The Evil Queen and Catholic Communion

I have been wondering about this topic myself a great deal recently. I am more than delighted to hear this anecdote:

Over at Larry Correia’s Monster Hunter Nation (http://monsterhunternation.com/2014/06/24/gary-oldman-likes-the-double-standard-word-police-about-as-much-as-i-do/#comment-68911) a commenter named KHorn writes:

 

True story: my daughter was in school with Pelosi’s grandson from K-8th grade at a Catholic school. The Tuesday before Thanksgiving was grandparents’ day and when my daughter was in 3rd grade Pelosi was in for that day. Because of the increased attendance at the mass, they brought in Father Charlie who was retired and only slightly younger than Methuselah (he was always there for the Christmas Eve vigil as well). When it came time for communion she was in the line where Father Charlie was providing the host. When she came up, he refused to give it to her because of her stand on abortion and told her she was not within the teachings of the Church. One of the younger priests ultimately provided her communion, but I still cherish the look on her face as Father Charlie admonished her.

My comment: this shows the strength and the weakness of that bride of Christ known as the Catholic Church. I have written in times past about the differences between the masculine and feminine approach to things. Men like rules written in stone, keeping score, winners and losers, and obvious public success or failure. Women like customs more than rule, consensus more than commands, feelings more than results, and a private word in your ear rather than public humiliation.

The Church is feminine, the way a ship or a storm or anything else men admire is feminine. It is not the Pope in Rome who excommunicates the pro-abortionist or pro-abomination politician, but the politician’s local priest or local bishop. The Church is not in the business of damning souls but saving them.

While my male spirit would like to have Pelosi publicly burned over a slow fire by the Secular Authority for aiding and abetting child-murder, after being found by the Inquisition to have blasphemously and disobediently claimed Church doctrine permitted child-murder, the female spirit of the Church is more personal and more intimate, as female spirits should and must be.

So Pelosi has been warned. Just because a disobedient and phariseeaic junior priest contaminated and blasphemed the Host by offering it to an excommunicated heretic and unrepentant sinner does not mean the warning was invalid. Pelosi now knows (no matter how energetically she pretends she does not know) that she is damned to hell.

She also knows, as all Christians know, that there is only one way, truth, and life, which saves the sinner from sin and death and fire. Whether she acts on it or not is up to her. The Church has done her part.

42 Comments

  1. Comment by Paul Weimer:

    Father Charlie was well within his authority and bounds to refuse to give Speaker Pelosi Holy Communion. I seem to recall chatter about this sort of thing back in 2004.

    Is a public chastisement the best course here to get her to reconsider her ways? (which the ultimate goal, naturally) That is the question.

  2. Comment by ConceptJunkie:

    She knows, but do the thousands or millions who (inexplicably) support her recognize that she is at odds with Church teaching given how she plays the “Catholic” card with impunity?

    I guess this begs the question of whether the average person understands Church teaching, of which the answer these days is probably, “No”. Mrs. Pelosi has one of the best platforms in the country to give aid and comfort to the enemy and I believe the charitable thing to do is to go beyond private fraternal correction and make it unambiguously clear where she stands, and if there is hesitancy because (in some people’s malformed opinions) she agrees with Chruch teaching on everything but abortion then that is nothing less with material complicity with evil. But does the Church leadership in the U.S. even agree on where she stands? Mrs. Pelosi sure seems to have no regrets. We can’t judge the disposition of her soul, but her actions, which we can and should judge, are unambiguous.

    In a world where all you need to do is “shop around” to find the priest or bishop who will agree with you (or at least look the other way, as Mrs. Pelosi was able to do without even have to leave the line), Church teaching does not appear to amount to much. The Church may be feminine, but the lack of masculine leadership has taken an enormous toll.

    I think the appearance of the Church in the U.S. is too often that the negative (and undeserved) stereotype of women… someone unable to make up her mind. Christ loves everyone, and forgives anyone of anything if but asked, but He would never tolerate obstinate evil, especially in His name. People forget that sometimes “WWJD?” means grabbing a whip and flipping tables.

