Detroit Archbishop defends his stance that gay ‘marriage’ supporters should not receive Communion
DETROIT, Sept. 24, 2013 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Despite strong criticism and a public rebuke from another bishop, Detroit’s Archbishop Allen Vigneron has reaffirmed his insistence that Catholics who support same-sex “marriage” should not receive Holy Communion.
The archbishop was speaking to media at a pro-life vigil in Motor City on Saturday.
“I don’t think they were hurtful,” he said of his comments from April, according to the Detroit Free Press. “I think they were straightforward. There’s nothing hurtful in telling people the truth.”
“And the truth is that... the teaching of the church about marriage is God’s way for us to flourish,” he added. “That’s what I want people to know.”
On April 7th, the archbishop had stressed, in the wake of the Supreme Court’s ruling striking down the Defense of Marriage Act, that a Catholic must be committed to Church teaching if they present themselves for Holy Communion.
“For a Catholic to receive holy Communion and still deny the revelation Christ entrusted to the church is to try to say two contradictory things at once: ‘I believe the church offers the saving truth of Jesus, and I reject what the Church teaches,’” he said. “In effect, they would contradict themselves. This sort of behavior would result in publicly renouncing one's integrity and logically bring shame for a double-dealing that is not unlike perjury.”
Four days later, Bishop Thomas Gumbleton, a retired auxiliary bishop for the Archdiocese with a strongly liberal reputation who has made a name for himself as an opponent of Church teaching, gave an interview to oppose Vigneron’s stance.
"Don't stop going to communion. You're okay," Gumbleton told Fox News.
The highest authorities of the Church, including Pope Benedict himself, have insisted, however, that the Church’s law not only bars public advocates of abortion and same-sex “marriage” from receiving Communion but, in Canon 915, instructs clergy to deny them Communion if they refuse to recant after receiving instruction.
Canon 915 states that those who are “obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to Holy Communion.”
Archbishop Vigneron offered a Mass at Assumption Grotto church for about 200 pro-lifers, and then joined a walk to two abortion facilities where he led a Rosary. The event was organized by the Helpers of God’s Precious Infants.
In his homily, he told the pro-lifers who gathered that they were part of the “field hospital” spoken of by Pope Francis in his widely-publicized interview published last week.