Letters to the Editor

Receiving the Eucharist is not a ‘political’ issue

Thank you for Russell Shaw’s excellent article “Striving for coherence.” It cannot be overstated that the great gift of Our Lord in the Eucharist at Mass is the focal point of our Catholic faith.

When public figures hypocritically state that they are “Catholic” but openly advocate a position that is condemned by our Church as intrinsically evil (abortion), they are apostatizing — rejecting a cornerstone tenet of our faith, in effect denying that they are truly Catholic. If I am understanding canon law correctly (#1364) by their “public show or speech” that is contrary to the faith they have excommunicated themselves (“latae sententiae”) and are prohibited from receiving the sacraments (#1331). Ergo, if they approach the altar to receive the Eucharist they should be turned away.

The only persons making this a “political” problem are the persons unabashedly advocating this terrible evil. Our U.S. bishops should make a definitive statement to the public at large and to our Catholics in particular how this freely-chosen conduct on their part has in effect excommunicated them from our faith by their own choice and negated their opportunity to receive the Eucharist. My ardent hope is that the bishops will ignore the strident squawking of the secular media and stand up for the truth by clarifying this issue at their general meeting this month.

Greg Polito, MD, KM, Dallas, Texas

An obligation to serve all Americans

In the June 4 issue, Russell Shaw’s article does a good job of outlining the issues facing the bishops at their June meeting. However, he fails to include the issue that a Catholic elected to office takes an oath to “preserve, protect, and defend the constitution of the United States,” thereby promising to serve all people regardless of faith, in our diverse pluralistic country. 

Some bishops would penalize those elected to public office who recognize their obligation to serve all citizens, not just Catholics and our values. 

— William Marmion, St. Matthew Church, Long Beach

What would Dorothy Day think?

Dorothy Day and St. Thérèse of Lisieux are two Catholic figures that I admire very much and pray to often. I thought Fr. Rolheiser’s recent article on their connection was just lovely, and I would like to thank him for the gift of his writing. 

As the case for Day’s sainthood advances, I would love to see more writing in Angelus about her, including her thoughts on the idea of her own sainthood! Her example of service and love for the poor is ever needed, and her life and struggles are a beautiful example of the cycle of consolation and desolation we all go through as followers of Christ.

— Luke Westby, Southern California

Some parenting needed in the homeless crisis

In reading "Los Angeles fails on permanent housing" and "How to Save a City” in the May 21 issue, I find the costs and conflicts resulting from the homeless crisis astounding.

Even if every person on the street were given a structure to live in, homelessness is here to stay. The discarding of human life through abortion or neglect happens daily and has become acceptable.  People with a very poor attitude about life are injurious to themselves and those around them. We see this in drug addiction, sexual abuse, prostitution, and other vices. If homelessness continues to rise despite government entitlements, something is not working properly.

However, it is important to note that not all people coming from broken homes end up homeless. There are some who do suffer emotional scars but are able to pursue goals in life.

This begs the question: What ever happened to parenting? The best forum for education, discussion and action is at the parish level. Discussing with and learning from parents and educators could be valuable in helping reach out effectively to those at risk in our communities.

— Dolores Mandujano, Whittier

More reporting needed on the Equality Act

Thank you to Dr. Christie for her rather alarming report about the Equality Act recently passed by the U.S. Congress and sent on the Senate in the May 7 issue. It was alarming to me because much of this bill is detrimental to the beliefs of American Catholics and the majority of our citizens. 

It can be laid completely at the door of Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, a nominal Catholic, but, if the Senate passes it, and President Biden signs it, it is at our door. One example of the bill’s many controversial topics that Dr. Christie warns us about is the very real possibility that Catholic and private schools could be sued by the federal government under this bill, unless they give in completely to the “gender issue.” 

I hate to say it, but I think this subject is quite a bit more important than the seven pages devoted to the restoration of the fire-damaged San Gabriel Mission (which I am happy about). It would be instructive also to your readers to see the names listed of all the Congress members who voted for this bill. 

— John DeLaney

Homily request: The preservation of life

I wanted to contribute to Heather King’s article “Wanted: Disturbing Homilies.” Her article seems to be politically motivated and targets a “Catholic in name only” audience.

The church has a very strong stance on abortion and the preservation of life.

Along political lines, the two parties in the United States have two very different positions on this topic. The right tends to align more with the Church in terms of life being sacred, and preserved at all costs. The left differs greatly, going as far as not recognizing conception as the beginning of life.

Knowing this, why do many Catholics, and the Church itself, align with the left? It has been puzzling to me as a Catholic for many years, and perhaps a priest could better explain. Those who claim to be Catholic and yet embrace the idea that life is sacred in some instances but not others illustrate the great hypocrisy that exists within the Church. I’d love to have a clergy member explain, or at least address it.

— Yadranka Draskovic

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