Hi there, I recently also saw the report on Mayor Guiliani's reception of communion at St.Patrick's during the Papal mass. Although I am pro-life, I disagree with some bishops (such as Egan) who refuse to administer the Eucharist to pro-choice politicians. If they are Catholic, they should be allowed to receive communion. They shouldn't be denied just because of their political views on certain issues. The Church can't change the fact that they are pro-choice, that is just their opinion quite simply, and as a politican, they are going to acknowledge the consitutionality of legalized abortion because it is federal law that is is allowed by Roe v.Wade. Do you realise how many, many "sinners" come up to receive communion? Should the bishop deny them then? Quite frankly, I believe that it is up to the communicant's conscience and relationship with God to decide, not the USCCB.
Answer by Colin B. Donovan, STL on 7/2/2008:
Just because a politican utters a view doesn't make it "political" and therefore outside the Church's authority. Who can and cannot receive Holy Communion is ABSOLUELY the decision of the Church, and one, I might add, protected by the First Amendment.
The difference between a politican who promotes, tolerates and defends abortion "rights" and the average Joe who commits mortal sin and goes to communion without going to confession is NOT in the gravity of the sacrilege, both commit sacrilege, but in the public scandal. Many such politicians flaunt their ability to do it, and then glory in the name Catholic for election purposes while contradicting Church moral teachings on multiple issues. This is why the bishops' tactic of "diplomacy" and "prudence" over the last 40 years has failed.
God bless Archbishop Burke for doing not only the right thing, but the prudent thing, given the failure of every other policy in this regard!