_P

MILWAUKEE -- A Roman Catholic bishop who waded into politics with a decree that lawmakers who support abortion rights can no longer receive holy communion has ignited a debate over the separation of church and state.

Bishop Raymond Burke of La Crosse cited Vatican doctrine, canon law and teachings by the U.S. bishops in an announcement telling diocesan priests to withhold communion from such lawmakers until they ''publicly renounce'' their support of abortion rights.

''This is about as stark a decree to come down against Catholic politicians as we've seen in recent history,'' said Barry Lynn, executive director of the Washington, D.C.-based Americans United for the Separation of Church and State.

''The problem with it is that elected officials have to represent people of all faiths and none, and not adhere to one religious demand like the bishop's,'' he said.

Pope John Paul II appointed Burke, 55, archbishop of St. Louis in December. Burke signed the decree in November, when he still had the authority to do so, but it was not made public until Thursday.

Burke is to be installed in St. Louis on Jan. 26 -- raising concerns among opponents that he may issue the same decree there.

The Vatican and U.S. bishops have urged Catholic legislators to consider their faith when they vote, and a task force is weighing whether to recommend sanctions for Catholic politicians who support policies contrary to church teachings.

In November, Burke wrote letters to at least three Catholic lawmakers, telling them they risked being forbidden from taking the sacrament by continuing to vote for measures he termed anti-life, including abortion and euthanasia.

Democratic U.S. Rep. David Obey, who received a letter from Burke, said Friday that he respects the sacred oath he took to uphold the U.S. Constitution. Obey said Burke can instruct him on faith and morals in his private life, but should use ''persuasion, not dictation'' to affect his political votes.

He said Burke had ''crossed the line.''


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Extended News; Politics/Elections; US: Wisconsin
KEYWORDS: barrylynn; burke; catholic; catholicpoliticians; davidobey; lacrosse; stlouis
Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-68 next last

1 posted on 01/11/2004 8:00:29 AM PST by Holly_P
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
Hey these guys are the ones who are always spouting seperation of church and state. So let it be said, so let it be done.
2 posted on 01/11/2004 8:05:17 AM PST by mware
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
If being a politician is more important than being a Catholic, then be a politician. Apparently, you can't have your cake and eat it too anymore.

What does this have to do with separation of church and state? The government isn't telling the pols they can't be Catholic and be pro-abortion -- the Catholic Church is.
3 posted on 01/11/2004 8:05:39 AM PST by ladylib
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
Good. It's about time.
4 posted on 01/11/2004 8:06:23 AM PST by dagar
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
''The problem with it is that elected officials have to represent people of all faiths and none, and not adhere to one religious demand like the bishop's,'' he said.

You can't have it both ways. If you want to support something outside of the doctrine of your faith, then you should find a new religion ala Howard Dean. Who by the way quit his first church over a dispute over a bike path. A true man of God.

5 posted on 01/11/2004 8:06:58 AM PST by Mean Daddy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
A Roman Catholic bishop who waded into politics with a decree that lawmakers who support abortion rights can no longer receive holy communion has ignited a debate over the separation of church and state

How is that "wading into politics"?

What does politics have to do with communion?

6 posted on 01/11/2004 8:07:17 AM PST by Jim Noble
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: All
Rank Location Receipts Donors/Avg Freepers/Avg Monthlies
47 Thailand 50.00
1
50.00
7
7.14


Thanks for donating to Free Republic!

Move your locale up the leaderboard!

7 posted on 01/11/2004 8:07:17 AM PST by Support Free Republic (I'd rather be sleeping. Let's get this over with so I can go back to sleep!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
"The problem with it is that elected officials have to represent people of all faiths and none..."

Then they need to pick their faith carefully, keep their mouths shut, or have none. IMHO.
8 posted on 01/11/2004 8:08:13 AM PST by Felis_irritable
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
I wonder why he didn't excommunicate them.
9 posted on 01/11/2004 8:09:55 AM PST by Catspaw
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: dagar
What about Senators Kennedy and Kerry?
10 posted on 01/11/2004 8:10:00 AM PST by ardara
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 4 | View Replies]

To: Jim Noble
"How is that "wading into politics?"

You're right. It's not. To this bishop, abortion is murder, not some political choice.

