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The 7 - Current Events & Politics - Pro-Choice Catholic Pols may be denied Communion Register and log in to post!
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Grimis
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#1 Posted on 23.4.04 1359.29
Reposted on: 23.4.11 1400.55
It will be interesting to see how this plays out. Probably won't have too much of a political effect, but still interesting nonetheless.

* * * * * * *
Cardinal backs denying communion to abortion-rights politicians
VATICAN CITY (CNN) -- A top Vatican cardinal called on priests Friday to deny communion to Roman Catholic politicians who support legalized abortion such as Democratic presidential hopeful Sen. John Kerry.

The Vatican announcement came hours before Kerry was to address a women's rights rally in Washington to discuss his support for legalized abortion. (Full story)

In a news conference to announce the release of a document aimed at a crackdown on possible abuses in celebrating Mass, Cardinal Francis Arinze was asked if a politician who supports abortion rights should be denied communion.

"Yes. Objectively, the answer is clear," Arinze said. "The person is not fit. If he shouldn't receive it, then it shouldn't be given."

Asked about Kerry, Arinze said the decision would be up to U.S. bishops: "The norm of the church is clear. The Catholic Church exists in the U.S. There are bishops there. Let them interpret it."

Kerry supports a woman's right to an abortion and the promotion of family planning resources. He also has said he will only back judges to the Supreme Court who support abortion rights.

Kerry has said, "I fully intend to practice my religion as separate from what I do with respect to my public life."

Kerry campaign spokeswoman Stephanie Cutter said, "John Kerry takes his faith seriously, but he also believes in the separation of church and state and believes that public officials have a commitment to separate church and state and protect the lives of every American."

Some U.S. Roman Catholics have said Kerry should not receive communion because of his position. The senator from Massachusetts received it on Easter -- prompting further debate within the church.

Asked about the push to deny communion, Cutter said, "For a generation, Catholics have believed in the freedom of conscience. ... At the end of the day, this is between John Kerry and his church."

Archbishop Theodore Egan McCarrick of Washington met privately last week with Kerry at the Archdiocese of Washington at the candidate's request. McCarrick is heading up a commission of U.S. bishops to determine if Catholic politicians who support abortion rights should be denied communion.

That commission may resolve the issue at a meeting set for November after the presidential election.
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DrDirt
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#2 Posted on 23.4.04 1414.48
Reposted on: 23.4.11 1414.50
It's interesting in the light of Kerry's abortion comments yesterday. This is hardly new to the Catholic Church and to be fair other denominations.
The Amazing Salami
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#3 Posted on 23.4.04 1427.27
Reposted on: 23.4.11 1427.46
    Originally posted by Grimis
    It will be interesting to see how this plays out. Probably won't have too much of a political effect, but still interesting nonetheless.


You can't just say something is interesting and post a link/story. Haven't you read the new "the-w rules."

http://the-w.com/ thread.php/id=19685&page=1#232422
DrDirt
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#4 Posted on 23.4.04 1833.35
Reposted on: 23.4.11 1835.59
Having just heard a report on this, it plays out to more than Kerry. People like Daschle for instance. And the US Catholic Church has a tendency to be a bit of a maverick re the Vatican.

(edited by DrDirt on 23.4.04 1835)
JayJayDean
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#5 Posted on 23.4.04 1840.41
Reposted on: 23.4.11 1844.24
I* assume the pols who are pro-the-inappropriate-touching-of-teenage-boys will still be eligible to receive communion.

(*who is Catholic)
ScreamingHeadGuy
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#6 Posted on 23.4.04 1842.27
Reposted on: 23.4.11 1844.35
Good. What's the point of belonging to a religion if you're just going to flaunt its tenents? Although, personally, I think it's been too long since we've had a good ol' high-profile excommunicating.
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#7 Posted on 23.4.04 2225.52
Reposted on: 23.4.11 2227.24
    Originally posted by ScreamingHeadGuy
    Good. What's the point of belonging to a religion if you're just going to flaunt its tenents? Although, personally, I think it's been too long since we've had a good ol' high-profile excommunicating.


Being denied the Holy Sacrements is about as good.
AWArulz
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#8 Posted on 24.4.04 2225.40
Reposted on: 24.4.11 2229.01
    Originally posted by DrDirt
      Originally posted by ScreamingHeadGuy
      Good. What's the point of belonging to a religion if you're just going to flaunt its tenents? Although, personally, I think it's been too long since we've had a good ol' high-profile excommunicating.

