What is the Catholic Communion Controversy? - WJET / WFXP

Bishop Ralph Walker Nickless of Sioux City celebrated Mass with members of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops' Region IX in the grotto of St. Peter's Basilica on Jan. 16 2020 during their ad Limina Apostolorum visit to the Vatica

BREAKING: Biden reacts to Catholic bishops seeking to prevent him from taking communion over pro-abortion stance

"You have some of them saying this is not about Joe Biden, but in the comments the bishops made in that Zoom session, a lot of them mentioned Biden and gave the game away".

Yet Bishop Kevin C. Rhoades, who leads the USCCB's Committee on Doctrine, which put forward the plan for a resolution, said in a news conference that the upcoming midterm and presidential elections "never entered my mind, or the committee's".

According to a Pew Research poll from 2019, about 56% of Catholics said they thought abortion should be legal in all or most cases.

It's a thorn in the side for many pastors that Biden will advocate for the right to abortion, while at the same time being a regular visitor to Catholic Church services.

The Vatican, meanwhile, has attempted to slow the USA bishops' drafting of the document.

Biden has always been devoted and highly public, speaking the words of faith fluently and attending regular masses even on busy days such as his own inauguration and the recent G7 Summit in the United Kingdom.

Later in the race, Biden walked back his support in response to criticism from other Democrats.

"That's a private matter and I don't think that's going to happen", said Biden after delivering remarks about the state of the pandemic in the U.S.

"The debate and vote demonstrated serious divisions among the bishops on the current proposal and process", John Carr, co-director of the Initiative on Catholic Social Thought and Public Life at Georgetown University, and a former USCCB staffer, said in an email.

"They're looking for direction", said Hying.

Carr speculated some bishops made have been persuaded by assurances the proposed statement "will not include policy or guidance on denying communion to the President or other public officials", adding, "it seems that the future statement is expanding in scope and shrinking in specific application to public officials".

What is Bishop's position on it? While the document will provide guidelines for the reception of communion, it will leave "decisions on withholding Communion up to individual bishops".

"The threat of abortion remains our preeminent priority because it directly attacks life itself, because it takes place within the sanctuary of the family, and because of the number of lives destroyed", it reads. He warned that the initiative would weaken the bishops' ability to speak on issues such as poverty, racism and the environment.

However, it is not very common for bishops to discuss denying communion on issues other than abortion.

Can the bishops' conference ban Biden from communion?

Archbishop Wilton Gregory of Washington, D.C., says he will not prevent the USA president from participating in the sacrament over his support for abortion.

The USCCB Doctrine Committee will draft the draft over the next few months.

At the bishops' next national meeting in November, expected to be conducted in person in Baltimore, bishops will have a chance to offer amendments.

Rhoades charged that his committee could immediately begin work on the indisputable section and wait for input from the regional conference on the more controversial part.

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