11 posted on 01/11/2004 8:11:01 AM PST by Bob Mc
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: Jim Noble
How is that "wading into politics"?

It isn't the Bishop "wading into politics" but the politicains wading away from their religion.

I don't see this as the Bishop telling them how to vote but just as him letting them know that it's crunch time. They can either be pro abortion politicians or Church members - but not both. It's their call.

12 posted on 01/11/2004 8:12:23 AM PST by Holly_P
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: ardara
And Biden..........
13 posted on 01/11/2004 8:12:54 AM PST by Gabz (smoke gnatzies - small minds buzzing in your business -swat'em)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: ardara
What about Senators Kennedy

Apparently Kennedy likes scotch more than communion wine...

14 posted on 01/11/2004 8:14:13 AM PST by Drango (NPR is the tax funded propaganda wing of the DNC.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 10 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
"The problem with it is that elected officials have to represent people of all faiths and none, and not adhere to one religious demand like the bishop's,' he said."

The problem is that these liberals want to be religious but at the same time don't want to have to follow the word of God.
15 posted on 01/11/2004 8:15:21 AM PST by Sofa King (-I am Sofa King- tired of liberal BS! http://www.angelfire.com/art2/sofaking/index.html)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Sofa King
The problem is that these liberals want to be religious but at the same time don't want to have to follow the word of God

You hit the nail on the head there my friend.

16 posted on 01/11/2004 8:19:46 AM PST by pctech
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 15 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
Look out for a new church, coming to a party caucus near you. Isn't that what happened the last time a lawmaker, chief, or potentiate didn't like the rulings of the Catholic church? [insert rousing chorus of "I'm 'enery the eighth I am" here].
17 posted on 01/11/2004 8:20:19 AM PST by NonValueAdded ("Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists." GWB 9/20/01)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
Democratic U.S. Rep. David Obey

This is the same disOBEY who accused the Republican Congress of holding not a gun, but specifically an AK-47 to the head of Billy Clintooon on the issue of the budget!
18 posted on 01/11/2004 8:20:57 AM PST by leprechaun9
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: NonValueAdded
"Do that to me one More time."
19 posted on 01/11/2004 8:22:52 AM PST by Jeff Chandler (www.VirtueMedia.org)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P; ninenot; GirlShortstop; Petronski; Barnacle
No Catholic asked for the insolent opinion of the Rev. Mr. Barry Lynn (Unitarian or Congregationalist?) and his anti-Catholic organization of bigots. The original name of the group was Protestants and other Americans for Separation of Church and State, when it was run by Paul Blanshard and chummy with the notorious Madeline Murray O'Hair. The very name was a slur against Protestants. The organization originated in the early Cold War as a reaction against Catholic anti-communism and as a reaction of anti-Catholics, many not at all Protestant, but atheist, agnostic and secular humanist who wanted to have a platform to attack anti-communist cardinals such as Francis Cardinal Spellman of New York, Richard Cardinal Cushing of Boston and James Cardinal McIntyre of Los Angeles.

As for Obey, we know where his heart lies. He may have been baptized Catholic but his loyalty is with the baby-killing Demonrats. Congressman Obey, you are what you vote for. What you vote for, Mr. Obey, is not Catholic and neither are you.

May every Catholic bishop in this country do as Bishop Burke has done. May every other Christian leader worthy of the name do likewise. Next stop for Archbishop-designate Burke is St. Louis. Next in line of desireable major changes in the Roman Catholic Church in the United States would be the rapid replacement of Roger Cardinal Mahoney in Los Angeles by an actual Catholic like Burke.

20 posted on 01/11/2004 8:35:54 AM PST by BlackElk (The auto-da-fe is God's chosen way to purge sin from the land!)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Felis_irritable
"The problem with it is that elected officials have to represent people of all faiths and none..."

And those who publicly advocate against the doctrines of their own faith have none.
21 posted on 01/11/2004 8:36:53 AM PST by Republic If You Can Keep It
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 8 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
If you don't like the rules, don't join the "club" Any faith has the right to make it's own rules. Some churches might vote other have an authority the speaks ex cathedra. If you don't like it, do what Dr. Dean did and join another church.
22 posted on 01/11/2004 8:41:35 AM PST by muir_redwoods
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: BlackElk
Thank you for the information contained in the first paragraph of your reply.`

I am looking for articles about Protestant leaders condemning the stance of pro abortion politicians.

