Lay ministers must agree with Church teachings to distribute Communion

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U.S. Cardinal: Lay Ministers Should Be in Sync With Church

CHICAGO, JUNE 10, 2004 (Zenit.org).- Catholic lay ministers who disagree with the Church’s teachings should not be allowed to assist in distributing Communion, according to a letter reportedly sent by Cardinal Francis George to pastors in his archdiocese.

“If a minister should manifest his/her disagreement with Church teaching, he/she should not continue in active ministry until such time that the minister is reconciled to the Church’s teaching,” wrote Cardinal George, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

Though this has been the policy of the archdiocese all along, Cardinal George said earlier this month he was writing in response to questions posed to the Church and in the media recently, the newspaper said.

In Arizona, meanwhile, Bishop Thomas Olmsted of Phoenix said that Catholic politicians who unambiguously support abortion “rights” should not receive Communion, the Arizona Republic reported today.

But he declined to say he would deny Communion to politicians who do not follow Church teaching on abortion, the newspaper said.

Asked what he would do if John Kerry, the presumptive Democratic candidate for president who is a Catholic and pro-abortion, came to him for Communion, the leader of the Phoenix Diocese told the newspaper: “If he asked about it, I would tell him he should not receive Communion.”
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I have to agree. IF you reject any of the Church’s teaching, how can you call yourself a Catholic?
 
Because the Church is a Church of sinners. None of us are perfect as St. Paul says, “all have fallen short.” Even though were Catholic!
 
Br. Rich,

I don’t think George is saying sinners are unwelcome to serve in various capacities in liturgies. Rather, he is asking that dissenters not participate in various capacities. For example, a person who feels strongly that women should be priests, and that feeling is public, should not serve in a capacity in the liturgy. Someone who struggles with sins, but repents and confesses regularly, while a sinner (as we all are) would be permitted to serve in some capacity as the liturgy.

This kind of stems out of the whole abortion issue IMHO. If we are to deny communion to individuals who are radically and manifestly pro-abortion, can we have those same type of people adminster communion? That is the reading of the situation I get. Your thoughts?
 
What do Lay ministers do when it is the Priest who is not following the church teachings? Do we stand on the alter during the Consecration or refuse to be a lay minister?
 
I’m sorry I should have pointed to whom I was speaking. I was commenting on what Bill t posted. We do not stop being Catholic because we don’t understand or don’t fully accept a teaching as long as we are open to exploring the teaching and do not lead others into error. Sin removes us from being close to God and active participation in certain Sacraments and in my opinion should also remove a person from active lay ministry. Public dissent is sinful. Being a sinner however does not remove us from being Catholic.
 
Br. Rich SFO:
I’m sorry I should have pointed to whom I was speaking. I was commenting on what Bill t posted. We do not stop being Catholic because we don’t understand or don’t fully accept a teaching as long as we are open to exploring the teaching and do not lead others into error. Sin removes us from being close to God and active participation in certain Sacraments and in my opinion should also remove a person from active lay ministry. Public dissent is sinful. Being a sinner however does not remove us from being Catholic.
In retrospect, that makes more sense. Dreadfully sorry if it seemed like I was getting on you, certainly not my place. Guess, I need to read a little more deliberately.
 
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