NewsMon Nov 14, 2005 - 12:15 pm EST
Vatican Cardinal Compares Abortion to Killing Politicians - “Pro-Choice” and Communion
By John-Henry Westen
VATICAN CITY, November 14, 2005 (LifeSiteNews.com) - Cardinal Francis Arinze, as the Prefect of the Congregation for Divine Worship, is the highest authority in the Catholic Church - next to the Pope himself - on the question of communion for pro-abortion politicians.Â As such, he has oft been asked for his position on the matter in light of the raging public debate on the issue which has bishops pitted on opposite sides of the question as well as many unwilling to take any position.
In an interview published Saturday by Inside the Vatican, the Cardinal, somewhat exasperatedly, responded once again to the question.Â In the interview he compared the situation to a person in favour of killing politicians and asked rhetorically if such a person should be denied communion.Â He said: Suppose somebody voted for the killing of all the members of the House of Representatives, ‘for all of you being killed. I call that pro-choice. Moreover, I am going to receive Holy Communion next Sunday.’ Then you ask me, should he be given communion. My reply, ‘Do you really need a cardinal from the Vatican to answer that question?’ Can a child having made his First Communion not answer that question? Is it really so complicated? The child will give the correct answer immediately, unless he is conditioned by political correctness. It is a pity, cardinals have to be asked such questions.”
In addition to Canon Law and numerous church documents which have forbidden reception of communion for persons in grave sin such as pro-abortion politicians, Cardinal Arinze has publicly stated the position of the church on the matter several times.Â The first time, in English, was a candid televised interview with EWTN. (see LifeSiteNews.com coverage: https://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2005/feb/05021603.html )Â He has since reiterated his statements on the matter several times (https://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2005/jul/05072504.html )
Despite this, the debate over the issue continues among US and Canadian bishops who, with only a handful of exceptions, far from endorsing the position expressed by Cardinal Arinze, have evaded the issue or remained silent.
A central character in the US bishops’ debate on the issue, Cardinal McCarrick of Washington, went so far as to withhold from a meeting of the US bishops’ conference, the pertinent section of a letter by then-Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, (CDF) in which he said such legislators “must be refused” communion. (https://www.lifesitenews.com/ldn/2004/jul/04070501.html )
Cardinal Arinze’s complete response to Inside the Vatican follows:
ARINZE: You are asking me if a politician says, “I vote for abortion, and I will continue to ask for abortion.” Then you ask should he be given holy communion. So, you are really saying, this politician says, “I vote for the killing of unborn children.” Because we call things by their names. And he calls that pro-choice.
Suppose somebody voted for the killing of all the members of the House of Representatives, “for all of you being killed. I call that pro-choice. Moreover, I am going to receive Holy Communion next Sunday.” Then you ask me, should he be given communion. My reply, “Do you really need a cardinal from the Vatican to answer that question?” Can a child having made his First Communion not answer that question? Is it really so complicated? The child will give the correct answer immediately, unless he is conditioned by political correctness. It is a pity, cardinals have to be asked such questions.
If a person has a way of life which is against the major Commandments, and makes a boast of it, then the person is in a state which is publicly sinful. It is he who has disqualified himself, not the priest or the bishop. He should not go to communion, until his life should be in line with the Gospel.
See the full interview with Inside the Vatican:
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