    God bless Father Charlie.

  3. Comment by luckymarty:

    Under canon law (specifically, canon 915) it is surely correct to bar Mrs. Pelosi from receiving communion; indeed, it is arguably required for ministers of communion to do so. It is not, however, correct to refer to her as “excommunicated” except metaphorically. I don’t believe her bishop has admonished her, at least not publicly.

    Incidentally, Kathleen Sebelius’ bishop, back in Kansas City, instructed her to refrain from presenting herself for communion, and I understand she has actually done so. (In part, no doubt, because the DC archbishop said she would be expected to refrain there as well, when she was appointed to HHS.) So it can be done.

  4. Comment by Prester Scott:

    What I find even more scandalous than the flagrant blasphemies and hypocrisy of the Evil Queen and others like her, is the lightness with which so many clergy, and even bishops, take their solemn and sacred duty to administer the Sacraments.

    The same principle applies to preaching the Word, teaching and admonishing the faithful, and preserving the liturgy; and to lay people who have some active role in any of the above activities. But surely the most acute responsibility is to handle rightly and reverently Our Lord Himself under the Eucharistic species.

    Do they not know they shall be judged more strictly? Do they not fear God — or believe He is not fearsome? Woe to those who pushed Father Charlie aside!

    • Comment by johnedko:

      Now this is one thing that I am not sure of. My parents are both Eucharistic Ministers (EM), and they have been taught that they do not have choice in giving out Communion. If a person presents themselves to receive the Eucharist, it is between them and God – the Minister has no choice.

      Now, a Priest might have more leeway – but it strikes me as a good idea not to let any EM decide to give or withhold the Host.

      -John

      • Comment by Prester Scott:

        That is a fair question. I will make inquiries.

      • Comment by ConceptJunkie:

        Well, the whole concept of EMs has become a bit of a farce.

        If you’ve got 5000 communicants and only one priest, yes, even using an altar rail distributing Communion to that many people would take too long, but let’s be honest, in most places it’s just become another way to allow the lay people to “play along”.

        I’m not trying to diminish the ministry, especially when it involves distributing Communion to the sick, and other things a busy priest might need help with, but the concept of Extraordinary Ministers being “extraordinary” is itself quite humorous. Most Church have far more EMs than is necessary, and in most cases, the priest (or priests) could administer the sacrament on his (or their) own just fine.

        As a kid, I thought that idea, and the idea of Communion in the Hand were cool, but as an adult, I’ve come to realize what a bad, bad idea they are.

        It seems we are doing everything we can to diminish the importance of a priest’s holy and sacerdotal duties and authority and everything we can to erode the belief in the Real Presence, and guess what? That’s exactly what we have.

        But yes, the very fact that an EM shouldn’t have that authority (which is quite reasonable, since the EM isn’t a priest) indicates that the EM probably shouldn’t be there in the first place. (i.e., Do we really need 12 people to distribute Communion to 200 people?)

        If only we still had more permanent deacons and if the minor orders could be brought back this wouldn’t be so much of an issue. Fortunately, we have a deacon-in-training at our parish, and he’s the perfect candidate for the job.

        Oh, and more note, I was making a comment about how common it’s become for the priest to bless children who are too young to receive Communion which is against the rubrics because tt’s about Communion, and not going up to get your “present”, and my parents commented that at their parish (in the Diocese of Richmond, surprise, surprise), the EMs are instructed to give “blessings” to the children themselves.

        After I gathered up the pieces of my skull and brain matter from the floor and walls, I just let it go. What could I say?

  5. Comment by Seymour Butz:

    Alas, when I saw the title of the post I was hoping for a juicy tale of some deranged secularist denigrating Our Lady as an evil queen, as Catholics do indeed esteem her as a queen, and like all traditional Christian practices this of course must be evil. Still, this a pretty good tale about good old Nance.

    Pelosi now knows (no matter how energetically she pretends she does not know) that she is damned to hell.

