Washington, D.C.’s archbishop Donald Wuerl has responded to complaints he allowed Catholic pro-abort politicians receive communion during the Pope’s April 17 Mass at Washington Nationals stadium. Catholic Online reported May 6 that Wuerl wrote in an April 30 Catholic Standard column:
I have always respected the role of the local church and the ministry of the individual bishop as shepherd of the church entrusted to his care….
A decision regarding the refusal of holy Communion to an individual is one that should be made only after clear efforts to persuade and convince the person that their actions are wrong and bear moral consequences….
Presumably this is done in the home diocese where the bishops and priests, the pastors of souls, engage the members of their flock in this type of discussion.
On one hand I think Wuerl expressed a valid concern of not wanting to usurp the authority of a politician’s own priest or diocese. He is in a unique position as head of the Catholic Church in D.C., where so many out-of-town infamous Catholics work.
On the other hand, this could read like a cop out….
If a Catholic politician spends a significant amount of time between 2 parishes, doesn’t the parish where pro-abortion actions are committed bear some responsibility, even if not the home parish?
I experienced a similar situation. The lead abortionist at Christ Hospital when I worked there was a Catholic named Dr. Steven Ambrose, head of the high risk pregnancy group.
Although Christ was located within the confines of the Archdiocese of Chicago, so Ambrose did his dirty work there, he lived in Westmont, IL, and attended chruch at Holy Trinity, located within the Joliet Diocese.
So for a time neither accepted responsibility for Ambrose. Ultimately the Chicago Archdiocese took up the matter and held a meeting with Ambrose (although it did no good – I know, I continued to work with him). His own priest, meanwhile, refused to stop offering Ambrose communion. But I give Cardinal George credit for trying.
But I digress. Is Wuerl following Catholic protocol of which I’m unaware?
[HT: LifeNews.com; photo courtesy of friendsoflourdesusa.com]