"It Is Not Our Policy to Deny Communion"

October 2003By Barbara Kralis

Barbara Kralis, former editor of the Catholic newsletter Semper Fidelis, directs, with her husband, Mitch, the Jesus Through Mary Foundation in Howe, Texas. Barbara may be reached by email at

Este artículo: en español

Archbishop Sean O’Malley made the following statement on July 29, 2003, from his Archdiocese’s Public Release Office: “a Catholic politician who holds a public, pro-choice position should not be receiving Communion….” However, he added (incredibly!): “The Church presumes that each person is receiving in good faith. It is not our policy to deny Communion. It is up to the individual.” (The presumption is obviously faulty.)

Therefore, on July 30, 2003, Archbishop O’Malley, at his Mass of Installation as Archbishop of Boston, permitted pro-abortion Massachusetts Senators John Kerry and Ted Kennedy to receive Holy Communion sacrilegiously.

If Archbishop O’Malley’s statement and action in regard to Kerry and Kennedy is morally correct, this would mean that priests in the Boston Archdiocese, and everywhere else for that matter, should give Holy Communion without question to anyone approaching the Altar. This would mean that it is O.K. for all bishops and priests to give Holy Communion to people publicly professing beliefs contrary to the doctrines of the Catholic Church or publicly living lives at serious variance with the teachings of the Church. This would include homosexual couples approaching the Eucharist arm-in-arm, those divorced and “remarried” without benefit of annulment, directors of Planned Parenthood, Mafia figures, drug lords, et al.

O’Malley’s statement is an evasion, and he has a responsibility to hold these pro-abortion politicians accountable to Canon Law. If his statement isn’t backed up by canonical penalties, can he really expect Kerry and Kennedy to take him seriously? As we know, they didn’t.

Canon Law is law; it’s not a suggestion. Canon Law 915 states: “those who…obstinately persist in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to Communion.” For a Catholic to vote for pro-abortion legislation is a “manifest grave sin,” and it is something Kerry and Kennedy have been doing for years, unabashedly.

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