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Boston Cardinal: Church Needs 'Clear' Injunction Denying Pro-Abortion Pols Communion
LifeSiteNews ^ | 2/10/10 | Peter J. Smith

Posted on 02/18/2010 4:18:05 PM PST by wagglebee

WASHINGTON, DC, February 17, 2010 (LifeSiteNews.com) – The best way for the Church to ensure pro-abortion Catholic politicians do not receive Communion would be through a change in the Church’s Canon Law, or an official directive from the Pope himself, Cardinal Sean O’Malley of Boston told LifeSiteNews.com.

LifeSiteNews.com caught up with O’Malley in Washington, DC last month, where he was among the concelebrating bishops for the Vigil Mass for Life at the National Basilica of the Immaculate Conception. LSN asked O’Malley what he considered the appropriate pastoral response to pro-abortion politicians receiving Communion.

"Well, I think that the only way that that solution [denying communion] should be invoked is if there were a large catechesis or if it was universal for the whole church," the cardinal responded. "You can’t have people doing things in one parish and another, you would only divide the Church hopelessly.”

(To view the full LSN interview transcript with Cardinal O'Malley, click here)

For several years, the US Catholic Bishops have actively engaged the problem of how to correct the scandal of pro-abortion politicians receiving Holy Communion – but developed no consensus on a uniform pastoral approach.  Many orthodox Catholics continue to protest against pro-abortion politicians presenting themselves to receive the Church’s holiest sacrament, yet the practice is widespread.

O’Malley said an official papal directive or change in Canon Law would be “the only way it is really going to work.”

“That would be helpful if they did it,” he continued. “But if it is not done – to make it look like it’s an individual bishop sparring with the people of particular parties is only going to divide the Church in a very terrible way.  Then you’ll have some priest who will obey and others who won’t, other divisions of the Church, more scandal, and undermining the authority of the bishops.”

O’Malley revealed that he had been concerned about the issue for a long time, and asked Pope John Paul II for guidance when the pontiff was soliciting input from bishops for his pro-life encyclical Evangelium Vitae.

“I wrote to him and asked him to please give us very clear direction on how to deal with politicians who will be pro-abortion and will be Catholic,” related O’Malley.

“We have not had the kind of clear response that we need.”

However, it seems the Vatican has already attempted to give the US bishops guidance on how to deal with the issue, through a 2004 letter from Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger – now Pope Benedict XVI – entitled "Worthiness to Receive Holy Communion: General Principles."

The memo states that, once persistently pro-abortion Catholic politicians had been warned by their respective bishops not to approach the altar, they "must" be denied Communion.

Unfortunately, the US Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) never received the letter as Ratzinger intended.  Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, chairman of the USCCB task force on the issue, only referenced the document as an afterthought in his 12-page report to that committee.

Later – in what may have been a Vatican end-run around McCarrick – Ratzinger's letter hit international headlines after being leaked to Roman media.

In the end, the US Bishops task force put out more generalized guidelines in the document "Catholics in Political Life," which leaves the appropriate pastoral response towards pro-abortion politicians - including denial of Communion - to the prudential judgment of the individual bishop. Ratzinger would later affirm to the USCCB that the document was "very much in harmony" with his general principles.

(To view the full LSN interview transcript with Cardinal O'Malley, click here)

See related coverage by LifeSiteNews.com:

For the Vatican it's Clear - Pro-Abortion Politicians 'Must' be Denied Communion
 
Pope Supports Excommunication for Pro-Abortion Politicians - "Incompatible with Receiving Communion"

Worthiness to Receive Holy Communion: General Principles

Cardinal McCarrick and the Concealing of Rome's Position on Denying Communion: Part I  Part II


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: abortion; catholic; moralabsolutes; omalley; prolife
Unfortunately, the US Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) never received the letter as Ratzinger intended. Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, chairman of the USCCB task force on the issue, only referenced the document as an afterthought in his 12-page report to that committee.

What unbelievable arrogance!