    Well, she’s been told, at least, but to say that she knows presupposes that she really believes in any Catholic doctrine at all, when I suspect that to call her, in her heart of hearts, a Christian of even the most liberal stripe would be inaccurate; therapeutic morally relativistic Deism strikes me as far more likely.

    • Comment by wlinden:

      You thought THAT? I thought it was going to be a post deriving captivating theological lessons from ONCE UPON A TIME.

    • Comment by John C Wright:

      Pardon my lack of precision. We lawyers have a phrase ‘knows or has a duty to know’ to describe the situation when a person is on notice and has a positive duty to make herself know something she knows she is supposed to know. When I said ‘know’ I meant it in this sense. If she does not know at this point, it is deliberate ignorance, which, from a legal point of view, is the same as knowing.

    • Comment by Zaklog the Great:

      I was hoping for a juicy tale of some deranged secularist denigrating Our Lady as an evil queen

      As a Protestant who will shortly be joining an RCIA class (since I’m not actually in the class yet, I don’t know what the term for us is), it seems profoundly unlikely that any secularist would bother attacking Mary for any reason. The only problem I ever had, and the only reasonable charge I ever heard brought against the Catholic Church on this matter, was the appearance of idolatry. I have had this thoroughly and carefully explained to me elsewhere on this very blog, and no longer consider it an issue. All that to say, anyone who is not a committed Christian has no particular reason to care about that, and hence no great reason to insult Mary.

      Of course, as you said, denigrating Christ’s Church is reason enough for leftists.

      • Comment by Seymour Butz:

        My dear Zaklog, how surprised you would be! Perhaps mere atheists would be content to dismiss the Virgin Mother as another mere bit of supernatural claptrap, but the A+ feminists, oh! the way they seethe over the patriarchal catspaw called Miryam, you would never have guessed that she were a sinless woman who never knew a man, and gave birth only to one. I have read several essays expounding the hypocritical dual obsession that patriarchal Christianity has with women as virgins whose sexuality men perfectly control, and women as mothers whose sexuality men utterly exploit; Mary of course being a reconciliation between these schizophrenic principles which is both perfect and perfectly impossible, like so many demands made on women. I even saw one essay take issue with, if I recall, an early Italian Renaissance painting featuring Mary nursing the infant Jesus; apparently the singular exposure of the operative breast was unrealistically chaste. The picture which the feminists paint of Christian sexuality, on the other hand, is that of a cartoonishly stereotypical pædophilic priest, wringing his hands and sweating nervously at the sight of all the irresistible innocence and purity set before him — which, considering the amount of political hay the Left likes making out of such scandals, really shouldn’t be surprising at all, except that it’s so stupid.

        Oh yes, friend: Mariology may be (naturally enough) as uncommon among post-Protestant American secularists as it is among still-Protestant American Christians, but those antitheists who do deign to contemplate her (especially the feminist subspecies) hate her with a loathing more or less commensurate with how much they hate her Son.

      • Comment by John C Wright:

        As an ex-Protestant it seems profoundly unlikely to you that any secularist would bother attacking Mary for any reason.

        As an ex-Atheist I most solemnly assure you that you have utterly underestimated what is at stake here.

        The point of the Protestant program, whether the result was good or ill, whether you think the program was proud or humble, was one thing and one thing only: to eliminate anything of the rite or discipline of the Church which had any possibility of standing between man and the naked glory of God. It was an attempt to find God without any crutch, decoration, sacrament, host, or help. It was an attempt to reduce the matter to its simplest and purest essential.

        The point of the secular and atheist program is to eliminate anything which has any possibility of standing between man and the naked sovereign power of God, the power to define one’s own life as one sees fit, to define reality to suit oneself, to set one’s own standards of right and wrong, and write one’s own personal Ten Commandments for oneself as one willed the matter. It is an attempt to be a god within the bounds of one’s own inflating self opinion without any help, sacrament, rite, image, or distraction.

        The self opinion, also called the sin of pride, by its very nature, in all atheists except the most humble and honest, must sooner or later provoke even a once mild and once unemotional atheist first to contempt of holy things, and eventually (depending on how seriously he sees them as a threat) to hatred. The only reason why secularists do not blaspheme Our Lady each and every day in all public fora is because this is an English speaking hence largely Protestant nation.