"Protestant" is a big umbrella and covers many different denominations and as such, leaders don't have a way to tell Protestant politicains to align themselves with Church teachings.

If you have any links to articles where Protestant leaders are condemning pro abortionist politicians. I would appreciate them. Thanks, Holly
23 posted on 01/11/2004 8:47:54 AM PST by Holly_P
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: BlackElk
MILWAUKEE -- A Roman Catholic bishop who waded into politics with...

Very difficult to proceed through the article when the first line is as spurious as this.  The good bishop is performing his appointed duty; that's not politics!
24 posted on 01/11/2004 9:03:27 AM PST by GirlShortstop
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: ladylib

Apparently, you can't have your cake and eat it too anymore.

Hey, good one.

25 posted on 01/11/2004 9:07:39 AM PST by Dan Evans
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
God didn't say, "I put before you this day, Life, Death and politics."

"Therefore," He did say, "Choose Life."

26 posted on 01/11/2004 9:19:17 AM PST by onedoug
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: NonValueAdded
I'm Henry The Eighth, I Am
Herman's Hermits

(Murray/Weston)
- written in 1911
- popularized in England by Harry Champion

I'm Henry the eighth I am
Henry the eighth I am, I am
I got married to the widow next door
She's been married seven times before
And every one was an Henry (Henry)
She wouldn't have a Willy or a Sam (no Sam)
I'm her eighth old man, I'm Henry
Henry the eighth I am

Second verse same as the first

27 posted on 01/11/2004 9:19:39 AM PST by Freeper john
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: muir_redwoods
"Any faith has the right to make it's own rules."

We might think so, however, there are many churches which might not believe that after being forced to hire homosexuals on their staffs. Then there is that church in Kansas who kicked out a member for a morals charge and were successfully sued by same when the court decided that it had authority over who the church could have as members.

It looks like "separation of church and state" only goes one way.

28 posted on 01/11/2004 9:27:11 AM PST by nightdriver
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: muir_redwoods
Exactly!

If you cannot or will not accept the ex cathedra teaching of the Catholic Church you have no right to call yourself a Catholic for political gain.

They can call themselves lapsed Catholics as some do. They can find a congregationalist church somewhere that believes as they do.
29 posted on 01/11/2004 9:51:37 AM PST by e5man_r_u? (A Man's mission: Build, Protect, Provide)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 22 | View Replies]

To: Drango
And Mr. Harkin and Mr. Durbin and Ms Landrieu and the lady from Wash. state
30 posted on 01/11/2004 9:52:32 AM PST by agite rem mente
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 14 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
" Obey said Burke can instruct him on faith and morals in his private life, but should use ''persuasion, not dictation'' to affect his political votes."

If he thinks the Bishop's instructions conflict with his beliefs in public, like a good pharisee, he should find another religion.
31 posted on 01/11/2004 9:59:09 AM PST by OpusatFR (Al Dean and Howard Gore, the Rainmen, definitely, definitely)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
This isn't the first time a Catholic bishop has "waded into politics" ---

Tom Daschle's Duty to Be Morally Coherent
A Weekly Standard Exclusive: The Senate minority leader is ordered to stop calling himself a Catholic.
by J. Bottum
04/17/2003 12:00:00 PM

TOM DASCHLE may no longer call himself a Catholic. The Senate minority leader and the highest ranking Democrat in Washington has been sent a letter by his home diocese of Sioux Falls, sources in South Dakota have told The Weekly Standard, directing him to remove from his congressional biography and campaign documents all references to his standing as a member of the Catholic Church.

This isn't exactly excommunication--which is unnecessary, in any case, since Daschle made himself ineligible for communion almost 20 years ago with his divorce and remarriage to a Washington lobbyist. The directive from Sioux Falls' Bishop Robert Carlson is rather something less than excommunication--and, at the same time, something more: a declaration that Tom Daschle's religious identification constitutes, in technical Catholic vocabulary, a grave public scandal. He was brought up as a Catholic, and he may still be in some sort of genuine mental and spiritual relation to the Church. Who besides his confessor could say? But Daschle's consistent political opposition to Catholic teachings on moral issues--abortion, in particular--has made him such a problem for ordinary churchgoers that the Church must deny him the use of the word "Catholic." <--snip-->

Tom Daschle's Duty to Be Morally Coherent

If there is any "separation of church and state" to be done here, it is on the part of the politicians who use their so-called Catholicism to garner votes.

