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Archbishop Burke firm on refusing Communion to Sen. Kerry February 03, 2004

Newly installed Archbishop Raymond Burke of St. Louis continues to make waves with his public insistence that pro-abortion Catholic politicians should not receive the Eucharist.

Archbishop Burke was quoted in the February 2 St. Louis Post-Dispatch as saying that he would refuse Communion to Senator John Kerry, a pro-abortion presidential candidate. "I would have to admonish him not to present himself for Communion," said the archbishop. "I might give him a blessing or something."

Kerry is moving into the front of the race for the Democratic presidential nomination. He is a Catholic who has vociferously defended his pro-abortion stand.

The response from the Kerry Campaign team was unapologetic. Kim Molstre, a Kerry campaign spokeswoman, said Friday, "The archbishop has the right to deny Communion to whoever he wants, but Senator Kerry respectfully disagrees with him on the issue of choice."

Kerry's own Archbishop Sean O'Malley, was interviewed by the day after the annual March for Life in Washington. He said: "These politicians should know that if they're not voting correctly on these life issues that they shouldn't dare come to Communion." Archbishop O'Malley, however, declined to go so far as to refuse Communion.