  6. Comment by billthesimple:

    Much as I am alarmed at the casual attitude some fellow so-called Catholics take toward the Sacrament and the Magisterium, in Christion charity I must urge you not to say things like ‘Pelosi now knows (no matter how energetically she pretends she does not know) that she is damned to hell.’ This is after all the exact thing our Lord warns us of, in fact in today’s Gospel reading at Mass – we must admonish, chastise, warn, but it is not ours to condemn. We do not know at any time the state of another’s soul. You would be right to warn her that she is in grave and mortal danger, and I believe she is, but in no way can we say she is condemned to hell. The Church condemns no one – you may have noticed she canonizes saints but does not damn sinners. By the way I have your latest loaded to my Kindle waiting for vacation next week, but I’m having trouble restraining myself.

    • Comment by John C Wright:

      All men are damned to hell except that Christ saves.

      I did not condemn her, did not say that I was casting into hell, nor did I say I wished her in hell. I said she knows she is in grave danger unless she repents — priests do not deny the faithful communion for light or transient reasons.

      Nor, as a Catholic, do I believe the doctrine of Election that there are certain saved few who cannot by any act throw themselves out of the hand of Christ and into the pit. She cannot be saved against her will. All sinners, you and me both brother, and in danger of hellfire. No need to make it worse by defying the Church established like the ladder Jacob saw to save us and lead us upward.

    • Comment by NRMD:

      When you say “we can in no way say she is condemned to hell”, it is true that we cannot say absolutely “she is certainly destined for hell”, but we can reason that:

      1. Any person who voluntarily performs action X, and does not later repent, is condemned to hell. [This describes all mortal sin.]
      2. She has performed action X, apparently voluntarily.
      3. Therefore, (assuming that the appearance of voluntariness is accurate) if she does not repent, she is condemned to hell.

      Therefore, we can say “she is condemned to hell” in a relative sense.

      The statements that “the Church condemns no one” and “does not damn sinners” stand in contrast to the formula of excommunication, which reads in part:

      “We declare him to be excommunicated and anathematized, and we judge him damned with the devil and his angels, and all the reprobate, in eternal fire; we hand him over to Satan for the punishment of his flesh until he escapes the snares of the devil, amends himself, does penance, and makes satisfaction to the Church which he has wounded, so that his soul might be saved on the day of judgment.”

      • Comment by Mary:

        One notes that John, in his epistle, calmly talks about sinners whose sins lead to death, and those who don’t — and how you need not pray for the first, which shows that they can be detected from the outside.

  7. Comment by Sandy Petersen:

    Nancy Pelosi was excommunicated? Surely not officially. I assume that is just a left-handed attack. I agree that she has divorced herself spiritually from her mother faith through her beliefs, but excommunication to me is an official ritual, carried forth by authorities. At least that is how it is done in the Mormon church and I assume the Catholic as well.

    • Comment by luckymarty:

      Canon law does provides for a few actions which can cause immediate excommunication without a trial or any other ecclesiastic action. (The technical term is “latae sententiae”.)

      Attempts have been made to argue that Mrs. Pelosi incurred a latae sententiae excommunication by her position on abortion (“A person who procures a completed abortion incurs a latae sententiae excommunication”), but the arguments are unpersuasive — to me and to the experts. As far as I can tell, it is only metaphorical to refer to her as “excommunicated.”

      • Comment by Tiago Becerra Paolini:

        What canon 1398 says is:
         

        A person who procures a completed abortion incurs a latae sententiae excommunication.

        This means that, in order to have a latae sententiae excommunication, the abortion has to necessarily be accomplished. The excommunication applies to both the people who did the abortion and to all the people who helped the abortion in any extent (either directly or indirectly).

