Thursday, April 30, 2009

Children, Pilgrimages, and Orbs...and orbs..and orbs!

On Monday, April 27th, we set out from St. Johns, MI with a group of a little over 50 people, including 23 children, to tour Sylvan Springs in Rome City, Indiana. We started with a historical tour from Nick and moved onto a "spiritual tour" from Larry, the owner. Having organized a few groups before, I am always curious as to how the first timers are going to react. After Larry's talk we headed outside to tour the grounds. As soon as I stepped outside of the door, I was asked, "How soon can we come back here?" I then headed up to Holy Family Hill and was greeted with a hug from a friend who also asked, "When is the next trip scheduled?" It is always the same thing and everyone who goes to Rome City first has a hard time leaving and secondly, has a hard time not returning!

After our exploration outside, we headed into the large chapel for a talk by my uncle, Irv Kloska. We also said a rosary and asked him to pray over us. One of the members of our group rested in the spirit and had a very spiritual experience while the last person that Irv prayed over also rested in the spirit. When he came out of it, he said that he saw many angels "up there" joyously singing because they were so happy to have all of the children there! They were pleased with the devotion of them. He told us to take pictures of the ceiling. When we started taking pictures we were amazed to see dozens of orbs of light all around us. The presence of God was immense and we have no doubt that we were surrounded by angels!

I would highly recommend that anyone, Catholic or not, visit Sylvan Springs in Rome City. God will touch you wherever you are in your walk with him.



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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Cardinal Rigali Says Notre Dame Obama Honor "Evades Common Sense"

By Kathleen Gilbert
PHILADELPHIA, Pennsylvania, April 28, 2009 ( -

Philadelphia's Cardinal Justin Rigali, Chairman of the U.S. Catholic bishops' Committee on Pro-Life Activities, weighed in on the Notre Dame scandal in an exclusive interview with today. Rigali called the school's decision to honor President Obama a "most unfortunate" decision that "must not happen again," and criticized the school's defense of the decision as one that "evades common sense."

"My reaction is that it is most unfortunate," said Rigali. "It's most unfortunate because of the confusion it causes; it's most unfortunate because of the message that it gives with regard to the importance of human life; it's most unfortunate in regard to the confusion that it causes also in the ordinary people - the students, the graduates, the families ... but above all, it is most unfortunate because the value that is attributed to life through the recognition of an honorary degree in this regard is just not acceptable."

Asked to give his opinion on the unprecedented backlash from U.S. bishops and thousands of Catholic laity over Notre Dame's decision, Rigali said he believes that "something very positive is going on in our country along with all the negative things - that there is a greater and evolving understanding of the value of human life in many, many people."

"The backlash is due to a great extent the reaction of people who through their intuition, through their common sense, they know that this is just not an acceptable way to take a position on something that is so important," he said.

The cardinal referred to a speech by Pope John Paul II during his visit to St. Louis, MO in 1999, when the pope compared the legalization of abortion to St. Louis' Dred Scott case. In that case the U.S. Supreme Court "declared an entire class of human beings, people of African descent, outside the boundaries of the national community and the Constitution's protection," in the pope's words.

"How can we tolerate that today?" Rigali challenged. "This whole other category of human beings, the unborn - and the attitude of certain people permitting this, and saying that, for example, abortion should be safe, legal, and rare - or that it simply should be permitted at all times - to take this as a position, this is simply not acceptable in our day and age." Thus a Catholic university, said Rigali, "has to be in the forefront of the defense of human life."

"This is a stand in regard to something that is so vital, it is so important for the civilization of today ... that we simply cannot be ambiguous," he said. "To honor somebody [who is pro-abortion] ... whatever his or her merits may be, whatever splendid things this person may do, whatever position he or she occupies ... makes no sense whatsoever."

The Philadelphia cardinal also addressed the U.S. Bishops Conference (USCCB) 2004 document "Catholics in Political Life", which states: "The Catholic community and Catholic institutions should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles. They should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions."

The majority of U.S. bishops condemning the Obama invitation have said the move directly violates the document. However, Notre Dame president Fr. John Jenkins claimed the directive only applies to the invitation of politicians who are Catholic. (

In response, Cardinal Rigali said that while the document "may have well been in the context of Catholics," the statement itself "says something quite clear which is a principle in itself."