1 posted on 02/18/2010 4:18:06 PM PST by wagglebee
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To: cgk; Coleus; cpforlife.org; narses; Salvation; 8mmMauser

Pro-Life Ping


2 posted on 02/18/2010 4:18:40 PM PST by wagglebee ("A political party cannot be all things to all people." -- Ronald Reagan, 3/1/75)
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To: cgk; Coleus; cpforlife.org; narses; Salvation; 8mmMauser

Pro-Life Ping


3 posted on 02/18/2010 4:19:08 PM PST by wagglebee ("A political party cannot be all things to all people." -- Ronald Reagan, 3/1/75)
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To: NYer; Pyro7480

Ping for your lists.


4 posted on 02/18/2010 4:19:38 PM PST by wagglebee ("A political party cannot be all things to all people." -- Ronald Reagan, 3/1/75)
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To: 185JHP; 230FMJ; Albion Wilde; Aleighanne; Alexander Rubin; An American In Dairyland; Antoninus; ...
Moral Absolutes Ping!

Freepmail wagglebee to subscribe or unsubscribe from the moral absolutes ping list.

FreeRepublic moral absolutes keyword search
[ Add keyword moral absolutes to flag FR articles to this ping list ]


5 posted on 02/18/2010 4:20:10 PM PST by wagglebee ("A political party cannot be all things to all people." -- Ronald Reagan, 3/1/75)
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To: wagglebee

I believe this is called passing the buck.


6 posted on 02/18/2010 4:25:35 PM PST by ardara
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To: netmilsmom; thefrankbaum; markomalley; Tax-chick; GregB; saradippity; Berlin_Freeper; Litany; ...
Catholic Ping
Please freepmail me if you want on/off this list


7 posted on 02/18/2010 4:28:56 PM PST by NYer ("Where Peter is, there is the Church." - St. Ambrose of Milan)
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To: wagglebee

Grow a spine, Sean.


8 posted on 02/18/2010 4:31:36 PM PST by iowamark
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To: wagglebee

The Pope needs to issue an edict. All those who are pro-abortion and take communion, and those priests and bishops who participate in it, are de-facto excommunicated until further notice. So they leave... these people are not doing the Body of Christ any favors as it is.


9 posted on 02/18/2010 4:32:59 PM PST by pray4liberty
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To: wagglebee
Bump that with this prayer!

A Pro-Life Prayer For Our President And Public Officials

Baby with TearLord God, Author of Life and Source of Eternal Life,

Move the hearts of all our public officials and especially our President, to fulfill their responsibilities worthily and well to all those entrusted to their care.

Help them in their special leadership roles, to extend the mantle of protection to the most vulnerable, especially the defenseless unborn, whose lives are threatened with extermination by an indifferent society.

Guide all public officials by your wisdom and grace to cease supporting any law that fails to protect the fundamental good that is human life itself, which is a gift from God and parents.

You are the Protector and Defender of the lives of the innocent unborn. Change the hearts of those who compromise the call to protect and defend life. Bring our nation to the values that have made us a great nation, a society that upholds the values of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness for all.

Mary, the Mother of the living, help us to bear witness to the Gospel of Life with our lives and our laws, through Christ, Our Lord.

Amen.

 


10 posted on 02/18/2010 4:38:00 PM PST by Salvation ("With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26)
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To: iowamark
Grow a spine, Sean.

LOL, this is a spine for Sean.

11 posted on 02/18/2010 4:46:40 PM PST by BlessedBeGod (New Wizard of Oz: Pelosi as the Wicked Witch of the West & Michelle as the Wicked Witch of the East.)
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To: wagglebee
Won't listen to Ratzinger, won't listen to Burke, won't find the subject-verb-object sequence in a simple section of Canon Law...

"And He said unto him, If they hear not Moses and the prophets ..."

I am so disgusted with O'Malley...

12 posted on 02/18/2010 5:15:18 PM PST by Mrs. Don-o ("As it is written, the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you." Romans 2:24)
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To: wagglebee
Does the good Cardinal care for the souls of the lost on the issue of abortion?

I am in material cooperation with evil if I have voted for, and promoted, abortion. I am in the state of mortal sin. I bring judgement upon myself, damnation in fact, if I knowingly, willingly, receive Our Lord.

