9-March-2011 -- Catholic World News Brief |

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New York Bishops Will Not Deny Communion To Pro-Abortion Politicians

The bishops of New York State will not deny Holy Communion to politicians who support abortion and same-sex marriage, according to Bishop Howard Hubbard of Albany.

“Some bishops have done that but not all bishops have done that,” he said. “Quite frankly, there is a disagreement among bishops about using the communion line as a place for a confrontation. And I don’t think that the bishops of New York State feel that’s appropriate.”

Canon 915 of the Code of Canon Law states that those “obstinately persevering in manifest grave sin are not to be admitted to Holy Communion.” In 2000, the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts, authoritatively interpreting the canon, declared that parish priests must deny Holy Communion to those who have remarried outside the Church if they persist in seeking Holy Communion following a warning.

Asked whether Governor Andrew Cuomo, who is divorced and living with his girlfriend, ought to receive Holy Communion, Bishop Hubbard echoed earlier comments and said that “there are norms for all Catholics about receiving Communion and we have to be sensitive pastorally to every person in their own particular situation,” adding, “and when it comes to judging worthiness for Communion, we do not comment on either public figures or private figures. That’s something between the communicant and his pastor personally. It’s not something we comment on.” Governor Cuomo and his wife, Kerry Kennedy, divorced because she was having an affair with a married man.

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