Archbishop Joseph Naumann reiterated his stance that President Joe Biden should not receive communion in the Catholic Church because of his abortion views.
Defending his position in an interview with The Atlantic published Sunday, Naumann, who heads the archdiocese of Kansas City, said the president’s pro-abortion stance shows that he “doesn’t believe what we believe about the sacredness of human life.”
Naumann said that Biden’s public claims that he is a “devout Catholic” while also supporting abortion creates challenges for the church, especially by potentially misleading other Catholics into accepting and promoting abortion.
“One of the issues is the extent to which he supports legalized abortion, even to the point of wanting all Americans to fund abortion. But the bigger issue, for us … is that he does these things, and then in reply to questions about them, he or his press secretary says, ‘Biden’s a devout Catholic,’” Naumann said. “Whether he intends it or not, he’s basically saying to people, ‘You can be a good Catholic and do similar things.’”
Naumann went on to explain why Biden should not take communion while also supporting policies to protect and expand abortion access.
“If a non-Catholic Christian wants to enter into full communion with the Church, they’re asked to make a profession where they say, ‘I believe and profess all that the holy Catholic Church believes, teaches, and proclaims to be revealed by God.’ Each time we receive the Eucharist, we’re also saying that profession,” Naumann said. “That’s why it becomes a point of confusion. Obviously, the president doesn’t believe what we believe about the sacredness of human life, or he wouldn’t be taking the actions that he is. And yet, he continues to receive the Eucharist. We can’t judge his heart. But we consider the action itself a grave moral evil.”
Asked whether Biden supporting pro-abortion policies should be considered the same as performing an abortion, Naumann said the two actions have “similar gravity.”
“They’re obviously not identical things. But he’s formally cooperating in abortion by his actions. He intends to make abortion available and accessible, to promote it, even help pay for it. He wants to force everybody else to do this as well, even if it violates their consciences,” Naumann said.
Naumann has been openly critical of Catholic politicians supporting abortion and has called for some, including Biden, to stop receiving communion as long as they continue to support abortion. Naumann has also called on Biden to stop referring to himself as a “devout Catholic.”
“The president should stop defining himself as a devout Catholic, and acknowledge that his view on abortion is contrary to Catholic moral teaching. It would be a more honest approach from him to say he disagreed with his Church on this important issue and that he was acting contrary to Church teaching,” Naumann said in February.
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