Does the good Cardinal care enough for my lost soul, even at the risk of offending (watch for it) some people?
13 posted on 02/18/2010 5:38:26 PM PST by jobim
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To: wagglebee

Meanwhile, McCarrick didn’t have a problem making public what was intended as private communication between a Kennedy and the Pope.

From http://www.time.com/time/world/article/0,8599,1919064,00.html:

“At [Ted] Kennedy’s burial at Arlington, retired Cardinal Theodore McCarrick read excerpts from Kennedy’s letter [to the Pope]; he also provided portions of the Vatican’s response to it.”


14 posted on 02/18/2010 5:50:51 PM PST by LibFreeOrDie (Obama promised a gold mine, but will give us the shaft.)
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Putz

Can. 915 Those upon whom the penalty of excommunication or interdict has been imposed or declared, and others who obstinately persist in manifest grave sin, are not to be admitted to holy communion.

15 posted on 02/18/2010 8:59:03 PM PST by A.A. Cunningham (Barry Soetoro is a Kenyan communist)
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To: LibFreeOrDie
retired Cardinal Theodore McCarrick read excerpts from Kennedy’s letter

Since McCarrick is the one who bowdlerized the Pope's letter to the bishops, I'm guessing "excerpts" is the operative word here! (Dowdification, anyone?)

16 posted on 02/19/2010 2:17:50 AM PST by maryz
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bump!


17 posted on 02/19/2010 7:17:49 AM PST by trisham (Zen is not easy. It takes effort to attain nothingness. And then what do you have? Bupkis.)
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To: wagglebee

“I wrote to him and asked him to please give us very clear direction on how to deal with politicians who will be pro-abortion and will be Catholic,” related O’Malley.”

I guess it could be a quick comment that is unintentionally unclear, but it sounds like this guy doesn’t even get the concept.

I guess maybe he meant to say something like “...how to deal with politicians who are pro-abortion and claim to be Catholic” but it came off as accepting that you can be pro-abortion and Catholic at the same time.

The lack of discipline concerning pro-baby butchery Catholic leaders is the biggest scandal going, dwarfing the homosexualist priests scandal.

Freegards


18 posted on 02/19/2010 7:39:57 AM PST by Ransomed (Son of Ransomed Says Keep the Faith!)
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To: wagglebee

“You can’t have people doing things in one parish and another, you would only divide the Church hopelessly.”

What a cop-out! Acting in accordance with what the Church professes to stand for will divide the Church hopelessly!!

Yes, I agree that it would be great to have a singularly defined standard of practice from the Holy Father, but obviously Rome is much too busy to attend to this minor issue. In the meantime, baby murder continues and is sanctioned, through inaction, by the Catholic Church!

It only take one parish priest to start it! Somebody out there has to have the courage to begin. If not, the Church is doomed.

Militant


19 posted on 02/19/2010 9:01:50 AM PST by militant2 (I may not agree with everything you say, but......hell, I don't agree with anything you say!)
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To: militant2
What a cop-out! Acting in accordance with what the Church professes to stand for will divide the Church hopelessly!!

Exactly, the alternative is to lower yourself to the lowest common denominator.

20 posted on 02/19/2010 9:04:53 AM PST by wagglebee ("A political party cannot be all things to all people." -- Ronald Reagan, 3/1/75)
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To: wagglebee
I'm sorry, but this is weasel-wording. The bishops usually do whatever they please on domestic issues within their own dioceses, with little concern for what the Pope thinks. But when a hard and politically unpopular decision needs to be made, they defer to the Pope.

Dear God, put some steel in the spines of our shepherds!
21 posted on 02/19/2010 9:08:46 AM PST by Antoninus (Vote Mitt Romney in 2012 -- We need an even bigger fraud in DC than Obama.)
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To: Antoninus

“Dear God, put some steel in the spines of our shepherds!”

I share your prayer.......but I fear that our “shepherds” no longer see themselves as such, much like our “elected officials”, and are satisfied to revel in self delusion and self service!

Militant


22 posted on 02/19/2010 9:17:12 AM PST by militant2 (I may not agree with everything you say, but......hell, I don't agree with anything you say!)
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