As reported on Catholic Kerry Watch and elsewhere, three of New Jersey's five Catholic bishops have spoken out in defense of the integrity of the faith in the face of challenges by CINO politicians: Archbishop John Meyers, Newark, A Time for Honesty:
Catholics who publicly dissent from the Church's teaching on the right to life of all unborn children should recognize that they have freely chosen by their own actions to separate themselves from what the Church believes and teaches. They have also separated themselves in a significant way from the Catholic community.
The Church cannot force such people to change their position; but she can and does ask them honestly to admit in the public forum that they are not in full union with the Church.
One who practices such dissent, even in the mistaken belief that it is permissible, may remain a Catholic in some sense, but has abandoned the full Catholic faith. For such a person to express "communion" with Christ and His Church by the reception of the Sacrament of the Eucharist is objectively dishonest.
Bishop Joseph Galante, a prominent figure in the U.S. Catholic Bishops' Conference, has gone on the record stating that he will deny the Eucharist to New Jersey's pro-abortion Governor James McGreevey....Bishop Galante cited the fact of McGreevey's irregular marriage and anti-Catholic positions on life issues. As David O'Reilly reported in the Philadelphia Inquirer:
Galante said he was taking the stance primarily because the divorced governor, who is Catholic, remarried without receiving a church annulment. Also, he said, McGreevey's record of "pushing" for legalized abortion, stem-cell research, and other positions the church views as immoral "is almost like he throws the gauntlet down."
Now it is the bishop of Trenton, NJ, John Smith, who is causing consternation among local CINO pols. A few nights ago at Roman Hall in Trenton, NJ, plates of pasta were passed among Catholic judges, lawyers, and politicians at a social featuring Bishop Smith. As Joseph Dee reports in the Trenton Times:
The dinner was not unlike other St. Thomas More Society functions, except that it was the first one since the bishop labeled Democratic Gov. James E. McGreevey "not a devout Catholic" for his support of abortion.
Those words, spoken by Smith during a recent Mass in Red Bank, have thundered through Mercer County, where a large number of elected officials are Catholic. Some of them are now wondering where they stand with the leader of the Diocese of Trenton, which, with 760,000 Catholics is the 20th largest in the country.
Now we have heard—or rather not heard— from a fourth New Jersey prelate, Bishop Paul Bootkoski, Metuchen, [pictured above] as reported by Bob Cullinane in the Home News Tribune:
In the Diocese of Metuchen, which represents 560,000 Roman Catholics in Hunterdon, Middlesex, Somerset and Warren counties, Bishop Paul Bootkoski said he is waiting for guidelines to be developed by the U.S. Conference of Bishops. A task force led by Washington, D.C., Cardinal Theodore McCarrick is expected to issue a final report after the November general elections. McCarrick was the first bishop of Central New Jersey's Diocese of Metuchen when it was formed in 1981.
And so the silence continues, as the body count mounts.
Ongoing commentary by the editors of CatholicKerryWatch
Sen. John Kerry stands with Kate Michelman (right) President of NARAL Pro-Choice America.
Since 1995, Michelman's group has given Kerry a 100% rating for his voting record to defend abortion.