Following a rash of news reports claiming the U.S. bishops defied Vatican Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger on the question of withholding Communion from Catholic politicians whose actions conflict with church teaching on abortion, Cardinal Ratzinger said the bishops' statement on the issue "is very much in harmony" with his recently leaked memo on the topic.
In a letter dated July 9 and made public July 12 by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, the head of the Vatican's Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith said the bishops' June 18 statement, titled "Catholics in Political Life," "is very much in harmony with the general principles (of) 'Worthiness to Receive Holy Communion.'" . . .
CNS News concludes the article with the text of Cardinal Ratzinger's July 9 letter to Cardinal McCarrick, responding to the document "Catholics in Political Life":
"With your letter of June 21, 2004, transmitted via fax, you kindly sent a copy of the statement 'Catholics in Political Life,' approved by the members of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops at their June meeting.
"The congregation is grateful for this courtesy. The statement is very much in harmony with the general principles 'Worthiness to Receive Holy Communion,' sent as a fraternal service -- to clarify the doctrine of the church on this specific issue -- in order to assist the American bishops in their related discussion and determinations.
"It is hoped that this dialogue can continue as the task force carries on its important work.
"With fraternal regards and prayerful best wishes, I am,
"Sincerely yours in Christ
"Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger"
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.