A Catholic bishop in Senator Dick Durbin’s Illinois diocese has issued a statement that Durbin will be denied communion until he repents for his sin of blocking a bill that would ban abortions after 20 weeks. Finally, a pro-abortion Democrat is being held accountable for political votes by the Catholic church.
Bishop Thomas J. Paprocki of Springfield, Illinois says Durbin is “cooperating in evil” and persisting in “manifest grave sin” because of his abortion advocacy and must therefore “not be admitted to Holy Communion until he repents of his sin.”
In a statement on the Diocese of Springfield website, Bishop Paprocki said, “Fourteen Catholic senators voted against the bill that would have prohibited abortions starting at 20 weeks after fertilization, including Sen. Richard Durbin, whose residence is in the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois.”
You may remember that at the end of January, Senate Democrats successfully filibustered the Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act because the 60 vote threshold required to take up the bill for debate was not met. (Life News)
The Senate voted today on whether to stop the Democrats’ filibuster of the Pain Capable Unborn Child Protection Act, legislation that would ban abortions after 20 weeks — as neither Congress nor state legislatures can vote to ban all abortions under Roe v. Wade. The bill highlights how unborn babies feel intense pain when they are killed in abortions. Fifty-one senators (forty-eight Republicans and three Democrats) voted to take the bill up for debate, but 60 votes were required.
Senators Casey (PA), Donnelly (IN), and Manchin (WVA) were the only three Democrats to vote with Republicans to debate the bill sponsored by South Carolina’s Senator Lindsey Graham. You’ll note that all the states represented by these senators were carried by President Trump last November. I do know that Casey has long been known as a pro-life Democrat. The other two have less clear records.
Pope Francis, a liberal Jesuit, directed bishops to hold Catholics to the commandments, particularly legislators, heads of governments and health professionals.
A 2013 letter from Pope Francis 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.
Apparently, this is an issue with Senator Durbin which his pastors have struggled with since 2004. From the statement released, it is noted that Durbin was once pro-life and the provision is not to punish him but to bring about a change of heart. I wish them luck with that, given today’s political atmosphere.
Canon 915 of the Catholic Church’s Code of Canon Law states that those “who obstinately persist in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to Holy Communion.” In our 2004 Statement on Catholics in Political Life, the USCCB said, “Failing to protect the lives of innocent and defenseless members of the human race is to sin against justice. Those who formulate law therefore have an obligation in conscience to work toward correcting morally defective laws, lest they be guilty of cooperating in evil and in sinning against the common good.” Because his voting record in support of abortion over many years constitutes “obstinate persistence in manifest grave sin,” the determination continues that Sen. Durbin is not to be admitted to Holy Communion until he repents of this sin. This provision is intended not to punish, but to bring about a change of heart. Sen. Durbin was once pro-life. I sincerely pray that he will repent and return to being pro-life.