Bishop Paprocki bars pro-abortion Illinois lawmakers from Holy Communion
FREE Catholic Classes
The Bishop of Springfield, Illinois, has decreed that state legislative leaders may not be admitted to Holy Communion within his diocese, because of their work to pass the state Reproductive Health Act. The bishop also directed the Catholic legislators who have voted for legislation promoting abortion should not present themselves to recieve Holy Communiion until they have first gone to confession.
Springfield, Ill., (CNA) - "In accord with canon 915 of the Code of Canon Law...Illinois Senate President John Cullerton and Speaker of the House Michael J. Madigan, who facilitated the passage of the Act Concerning Abortion of 2017 (House Bill 40) as well as the Reproductive Health Act of 2019 (Senate Bill 25), are not to be admitted to Holy Communion in the Diocese of Springfield in Illinois because they have obstinately persisted in promoting the abominable crime and very grave sin of abortion as evidenced by the influence they exerted in their leadership roles and their repeated votes and obdurate public support for abortion rights over an extended period of time," Bishop Thomas Paprocki wrote in a June 2 decree.
"These persons may be readmitted to Holy Communion only after they have truly repented these grave sins and furthermore have made suitable reparation for damages and scandal, or at least have seriously promised to do so, as determined in my judgment or in the judgment of their diocesan bishop in consultation with me or my successor," the bishop added.
Illinois' Reproductive Health Act was passed by the state's House and Senate just days ago, and observers credited the advocacy of Cullerton and Madigan with helping to secure passage. It is expected to be signed by Illinois' Gov. J.B. Pritzker.
The bill declares abortion to be a "fundamental right" in the state and would remove regulations on abortion clinics and doctors.
Among the provisions that the bill would remove are regulations for abortion clinics, required waiting periods to obtain an abortion, and a ban on partial-birth abortion. In addition, it would lift criminal penalties for performing abortions and would prevent any further state regulation of abortion.
The legislation would require all private health insurance plans to cover elective abortions, and eliminate reporting requirements as well as regulations requiring the investigation of maternal deaths due to abortion.
Paprocki's decree formally instructs priests and deacons in the Diocese of Springfield to refrain from administering the sacrament of the Eucharist to Cullerton and Madigan, both Catholics. The bishop also instructed other Catholic lawmakers not to approach Holy Communion, but did prohibit priests from administering the sacrament to them.
"I declare that Catholic legislators of the Illinois General Assembly who have cooperated in evil and committed grave sin by voting for any legislation that promotes abortion are not to present themselves to receive Holy Communion without first being reconciled to Christ and the Church in accord with canon 916 of the Code of Canon Law," Paprocki wrote.
In a statement issued June 6, the bishop said that "in issuing this decree, I anticipate that some will point out the Church's own failings with regard to the abuse of children."
"The same justifiable anger we feel toward the abuse of innocent children, however, should prompt an outcry of resistance against legalizing the murder of innocent children. The failings of the Church do not change the objective reality that the murder of a defenseless baby is an utterly evil act.
"We also understand many unplanned pregnancies come with fear and difficulty," Paprocki acknowledged.
"It is our obligation, as a society, to be there for these pregnant mothers, help them in any way possible, and empower them to make life affirming decisions. This also includes continued support for the mother and her child after birth. We must acknowledge a child in the womb is not a problem. He or she is a gift from God."
The bishopďż˝ s decree comes five months after a controversy surrounding New Yorkďż˝ s Catholic governor Andrew Cuomo, who in January signed into law a bill that also dramatically expanded legal protection for abortion.
While some Catholics called for New Yorkďż˝ s Cardinal Timothy Dolan to excommunicate Cuomo - a canonical option most experts said was not technically possible - others encouraged the cardinal to formally prohibit Cuomo from receiving Holy Communion.
Although Dolan criticized Cuomo's decision, he stopped short of issuing a decree prohibiting Cuomo from the Eucharist. The cardinal told reporters that decision would be counterproductive.
