Catholic Church Prohibits Pro-Abortion Politician From Reading Scripture During Mass

International   |   Steven Ertelt   |   May 23, 2016   |   1:32PM   |   Cork, Ireland

A local Catholic Church in Ireland has prohibited a pro-abortion politician from reading Scripture during Mass. St Colman’s Cathedral in Cork won’t let Ken Curtin read from the Bible during the service because he is a member of the Social Democrats, a party that supports abortion and repealing the 8th Amendment that provides legal protection for women and unborn children from abortion.

Fr John McCarthy told Curtin he would be dropped as a Mass reader because of his support for repealing the pro-life amendment. Here’s more:

“[Fr John] said that regardless of my own personal position, either way, as long as I was a member of a party that was a supporter of something against a core Church belief, I couldn’t be a lector at the same time,” said Mr Curtin, who unsuccessfully ran for the party in Cork East in the general election.

Speaking after a meeting with Bishop Crean on Monday, Mr Curtin said he “got a good hearing” and the bishop “listened to my viewpoints and expressed a few opinions of his own”.

In a statement, the Diocese of Cloyne said a “cordial and fruitful meeting was held between Bishop Crean and Ken Curtin” describing the encounter as “pastoral in nature”. It said a meeting involving Fr McCarthy would be held in the future.

After meeting with the bishop, Curtin said he got a sense from Bishop Crean “that he was of the view that a person’s membership of a political party was not grounds for excluding a person from having a role in the church”.

“However, he did say he believed a person’s view on repealing the Eighth Amendment was a different matter and he would have a problem with somebody holding a contrary view to the church’s on repealing the Eighth Amendment continuing in a role as a lector.”

In 2013, a letter Pope Francis sent to the bishops of Argentina in late March is getting note from a pro-life Catholic group that says it is encouraging for pro-life advocates because it says pro-abortion politicians should not be eligible for communion in the Catholic Church. In the letter, Pope Francis directed the Argentinean bishops to govern the Church there following the Aparecida Document.

The text states, in part, “[people] cannot receive Holy Communion and at the same time act with deeds or words against the commandments, particularly when abortion, euthanasia, and other grave crimes against life and family are encouraged. This responsibility weighs particularly over legislators, heads of governments, and health professionals.”

“These are the guidelines we need for this time in history,” the pope wrote to the bishops.

Judie Brown, president of American Life League, a U.S.-based pro-life group, and Michael Hichborn, director of Defend the Faith for American Life League, sent a letter to all U.S. Catholic bishops alerting them to what Pope Francis wrote.

“We are renewed in our joy over the election of Pope Francis. One of the reasons for our happiness is the Holy Father’s reiteration of Catholic teaching as enunciated in canon 915,” the letter reads.

“We pray that these words will be an encouragement to you as well because, like Argentina, the United States has her share of Catholics in public life who persist in their support of abortion while, at the same time, receiving Christ in the sacrament of Holy Eucharist,” it continues. “We write to ask you, in view of this recent news report, to act on Pope Francis’ call and deny the sacrament of Christ’s real presence-body, blood, soul, and divinity-to every pro-abortion Catholic in public life who has not repented of his support for the heinous crime of abortion.”

The communion issue was exacerbated when, despite their pro-abortion views, Vice President Joe Biden and House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi both received communion at the Mass to celebrate Pope Francis’ inauguration. Biden’s office confirmed to the Washington Times that he had received communion and reporters in the White House presidential reporting pool confirmed in an email to LifeNews that Pelosi had received it as well. Pope Francis did not administer the sacrament.

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Father Frank Pavone told the LifeNews he opposed the two pro-abortion politicos receiving communion since their pro-abortion views are outside the teachings of the Catholic Church.

The Priests for Life leader said, “At a Mass during which our new Pope emphasized the duty public officials – and all the rest of us – have to protect the weakest among us, Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi have the audacity to receive Communion while publicly renouncing their responsibility to protect the weakest among us.”

“Some Church leaders mistakenly think we are advocating the use of the Eucharist as a ‘weapon.’ In fact, we are defending the Eucharist from being used as a political tool. These politicians have no respect for what the Eucharist means: an integral, consistent union with Christ and with all our brothers and sisters. To receive Christ while rejecting the unborn is a slap in the face to both,” he added.