    Being denied the Holy Sacrements is about as good.

Yeah. And I can't recall a time when a (modern)politician was excommunicated,

Oops -seems Gray Davis is
http://www.lifesite.net/ ldn/2003/jan/03012301.html

Kind of an interesting article about this from a couple years ago - according to the date, anyway, right here
http://www.christiangallery.com/ silenceofshepherds.htm

Mostly ripping on the church leadership

One more thing: the catholic church released a document called "PARTICIPATION OF CATHOLICS IN POLITICAL LIFE" in 22 January 2003, here's a link
http://www.ewtn.com/library/CURIA/CDFPOLIF.HTM

worth a read.


MoeGates
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#9 Posted on 25.4.04 0035.29
Reposted on: 25.4.11 0036.28
Excommunication is different from what they're talking about. Excommunication is generally reserved for people like Martin Luther. I mean, HITLER didn't get excommunicated. What the Pope is talking about (I think) is an "interdiction" which is a lesser kind of punishment.

But regardless, there is a world of difference between

"Such a person should have the integrity to acknowledge this and choose of his own volition to abstain from receiving Holy Communion until he has a change of heart" which is as close to "excommunicated" as Grey Davis got, and actually refusing to put the cracker in the guy's mouth.

I'm not so up on Catholic procedure, but I think this is one that's left to the Bishops in general, and the U.S. Catholic Church has always been one of the ones most independant of Vactican directives. If anyone actually refused communion to Pro-Choice politicians, I'd be very surprised.

I wonder how much of an issue this is in Europe, which is both more Catholic and more Pro-Choice than the U.S.
Corajudo
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#10 Posted on 25.4.04 2204.13
Reposted on: 25.4.11 2204.43
As usual, the press got Catholic teaching wrong, and Moe pretty much nailed it.

Interdiction is when a bishop or priest impose some type of discipline on an individual (usually for someone who can't conquer a particular sin and/or confess the same thing over and over and over). In this case, the priest or bishop could bar pro-abortion Catholic politicians from receiving communion because of their disregard for Church teachings. I don't know if a priest or bishop has actually refused communion to such a politician, but they do have the discretion to withold the Host from anyone. FWIW, I do know that Kerry went to a very liberal church on Easter and did receive Communion.

With excommunication, the Church formally cuts someone off from the Church and is seen as recognizing 'spiritual death' so that the person cannot receive any of the sacraments (to use the language of the Catechism). And, it would be hard to excommunicate Hitler since he wasn't a member of the Church to start with (although Napoleon was excommunicated; I believe Elizabeth I was too--I don't think either worked out according to plan!)

I'd be interested to know how (if?) this issue is handled in Europe.
Grimis
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#11 Posted on 26.4.04 0635.20
Reposted on: 26.4.11 0635.35
    Originally posted by Corajudo
    And, it would be hard to excommunicate Hitler since he wasn't a member of the Church to start with (although Napoleon was excommunicated; I believe Elizabeth I was too--I don't think either worked out according to plan!)
I'm pretty sure that just about every protestant king or queen of England was excommunicated over the years. Henry VIII was one specifically...
Corajudo
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#12 Posted on 26.4.04 0747.29
Reposted on: 26.4.11 0747.30
    Originally posted by Grimis
      Originally posted by Corajudo
      And, it would be hard to excommunicate Hitler since he wasn't a member of the Church to start with (although Napoleon was excommunicated; I believe Elizabeth I was too--I don't think either worked out according to plan!)
    I'm pretty sure that just about every protestant king or queen of England was excommunicated over the years. Henry VIII was one specifically...


Then, let me rephrase that to say it would be and has been pointless.
DrOp
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#13 Posted on 26.4.04 0756.21
Reposted on: 26.4.11 0757.13
Doesn't this potentially make Kerry more of a martyr in the "I so believe in this that I am willing to be punished by my church" kind of way? Seems to me that he *could* try to use this as a strong rallying point.
Maniac
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#14 Posted on 26.4.04 0854.23
Reposted on: 26.4.11 0854.38
This is why separation of Church and State so important. Kerry may be against abortion, but be pro-choice because he knows that the Government has to protect peoples rights. If he gets refused holy Communion then perhaps his faith will lead him to another Christian denomination. I don't know do they all serve bread?
vsp
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#15 Posted on 26.4.04 0936.13
Reposted on: 26.4.11 0937.13
I will pay attention to this if and only if politicians who favor capital punishment (which is also denounced by the Catholic Church on the "all life is sacred" rationale, preached against by the Pope and everything) are also denied Communion. In for a penny, in for a pound, right?