"It would make no sense whatsoever to say, 'Well, we shouldn't honor Catholics who present the antithesis of our Catholic doctrine, but ... there's really no problem whatsoever provided the person's not a Catholic,'" he said. "That evades common sense."

When asked whether he felt the invitation to Obama ought to be revoked, Rigali referred the question to Notre Dame's own Bishop John D'Arcy. "I don't think that everybody can come up with an answer to a specific problem in another diocese," he said.

However, he continued: "It is evident that the invitation should not have been extended. It goes against the values that we hold. And it must not happen again."

The bishop praised former U.S. ambassador to the Vatican Mary Ann Glendon for turning down Notre Dame's Laetare Medal at the same ceremony in protest of the scandal.

Rigali said that "there has to be some form of explanation - explanation to all those who have been given this poor testimony of the value of life ... on the part of the university, on the part of the president of the University, on the value of life."

"He [Notre Dame president Fr. Jenkins] has to, because he has given an invitation that shows that this is not that important an issue," said the cardinal. "And now, the whole world has to see that it is such an important issue: that, yes, it is a sign of contradiction ... it is a division between life and death, and we cannot treat it as one issue among many."

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Saturday, April 25, 2009

Fairy Tale, Futuristic Vision, or Just History Repeating Itself?


One day Henny-penny was picking up corn in the cornyard when-whack!-something hit her upon the head. "Goodness gracious me!" said Henny-penny; "the sky's a-going to fall: I must go and tell the king."

So she went along and she went along and she went along till she met Cocky-locky. "Where are you going, Henny-penny?" says Cocky-locky. "Oh I'm going to tell the king the sky's a-falling," says Henny-penny. "May I come with you?" says Cocky-locky. "Certainly," says Henny-penny. So Henny-penny and Cocky-locky went to tell the king the sky was falling.

They went along, and they went along, and they went along, till they met Ducky-daddies. "Where are you going to, Henny-penny and Cocky-locky?" says Ducky-daddies. "Oh! we're going to tell the king the sky "s a-falling," said Henny-penny and Cocky-Cocky. "May I come with- you?" says Ducky-daddles. "Certainly," said Henny-penny and Cocky. locky. So Henny-penny, Cocky-Cocky, and Ducky. daddles went to tell the king the sky was a-falling.

So they went along, and they went along, and they went along, till they met Goosey-poosey. "Where are you going to, Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, and Ducky-daddles?" said Goosey-poosey. "Oh! we're going to tell the king the sky's a-falling," said Henny-penny and Cocky-Cocky and Ducky-daddles. "May I come with you?" said Goosey-poosey. "Certainly," said Henny-penny, Cocky-cocky, and Ducky-daddies. So Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddies, and Goosey-poosey went to tell the king the sky was a-failing.

So they went along, and they went along, and they went along, till they met Turkey-turkey. "Where are you going, Henny-penny, Cocky-Cocky, Ducky-daddles, and Goosey-poosey?" says Turkey-turkey. "Oh! we're going to tell the king the sky's a-falling," said Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddles, and Goosey-poosey. "May I come with you, Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddles, and Goosey-poosey?" said Turkey-lurkey. "Oh, certainly, Turkey-lurkey," said Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddles, and Goosey-poosey. So Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddles, Goosey-poosey, and Turkey-lurkey all went to tell the king the sky was a-falling.

So they went along, and they went along, and they went along, till they met Foxy-woxy, and Foxy-woxy said to Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddles, Goosey-poosey, and Turkey-lurkey: "Where are you going, Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddles, Goosey-poosey, and Turkey-lurkey?" And Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddles, Goosey-poosey, and Turkey-lurkey said to Foxy-woxy: "We 're going to tell the king the sky's a-falling." >"Oh! but this is not the way to the king, Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddles, Goosey-poosey, and Turkey-lurkey," says Foxy-woxy; "I know the proper way; shall I show it you?" "Oh, certainly, Foxy-woxy," said Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddles, Goosey-poosey, and Turkey-lurkey. So Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddles, Goosey-poosey, Turkey-lurkey, and Foxy-woxy all went to tell the king the sky was a-falling.

So they went along, and they went along, and they went along, till they came to a narrow and dark hole. Now this was the door of Foxy-woxy's cave. But Foxy-woxy said to Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddles, Goosey-poosey, and Turkey-lurkey: "This is the short way to the king's palace: you'll soon get there if you follow me. I will go first and you come after, Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddles, Goosey-poosey, and Turkey-lurkey." "Why of course, certainly, without doubt, why not?" said Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddles, Goosey-poosey, and Turkey-lurkey.