        A support for abortion does not incurs in latae sententiae excommunication if (and only if) this support has not helped an abortion. Regardless, willingly supporting abortion with full knowledge that it is wrong is a mortal sin. People in mortal sin state must not receive the communion. In order to be able to commune again they have to make a valid confession (which requires one to honestly admits that he has sinned, to atone his sins and to make an effort to change his ways).

        It is worth noting that everyone who die in mortal sin without repentance goes straight to hell (I am not condemning anyone in specific to hell, I am just stating the circumstance that leads someone to hell).

    • Comment by SMM:

      Ms. Pelosi is excommunicated to my knowledge, but you are correct: It is unofficial. She has excommunicated herself. Any mortal sin, which mortally cuts one off from God, “(ex)communicates” one. One should not go for “communion” (communicate) without being in a state of sanctifying grace. To do so brings judgment upon the one in mortal sin (1 Cor XI: 27-30). Ms. Pelosi is a public mortal sinner and should probably be officially (capital “E”) excommunicated by her bishop as you allude to above Mr. Peterson. This would help abate the scandal she causes to the “little children” and would allow her to repent and be worthy of the Body and Blood. We are also insured it would help with her (mental) infirmity as well.

      While the Church is indeed thought of as female, she is male in one penultimate instant (see “Why Priests Must Be Male”, by Ann Barnhardt for an excellent treatise). This instant has to do with the Blessed Sacrament.

      • Comment by Sylvie D. Rousseau:

        “While the Church is indeed thought of as female…”

        The Church is not “thought of” as female, she is affirmed so unambiguously in all the Bible (in the figure of the “People” in the OT) and theology all the time. The priest is part of the Church like any other Christian, except when performing the sacraments in persona Christi; then he is not the Church, he is Christ the Groom. He cannot logically be the Bride at the same time.

        • Comment by DungeonHamster:

          Three points, one substantive, two somewhat pedantic.

          First, the Church is feminine. Female is, last I checked, a biological term, such that “thought of as female” is in fact more accurate than female.

          Second, if you don’t mind me indulging my love of the persnickety just once more, technically he’s not the Bride, but a member of the Bride that is the Church.

          Thank you for your kind indulgence in following me thus far. But we now move to my real disagreement with you.

          I am not sure we must draw so sharp a distinction. The male and female are images of higher things. Bridegroom and Bride are only an image of a reality that transcends what we here in exile comprehend by the terms. Similarly, though I grant that in the sacraments he uniquely fulfills this role and function, a priest is in a sense in persona Christi at all times; indeed, given the the Church is not only Christ’s Bride but also his Body, in another, albeit less complete sense, all members of the Church are in persona Christi, this being one sense in which the priesthood of all believers affirmed in CCC 1546 is a reality. Things can have multiple layers, and to compound the matter our perspective is extremely limited. In no way does this undermine the underlying reality, but it does mean things that seem to us apparently contradictory (such as, for instance, three persons in one being or two natures in one person) may in fact be true.

          In other words, yes, the priest can be in one sense in persona Christi and at the same time in another sense a member of the Bride of Christ. He does not stop being a member of the Church that is said Bride either when he is ordained or when he is performing the sacraments, anymore than a man stops being a husband when he is playing with his son.

          • Comment by John C Wright:

            No, you are mistaken. The Church is female. She gives birth to the faithful in baptism and nourishes them at her breast at Mass. The biological term is the metaphor. The spirit is the reality.

            • Comment by Tom Simon:

              Ah, but the biological term is the term: I mean that the word ‘female’ properly pertains to the biological phenomenon, even if it is only God’s metaphor for a higher spiritual reality. Since we humans, in our present fallen state, know that reality only by the solitary example of the Church, we have no need of a common noun for it in our language; we know it, or know of it, only in the instance called by the proper noun, ‘The Bride of Christ’.

              That Doctor of the Church whose name I have been given, and tried not to dishonour (and now and then I almost succeeded), would say that the maternal and uxorial quality of the Church, like the nature of God, is something about which we speak neither univocally nor equivocally, but analogically. Let us then frankly confess that the term ‘female’, being devised for mere biology, is inadequate to the task. Otherwise we shall think we understand the Bride better than we do.

