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By Dr. Jeff Mirus, Catholic Culture, June 23, 2021
Jeffrey Mirus holds a Ph.D. in intellectual history from Princeton University. A co-founder of Christendom College, he also pioneered Catholic Internet services. He is the founder of Trinity Communications and CatholicCulture.org. …
Way back in 2004 I wrote a commentary entitled Why Communion Won’t Be Withheld. In it I assessed the question of withholding Communion, in accordance with the provisions of Canon Law, from manifestly grave public sinners. The future Pope Benedict XVI, then head of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, had just clarified the circumstances under which Communion should be withheld, especially from politicians who sought to encode grave evils into law, or to declare grave evils as human rights. It turns out that I was right in thinking that nothing would be done in the immediate future by the American bishops to demand what some are now calling “Eucharistic coherence”.
But almost twenty years later, our bishops as a body may finally have achieved both the clarity and courage to take a stronger stand. Given opposition to a teaching document on this issue from a number of high-ranking American churchmen, it is already a very good sign that the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has decided to go ahead. Now it is worth considering what the eventual document should and should not say. …
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