32 posted on 01/11/2004 9:59:23 AM PST by arasina (So there.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: e5man_r_u?
They can find a congregationalist church somewhere that believes as they do.

Episcopalian, actually. Otherwise known as "Red Door Catholics."

33 posted on 01/11/2004 10:01:35 AM PST by Grut
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 29 | View Replies]

To: NonValueAdded
"...a new church..."

Henry the 8th did it for his convenience, this is nothing new. He couldn't get permission from The Churh to divorce, so he formed THE CHURCH OF ENGLAND, if I remember correctly.
34 posted on 01/11/2004 10:05:49 AM PST by Blue Collar Christian (Part of the Vast Right Wing Apparatus since Ford lost. ><BCC>)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 17 | View Replies]

To: Grut
Which is why I converted to the Catholic Chuch.
35 posted on 01/11/2004 10:19:14 AM PST by e5man_r_u? (A Man's mission: Build, Protect, Provide)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 33 | View Replies]

To: Blue Collar Christian
[he] did it for his convenience ... exactly, so what is to make us think his crop of politicians won't seek a similar convenience from their church? I realize we won't see a new religion start up soon. Or will we? Look at what is happening with the Episcopalians. It is convenient to exempt ones views from God's law.
36 posted on 01/11/2004 10:35:53 AM PST by NonValueAdded ("Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists." GWB 9/20/01)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 34 | View Replies]

To: Republic If You Can Keep It
I loved this story, but then realized that that this principle could be applied to other issues, as well. The Pope was pretty clearly against US action in Iraq, and the Catholic Church has been firmly and unquivocally opposed to the death penalty for some time now (so it is not merely a difference of opinion having to do with one Pope). What if an elected official is exluded from communion for voting for miltary action in Iraq or for voting for a federal death penalty statute, or for voting against abolishing the death penalty? I am not saying that the Church cannot do this, but simply that this principle is a two-edged sword.
37 posted on 01/11/2004 10:41:01 AM PST by Montfort
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 21 | View Replies]

To: Montfort
The Pope was pretty clearly against US action in Iraq, and the Catholic Church has been firmly and unquivocally opposed to the death penalty for some time now (so it is not merely a difference of opinion having to do with one Pope). What if an elected official is exluded from communion for voting for miltary action in Iraq or for voting for a federal death penalty statute, or for voting against abolishing the death penalty?

Can't happen. None of those things are doctrine. Abortion is, so the bishop had a perfect right to do what he did.

38 posted on 01/11/2004 10:49:06 AM PST by BlessedBeGod
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 37 | View Replies]

To: BlackElk
If only the German Bishops had been this courageous 70 years ago.

The tragic truth is that there are little Auschwitzes spread across this great nation. And, they have killed more people than all the Nazi concentration camps combined.

We call it “women’s rights”. But, since when is it moral to bestow the right to a woman or a man to kill another human?

39 posted on 01/11/2004 10:49:35 AM PST by Barnacle (A Human Shield against the onslaught of Leftist tripe.)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 20 | View Replies]

To: ladylib
"What does this have to do with separation of church and state? The government isn't telling the pols they can't be Catholic and be pro-abortion -- the Catholic Church is."

It is about the 1st amendment right to free association. The private group can define its membership. The Catholic Church is a private group that opposes abortion. Those who don't oppose abortion are not members.
This kind of mistake is made by the media all the time.

They don't have a church-state problem with positions they approve of....they forget that the civil rights movement was led by churches.



40 posted on 01/11/2004 10:52:23 AM PST by edwin hubble
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 3 | View Replies]

To: BlessedBeGod
I was hoping something like that would be the case. So you are saying that the Church's stance against abortion is doctrine, but the church's stance against the death penalty is not doctrine?
41 posted on 01/11/2004 10:55:00 AM PST by Montfort
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 38 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
What a joke. If their faith meant a hill of beans to them they would not be pro abortion. Guess they'll just have to become Episcopal.
42 posted on 01/11/2004 10:57:38 AM PST by mercy
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Jim Noble
Jim, you recognize that the spin on this story is being handed to the "reporter" by the Democrats who were recipients of Burke's letter.

