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ANALYSIS

WASHINGTON, June 24, 2021 (LifeSiteNews) — As the dust settles after the U.S. bishops gathered online for their Spring Assembly last week, the bishops’ conference has released a brief clarifying note on the proposed document on the meaning of the Eucharist in the life of the Church, stating, “There will be no national policy on withholding Communion from politicians.”

The three-day conference, livestreamed online, was marked by debate and division on the matter of the Eucharistic document proposed by the Doctrine Committee of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB). Proposing the document, Bishop Kevin Rhoades, head of the Doctrine Committee, stated that there was a need for a “unified and strong revival of the meaning of the Eucharist in the life of the Church,” which was “more critical now than ever.”

However, in the wake of strong protest from a number of cardinals and bishops, as well as from mainstream media reports and pro-abortion self-described Catholic politicians, Rhoades added that the purpose of the document was not to single out select groups of people, particularly pro-abortion politicians such as Joe Biden.

“It was never our thought to present national norms for denying Catholics Holy Communion,” stated Rhoades, who ruled out creating a “national policy.” Instead, he described the document’s purpose as seeking to “present a clear understanding of why the Church has these laws.”

The document, which was given the approval to be drafted, has piqued interest from Catholic and non-Catholic media alike, with the suspicion that despite avoiding singling out any particular group, it might nevertheless affirm teaching which would prohibit abortion supporters from receiving Holy Communion.

Such a thought was evidently on the minds of the virtually assembled clerics, as Cardinals Blaise Cupich, Joseph Tobin, and Wilton Gregory, as well as Bishop Robert McElroy, attacked the document, opposing any policy of denying the Eucharist to individuals, saying it would even be out of line with the Gospel.

Clarifying note rules out any national policy on Holy Communion

Now, however, the USCCB has issued a one-page note in an apparent attempt to regain control of the media narrative, a concern which was even raised by certain bishops during the meeting. The note addresses certain key questions on the Eucharistic document, namely why it is being drafted, whether the USCCB voted to ban pro-abortion politicians from Holy Communion, if there will be a policy on such a question, and whether the move is in line with the Vatican.

The document notes that there was no vote or even debate on banning pro-abortion politicians, or indeed anyone, from Holy Communion.

Instead, the bishops wrote in the note: “Each Catholic — regardless of whether they hold public office or not — is called to continual conversion, and the U.S. bishops have repeatedly emphasized the obligation of all Catholics to support human life and dignity and other fundamental principles of Catholic moral and social teaching.”

Furthermore, the note clearly stipulates what Rhoades mentioned at the Spring Assembly: There will be no new national policy on the reception of the Eucharist in the Eucharistic document.

“There will be no national policy on withholding Communion from politicians. The intent is to present a clear understanding of the Church’s teachings to bring heightened awareness among the faithful of how the Eucharist can transform our lives and bring us closer to our creator and the life he wants for us.”

Taking the statement at face value, it leads to as yet unanswered questions about what the USCCB does in fact intend to do on the matter of giving Holy Communion to pro-abortion politicians. If the much-anticipated section on “Eucharistic consistency” in the Eucharistic document does not address this question, then the clerical and media hype about a future rebuttal of Biden would appear to be groundless. The Eucharistic document would also be avoiding a significant element of the meaning of the Eucharist in the life of the Church by sidestepping such statements.

Indeed, Rhoades himself already mentioned in comments to the press after the second day of the Spring Assembly that “I can’t answer” whether Biden would be allowed to receive Holy Communion. It would be a matter for Biden’s own bishop, Rhoades added.

Eucharistic document, much ado about nothing? Church’s law already binds

With regards to the upcoming Eucharistic document, it seems that in light of the June 21 note, the issue of giving Communion to supporters of abortion will not be covered, even though abortion is a grave sin, and one which instantly bars one from receiving Holy Communion — a significant issue in a discussion of the Eucharist and the Church.

The Catholic Church teaches that abortion is always wrong because it kills an innocent human being, thus violating the Church’s prohibition on murder, a teaching which “remains unchangeable.”

“Formal cooperation in an abortion constitutes a grave offense,” reads the Catechism of the Catholic Church. “The Church attaches the canonical penalty of excommunication to this crime against human life.”

Any state which deprives a certain category of persons of their inalienable rights, particularly the right to life from conception until death, is thus “denying the equality of all before the law,” and undermines its own foundations.

Furthermore, the Church’s Canon Law stipulates that under no circumstances are those who persist in manifest grave sin to receive the Holy Eucharist. “Those who have been excommunicated or interdicted after the imposition or declaration of the penalty and others obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to holy communion.”

It was based on this very directive of Canon Law that Fr. Robert E. Morey of St. Anthony Catholic Church in Florence, South Carolina, refused to give Biden Holy Communion in 2019. In comments to media in the aftermath, Morey explained his reasons: “Holy Communion signifies we are one with God, each other and the Church. Our actions should reflect that.”

