I woke up this morning to find this story: https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/catholic-priest-to-tim-kaine-dont-show-up-in-my-communion-line I LOVE to see somebody actually defending Our Lord! That’s exactly what Fr. Thomas Petri, OP, did. Thank you so much, dear father! Some are going to rant and rave that he is using the Eucharist as a “political football”, but he’s simply showing belief in the Real Presence. This is a no-brainer. All the other priests not coming to the same conclusion are the ones who are playing “political football.” Quite sadly, some aren’t going to be like Tarcisius because they don’t want to get beat up. (For those who don’t know the story: (http://www.ewtn.com/library/MARY/TARCIS.htm) They are the ones that are constantly weighing the benefits and the consequences of whether or not to prevent the sacrilege of the Eucharist, when we all should really just be following the law that guides us. Can’t go wrong there. It’s a sacrilege, plain and simple.
So, can we look at the canons pertaining to reception of the Eucharist in the cases of Catholics (and yes, they are still Catholics, albeit bad ones) who hold a pro-abortion stance? There are really two kinds. There those who hold this position privately and those who hold this position, and even champion it, publicly.
Canon 915 addresses the public sinner. You know, the guy who says “I am a devout Catholic BUT I believe in a woman’s ‘right to choose’, gay marriage, and priestesses!” (Cough! Tim Kaine!):
Can. 915 Those who have been excommunicated or interdicted after the imposition or declaration of the penalty and others obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to holy communion. (Emphasis is all mine because I didn’t want anyone to miss anything!)
Tim knows what the Church teaches, yet he rejects it, and he does so very manifestly. Canon 915 says he should not be admitted to Holy Communion. Easy peasy. Please note that it doesn’t say that HE should not present himself for Communion. It says he should not be admitted to it. It’s not a judgment call on his part, nor on the part of the person holding the Host up in front of Tim Kaine, who knows who he is and what he champions. (Ideally that should be a priest, but that’s another blog post.)
Canon 916 addresses the sinner whose sin cannot be determined by the priest (or whoever) holding the Host in front of them. The burden of not allowing admittance now shifts to them.
Can. 916 A person who is conscious of grave sin is not to celebrate Mass or receive the body of the Lord without previous sacramental confession unless there is a grave reason and there is no opportunity to confess; in this case the person is to remember the obligation to make an act of perfect contrition which includes the resolution of confessing as soon as possible.
I’ve heard some political linebackers in the Church try to do a bit of pretzel twisting and colluding of the two canons by saying “Well, how is the person distributing Communion to know if Tim Kaine truly understands the Church teachings?” or “Well, how do we know if Tim Kaine didn’t go to confession right before Mass?”
Well here’s the answer to this nonsense. First of all, stop blending Canon 915 and 916, which deal with manifest sin and private sin, respectively. Canon 915 has no remedy for lack of understanding or going to confession. Why? Because the sin is so public it is scandalous and it can cause even more scandal and sacrilege when people see someone who’s never publicly recanted walking up to receive Our Lord. A public, obstinate sinner must not only repent and go to confession privately but must publicly repent, or they continue to commit the sin of scandal. It’s gone beyond the simple private sinner’s examination of conscience because it’s brought public scandal.
For instance, unless you live under a rock, we all know Tim Kaine’s stance on abortion. Say Tim Kaine repents of his position, goes to confession, but never publicly recants the ideology. What are the people in the pews to think? Uh, maybe “How can we be giving Our Lord to someone who is pro-abortion???” They have no way of knowing if he repented and went to confession. All they see is someone publicly opposing the teachings of the Catholic Church receiving Communion, which is supposed to be a sign of communion with the truths of the Church! Others might also be thinking “Hey, if he can hold this position and receive Communion, why can’t I?” Still others might be led to a lack of belief in the Real Presence. I mean, hey, if they’ll give Our Lord to someone touting those positions, why would we believe that we hold the Eucharist as something as precious as Our Lord, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity? In short, it’s scandalous all the way around, which is why we have Canon 915.
A failure to hold people to Canon 915 does great danger to the Faith and surely doesn’t encourage the rest of the faithful hold ourselves to Canon 916. All of this contributes to lack of belief in the Real Presence. If we don’t get serious as a Church about sacrilege, well, I suppose, it can’t get much worse than the world we’re living in today with such a blatant disregard for life and morality. Maybe fire raining down from the sky? It’s kind of ironic that Tim Kaine was chosen on “Sodom and Gomorrah” weekend, isn’t it?
Let’s also remember that denial of the sacraments is not only to protect the rest of the faithful from scandal, but it’s also a remedy to help the sinner. Letting Tim Kaine, Nancy Pelosi, Joe Biden, the Kennedy family, etc., skate on the Eucharist doesn’t help their souls. It’s called “tough love”, my friends, but it is love no less. Spare the rod, spoil the child.
Please, Holy Father, Cardinals, Bishops, Priests of the Church – restore the belief of the real in Real Presence! Thank you to all of you priests who have been willing to suffer abuse to do so. Let us pray for them and many more to join them!