Nowhere will you read about MORAL law--but you'll hear a lot about the Constitution, Democracy, the Sacred Trust of Representation, etc., etc.

Smell from Obey even carries down to Milwaukee on the wind.
43 posted on 01/11/2004 11:01:50 AM PST by ninenot (So many cats, so few recipes)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: Jim Noble
"What does politics have to do with communion?"

In the case of politicians like Obey, the church attendance and participation is a front and is used as part of their con. Their exists a right to life, not a right to kill babies because they are an inconvenience.

44 posted on 01/11/2004 11:03:13 AM PST by spunkets
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 6 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
A Roman Catholic bishop who waded into politics with a decree that lawmakers who support abortion rights can no longer receive holy communion has ignited a debate over the separation of church and state.

There is no conflict here.

The Catholic Church has absolutely no power to legislate in the U.S. and the politicians have an absolute right to find another Church that does not believe that abortion is a sin.

45 posted on 01/11/2004 11:03:46 AM PST by Polybius
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P; mware
MILWAUKEE -- A Roman Catholic bishop who waded into politics with a decree that lawmakers who support abortion rights can no longer receive holy communion has ignited a debate over the separation of church and state.

I salute and greatly admire this champion of right, decency, morality, and the right of the unborn to live.

BRAVO and God forever bless this great and wonderful man!

46 posted on 01/11/2004 11:04:20 AM PST by Happy2BMe
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

To: Barnacle
ouch!

Those bishops who remained silent against the Nazi butchery are no doubt paying their dues now and for a long, long time to come.

Thank God Almighty spiritual and moral courage may finally be being rebirthed in the Catholic Church.

I say BRAVO. I say Praise God!

47 posted on 01/11/2004 11:06:52 AM PST by Happy2BMe
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 39 | View Replies]

To: Montfort
Re abortion you are correct. Deliberate killing of ANY innocent is murder. Doctrine.

Re: death penalty: the Church, DOCTRINALLY, recognizes that the State has the authority to use the death penalty. Never has changed--it's still in the Catechism.

However, the current Pope really, really, really, really, REALLY wants States to abandon the DP and use life-in-jail instead. He claims (justifiably) that in most Western countries, there's enough money to keep a prisoner for life.

But JPII cannot change the doctrine.

Same-o with war. The war must be a "Just War." (Don't have time to cite the stuff for you, but Google...) Now in the case of Iraq, the Pope's prudential judgment was that the justification for the action was not sufficient for the action we took.

GWB's prudential judgment was that the justification WAS sufficient.

Were we to have nuked every square foot of Iraq to prosecute the war, that would be UN-just. (Collateral damage must consciously be minimized...)

The Pope prefers not-war solutions, but does not have a DOCTRINAL basis for condemning this war.
48 posted on 01/11/2004 11:11:45 AM PST by ninenot (So many cats, so few recipes)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 41 | View Replies]

To: Montfort
From the Catechism:

2266 Preserving the common good of society requires rendering the aggressor unable to inflict harm. For this reason the traditional teaching of the Church has acknowledged as well-founded the right and duty of legitimate public authority to punish malefactors by means of penalties commensurate with the gravity of the crime, not excluding, the death penalty.

Hope that helps. :-)
49 posted on 01/11/2004 11:12:32 AM PST by BlessedBeGod
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 41 | View Replies]

To: Holly_P
A Roman Catholic bishop who waded into politics with a decree that lawmakers who support abortion rights can no longer receive holy communion has ignited a debate over the separation of church and state.

Some people think that this so called "separation of church and state" means that the Church may not refuse the sacraments to the people in power. Weird.

50 posted on 01/11/2004 11:19:42 AM PST by A. Pole (pay no attention to the man behind the curtain , the hand of free market must be invisible)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]


Navigation: use the links below to view more comments.
first 1-5051-68 next last

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
News/Activism
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794
FreeRepublic.com is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson