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Tags: joe biden | communion | abortion | catholic

Priest Was Right to Deny Biden Communion

Priest Was Right to Deny Biden Communion
Democratic presidential candidate, former vice President Joe Biden addresses a crowd at Wilson High School on October 26, 2019, in Florence, South Carolina. (Sean Rayford/Getty Images)

Michael Dorstewitz By Wednesday, 30 October 2019 12:25 PM EDT Current | Bio | Archive

A South Carolina Roman Catholic priest stirred up a mountain of controversy Sunday when he denied 2020 Democratic presidential frontrunner Joe Biden Holy Communion because of his position on abortion.

Even “Fox & Friends” co-host Brian Kilmeade thought the priest’s decision was “an extremely negative” act Tuesday morning. But the priest was entirely within his right to deny the former vice president the Holy Eucharist.

When Biden, who considers himself a devout Catholic, was campaigning in South Carolina over the weekend, he celebrated mass at Saint Anthony Catholic Church in Florence.

When it came time for communion, Father Robert E. Morey, the parish priest, refused to offer him a communion wafer, which represents the body of Christ.

“Sadly, this past Sunday, I had to refuse Holy Communion to former Vice President Joe Biden,” Morey told the (South Carolina) Morning News via email. “Holy Communion signifies we are one with God, each other, and the Church. Our actions should reflect that. Any public figure who advocates for abortion places himself or herself outside of Church teaching.”

Morey added, “I will keep Mr. Biden in my prayers.”

After co-hosts Steve Doocey and Ainsley Earhardt outlined the controversy on Fox News Tuesday morning, Kilmeade blasted Fr. Morey.

“If everybody on line to get communion has to live up to all the principles of Catholicism as a Catholic, then there’ll be two or three people on line every weekend. Everyone else on line to get communion is hitting it out of the park every day?”

Earhardt suggested that, “If he doesn’t want to abide by the church teachings then maybe choose a different denomination or something, or a church that you can go to where the priest will allow you to.”

Kilmeade disagreed, and said, “if you’re going to enforce that, there are so many other rules to enforce in the Catholic religion and they should walk around and tell people who aren’t famous, or a political figure, that you should get off the line because did this, or you this, you should get off the line, too.”

Kilmeade misses the point. The church and Fr. Morey are fully aware that no one is perfect. Indeed, Proverbs 24:16 states that “... for though the righteous fall seven times, they rise again.” But we’re not talking about Biden the individual — it’s Biden the public figure that’s at issue.

As a politician, a public figure, and a candidate for national office, he has the ability to shape and influence public opinion and if elected, set policy for the entire country.

During his half-century under the microscope Biden has struggled with the abortion issue and has bounced back and forth. Until this year the one issue he’d always supported was the Hyde Amendment — which denies public funds for abortions.

When it became evident he was the only Democratic presidential candidate in a very crowded field holding that view, he threw in the towel.

“If I believe health care is a right, as I do, I can no longer support an amendment that makes that right dependent on someone’s ZIP code,” Biden said.

The odd thing about the issue is that it’s possible it wouldn’t affect his chances one way or the other in a general election. President Donald Trump captured 30 of the 50 states to win the 2016 election while running as a pro-life candidate.

The issue only has importance to Biden during the Democratic primary — he could never hope to become his party’s nominee as a pro-life candidate. And judging by the position of the majority of candidates, he’d better support abortion for any reason up to the moment of delivery.

Biden’s not the only Democrat to come under fire by the church for being pro-choice.

In February, several Catholic bishops called for New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo to be excommunicated, in response to signing into law his state’s Reproductive Health Act, which provides for abortion up to childbirth.

“I have my own Catholic beliefs, how I live my life. ... That is my business as a Catholic,” Cuomo said.

And six years ago Cardinal Raymond Burke, the chief justice of the Vatican, said House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., should be denied Holy Communion because of her own extreme pro-choice views.

MSNBC’s Andrea Mitchell asked Biden about the incident during a telephone interview Tuesday. He replied, “I’m not going to discuss that, that’s my personal life and I’m not going to get into that at all.”

That was uncharacteristically smart on his part. Not only was Fr. Morey theologically correct, but Saint Anthony is his parish; Biden has to play by his rules.

And with any luck, maybe Fr. Morey will have started a trend.

Michael Dorstewitz is a retired lawyer and has been a frequent contributor to BizPac Review and Liberty Unyielding. He is also a former U.S. Merchant Marine officer and an enthusiastic Second Amendment supporter, who can often be found honing his skills at the range. To read more of his reports — Click Here Now.

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A South Carolina Roman Catholic priest stirred up a mountain of controversy Sunday when he denied 2020 Democratic presidential frontrunner Joe Biden Holy Communion because of his position on abortion.
joe biden, communion, abortion, catholic
Wednesday, 30 October 2019 12:25 PM
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