As readers of Catholic Kerry Watch know, a growing number of American bishops are begining to speak out against what LifeSite News describes as "the scandal of U.S. Catholic pro-abortion politicians defying Catholic teaching and receiving Communion despite their grave sin of supporting abortion." One of the latest to join this remnant's ranks, as Episcopal Spine Alert has noted, is Bishop Samuel J. Aquila, of the diocese of Fargo, ND. In his homily for April 25, 2004, delivered in the Cathedral of St. Mary, Bishop Aquila declared:
In the light of the last few days and all of the media coverage regarding John Kerry's unambiguous support of abortion rights, his personal opposition to abortion, and his insistence on the separation of his Catholic faith from his professional life, I, as a successor of the apostles, cannot remain silent. I, as an apostle, must speak with the apostles and obey God rather than man and present to you the teaching of the Church on the proper relationship between our faith and professional life.
"The lie of thinking that we can have one foot with God and one foot with the world," Bishop Aquila observed," is a "grave error that the Father of lies has planted in the hearts of many." The heir to the apostles was quick to dispel such diabolic deceptions.
In regard to the question of sanctions for Catholics who are "pro-choice," who say that they are personally opposed to abortion but whose words and actions speak otherwise in their support of abortion rights, I would share with them the words from St. Justin Martyr in today's Office of Readings. This was in 165 A.D. They shared the same problems we do today. "No one may share the Eucharist with us unless he believes that what we teach is true, unless he is washed in the regenerating waters of baptism for the remission of his sins, and unless he lives in accordance with the principles given us by Christ.'"
Nor did this pastor of souls leave his duty half done.
I would remind Catholic politicians, clergy, and all the faithful of the words of St. Paul when he reminds the people who are not living their lives according to the Gospel of Jesus Christ and yet still receive the Eucharist that they bring judgment on themselves. (1. Cor. 11:27-29)They bring judgment on themselves. [original emphasis] Let those words sink in.