Some days ago Archbp. Alan Vigneron of Detroit stirred the anthill (which is what bishops are supposed to do when it comes to faith and morals). He reaffirmed that Catholics who actively, publicly promote unnatural, same-sex “marriage” are acting in contradiction to the Catholic Faith they otherwise claim to support. Therefore, being in interior conflict with the Faith and being in open, public conflict with the Faith, they should not receive Holy Communion. Archbp. Vigneron did not say that, from that time onward, Communion would be denied to public supporters of immoral things. He likened their choice to receive as perjury.
It seems to me that Vigneron simply asked them to be honest with themselves and the Church they profess they belong to. He asked them to act like adults rather than self-centered children. (My words, not his.) For more see HERE and HERE
Over at Catholic Vote Stephen Kokx looks at how the mainstream media has weighed in, with the collaboration of liberal Catholcis. The MSM, using liberal Catholics in support, tries to turn people against the Church and portray Archbp. Vigneron and all who agree with him as a knuckle-dragging “gay”bashers. They drag the issue away from the spiritual and doctrinal into the ditch of the political.
Let’s have a look with my emphases and comments.
DETROIT ARCHBISHOP TRIES TO SAVE SOULS; MAINSTREAM MEDIA NOT HAPPY.
Since when do outlets like Slate, Huffington Post, CNN, Esquire, and USA Today care about who receives Holy Communion? They rarely, if ever, concern themselves with the inner-workings of Jewish or Muslim worship services. [Because hating Catholics is the last acceptable prejudice.] Well, since Detroit Archbishop Allen Vigneron said Catholics who support redefining marriage should not receive Holy Communion, a number of secular news outlets have seen to it to let their readers know just how unpopular some Catholics think his decision is.
Here’s what Archbishop Vigneron said that’s got everybody up in arms:
For a Catholic to receive holy Communion and still deny the revelation Christ entrusted to the church is to try to say two contradictory things at once: ‘I believe the church offers the saving truth of Jesus, and I reject what the church teaches.’ In effect, they would contradict themselves. This sort of behavior would result in publicly renouncing one’s integrity and logically bring shame for a double-dealing that is not unlike perjury.
Some Catholics respond to a situation like this by arguing Holy Communion should not be used as a political weapon. If a politician who promotes principles antithetical to Church teaching presents themselves for Communion, they should not be denied, because ultimately it is God who will decide if that politicians’ actions are right or wrong. Not the priest.
This argument is wrong on a number of fronts. Archbishop Vigneron oversees the Archdiocese of Detroit, home to 1.3 million Catholics. That’s 1.3 million souls he is responsible for getting into heaven. It’s a responsibility I would not want to have at this point in my life. As the Book of James reminds us, “not many of you should become teachers… for you will be judged more strictly.” [I am glad he brought in this point about cura animarum… the care of souls.]
As such, Archbishop Vigneron is responsible for doing everything he can to make sure those 1.3 million Catholics are not in danger of losing their souls to eternal damnation. He will be judged more strictly for his actions than the rest of us. Therefore, he is responsible for making sure, among other things, that the deposit of faith is upheld. He is also responsible for making sure those 1.3 million Catholics are able to go to confession on a regular basis, that they are able to attend Mass as frequently as possible, and that they are in a state of grace while attending Mass so they can worthily receive Holy Communion, lest they further compound their sins and offend God even more.
Outlets like Esquire and the Huffington Post are trying to turn this into a political issue by arguing Catholics can support redefining marriage if their conscience tells them, and that this is nothing more than a conservative Archbishop trying to punish liberal Catholics. [When liberals play the “political” card when they advocate dissent, they are helping the Church’s enemies. Some, like Sr. Simone Campbell, do so pretty openly, as she did HERE.]
Nothing could be further from the truth.
[… The analysis continues with Ed Peters, the canonist… ]
Be that as it may, the Detroit Free Press made Peters seem like he was but one of a handful of supporters of Archbishop Vigneron’s statement. The Free Press quotes Fr. Thomas Reese of Georgetown University as saying “Most American bishops do not favor denying either politicians or voters Communion [Notice how he conflates “politicians” (who are public figures) with “voters” (who usually are not).] because of their positions on controversial issues.” Fr. Reese added that only about “30 or so bishops have said that pro-choice or pro-gay-marriage Catholics should not present themselves for Communion.” [A good example of governing the Church by polling and what the majority think. Never mind right or wrong.]
Again, by citing Fr. Reese, the Free Press is attempting to undermine Archbishop Vigneron and Peters’ arguments. But as Peters points out on his blog, Fr. Reese’s statement is misleading: “Reese is commenting on how bishops act whereas I am commenting on how canon law expects bishops and others to act. Reese’s claim about bishops’ (in)action, even if true, would not make my views (actually, the 1983 Code’s views, resting on settled Church teaching) wrong, it would simply mark them as ignored.” [Exactly.]
Interestingly enough, CNN also makes it seem like Peters – who[m] Esquire calls a “nuisance” and claims is merely relying on his own opinions and not Canon Law – is on the wrong side of history. At the end of the CNN article, readers are conveniently reminded that “a majority of Catholics, according to polling, disagree with [Peters’] view of Communion.” To which I would respond, thank God we don’t decide what is right and wrong in the Catholic Church based on polling data. [“politics” and “polling”]
In an effort to make Peters and Archbishop Vigneron appear even more off base, Slate interviewed the reliably left-leaning Michael Sean Winters. “The principal threat to our Catholic teaching about traditional marriage is not gay marriage,” Winters argued. “The principal threat [to our Catholic teaching about traditional marriage] is divorce.
During a wartime, hostile occupation, there will always be collaborators.
Go there and see the rest.