So Foxy-woxy went into his cave, and he didn't go very far, but turned round to wait for Henny-penny, Cocky-locky, Ducky-daddles, Goosey-poosey, and Turkey-lurkey. So at last at first Turkey-Turkey went through the dark hole into the cave. He hadn't got far when" Hrumph," Foxy-woxy snapped off Turkey-lurkey's head and threw his body over his left shoulder. Then Goosey-poosey went in, and "Hrumph," off went her head and Goosey-poosey was thrown beside Turkey-lurkey. Then Ducky-daddles waddled down, and "Hrumph," snapped Foxy-woxy, and Ducky-daddles' head was off and Ducky-daddles was thrown alongside Turkey-Turkey and Goosey-poosey. Then Cocky-locky strutted down into the cave, and he hadn't gone far when "Snap, Hrumph!" went Foxy-woxy and Cocky-locky was thrown alongside of Turkey-lurkey, Goosey-poosey, and Ducky-daddles.

But Foxy-woxy had made two bites at Cocky-locky, and when the first snap only hurt Cocky-locky, but didn't kill him, he called out to Henny-penny. But she turned tail and off she ran home, so she never told the king the sky was a-falling.

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Thursday, April 23, 2009

The Second International Symposium on Euthanasia & Assisted Suicide is a Go

Renowned Dr. Jack Willke added to list of speakers.

By Steve Jalsevac
April 21, 2009 ( -

Alex Schadenberg, Executive Director of the Euthanasia Prevention Coalition, has announced that the Second International Symposium on Euthanasia & Assisted Suicide is a now a definite go. There were concerns noted in a LifeSiteNews report last week ( that very low registrations at the time might jeopardize the conference. However, the response since then and other factors, such as the addition of the renowned Dr. Jack Willke to the speakers list, have abated that concern.

Schadenberg sent out the following email message yesterday:

"Last Friday, we sent out an alert explaining that the economy, or the lack of commitment to fighting the scourge of assisted suicide, may cause the Euthanasia Symposium to be cancelled. Due to the response of many people who indicated that they will attend the Second-International Symposium on Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide we have been able to agree to go forward with the International Symposium."

He added, "Many people and groups are making great sacrifices to attend the Euthanasia Symposium which is the most important conference ever organized to stop euthanasia and assisted suicide."

Highlighting just one of the speakers, Schadenberg states, "Lionel Roosemont is a physician from Belgium who will be speaking at the Symposium. Lionel & his wife Renate have a personal story that will enable participants to understand how the culture of death and the acceptance of euthanasia in Belgium effected the care of their daughter Tikvah, who was born with hydrocephalus."

"Tikvah is now 13 years old and lives with significant disabilities, but her life is not only valued by her parents but she is constantly providing new growth and surprises."

For those readers who were not yet aware, Dr. Jack Willke grew up at Kneipp Springs (now Sylvan Springs) in Rome City, IN. He is the founder of National Right to Life and International Right to Life.
Our Lady of America must be very proud of her faithful torchbearer.

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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

"We are at War!": Bishop Finn Delivers Rousing Clarion Call to the "Fight for Life" in America

By Kathleen Gilbert
OVERLAND PARK, Kansas, April 21, 2009 ( -

Bishop Robert Finn of the diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph issued a powerful call to action to pro-lifers at the 2009 Gospel of Life Convention on Saturday. In his speech, Finn heavily criticized pro-abortion Catholic politicians who claim a "personal opposition" to abortion, stating that such persons are "warriors of death" who "have abandoned their place in the citizenship of the Church."

"As I speak a word of encouragement today I also want to tell you soberly, dear friends, 'We are at war!'" began Finn, who said that today's issues bring "an intensity and urgency to our efforts that may rival any time in the past."

The bishop warned that an empty version of the rhetoric of "tolerance" can come from people of all backgrounds, including Christians and Catholics: "The 'battle between believers,' who claim a certain 'common ground' with us, while at the same time, they attack the most fundamental tenets of the Church's teachings, or disavow the natural law - this opposition is one of the most discouraging, confusing, and dangerous," he said.

"Occasionally we still hear an elected official speak of his or her personal opposition to abortion, while they support the legal right to an abortion," he continued.