For his part, Paprocki said that he issued the decree to encourage conversion.
"In view of their gravely immoral action to deprive unborn children legal protection against abortion, it must be said that any Catholic legislator who sponsored, promoted, advocated, or voted for these pro-abortion bills has acted in a seriously sinful manner unfaithful to the 2,000-year-old Christian teaching against abortion and therefore, would place themselves outside of the full communion of the Catholic Church," the bishop said.
"Such persons are not to receive Holy Communion until they have celebrated the sacrament of reconciliation and displayed a public conversion of life."
"As sacred Scripture warns, 'Whoever eats unworthily of the bread and drinks from the Lord's cup makes himself guilty of profaning the body and of the blood of the Lord.' To support legislation that treats babies in the womb like property, allowing for their destruction for any reason at any time, is evil. It's my hope and prayer these lawmakers reconcile themselves to the Church so they can receive Communion."
"The Eucharist is the most sacred aspect of our Catholic faith," Paprocki added.
In 2018, Paprocki said that Illinois Senator Dick Durbin would not be admitted to Holy Communion because of his advocacy for the legal protection of abortion.
Paprocki's statement recognized the Illinois lawmakers who had opposed the Reproductive Health Act.
"I want to thank lawmakers who stood up to these barbaric pieces of legislation and voted 'no,'and I applaud their courage to speak the truth that the most basic right we should all enjoy, is the right to life."
Copyright 2019 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK
We have received the Bread of Heaven. Let us choose to become what we consume. These Feasts are not just rituals on a Church calendar. ... continue reading
Thomas More was a morally coherent Christian. That is the lesson of his life - and of his Martyrs death. He beckons millions, across the ... continue reading
Missouri's health department on Friday rejected a license renewal request from a Planned Parenthood clinic in St. Louis, the last remaining ... continue reading
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled on Thursday that new Title X rules, that prohibit funds from going to clinics that perform ... continue reading
Today, on World Refugee Day, the world marks the highest number of forcibly displaced people in nearly 70 years. In their statement marking ... continue reading
by Catholic Online
- Thomas More, the Man for This Season - for Christians Who Will Not ...
- Daily Reading for Wednesday, June 26th, 2019 HD Video
- St. John the Baptist: Saint of the Day for Monday, June 24, 2019
- Deacon Fournier: Corpus Christi, The Feast of the Body and Blood of Jesus
- Daily Reading for Tuesday, June 25th, 2019 HD Video
- UK court orders forced abortion for disabled woman
- Daily Readings for Monday, June 24, 2019
- Daily Reading for Monday, June 24th, 2019 HD
- Daily Reading for Sunday, June 23rd, 2019 HD
- Prayer Requests Live for Friday, June 21st, 2019 HD
- Prayer Requests Live for Thursday, June 20th, 2019 HD
Learn about Catholic world
Inform - Inspire - Ignite
Catholic Online Saints
Your saints explained
Catholic Online Prayers
Prayers for every need
Catholic Online Bible
Complete bible online
Catholic Online News
Your news Catholic eye
Today's bible reading
Products and services we offer
Catholic Online Shopping
Catholic medals, gifts & books
Advertise on Catholic Online
Your ads on catholic.org
Catholic Online Email
Email with Catholic feel
Learn the Catholic way
Catholic Online School
Free Catholic education for all
K-12 & Adult Education Classes
Support Free Education
Tax deductible support Free education
Copyright 2019 Catholic Online. All materials contained on this site, whether written, audible or visual are the exclusive property of Catholic Online and are protected under U.S. and International copyright laws, © Copyright 2019 Catholic Online. Any unauthorized use, without prior written consent of Catholic Online is strictly forbidden and prohibited.
Catholic Online is a Project of Your Catholic Voice Foundation, a Not-for-Profit Corporation. Your Catholic Voice Foundation has been granted a recognition of tax exemption under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Federal Tax Identification Number: 81-0596847. Your gift is tax-deductible as allowed by law.