Is Joe Biden a “good Catholic”?
At least one member of the priesthood doesn’t appear confident.
Though Joe’s a member of the Holy Church, he’s at odds with some of its teaching — particularly where abortion is concerned.
Nonetheless, as noted by The Daily Wire, D.C. Cardinal Wilton Gregory has indicated he’ll administer Communion to the former VP in the spirit of discussion.
He explained in a November 24th Zoom interview:
“The kind of relationship that I hope we will have is a conversational relationship where we can discover areas where we can cooperate that reflect the social teachings of the church, knowing full well that there are some areas where we won’t agree. They are areas where the church’s position is very clear.”
Wilton hopes for a “real dialogue.”
“[I] think that’s the mantra of Pope Francis,” he said, “that we should be a church in dialogue, even with those with whom we have some serious disagreements.”
But the priest is getting a challenge from former Philadelphia Archibishop Charles Chaput.
Writing for First Things, Mr. Chaput skewered both Biden and his clergical colleague:
“Public figures who identify as ‘Catholic’ give scandal to the faithful when receiving Communion by creating the impression that the moral laws of the Church are optional. And bishops give similar scandal by not speaking up publicly about the issue and danger of sacrilege.”
Charles believes Wilton is working against bishops at large:
“Those bishops who publicly indicate in advance that they will undertake their own dialogue with President-elect Joseph Biden and allow him Communion effectively undermine the work of the task force established at the November bishops’ conference meeting to deal precisely with this and related issues. This gives scandal to their brother bishops and priests, and to the many Catholics who struggle to stay faithful to Church teaching. It does damage to the bishops’ conference, to the meaning of collegiality, and to the fruitfulness of the conference’s advocacy work with the incoming administration.”
“When bishops publicly announce their willingness to give Communion to Mr. Biden, without clearly teaching the gravity of his facilitating the evil of abortion (and his approval of same-sex relationships), they do a serious disservice to their brother bishops and their people. The reason is obvious. By his actions during the course of his public life, Mr. Biden has demonstrated that he is not in full communion with the Catholic Church.”
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Furthermore, he asserted, the issue transcends politics:
“This is not a ‘political’ matter, and those who would describe it as such are either ignorant or willfully confusing the issue. This is a matter of bishops’ unique responsibility before the Lord for the integrity of the sacraments. Moreover, there is also the pressing matter of pastoral concern for a man’s salvation.”
It’s apolitical, indeed: As observed by the Wire, “According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, abortion is a grave moral evil that cannot be approved or tolerated in any circumstance.”
To be clear, if Holy Communion were to be withheld, it wouldn’t be Joe’s first strike-out.
In 2019, a South Carolina priest denied him the sacrament.
Saint Anthony Catholic Church Father Robert E. Morey told reporters at the time, “Sadly, this past Sunday, I had to refuse Holy Communion to former Vice President Joe Biden.”
He didn’t mince words:
“Holy Communion signifies we are one with God, each other, and the Church. Our actions should reflect that. Any public figure who advocates for abortion places himself or herself outside of Church teaching.”
It’s always a question: Every president claims to believe in the Bible and Christianity, but how deep is their faith?
Where abortion and Catholicism are concerned, it seems, in the case of Biden, it might not be up to his leg hairs.
From his June statement:
“Women’s health care rights have been under attack as states across the country have passed extreme laws restricting women’s constitutional right to choice under any circumstance. Today the U.S. Supreme Court reaffirmed that states cannot put in place laws that unduly burden a women’s right to make her own health care decision with her doctor.”
And last year, he laid things out at a fundraiser:
“I can’t justify leaving millions of women without the health care they need.”
So does Joe Biden deserve Communion? Charles Chaput says No.
But at least one D.C. priest is willing to say Yes, and I predict there are others on the same side, despite the Democrat’s vocal support of a “grave moral [evil].”
Charles lamented loss:
“[Biden’s] many of his actions and words have also supported or smoothed the way for grave moral evils in our public life that have resulted in the destruction of millions of innocent lives.”