"We should be very clear: Such a person places him or herself completely OUTSIDE the moral framework, the moral imperative of Evangelium Vitae and other Church teaching on these issues. ... They have abandoned their place in the citizenship of the Church. Quite simply they have become warriors for death rather than life.

"If you and I support such a person who has so flatly told us of their intentions to protect a fraudulent Right to Death, a Right to an Abortion, we make ourselves participants in their attack on life," said Finn.

Touching on the Notre Dame scandal, Finn said the school's decision to honor Obama at this year's commencement was "scandalous, discouraging and confusing to many Catholics" and he conjectured that "Fr. Jenkins will probably lose his job."

Finn suggested that Jenkins should disinvite the President and give the honorary degree to Bishop John D'Arcy of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend, "who has supported and tried to guide the University, despite their too frequent waywardness, faithfully for 25 years."

Finn urged the crowd to never get used to the "constant magnitude" of abortion.

"Thousands of human lives every day: If we keep saying this - first of all - some people will get very upset with us," said the Bishop. "They will want us to stop. They may quote other statistics about the tragedies of poverty and war. We must truly share their horror at these things too. However, in the end the measure of our society is in how we treat the most vulnerable in our midst."

On the role of bishops in the abortion debate, Finn noted the spontaneous standing ovation received by New York's Archbishop Timothy Dolan at his installation Mass when he mentioned the sanctity of unborn life.

Finn said the reaction revealed the Catholic community's desire for leadership on the issue.

"This is NOT partisan politics on the part of bishops or their flock," he said. "This is zeal for life, pure and powerful. This is care for truth, and attention to the salvation of souls. It cannot and must not be neglected, even if it means we might get scolded at times by those who want us to speak less.

"We bishops should note it carefully - how our people are starving for more leadership - more unanimity - more courage in this regard."

Bishop Finn urged diligence in the effort to promote the culture of life, one that must not slacken even as others "push back" and try to silence the message.

"As bishop I have a weighty responsibility to tell you this over and over again," said Finn. "This obligation is not always easy, and constantly I am tempted to say and do less, rather than more. Almost every day I am confronted with the persuasion of other people who want me to be silent. But - with God's grace - you and I will not be silent."

Monday, April 20, 2009

Greg Fean to Tell His Story on Redeemer Radio This Thursday

We received word this past week that Greg Fean will be on Redeemer Radio this Thursday telling his story of how Our Lady of America's intercession was responsible for his healing from deadly cancer nearly 8 years ago.

You can read about his story here:

Please tune in to at 2 pm this Thursday to hear his first-hand account of healing mercy and hope.

Dear Friends,

As you know our Greg (now 13 years old!) is truly a miracle. We never loose sight of our blessings. Many of you also know Greg wrote a book that was published recently. His book is a message of hope. Greg's intention is for all newly diagnosed children of cancer to be given this book to help them "not be so afraid". To get a peak at his book you can check out his website at

We send this email to let you know that Greg will be doing an hour of share-a-thon for Redeemer Radio one week from today, Thursday April 23 at 2PM. He will be sharing his story of hope. He will be sharing how, despite his suffering, he felt God's love and mercy embracing him. As you all know, Redeemer Radio is a blessing for our local Catholics and investing in this gift helps build our Church. That is our goal.

Please join us Thursday April 23 from 2:00 to 3:00 PM!
Click on "Listen Live" and then click the button that says "Listen Now" (it may appear over the top of one of their ads, so look for it if it doesn't jump right out at you)
The Sharathon will begin on Wednesday and run through Friday. Feel free to call in with your own stories of hope and healing.

Help us celebrate hope, healing, and this One, Holy, Catholic, Apostolic Church that thru His blood Christ has given us. Please consider giving to Redeemer Radio as we strive to Love Christ, Serve People and Build the Church.

Happy Easter,
Tom and Kathy Fean

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Friday, April 17, 2009

Standing Ovation at Mention of Unborn for New York Archbishop During Installation Mass

By Kathleen Gilbert
NEW YORK, April 16, 2009 ( -

New York's St. Patrick's Cathedral erupted in applause yesterday during the installation Mass of Archbishop Timothy Dolan, the new leader of the Catholic Church in New York, when the prelate mentioned the sanctity of human life in the womb.

In a press conference the day before, the popular new archbishop affirmed that he would not back down from defending life and family in his influential new position.

