The Bishop of Elphin has said that neither he as bishop nor any member of the Catholic faith have “any business in declaring a group of people unworthy” to receive Communion.
In his homily in Knock on Sunday, Bishop Kevin Doran said he would “seriously question” the “cancellation” of an invitation to Communion.
“If the Eucharist is viewed as a prize, there seem to be winners and losers; There are some who, quite comfortably, consider themselves worthy while others consider themselves unworthy,” he acknowledged.
His stance seems at odds with a string of US bishops who have targeted Catholic politicians such as President Joe Biden and US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi.
In May, Ms Pelosi was barred from receiving Communion by Archbishop Salvatore Cordileone in her home diocese of San Francisco.
A month later, however, she received communion at a papal mass while she was in Rome to meet Pope Francis.
The Pope has said that he never refused the Eucharist to anyone.
In Knock at a Mass on the anniversary of the apparition on August 21, 1879, Dr. Doran acknowledged that the synodal discussions in the Church made it clear that “many Catholics, for various reasons, feel uncomfortable or unwelcome at the Eucharist”.
He said this isn’t just a problem for these people, it’s “a problem for all of us”.
Still, the outspoken bishop said there are times when a person “cannot honestly accept the invitation to Holy Communion because he or she, with full knowledge and full consent, has done something gravely wrong.”
But he added that even then the invitation was not canceled. No one, he said, “should accept the body and blood of the Lord unworthily. But nobody should stay away unnecessarily.”
“Ultimately, it is up to every woman or man to make a decision, according to his well-formed conscience, whether or not to come to the sacrament.”
dr Speaking about the Catholic Church’s synodal process and efforts to hear a diversity of views, Doran said the Church is not just what happens around the altar.
Acknowledging that the reality of the church in Ireland “is that people are leaving and the rest of us take it for granted or worse, don’t even notice it,” he prayed that the church would become a place where ” everyone is really welcome”, and no one feels left out.
https://www.independent.ie/news/no-catholic-has-any-business-deciding-someone-is-unworthy-of-receiving-communion-says-bishop-41926596.html No Catholic has “any business” to decide someone is unworthy of Communion, bishop says