    Originally posted by DrOp
    Doesn't this potentially make Kerry more of a martyr in the "I so believe in this that I am willing to be punished by my church" kind of way? Seems to me that he *could* try to use this as a strong rallying point.


He and his followers would have to be very careful as to how they word these kinds of statements and ads; no matter what he does, it can be spun negatively. Who wants to see "Our opponent's own church has rejected him" attack ads in a closely-contested race? If he keeps a low profile, they'll continue; if he attacks the Vatican rhetorically, it'll only stir up the controversy more and risk angering Catholic voters. And if he capitulates (which he won't) and says "Okay, fine, I'll work towards pro-life legislation," the election can be cancelled because Democratic voters will abandon him in droves.


(edited by vsp on 26.4.04 0747)
Corajudo
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#16 Posted on 26.4.04 0937.09
Reposted on: 26.4.11 0940.11
    Originally posted by Maniac
    This is why separation of Church and State so important. Kerry may be against abortion, but be pro-choice because he knows that the Government has to protect peoples rights. If he gets refused holy Communion then perhaps his faith will lead him to another Christian denomination. I don't know do they all serve bread?


What does this have to do with separation of church and state?

Also, people who are pro-life believe that they are protecting human rights as well. Catholic churches do not serve bread, and (to my knowledge) all Christian denominations serve communion, at least on occasion.

EDIT: In response to vsp's post, the short answer is because the Church teachings against abortion are much, much stronger than the teachings about capital punishment. Similarly, the theology about abortion is much deeper than that of capital punishment. Pragmatically, abortion is in the news more so we hear more about it.

Incidently, there was some Vatican criticism of prominent politicians who were in favor of the war in Iraq (your friend Santorum was one of the recipients).

(edited by Corajudo on 26.4.04 0945)
DrDirt
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#17 Posted on 26.4.04 1046.42
Reposted on: 26.4.11 1046.55
    Originally posted by Grimis
      Originally posted by Corajudo
      And, it would be hard to excommunicate Hitler since he wasn't a member of the Church to start with (although Napoleon was excommunicated; I believe Elizabeth I was too--I don't think either worked out according to plan!)
    I'm pretty sure that just about every protestant king or queen of England was excommunicated over the years. Henry VIII was one specifically...


Small point. Henry VIII was a member of the Cathoilc Church. You can't excommunicate those who don't belong.
Grimis
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#18 Posted on 26.4.04 1116.31
Reposted on: 26.4.11 1116.49
    Originally posted by DrDirt
    Small point. Henry VIII was a member of the Cathoilc Church. You can't excommunicate those who don't belong.
Point taken. He did become Protestant(technically) after getting the boot...
vsp
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#19 Posted on 26.4.04 1148.15
Reposted on: 26.4.11 1148.18
    Originally posted by Corajudo
    What does this have to do with separation of church and state?


Well, there's the Kennedy question all over again -- when the interests of the constituents and the interests of the church collide, which take precedence?

I'm sure the Pope is a nice guy and all that, and I'm glad that the faith he represents is valuable to millions around the world. If they buy into it and draw something useful from it, good for them. But I'm not comfortable with the notion of the Pope -- or any other religious body or authority -- directing US domestic, foreign, social or military policy in any way. Anyone who isn't Catholic shouldn't give a rat's ass about what a guy in a funny pointed hat thinks about the issues of the day.

I sincerely hope that if a President Kerry (or any other religious president) faces a crisis, his advisors and constituents say "X" and the Pope (or other religious authority) says "Y" on religious grounds, that the President will go with "X" without hesitation and politely tell the Pope to go pound sand.

That's not how the Church sees it, obviously. Within the last two weeks, we've had a pastor deliver morning prayers to the House coupled with a statement that politicians should be the "antithesis of John Kennedy" and should "let their faith influence and guide every vote they make." We have the Catholic officials in this thread's first article saying "If politicians don't abide by the Church's teachings on this issue, we're rebuking them."

If our leaders say "Fine -- rebuke me," I can handle that, but the possibility that they might react differently makes me itch.
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#20 Posted on 26.4.04 1215.06
Reposted on: 26.4.11 1217.10
It may be a separation question to voters but has not shown itself to be a problem in the past. "W" is a Methodist but it doesn't appear that denomination is influencing his decision making.

Plus, separation doesn't mean your personal faith shouldn't play a role in you thought processes. You make decisions based upon your convinctions and faith is part of that.
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