As you probably know, the Roman Catholic Church, America's grandest pedophile organziation, whose business ventures are worth billions, in great part due to not having had to pay any taxes, has flouted an explicit warning from the Vatican to vote to consider denying communion to Joe Biden. 73% of the bishops voted to interfere directly into American politics in this way.
Elizabeth Dias wrote that "the move to target a president, who regularly attends Mass and has spent a lifetime steeped in Christian rituals and practices, is striking coming from leaders of the president’s own faith, particularly after many conservative Catholics turned a blind eye to the sexual improprieties of Trump because they supported his political agenda. It reveals a uniquely American Catholicism increasingly at odds with Rome and Pope Francis."
The decision immediately drew criticism from 60 Catholic Democrats in Congress, who urged the bishops “to not move forward and deny this most holy of all sacraments” and who challenged the bishops by outlining their own commitment to “making real the basic principles that are at the heart of Catholic social teaching.”
But the fact that Biden’s views on abortion are even a matter of public discussion is already a victory for conservative Catholics.
Biden, like Pope Francis, embodies a liberal Christianity focused less on sexual politics and more on racial inequality, climate change and poverty. His administration is a reversal of the power that abortion opponents, including bishops who advanced the measure, enjoyed under Trump.
The fight comes as anti-abortion activists across the United States are emboldened and as reproductive rights activists want Biden to speak more forcefully in their defense. State legislatures have introduced more than 500 abortion restrictions over the past five months, and the Supreme Court, with its newly expanded conservative majority, agreed to take up a case on a Mississippi law that bans most abortions at 15 weeks, which could challenge the constitutional right to abortion established in Roe v. Wade. Five of the court’s six Catholic justices were appointed by Republicans.
The bishops are expected to vote on the forthcoming statement in November, ahead of the midterm elections, giving conservatives a tool to criticize Democratic politicians throughout the campaign cycle. Abortion has long been one of the most mobilizing political forces for the religious right.
That subtext was made plain as the bishops debated the topic for more than two hours on Thursday: “I can’t help but wonder if the years 2022 and 2024 might be part of the rush,” Bishop Robert Coerver of Lubbock, in Texas, said.
Bishop Kevin Rhoades, who leads the bishops’ Committee on Doctrine, which put forward the communion effort, replied in a news conference that the upcoming midterm and presidential elections “never entered my mind, or the committee’s.” [Lying is a venal sin and Pope Francis should defrock this hypocrite today.]
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, an assembly of the country’s 433 active and retired bishops, can issue guideline statements, but it does not have the authority to decide who can or cannot receive the sacrament of communion. That power is reserved for the local bishop, who has autonomy in his diocese, or the Pope.
Cardinal Wilton Gregory, the archbishop of Washington and the nation’s first African-American cardinal, has made it abundantly clear that he does not support denying communion to Biden. Bishop-elect William Koenig of Wilmington, Delaware, Biden’s hometown, has remained largely quiet on the issue ahead of his installation next month.
...Bishops seen as allies of Pope Francis’ direction for the church pushed back. Bishop Robert McElroy of San Diego cautioned that moving forward would make it “impossible to prevent the weaponization of the Eucharist in partisan battles.”
“Once we legitimate public policy-based Eucharistic exclusion as a regular part of our teaching office-- and that is the road to which we are headed-- we will invite all of the political animosities that so tragically divide our nation into the very heart of the Eucharistic celebration,” he said. “That sacrament which seeks to make us one will become for millions of Catholics a sign of division.”
When Bishop Joseph Tyson of Yakima asked if the debate was focusing on abortion to the exclusion of other issues on which public figures might disagree with the Church’s teachings, Bishop Rhoades blamed the publicity for overly focusing on abortion instead of other issues like human trafficking and white supremacy.
About 56 percent of U.S. Catholics support legalized abortion, but about two-thirds of Catholics who attend Mass regularly do not, according to a Pew Research Center survey conducted in March.
Catholics in general are divided on party lines over whether Biden should receive communion: 55 percent of Catholic Republicans think he should be denied communion, and 87% of Catholic Democrats think he should not, according to Pew.
...Biden and Pope Francis have been political allies for years, especially because of the partnership between the Vatican and the United States during President Barack Obama’s tenure on issues like the normalization of relations with Cuba and the Paris Climate Agreement.
Last month Pope Francis’ top doctrinal official, Cardinal Luis Ladaria, warned the U.S. bishops in a letter that a policy on communion as relates to politicians could “become a source of discord rather than unity.”
One of the Catholic congressmembers to speak out was Ted Lieu, who called the bishops "hypocrites" and "nakedly partisan." Lieu tweeted "Dear @USCCB: I’m Catholic and you are hypocrites. You did not tell Bill Barr, a Catholic, not to take communion when he expanded killing human beings with the death penalty. You are being nakedly partisan and you should be ashamed. Another reason you are losing membership."
Millions of Americans would like to see church organizations' businesses-- particularly ones not released to their core ministries-- taxed just like any other business. This would be a splendid time to start that conversation-- and to get touch with priests who have been raping children and with bishops who have enabled them and moved them around to avoid accountability.