"The Resurrection goes on, as His Church continues to embrace and protect the dignity of every human person, the sanctity of human life, from the tiny baby in the womb to the last moment of natural passing into eternal life," said Dolan in his homily, which witnesses say was immediately interrupted by "deafening" applause.

"At the phrase 'tiny baby in the womb' a sharp staccato applause began (from what I could hear) originating from the priests," popular American Papist blogger Thomas Peters, who was in attendance, told Peters said the "violent" applause, which lasted about half a minute, led to a standing ovation by the congregation and nearly all the priests.

"My personal feeling was that it was a 'moment' for the assembled gathering - a strong declaration of the Church's proud and uncompromising defense of unborn human life, especially at this crucial time in our nation and in particular at this transition taking place for the New York archdiocese," he added.

Dolan's homily continued: "As the Servant of God Terrence Cardinal Cooke wrote, 'Human life is no less sacred or worthy of respect because it is tiny, pre-born, poor, sick, fragile, or handicapped.'

"Yes, the Church is a loving mother who has a zest for life and serves life everywhere, but she can become a protective 'mamma bear' when the life of her innocent, helpless cubs is threatened," he said - at which moment the church erupted in applause a second time.

"Everyone in this mega-community is a somebody with an extraordinary destiny," Dolan said. "Everyone is a somebody in whom God has invested an infinite love.

"That is why the Church reaches out to the unborn, the suffering, the poor, our elders, the physically and emotionally challenged, those caught in the web of addictions."

Dolan, the former archbishop of Milwaukee famed for his jovial and inviting demeanor, told press members at a conference Tuesday that he would defend authentic Church teaching on "controversial" issues with charity and firmness.

Asked if he would use his new position as a bully pulpit on issues such as same-sex "marriage," Dolan objected to the negative connotation of the term "bully," but emphasized that he would "still preach the truth" whether in a position of influence or not.

On controversial topics "that the church has a message to give," Dolan said, "I don't shy away from those things, and I wouldn't sidestep them."

"We bishops aren't into politics, we're into principles," he added.

Archbishop Dolan indicated he would take an active role in defending marriage as New York activists look to pass same-sex "marriage" legislation, which Gov. David Paterson is introducing to the state senate today.

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Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Abp. Dolan Determined to Fight Anti-Catholic Bias on Same-Sex "Marriage," Abortion

By Kathleen Gilbert
MANHATTAN, New York, April 14, 2009 ( -

The day before his installation as the next archbishop of New York - one of the most influential sees in the American Catholic Church - Milwaukee's Archbishop Timothy Dolan told the Associated Press that as archbishop he will challenge the idea that the Catholic Church's teaching on same-sex "marriage" and abortion is unenlightened.

Dolan said his top priority would be to re-inspire pride in Catholic identity, and that he would encourage Catholics to battle bias against the Catholic Church in American society.

"One would hope that through education and through the joy that we give by our lives that people will begin to see that these fears and this skepticism we have about the Church are unwarranted," Dolan said. "Periodically, we Catholics have to stand up and say, `Enough,'" he said. "The church as a whole still calls out to what is noble in us."

Dolan emphasized the legitimate role of Catholics in spreading the message of life in America.

"It's not that we're trying to impose Catholic values on the rest of the country, as much as to remind America of its birthright: that we are a nation found on certain inalienable rights, as Thomas Jefferson said, and then went on to list them - the first one being life," he said. "It's at the core of the American experiment that every human life would enjoy the full protection of the law."

Referring to the Church's attitude to homosexuals, Dolan said that "we love them" and "would defend their rights," but nonetheless marriage must remain between a man and a woman.

"If we let that definition of marriage go and begin to include other relationships, it will be to a detriment to the civilization," he said.

The celebration of Dolan's April 15 installation begins with a vespers service in St. Patrick's Cathedral tonight. Dolan succeeds New York Cardinal Edward Egan.

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Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Our Lady of America Stained Glass Window

Father Hector Moreno and his parishioners at St. Francis of Assisi parish in Necedah, WI have been very busy lately creating their own tribute to Our Lady of America in stained glass. Great job!!

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Friday, April 3, 2009

Our Lady of America Medals Available

OLTIV has learned of a new source of Our Lady of America Medallions. The medallions are now available in two sizes in a wider variety of materials.

The small medal is about 9/16” x ¾” and the large medal is about ¾” x 1”.

