The Archbishop of Newark, New Jersey has told Catholic supporters of marriage equality that they are not welcome to take Communion on Sundays.
Archbishop John Myers wrote a pastoral letter in which he warned that Catholic supporters of same sex marriage were ‘seriously harm[ing] their communion with Christ and His Church,’
‘I urge those not in communion with the Church regarding her teachings on marriage and family … sincerely to re-examine their consciences,’ wrote the Archbishop.
‘If they continue to be unable to assent to or live Christ’s teachings in these matters, that they must and in all humility refrain from receiving Holy Communion until they can do so with integrity.’
Myers wrote that gays and lesbians could marry people of the opposite sex and lead ‘faithful and even joyous married lives.’
Myers was criticized by Cornell University Law Professor Steve Shiffrin on Catholic law blog Mirror of Justice, who wrote that Myers would be more likely to succeed in marginalizing himself rather than Catholic dissenters who disagreed with the church’s teaching on this and other issues.
‘If Myers is right about this, it seems to me that the overwhelming majority of American Catholics should not be receiving communion,’ Shiffrin wrote.
‘To reject the Church’s teaching on contraception is to reject the teaching authority of the Church, and the overwhelming majority of American Catholics do exactly that.
‘There is already a crisis in the teaching authority of the bishops. If they follow the lead of Archbishop Myers in being specific about which moral teaching cannot be rejected while continuing to receive communion, Catholics will either leave the Church or contumaciously receive communion anyway.
‘In other words, the emperor will lose many of the clothes that are left.’