Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Rome has spoken

By Phil Lawler (bio - articles ) | Apr 29, 2004

When should a priest withhold the Eucharist from a Catholic who is an obstinate public sinner?

And who should make the decision to refuse Communion: the parish priest? the local bishop? the bishops' conference? the Holy See?

Those questions have been answered. It's up to the pastor.

In June 2000, the Pontifical Council for Legislative Texts issued a declaration on that very issue.

The whole document is worth reading, but here's the bottom line:

The discernment of cases in which the faithful who find themselves in the described condition are to be excluded from Eucharistic Communion is the responsibility of the Priest who is responsible for the community. They are to give precise instructions to the deacon or to any extraordinary minister regarding the mode of acting in concrete situations.

4. Bearing in mind the nature of the above-cited norm (cfr. n. 1), no ecclesiastical authority may dispense the minister of Holy Communion from this obligation in any case, nor may he emanate directives that contradict it.

An appeal from our founder, Dr. Jeffrey Mirus:

Dear reader: If you found the information on this page helpful in your pursuit of a better Catholic life, please support our work with a donation. Your donation will help us reach seven million Truth-seeking readers worldwide this year. Thank you!

Progress toward our September expenses ($33,239 to go):
$35,000.00 $1,761.25
95% 5%
Sound Off! CatholicCulture.org supporters weigh in.

All comments are moderated. To lighten our editing burden, only current donors are allowed to Sound Off. If you are a donor, log in to see the comment form; otherwise please support our work, and Sound Off!

Show 1 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: - Apr. 30, 2004 9:26 AM ET USA

    So what happens when the Deacon or Priest deliberately gives Communion to a public sinner who has excommunicated him/herself? The vicar General takes the minister to task? Ha! The Bishop? Ha, ha! The Bishop's Conference? Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha ....... Come on Phil, get real !

Subscribe for free
Click here to advertise on CatholicCulture.org

Recent Catholic Commentary

Liberal visions of Catholicism: Kickstarter and the world's largest NGO 22 hours ago
The Blessed Book of Beasts August 30
Weekend reading August 29
Frustrating the Moral Law August 29
Weep for slaughtered Christians, not for dialogue with Islam August 29

Top Catholic News

Most Important Stories of the Last 30 Days
‘A real via crucis’: Pope Francis, patriarch plead on behalf of Iraq’s Christians CWN - August 8
Hundreds of thousands of Iraqi Christians in flight as Islamic State advances CWN - August 8