            • Comment by Sylvie D. Rousseau:

              Thank you, Mr. Wright, particularly for this: “The biological term is the metaphor.”

              I have long thought the same about religious ecstatic experience, for example, that I saw branded as sexual sublimation in some book I read before my conversion. The two things are the exact opposite in my opinion: authentic contemplative ecstasy is the real thing while the earthly experience of male-female union is only a remote taste of Eden, which is already very far from the taste of heaven.

  8. Comment by Brian Niemeier:

    One of my theology professors knew a priest whose first assignment as pastor was at Ted Kennedy’s home parish in the late 90s/early 2000s. The first time Senator Kennedy presented himself to the new pastor for communion, he refused and politely asked the senator to meet with him after Mass. Mr. Kennedy said nothing, returned to his seat, and never met with the priest.

    Soon thereafter, the young priest was summoned for a dressing-down by his bishop and was transferred to another parish. My professor, who is also a priest, agreed that denying Senator Kennedy communion was the right call according to canon law and implied that Kennedy’s people pressured the diocese to chastise the pastor.

  9. Comment by The Deuce:

    Bad on the younger priest. There’s nothing loving or kind about helping someone to eat and drink damnation upon themselves. It strongly suggests that he doesn’t believe in that himself.

    • Comment by bear545:

      I will pass on to you something my dear old mother says to me whenever she hears me start complaining about some priest or other. She says: “You don’t do any good by complaining. You would do far more good if you were to stop in your complaints and say a single prayer for them. They don’t belong to you, they belong to God.” So pray for the young priest, and all priests.

  10. Comment by Outlaw-X:

    Mr. Wright, I wish I could have been there to see that. Not that I like or wish souls to be damned so much as I like to see those who have damned the innocent of life rejected by the Church. She regards the unborn much less than Father Charlie had regard for her. He neither denied her right to live or to come to Mass, he just denied her the sacrament of Communion. He may of embarrassed her, while she is a murderer.

    People think that us Catholics are a cult because they don’t understand the communion. This is why they are forbidden as non Catholics from partaking of it. If you don’t know what you are doing or what the meaning of the body, blood, soul and divinity of Christ in the Host means you have no business partaking of it.

    What Ms. Pelosi doesn’t realize is that the Church did not excommunicate her, she excommunicated herself. There need be no function or formal process of excommunication by the Church to be excommunicated. A person excommunicates themselves. Ms. Pelosi attends Mass as a process, like little girls play house and little boys play war. She is no more a Catholic than my dog even though when alive knew to be quiet and still when we were praying before a meal. He new the process, but did not understand the meaning.

    You can train a chicken or a politician but that doesn’t make them a Christian. As a protestant preacher once said. “Sitting in a chicken house doesn’t make you a chicken and sitting in a church house doesn’t make you a Christian. I would submit to you Ms. Pelosi is neither a chicken or a Christian, and the priest knew it.

    How far must we travel away from the truth before it becomes too far to see? How long can a nation exist with politicians who play house? But most importantly how long will we abide it and who do we have left who will step up and say no?

    It is time we did. The whispers should be shouted from the mountains and the games need to end now. I am not in the business of repossessing souls but she is very late on her payment schedule, and at her age it won’t be long before the repo man comes to her door.

    I fear the Lord, not just because I am at deaths door, but because we all are and I realize like ten thousand bright shining lights that the temporal will soon become eternal for everyone. History and gravestones tell the story but some people just can’t read.

  11. Comment by Stephen:

    The Church is feminine, the way a ship or a storm or anything else men admire is feminine.

    Alright, I’m sensing that there’s a distinction in your thinking here, since presumably not everything that men admire (and I assume here, given the context, that you are using “men” in the non-inclusive sense, that is to say, using it to refer to the male sex; if not, I am entirely open to correction) is necessarily feminine. Bravery in battle, for example, is not something I would term “feminine”. Are you using a distinction between different senses of admiration, or using another word altogether for, say, the example of bravery in battle, or are we using alternate definitions of the word (or some other reason of which I cannot conceive)?

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