Most Bishops Wouldn’t Deny Communion, Says Cardinal

A top Roman Catholic official has suggested that most American bishops would not deny communion to politicians who advocate policies not supported by the church.

Cardinal Theodore McCarrick of Washington, D.C., said in early July that “a majority” of U.S. bishops would not deny communion to Catholic politicians who dissent from church doctrine, the Religion News Service reported.

McCarrick is head of a church task force regarding the treatment of such politicians. Last year, a clutch of national and international bishops suggested that politicians who strayed from the church’s teachings should be denied communion. Several American bishops criticized Democratic presidential challenger John F. Kerry for his support of reproductive rights and suggested he ought to be denied communion.

McCarrick’s task force is soon expected to issue recommendations to the bishops on the subject matter, though no release date has been announced.