“Any public figure who advocates for abortion places himself or herself outside of Church teaching,” he added.

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PETITION: Urge U.S. Bishops to publicly excommunicate Joe Biden (and other pro-abortion politicians)
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PETITION UPDATE (9/3/21)

Following the US Supreme Court's decision to allow Texas' Heartbeat Law to go into effect, Joe Biden made the announcement that he would initiate a "whole-of-government" response against the new pro-life statute which could ban abortions after a fetal heartbeat is detected.

This is yet another, outright confirmation of Biden's openly pro-abortion policies, policies which have the main objective of ensuring that women will continue to be able to kill their own children without impediment.

This anti-life, anti-Catholic stance needs to be urgently addressed and condemned by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.

For the good of the Church, for the good of pre-born babies, for the good of the faithful, and, indeed, for his own good, Joe Biden needs to be publicly rebuked by the bishops and excommunicated until such time as he repents from his pro-abortion policies.

Please continue to SIGN and SHARE this petition, which asks the bishops of the United States to act in unison to exclude Joe Biden from Holy Communion for his scandalous promotion of abortion - the murder of the innocent.

After signing, please take a moment to CONTACT the offices of the USCCB to politely, but firmly, encourage the Conference to take the necessary steps to exclude from Holy Communion public officials who continue to show blatant disregard for innocent human life and the Church's teaching.

The USCCB's Office phone number is: 202.541.3000

Thank you!

_____________________________________________________________________________

"No man can serve two masters. For either he will hate the one, and love the other: or he will sustain the one, and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon." - Matthew 6:24

In the lead-up to their meeting in mid-June, we call on the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) to exclude Joe Biden and other “Catholic” politicians (like, Nancy Pelosi) from Holy Communion over their public, obstinate, and scandalous promotion of abortion.

Please SIGN and SHARE this petition which asks the USCCB to act to stop the abuse of the reception of the Holy Eucharist by politicians who promote the murder of innocent pre-born babies.

We know that making a decision to exclude public figures from Holy Communion is not easy. But, sometimes, this is the only way to make them understand the error of their ways, and to preserve the Church from serious scandal.

Indeed, Canon Law (Canon 915) declares that those who persist in manifest, grave sin should not be admitted to Holy Communion

Beyond that, at this point, public excommunication appears as the only suitable response for Biden's obstinate, public and grave sin of promoting abortion.

In doing so, we do not hold ourselves up as judges over Joe Biden's eternal soul, but we encourage the bishops to make known one of the consequences of public and obstinate support of abortion by our 'Catholic' politicians.

The fact is, in terms of the manifest, grave sin of abortion, Joe Biden is as bad as he said he would be before the election.

Therefore, it is cold comfort that the USCCB is only preparing to discuss this issue only now.

But even now, if the USCCB publicly excommunicate Biden for his pro-abortion stance (as well as other pro-abortion politicians), the Conference could reclaim some of the moral authority which they lost by their largely silent assent to Biden's candidacy.

Please SIGN and SHARE this petition, now.

Since Joe Biden was sworn-in on the 20th of January, he has wasted no time in signing orders and bills which facilitate the destruction of unborn human life.

  • In one executive order, Biden rescinded the Mexico City Policy prohibiting the federal government from spending taxpayer monies on abortion and the promotion of abortion.
  • Biden also signed (instead of vetoing) the COVID relief bill, which, for the first time in 44 years, contained funding for abortions in America, using taxpayer dollars.
  • Biden said that he wouldn't defend Hyde, and he hasn't.

And, if he and the Democratic Party get their way, a lot more of the same regarding abortion is on the way.

Strong action must be taken lest anyone, especially young people, be confused by the scandal of a "Catholic" in Biden's position aggressively promoting abortion, enabling the killing of innocent human beings.

American rank-and-file Catholics don't want any more compromise and equivocation from the Bishops Conference on this "pre-eminent" life-and-death issue.

We want clear action, not twenty more years of dithering and "dialoguing."

50 million babies have been lost to abortion in the U.S. since Roe!

So, we will NOT accept any more lives lost as a result of dithering and "dialoguing." [**Please see "Notes" below about how it has been reported that some senior U.S. clerics are trying to prevent this discussion from even taking place.]

And, we will especially NOT accept one life lost to abortion by politicians who claim the Catholic Faith, but who promote grave evil. God forbid!

With all due respect to these bishops, they diminish the Holy Eucharist and their high office, as well as cause grave scandal to the faithful, by not imposing public canonical penalties on a man who is promoting mass murder of the unborn against the constant teaching of the Church.

The bishops are now at a crossroads and must choose either God or mammon.

We call on them to choose God and choose Life!

And we also continue to encourage those brave, true and good bishops who have done well to warn Amercian Catholics about the perils to the unborn and the Faith resulting from Biden's promotion of abortion!

