@JamesMartinSJ twists the truth again… on purpose?

Fr James Martin, LGBTQSJ.   The Jesuit homosexualist activist.

There are so many things to say about James Martin.

Let’s focus today on the whopper he tweeted about Communion for pro-abortion politicians. Two tweets… connected.


Leaving aside the dopey string of moral equivalences the Jesuit draws in the first part, and focusing on the second part, we have to conclude that either a) his formation was so bad that he doesn’t understand the simplest distinctions to be made about this Communion scenario, or b) he is purposely trying to deceive people.

I want to give him the benefit of the doubt, so I’ll go with option a).   Therefore, let’s explain the situation to him in basic terms.

Denial of Communion to a person under can. 915 is NOT based on a Communion minister’s estimation of the state of a person’s soul!

As I wrote to a commentator here the other day, a priest cannot know with certainty the state of the soul of another.  I suppose one might make a really good guess if the person is in the act of committing a grave sin while he is standing there waiting for Communion. Even then it might be hard to say what the person’s state is.


can. 915 does not pertain to the state of soul of the person.

Can. 915 has to do with what is manifest and it has to do with scandal.

If a person has manifestly been committing grave sins, obstinately, in public (such as a politician who actively promotes abortion even though he has been instructed not to) then there is an open, public, manifest problem that must be openly and manifestly corrected before he can receive Communion.  He publicly committed scandal and that scandal must be redressed.

A priest doesn’t have to know the state of soul of the public person in front of him. If he knows that that public person, well known, has been doing very bad things without any move to correct the harm he caused, the priest, by can. 915, must deny him Communion.

On the other hand, there is can. 916 which pertains not to the priest but to the communicant.

Any person who knows himself to be in the state of sin is admonished by the Church not to present himself for Communion in the first place.

In short, can. 915 pertains to the minister of Communion and can. 916 pertains to the communicant. The priest judges open, public actions people know about at the time of Communion. The communicant judges his own state of soul, which is invisible to others.

The keys to reading the canon are the elements of obstinacy, perseverance, manifest character, gravity, and sinfulness.  Biden checked all those boxes.

I hope that clears it up for the Jesuit.

But… no.  It won’t make any difference to him.  Why?   Because he is a homosexualist activist.

Under can. 915 people wearing, for example, “rainbow sashes” who present themselves for Communion must be denied.  This isn’t just about abortion, it is also about open homosexual activity, such as civilly “marrying” someone of the same sex, of which I am pretty sure Martin approves.   It applies to parading around in favor of, in promotion of, homosexuality, even when the Church’s teaching has been made clear.  People who commit grave sins openly and obstinately are to be denied Communion.  This is to protect the integrity of the Church’s teaching and to avoid profanation of the Eucharist and to avoid scandal and to prompt the person in question to repentance, amendment of life and reparation for the harm caused.

The Jesuit homosexualist activist perpetrates a three card monte game with the truth about can. 915, trying to make it seem as if what is in play is the “state of soul” of the person, when it is actually what is publicly known about the person.

As a priest, James Martin is obliged to deny Communion to people whom he knows are civilly married to someone of the same sex.   Remember that civil marriage is a public act.  It is manifest.  It is grave.  It is a sin.  If the “couple” doesn’t separate and publicly try to repair the scandal they caused by their open same-sex behavior, they are to be denied Communion.  This is certainly the case at, for example, a funeral when, beforehand, a child of the deceased known to be in some open, homosexual relationship, announces her intention to receive Communion and then is told by the priest, beforehand, don’t present yourself for Communion.  That was a scenario a few years ago in Washington DC and the priest was hammered for it by Card. Wuerl (big surprise there).  It was entirely unjust and the priest was in the right.  The priest was bound by the law to act as he did.

And so would be Martin.  That’s probably why he distorts the truth in his tweets.

Maybe I should have chosen option b)?

Click me.


Canonist Ed Peters has a column at The Hill about this. It confirms that I am right in my instruction of James Martin the Jesuit, and the Jesuit James Martin is wrong.


Anthony Esolen gives Martin a thorough beating.


About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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This entry was posted in 1983 CIC can. 915, Canon Law, Jesuits, Liberals, Sin That Cries To Heaven and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. teomatteo says:

    Fr Z you can give him the benefit of the doubt but i will not. He is an intelligent man who completed seminary and sits in confessionals and must parse the sometimes difficult culpability of an action. No, I will not give him the benefit of the doubt. Homosexualists are pretty much liars.

  2. JustaSinner says:

    What happened to the Jesuits? Once they were Christ’s soldiers, bible and sword…now this? Waving rainbow flags and spouting heresy. I’m so depressed, I don’t think a Novena to St. Jude could help him…only intervention from the Holy Ghost. And THAT’S a tall order!
    But being just a sinner, I have set aside the fifth decade of the Sorrowful Mystery of the rosary for the conversion of Fr. Jesse James Martin. I always say a prayer for the most forgotten soul in purgatory; starting early for him.

  3. Gaetano says:

    I’m not surprised, Father Martin’s track record when commenting on canonical matters demonstrates a complete ignorance of Canon Law. Too call it puddle deep would be too generous.
    Asking him to make a thorough analysis of this issue is, therefore, simply beyond his abilities. He magnifies his error by failing to consult with anyone who would have an informed opinion on the matter.
    His greatest mistake, however, is that most people who lack knowledge and insight on a subject prudently choose to remain silent. A far more prudent strategy than jumping on social media to announce your ignorance to the world.

  4. monstrance says:

    Cardinal Dolan was on Fox and Friends recently discussing this matter.
    Brian Kilmeade threw out the common objection – “ who can receive communion then, we ‘re all sinners “.
    Card. Dolan did his usual sidestep, and even quipped the “who am I to judge”.
    The Francis gift that keeps on giving.
    The disturbing part is that the Cardinal knows better.

  5. Gab says:

    I’m grateful that Anthony Esolen took the Jesuit to task over his spurious, inflammatory and fallacious comparison to slavery in the Bible.

  6. iamlucky13 says:

    Dr. Peters did an excellent job presenting the background and reasoning for this decision in a manner to be understood even by secular readers will to read it attentively.

    It frustrates me to know that such careful writing about a matter that is properly the Church’s prerogative will be ignored in favor of simplistic and frequently prejudiced interpretations.

    @ teomatteo – given what Father Z has said about his own experiences in seminary, perhaps there actually is some degree of prudence in giving Fr. Martin the benefit of a doubt. Note also that the conclusion is not altered by giving him the benefit of a doubt. Canon law and prudence both mandate what they mandate.

  7. teomatteo says:

    iamlucky13, with all due respect, I stand by what I wrote.

  8. Marine Mom says:

    Sometimes it is better to pray for Fr James Martin than to listen to Fr James Martin

  9. Pingback: Your Good News | Fr. Z's Blog

  10. aiello01 says:

    The minister of communion can make a public statement of disapproval regardless of the conscience of the recipient.

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