Calgary Bishop Says He Would Refuse Prime Minister Communion

CALGARY, August 5, 2003 ( - Calgary Bishop Fred Henry has not been daunted by politicians and newspapers attacking him as a hatemonger and worse for his clear defence of Catholic teaching on homosexuality and his daring to call to account Prime Minister Jean Chretien who calls himself ‘Catholic’.  Rather than back down from his widely reported warning that the Prime Minister was risking his eternal salvation, Bishop Henry used the media frenzy to teach.  In an interview with Sun Media, Bishop Henry noted that a good Catholic must be in communion with the Church.  “As a Catholic if he can’t listen to the pope and he can’t listen to the bishops then we have a problem with the Catholicity of this man. We have a serious problem.  “You can’t go around calling yourself a good Catholic and act in a contrary manner. Acts have consequences.”  The Bishop also noted that he would refuse Chretien communion.  “Given his status, if the prime minister were to come to Calgary and line up for communion in the ranks at the cathedral and I were the celebrant I would probably refuse him and give him a simple blessing.  I don’t want to embarrass anyone publicly but at present he is not in communion with the church. I don’t intend to threaten the prime minister but I think his eternal salvation is at risk and I pray he experiences some kind of conversion and enlightenment and mend his ways.”  See his comments to Sun Media and a column in the Globe by Bishop Henry:

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