SIGN and SHARE this petition, which asks the bishops of the United States to act in unison to exclude Joe Biden from Holy Communion for his scandalous promotion of abortion - the murder of the innocent.

After signing, please take a moment to CONTACT the offices of the USCCB to politely, but firmly, encourage the Conference to take the necessary steps to exclude from Holy Communion public officials who continue to show blatant disregard for innocent human life and the Church's teaching.

The USCCB's Office phone number is: 202.541.3000

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Joe Biden: I support abortion ‘under any circumstance’ - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/joe-biden-i-support-abortion-under-any-circumstance

Biden administration has opened the way for ‘abortion by mail on a massive scale’ - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/biden-administration-unleashed-by

‘Catholic’ Biden marks Roe v. Wade anniversary with pledge to make abortion available for ‘everyone’ - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/catholic-biden-marks-roe-v-wade-anniversary-with-pledge-to-make-abortion-available-for-everyone

BREAKING: DC archbishop affirms he will give Holy Communion to pro-abortion Joe Biden - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/breaking-dc-archbishop-affirms-he-will-give-holy-communion-to-pro-abortion-joe-biden

Vatican puts brakes on US bishops confronting problem of pro-abortion Biden receiving Holy Communion - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/vatican-puts-brakes-on-us-bishops-confronting-problem-of-pro-abortion-biden-receiving-holy-communion

Abp. Aquila backs call for pro-abortion ‘Catholic’ Joe Biden to be denied Holy Communion - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/abp-aquila-backs-call-for-pro-abortion-catholic-joe-biden-to-be-denied-holy-communion

Cardinal Burke floats ‘excommunication’ for Biden over his ‘aggressive’ abortion promotion - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/cardinal-burke-floats-excommunication-for-biden-over-his-aggressive-promotion-of-abortion

Biden’s HHS is lying about Title X to push abortion - https://www.lifesitenews.com/blogs/bidens-hhs-is-lying-about-title-x-to-push-abortion

List of US bishops for and against denying Communion to pro-abortion politicians like Biden, Pelosi - https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/list-of-us-bishops-for-and-against-denying-communion-to-pro-abortion-politicians-like-biden-pelosi

Notes about USCCB's June Meeting:

For nearly twenty years, the US bishops have been dithering about whether or not to excommunicate pro-abortion politicians by formally withholding Holy Communion from them.

Their indecision on this gravely scandalous matter is a scandal in itself, but one of the biggest obstacles has been internal opposition from senior U.S. bishops.

And, although the faces have changed in the last 20 years, their morally-and-intellectually-challenged arguments against excommunication have not changed.

Liberal bishops of the USCCB say that excommunicating Biden (for example) would divide the Church, divide the bishops, and would politicize the reception of Holy Communion.

Indeed, in the name of “unity,” it is reported that some senior U.S. clerics, including Cardinal Blase Cupich (Chicago), Cardinal Wilton Gregory (Washington, DC) and Cardinal O’Malley (Boston), have been working overtime to prevent any substantial discussion of so-called “Eucharist coherence” (that is, what qualifies as worthy reception of Holy Communion).

It is also reported that at least 57 other American bishops allegedly joined these Cardinals in a recent letter to the Head of the Bishops Conference, Archbishop Gomez of Los Angeles, to try to pressure him to drop the planned discussion at the full meeting of bishops in June.

And now, even the Vatican is getting involved, with the head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith suggesting that even more “dialogue” is needed.

These same clerics may mistakenly believe that any attempt to suppress the objective connection between a politician’s promotion of abortion and his unworthy reception of Holy Communion will fool anyone.

But, it will not.

Rank-and-file Catholics are not stupid and can smell compromise a mile away, and we’ve had enough.

With all due respect to the Cardinal, bishops, and the Vatican…those who fail to act diminish the Holy Eucharist and their high office, as well as cause grave scandal to the faithful, by “dialoguing” with a man who is promoting mass murder of the unborn against the constant teaching of the Church.

Please SIGN and SHARE this urgent petition urging the bishops Conference to take action at their June meeting to exclude pro-abortion Joe Biden and other abortion-promoting “Catholic” politicians from Holy Communion.

***Photo Credit: Claire Chretien / LifeSiteNews

  Hide Petition Text

Hence, as the USCCB looks set to studiously avoid the topic of Holy Communion to pro-abortion politicians, most especially in the form of drafting a “national policy,” the Eucharistic document would appear to be already moot, since it will avoid one of the most pressing issues of the Church in the U.S., namely, having a “Catholic” president who supports and promotes the murder of the unborn, and still presents himself for Holy Communion.

In fact, while the USCCB attempt to avoid this topic by rejecting any national policy, the Church has already spoken for the bishops in a universal manner, through the official texts and laws which bind all Catholics, both clerical and lay.

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