Click Here To View Medallion

Small Medallions

Aluminum $5.00
Gold plated $14.00
Silver plated $14.00
Sterling Silver $32.00
Gold filled $42.00
14k Gold $385.00

Large Medallions

Gold plated $15.00
Silver plated $15.00
Sterling Silver $35.00
Gold filled $45.00
14k Gold $485.00

OLTIV is not selling these items and no proceeds are shared with us.

You can order by phone and pay with a credit card or by check. Call 888-834-6261 or 802-524-5350 to place your order today. Delivery time is normally 2-3 weeks.

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Thursday, April 2, 2009

Prominent Canon Law Prof Contrasts Archbishops Wuerl and Burke on Communion for Pro-Abort Politicians

Commentary by Ed Peters, Canon Lawyer
April 2, 2009 ( -

I often tell my students, the answer to a canonical question is seldom found in a single canon.

Two prominent American prelates,
Abp. Donald Wuerl of Washington DC and Abp. Raymond Burke of the Apostolic Signatura, are the lead figures in a significant disagreement over admitting certain pro-abortion Catholic politicians to Holy Communion. Wuerl basically believes that, under Canon 916, Catholics, including pro-abortion politicians, should determine their own eligibility for reception of Communion. Burke argues that, beyond Canon 916, Canon 915 requires ministers of Holy Communion to withhold the Eucharist from some pro-abortion politicians if they don't refrain from approaching on their own. Both sides can't be right, and I suspect that the more compelling case is made by reading the two canons together instead of reading one to the exclusion of the other.

Some preliminary thoughts toward sorting this out.

First, awareness of Church history helps contemporary Catholics sleep at night. This is not the first time that upright bishops have differed over important points of pastoral practice; for that matter, strong episcopal conflicts over (unsettled) matters of doctrine are not unknown in the Church. So, let's be confident in the Holy Spirit's power to lead the Church through this issue as He has led us through others.

Second, one must avoid "personalizing" the debate. Both archbishops are distinguished thinkers and both have many decades of loyal service to the Church behind them, including some services rendered under very difficult circumstances. In short, each is an attractive figure. But, while it's tempting to rally behind one or the other, personalities are not what's at issue here.

Rather, if we want to resolve the question of Communion admission, we must plainly identify the core of the disagreement. I think it's this: may one rely on a single canon to absolve arch/bishops of any direct responsibility to act when pro-abortion Catholic politicians present themselves for Communion, or must one read both the relevant canons in these cases, even if one of those canons requires ministerial intervention under certain circumstances?

The two relevant canons are not complicated.

Canon 916 expresses the fundamental responsibility of individual Catholics to weigh their conscience before approaching the Holy Banquet and to refrain from receiving Communion if they believe themselves to be in grave sin. Canon 915 requires ministers of holy Communion to withhold the Eucharist from Catholics who, though their public conduct is gravely at odds with Church teaching and/or morals, insist on presenting themselves for holy Communion.

I suggest that, for one to argue that Communion reception by Catholics is a purely personal decision under Canon 916 is to ignore impermissibly Canon 915 and its assertion of ministerial obligations in certain cases.

To be sure, both canons make serious demands on the faithful.

It's not easy for an individual Catholic to refrain from going to holy Communion at Mass. The so-called 'Communion fast' offers no cover for a Catholic with a doubtful, let alone a guilty, conscience. These days, to remain in the pew while everyone else goes to Communion is tantamount to saying "I think I'm in the state of grave sin." Who wants to imply that? But neither is it easy on a minister of holy Communion to withhold the sacrament from a Catholic seeking it. Who wants the responsibility of taking the most august sacrament, the source and summit of the Christian life (1983 CIC 897), into one's own hands, only to say to a fellow Catholic in the Communion line "move along"?

So the question squarely confronts us: is the answer to the canonical problem of admitting notoriously pro-abortion Catholics to Communion found in a single canon, or is it found primarily in two canons? Do we read Canon 916 as if it sufficed to let pro-abortion Catholics decide about their own eligibility to receive holy Communion, or do we read Canons 915 and 916 together, being willing to invoke Canon 915 against certain Catholics who insist on receiving holy Communion despite their public disregard of important points of Catholic doctrine and/or morals?

Wuerl seems to think that one canon, namely 916, settles the question. Burke says that we must read both norms, Canons 915 and 916, together to arrive at the correct answer.

What can I say? I think Burke's right.

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