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 Post subject: Using Communion as a Weapon
PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 5:25 pm 
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Using Communion as a Weapon

By E.J. Dionne

WASHINGTON—Word spread like wildfire in Catholic circles: Douglas Kmiec, a staunch Republican, firm foe of abortion and veteran of the Reagan Justice Department, had been denied communion.

His sin? Kmiec, a Catholic who can cite papal pronouncements with the facility of a theological scholar, shocked old friends and adversaries alike earlier this year by endorsing Barack Obama for president. For at least one priest, Kmiec’s support for a pro-choice politician made him a willing participant in a grave moral evil.

Kmiec was denied communion in April at a Mass for a group of Catholic business people he later addressed at dinner. The episode has not received wide attention outside the Catholic world, yet it is the opening shot in an argument that could have a large impact on this year’s presidential campaign: Is it legitimate for bishops and priests to deny communion to those supporting candidates who favor abortion rights?

A version of this argument roiled the 2004 presidential campaign when some, though not most, Catholic bishops suggested that John Kerry and other pro-choice Catholic politicians should be denied communion because of their views on abortion.

The Kmiec incident poses the question in an extreme form: He is not a public official but a voter expressing a preference. Moreover, Kmiec—a law professor at Pepperdine University and once dean of Catholic University’s law school—is a long-standing critic of the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Wade decision.

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 Post subject: Re: Using Communion as a Weapon
PostPosted: Tue Jun 03, 2008 6:16 pm 
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Catherine wrote:
A version of this argument roiled the 2004 presidential campaign when some, though not most, Catholic bishops suggested that John Kerry and other pro-choice Catholic politicians should be denied communion because of their views on abortion.


Somewhere in my memory, I remember that one of the Catholic hierarchy who wanted to deny Communion to Kerry was the current Pope, then the number two man at the Vatican as a cardinal. In Kerry's case, they had a simpler argument; he was divorced from his first wife and had not undergone the sham of a Catholic annulment of that marriage.

That being said—All these churches need to back out of politics if they wish to maintain their tax exempt status. Paying taxes is what gives voters and organizations the right to participate in the electoral process. If you maintain saving men's souls is your job, then get to it, and stop throwing your monkey wrench of your single-issue political views. Why the Catholics are more concerned about the aborting of fertilized eggs over the needless killing of over a million living breathing Iraqis is something that I will NEVER understand. This is just one of the reasons that the ball-and-chain and I don't attend church services together.

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