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Kerry and Communion
Episode II
by John Jakubczyk, Esq.
26 April 2004

Does John Kerry think that Catholics are so ignorant not to understand that the key component of belief is agreement with the central tenets of the Faith? So, here is the question, John: Do you believe what the Church teaches about respect and protection for those created by God in His
image and likeness? If you say you do, then why are you not practicing what you believe? John Kerry's actions
are a deliberate attempt to divide the Church and advance his
own political agenda at the expense of the truth.


In a recent column, Kerry – the Great Pretender, I explained why as a Catholic, John F. Kerry, should not receive Holy Communion if he was going to continue to espouse a pro-abortion position in his run for the presidency. It seemed that Kerry was attempting to appeal to Catholics by claiming the he was a “believing and practicing Catholic” – his words, not mine.

This week he showed further scorn for the Church’s teaching on the respect for human life by attending a pro-abortion rally in Washington D.C. where he again promised only to select pro-abortion judges to the nation’s courts.

During the same weekend he was presenting himself for Holy Communion at the Paulist Center in Boston where he attends mass.

Concurrently Cardinal Arinze was asked about these matters and explained that a person should not present for communion under these circumstances.

Now I am but a Catholic layman. I am not a theologian, nor am I a canon lawyer. However, I am a “believing and practicing Catholic.” To be a “believing and practicing” Catholic, one must believe and practice the Faith. The operative words are “believe” and “practice.”

Lets look at the word “believe.” Webster’s Dictionary defines the word as “ to have confidence in the truth, existence, reliability, or value of something.” Every Sunday Catholics recite the Nicene Creed, a statement of Catholic belief. Part of the prayer is “I believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the Giver of Life.” Another section states, “I believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.” The Catechism of the Catholic Church states, “Whoever says ‘I believe’ says ‘I pledge myself to what we believe.’ Communion in faith needs a common language of faith, normative for all and uniting all in the same confession of faith.” Par. 185.

Does John Kerry think that we are so ignorant not to understand that the key component of belief is agreement with the central tenets of the Faith? John, check it out – respect for the dignity of every human being made in the image and likeness of God is a central tenet of Catholicism, not to mention Christianity and Judaism. It goes back to the Ten Commandments. You remember those, John. You know the one that states “Thou shalt not kill.” What part of that do you not understand? Confused? Well, the Church is there to help you understand. It means you do not kill innocent people. People include babies. Babies include unborn babies. After all, John you are not going to tell me that these unborn babies are not human beings. You aren’t that ignorant to say they are not human beings.

So, here is the question, John: Do you believe what the Church teaches about respect and protection for those created by God in His image and likeness? If you say you do, then why are you not practicing what you believe? And what are you doing at all these pro-abortion events?

Now for those who are not Catholic, the furor over reception of the Eucharist may seem a little overblown. However, for “believing and practicing” Catholics, the Eucharist is the center of our Faith and worship. We believe that Jesus Christ becomes present in the form of bread and wine. We believe that we actually receive Jesus Christ, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity when we partake of the Holy Eucharist. The Church teaches that we are to be suitably prepared in our minds, hearts and souls to receive Our Lord. We are to confess any serious sin before approaching the altar. This means if we missed mass on Sunday, we are to reconcile with Our Lord through the Sacrament of Penance, before receiving Our Lord in Holy Communion. If we are in a state of sin and receive Holy Communion, we sin against Our Lord. As Charlotte Hays recently wrote in an article on www.beliefnet.com on the subject referring to a passage in St. Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians:

"No less a figure than St. Paul warned of the danger of receiving Holy Communion in a state of grievous sin. In one of his more thunderous moments, Paul warned of eating and drinking to one’s damnation. St. Paul exhorted Christians to try and examine their consciences before 'presuming' to receive the Eucharist. Reception of the Body and Blood of Christ is not to be done lightly. Benefits accrue to those who receive communion in the proper state. Receiving the Eucharist in an unworthy condition, however, will do nothing but increase one’s chances of condemnation."

The point is that the Church is ultimately concerned about our souls, including John Kerry’s soul, whether he cares to know or not. In fact, as a member of the mystical Body of Christ, it is also my duty to be concerned about John Kerry’s soul. But as much as I would like him to renounce his support of abortion, I am not blind. He has embraced the abortion culture and all that it means. From his early days to the present, he and his fellow senator from Massachusetts, Edward Kennedy, have been the epitome of all that is wrong in the expression of Catholic virtue in public life. As bad as his pro-abortion, pro-homosexual politics have been, it is the scandal of bad example that calls for condemnation. How many people have justified their sins because of John Kerry and Ted Kennedy? How many people have turned their backs on the “least of their brothers and sisters” because John Kerry, Ted Kennedy, Tom Daschele, Chris Dodd, and others all said no to life? How many babies have died and women scarred because of their very public support for the killing of these babies?

The Catechism of the Catholic Church has a section that addresses the evils of abortion and euthanasia (Para. 2270 – 2279). There is also a section entitled “Respect for the souls of others: scandal” (Para. 2284-2287). In these paragraphs, the Church addresses the issue of scandal, first defining it and then pointing out the additional problem when those in authority lead others into sin. Par. 2285 states in part, “ Scandal takes on a particular gravity by reason of the authority of those who cause it….” Further, “they are guilty of scandal who establish laws or social structures leading to the decline of morals and the corruption of religious practice, or to social conditions that intentionally or not make Christian conduct and obedience to the Commandments difficult and practically impossible.” Par. 2286.

Finally, anyone “who uses the power at his disposal in such a way that it leads others to do wrong becomes guilty of scandal and responsible for the evil that he has directly or indirectly encouraged. ‘Temptations to sin are sure to come; but woe to him by whom they come.’” Par. 2287.

Thus it is that John Kerry’s actions are a deliberate attempt to divide the Church and advance his own political agenda at the expense of the truth. His real problem may not be in simply trying to fool the American people and in particular Catholics. He should take care to heed the words of Pius XI from his encyclical Casti Connubii who wrote

Those who hold the reins of government should not forget that it is the duty of public authority by appropriate laws and sanctions to defend the lives of the innocent, and this all the more so since those whose lives are endangered and assailed cannot defend themselves. Among whom we must mention in the first place infants hidden in the mother's womb. And if the public magistrates not only do not defend them, but by their laws and ordinances betray them to death at the hands of doctors or of others, let them remember that God is the Judge and Avenger of innocent blood which cried from earth to Heaven.

John Kerry should after all realize that we are here in this earth but a short time. After that is death and judgment. We will all be judged and we will be asked to account for all that we have done and all that we have failed to do. To echo the words of Christ, “What does it profit a man to gain the whole world and suffer the loss of his soul?”

John Kerry may think he can fool the people of this country, but he cannot fool His Maker, and His Maker will not be mocked.


John Jakubczyk is a lawyer and President of Arizona Right to Life. He has been a frequent speaker on life issues throughout the country.

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