Politicians, abortion and Communion?

* FOR A FUN LOOK AT POPE COUTURE, CHECK NEWS DIGEST

There was a a great deal of speculation over who could/would/should receive Communion during the Papal masses while Pope Benedict XVI was in the United States.  The “wafer wars” in one headline was the predictable attempt to turn the whole issue into a cartoon.  

I’ve now read and heard comments that when Nancy Pelosi and John Kerry received Communion at Mass in Washington, that it was an indication that the Pope was not a “hard-liner” on the matter. (John Allen of National Catholic Reporter)

As if to underscore that point, Rudy Giuliani (twice divorced, pro-abortion) shamelessly went to Communion in St. Patrick’s Cathedral during the Papal visit. The message the pols sent was “See, I’m not out of Communion with the Church.”

This is not true. Not remotely true. Pope Benedict has written EXPLICITLY on this very point.

Then WHAT happened? How was it that millions of –who struggle with family members and loved ones who are separated from the practice of their faith for various disputes over Church doctrine– had to witness a Pelosi or a Kerry at Communion?

I’m pretty certain there is no ONE answer. The preparation for a papal trip is an enormous undertaking. A quadrillion details must be overseen. Also, at some point, you must rely on the people in place…ah, there is a point, the people in place. Often when working on articles about dissent within the Church in America, I heard the dissenter’s mantra: “defect in place.” They mean, of course, “keep your jobs, and undermine from within.”

I suggest to faithful Catholics that the music for the liturgy at At the Nationals’ stadium was an example of the Pope being “honored” by the “people in place.” They did not want to honor him with that music–but to show him “how we do it here, your Holiness.”

I did hear that those 50 who received Communion from the Holy Father were vetted carefully–perhaps a partial truth was told: “Oh YES, your Holiness, it has been seen to that no pro-abortion candidate will receive Communion (from you).”

But an equally likely explanation may be that the Pope did not want to overshadow his major message, and his entire visit with the media circus that would have ensued –the political tempest that Pelosi would make–if nationally prominent politicians had been turned away in a public disciplinary act.

But I admit–I’d love a photo of the Pope blessing Pelosi, but refusing her communion.

Some find a whiff of consolation in the address to the bishops, particularly this paragraph:

Perhaps America’s brand of secularism poses a particular problem: it allows for professing belief in God, and respects the public role of religion and the Churches, but at the same time it can subtly reduce religious belief to a lowest common denominator. Faith becomes a passive acceptance that certain things “out there” are true, but without practical relevance for everyday life. The result is a growing separation of faith from life: living “as if God did not exist”. This is aggravated by an individualistic and eclectic approach to faith and religion: far from a Catholic approach to “thinking with the Church”, each person believes he or she has a right to pick and choose, maintaining external social bonds but without an integral, interior conversion to the law of Christ. Consequently, rather than being transformed and renewed in mind, Christians are easily tempted to conform themselves to the spirit of this age (cf. Rom 12:3). We have seen this emerge in an acute way in the scandal given by Catholics who promote an alleged right to abortion.

May I suggest each of us write a letter to out pastors and bishops outlining this passage?

As an antidote to the pro-abortion politicians and Communion stories, give yourself time to read his address to the young people–

Keep the faith!

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2 Responses

  1. I was thrilled with the Holy Father’s address to the bishops. Infinitely less so with the response I am hearing from the bishops themselves. Apparently there’s nobody blinder than those who refuse to see.

    Oy.

    AMDG,

    -J.

  2. MJ, face it, what the Pope said will mean less than the photos of pols taking the Eucharist. You know the bishops think they pulled one.

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